Sometimes I think we are going to need a bigger couch...what's new with you?

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Signorina, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Just posting in response to Kathy's ..."move over" - we are going to need an NBA sized sectional couch at this rate. So scoot on over, grab a cup of coffee or a glass of wine...and let's chat!

    seems like spring has sprung and so many of our difficult child's are bouncing all over the place.

    Just a post to encourage some updates...


    After my pity party post here last Sunday - on difficult child's birthday - I think my H started to worry because I was teary all day. This may be too much information, but we were um happily intimate that morning and I burst into tears - actual sobs - right afterward. Totally a surprise to both of us. Not pretty weeping, but hiccuping snotty sobs. Certainly not the most romantic moment. All day I had trouble getting anything done. I had a humongous work project due the next day and I couldn't concentrate. Just went around in circles. Kept remembering the moment he was born...his birth was a little traumatic. My blood pressure plummeted and we lost his heartbeat. I remember in a daze the nurse trying to get me to move (I was numb from my epidural) and yelling at me "you gotta turn on your side or we're going to lose this kid..." and I was terrified at the thought I could lose this baby at 42 weeks and 2 days gestation. One of the worst moments of my life. It seems to parallel getting a kid to age 18 safe and sound and IN COLLEGE and then losing him to gfgdom just when I thought we could start pulling away...and that the hard part was over!

    Anyway, H felt so bad for me that he secretly called difficult child and told him to call me. And he did. It was really nice to hear his voice. He was in North Dakota visiting a friend on "spring break." He still wants to keep up the facade - to himself - that he is a college student despite that truth that he is a drop out who has been suspended. Whatever.. He is working at pizza hut for minimum wage, plans to head back here (city not our house) when school gets out to resume his summer job. I gently reminded him that his summer job (landscape) pays WAY more than pizza hut & that the mild weather meant that the landscaping company is all ready at work, But he wants to stay in the college town until school gets out. Doesn't seem too concerned about money - apparently he has the finances to travel. He talked to his brothers for a good long time, and H too. The ice has been broken, I guess.

    He did get in touch this week, he wanted to know if we would be home for Easter (no) and if so - could he come for Easter dinner. He also had questions about his taxes. I helped him with some information and transferred his turbo tax account (free file) to his new email address. We chatted for a bit. He seems to have forgotten that he lied about being enrolled in a few classes at Community college (he's not) - and I didn't remind him. He told me he is meeting with his advisor this week to set his schedule for next year. The conversation was nice and I was able to express my concerns that he will not be able to bring his resident GPA up to a 2.00 (necessary to be in good standing) even if he gets a 3.0 next semester. He believes he can take 19 credit hours and get a 3.2 to be off the hook. I find that doubtful, but didn't say so. I went over the GPA numbers with him and stressed that's why his dad and I wanted him to enroll in CC and stay home and see a pysch and a neuro so that we could appeal to have his last semester (failed) expunged or changed to incompletes/Ws - so that he could transfer elsewhere and start over with a new resident GPA. I did tell him he should ask his advisor if there was a way to change his failed semester to a withdrawal and remove the Fs from his GPA. He listened or pretended to do so - and at least I was able to get those points across. Something he didn't quite want to hear when he was home.

    He told me he and his pothead roommate are looking at places for next year. Randy - his friend who had the pyschotic break in 2011 - may live with them too - but he is still talking it over with his parents. I expressed that I thought it was nice that Randy's parents were involved in his decision. difficult child said they might lease an apartment starting May 1 so they can leave their stuff there over summer break. He thinks he can handle two rents...which is a surprise to me. Said he will pay "only" $200 p/m to sublet a room this summer in our city so he can afford to pay both rents.

    I updated him on his brother's college choice and told him that PC17 received a great scholarship. Let him know that his same age cousin is transferring to a *great school* in the fall and he seemed happy for both of them and a little sheepish. I asked him to save the date of his bros HS grad & he said he would NEVER miss it. I told him he could sleep on the couch in the den the night before so he can hang out with the visiting relatives.

    All good news. I could almost close my eyes and believe things will be OK. But been there done that. Grain of salt taken - but nice to know he's trying or at least faking it to us- must mean he cares somewhere. And I was able to get in many of the words I wanted to say. So, it is what it is... he isn't completely lost. Not yet anyway
    Lasted edited by : Apr 2, 2012
  2. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Well I may end up on that bigger couch when things fall apart with my difficult child.... but for now I personally am doing better, feeling some peaceful moments and am getting more acceptance. That may be because for now things are relatively calm and it may be the calm before the storm.... I am thinking about looking at colleges for my easy child daughter, and time with her, I am enjoying my job and mostly following weight watchers and it feels good when I am eating healthier and at least headed in the right direction.

    Back to the acceptance... I am accepting that my son is drug addict, that this is his journey, that there is nothing more I can do, and that I just have to watch so I don't get conned or sucked into rescuing him. And when I head down that mental road of what could I have done differently, what if..... I stop myself and remind myself it doesn't really matter becuase now he is an adult and it is up to him.

  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm sitting on this big couch with Kathy feeling a biot lonely but thrilled that you two are doing better. Sig it sounds like your difficult child does want to maintain some connection and that's good. Apparently he has been holding things together so maybe there is hope that you will eventually have a different but good relationship. I can really relate to the sad feelings that overcome you at certain times. I haven't been able to get over those yet.

    TL I am working hard at the same things you are, detaching and letting go and acceptance. This is not my journey and I can't do anything to fix things for her.

    As far as my update goes, I haven't spoken to difficult child in weeks. I've been trying to straighten out her bank account so I sent her a couple texts telling her what I'm doing but got no response from her and didn't expect one. husband called her the other day to check about her transferring her car plates and he wished her luck in everything. She responded that he sounded like she was no longer our daughter. He told her of course she was but that we felt that she was making very bad choices and the outcome was not going to be good.

    easy child saw her yesterday because she had to bring her dog into the animal hospital she works at. She said difficult child was pleasant but when she left easy child texted her and told her she was sad they couldn't have a relationship. difficult child she wanted one but easy child told her not as long as she was drinking and using drugs. difficult child tried to tell her that she only drinks once in a while when she is celebrating something and just ignored the drug part. easy child told her we all knew that was a lie so that was that.

    I'm waiting to see if she asks to come over on Easter. I told husband I didn't want her over, that I wasn't going to ignire the elephant in the room. I doubt she wil ask anyway, she does not want us to voice our disapproval of her and we will see her car all wrecked and she doesn't want to have to explain that.

    Besides that husband is having surgery tomorrow on his torn meniscus so my day will be busy for the next few weeks driving him back and forth to work until he is off crutches.

    Thanks for starting this thread Sig, it's nice to catch up.

  4. buddy

    buddy New Member

    HUGS to you. He clearly does love you very much, just so very gfgish in his behavior. He has the basic foundation you gave him in there, and if anything is going to eventually turn this around, I bet that will be what helps him to stay strong.

    I think it makes sense that you broke down at that time. (not an expert here, LOL) the only time crying has really helped me is when I did the ugly cry anyway. the kind that exhausts you when you are done. I think it is very sweet your H called him. Nothing takes away the pain of what you are going through, but you have a really lovely family. I enjoy your posts and am so excited for the college plans of your other son.
  5. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Thanks Buddy - and I am so excited that easy child chose the college in your "tree" - maybe we can actually meet :)
  6. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm excited for you too Sig. You will get to enjoy sending your son off to college that you missed with difficult child. I'm so glad I had it with easy child and it helps when I see all my friends kids enjoying their college years in a healthy way and listen to the parents talk about their visits to campus. I missed that with difficult child and those days are just a bad memory to me now. Congratulations on his scholarship.

  7. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    A big me too on the college thing. It was so heartbreaking for me to hear about the college process when my difficult child was a junior and senior. I knew he was in no shape to go even though he talked about community college but it was so hard to hear what other kids were doing.

    However now my easy child is a junior and we are going to go look at some schools in a couple of weeks just to start getting an idea of what school she would like to go to. Although I am a bit overwhelmed by the process it is also so exciting and fun to be talking to her about her future plans and to know her future is in good shape!!!

  8. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thank goodness for our easy child's.

  9. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    HI - can I have a cup of coffee and sit, too?

    My difficult child told me last week that she had detoxed for a few days and was ready to submit to a sober life. She was trying desperately to get a hold of my friend (who I think has saw the crazy and decided to run). But, she had such an entitled attitude and I was in disbelief that she was not one bit grateful for the opportunity my friend was willing to give her. All she could think about was how she was going to have a short temper because she was sober. I told her not to bother calling me back with that attitude and she hasn't. I have not heard a word from her in about a week. I just checked her call records and she tried calling my friend Monday but my friend did not answer the call and has not called her back. I think that opportunity is officially gone. Yet difficult child said she was not desperate enough for rehab. Judging by the call records I just saw, she is still very much in the trenches of her addiction...

    As for my easy child ever going to college, well, I just don't think it is going to be in his future. I love my easy child dearly, but he is just not book smart. His grades have always been low and he has always struggled to pass. I wish so very badly we had a vocational/trade school around here, but we don't. I keep trying with him, though. The teachers think he is lazy, but honestly, I think part of it is laziness and part of it is that he just isn't very smart. Gosh, that is horrible to say about your child, isn't it? :(

    I think I may have to experience the college excitement through all of you...
  10. Giulia

    Giulia New Member

    If he struggles at school, do you think that medicines can help him ?

    What I can say from my own experience is that when school becomes hyper demanding, I could barely manage. Teachers thought that I was only a lazy person, and I could do much better if I wanted. The only thing is... I couldn't. (undiagnosed and unmedicated)
    His low grades can be explained by his attention deficit. Which is much different from laziness.
    Also, it's not because he has low grades that it automatically means that he is "not very intelligent". You can be a genius with low grades. You can be absolutely stupid and having high grades at the same time.

    According to my personal experience, his ADD can play a lot on these low grades.
    Medicine can help him focus.
    After, weigh the pros and cons with his doctor, then you can decide with all the info together.
    He may be in time to need a medicine whereas he could manage without medicine before. I can understand that it is difficult to accept such a step. It doesn't mean that you are guilty if you medicate your child. It does not make you a "failed mommy". It doesn't mean that you are giving in to his "laziness and not being smart".

    If you decide to medicate your son, just remember that you need a help to express his potential without letting him struggle with his ADD. Again, medicating a child doesn't make you a "bad mom", even if some folks could tell you something like that. Leave them away, they don't worth any effort.
  11. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    PG-{{{pays the seat beside me and pours a cuppa joe,,,}

    College isn't for everyone. Does your easy child have anything he loves? Like a hobby or a sport? Encourage that. Let him taste success elsewhere if school isnt his thing!

    I work in the retail industry. It can be a great fit for people with add. My 65 yo Uncle who likely has ADD (long before it was dxd) he went into retail as a young man & now owns a chain of über successful variety stores. Both of his adult sons manage the business as partners. One was a straight A college student who graduated & started at IBM. The other son had an Learning Disability (LD) (sensory, I think)plus anxiety, was not a college student and yet both are equal assets to the business. You would never guess they have totally different backgrounds. My family is also in the retail business. My nephew -an aspie-is a great asset to us! One of our rising stars. I suspect many of the kids we hired right out of Hs had LDs and many of them excelled in retail & outgrew us. Quite a few went to school as adults-and got degrees or certificates in related fields. I think the ever changing tasks associated w retail are a good fit for less "studious" kids.

    Sorry to hear your difficult child is still maintaining the status quo. I feel your frustration. It's so hard when they don't have any desire to change. My difficult child too.

    Nice to see u on the boards!
  12. Elsieshaye

    Elsieshaye Member

    Grabbing a cup and sitting with y'all. Have only heard sporadically from difficult child, when he needs something like his birth certificate, to help with meeting I-9 requirements for a job. No requests for money received, and I haven't offered any. I did unblock him from being able to see my Facebook posts (which are rare and generally have to do with the weather or the cat, lol). He hasn't blocked me from seeing his FB wall, but his girlfriend is the one who posts on there most often, although he comments. (I like her - she's funny and kind and obviously cares about him, if the posts are representative of how they are with each other). Most of his spontaneous posts and a lot of the comments involve pot references. :proudmom::rolleyes:

    What I'm struggling with right now is blaming myself for where he is and internalizing his anger at me. Working on that in therapy. Still very hard not to feel like a bad parent, especially when my boyfriend's son is doing so well. I feel guilty for not protecting difficult child more from his father's crazy, and for not standing up to his father more. I wonder sometimes if I am over-reacting and blaming difficult child for something that should be my responsibility, or if I should be friendlier and more supportive and initiate more contact. But, fundamentally, I don't want to, and I honestly do find him abusive. Struggling with the idea that a child -can- be abusive to a parent, or that the difficult child events over time can be traumatic for us as well as for them, and feeling like I need to take more responsibility because difficult child is the child and I am the parent. I know that's not helpful or entirely accurate, but I'm still struggling.
  13. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    What an awesome post!!! I needed that. Thank you! :)

    He is actually dying to work at Hot Topic and he can apply as soon as he turns 15 in October. :)

    I work in retail, too! We lease/manage malls and open air centers. LOVE the world of retail!!
  14. wantpeace

    wantpeace New Member

    PatriotsGirl - As a teacher, I have seen ADD medications work miracles for many students. My own easy child is 15 and started taking medications (Vyvanse) for the first time a year ago. I just looked at his report card 30 minutes ago and he got all As and Bs. He said he notices a huge difference in his ability to focus during class. I'm careful about keeping these medications locked up of course. Sorry if I got off-topic from the original thread.
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2012
  15. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    He was on medication before, but honestly, his personality changed. He became zombie-like. Then the doctor was concerned about his heart so she took him off of them. And I had to ask myself if it was worth drugging my kid so he would get good grades. I struggle with that. difficult child was on ADD medications and she ended up hooked on that "speedy" feeling and ended up on crystal meth. So, I have not had a wonderful experience with my kids being on these medications. I was honestly wanting him to learn to cope and get through life with his issues as I have...
  16. Giulia

    Giulia New Member

    double post. Technical issue.
  17. Giulia

    Giulia New Member

    PatriotGirls, you don't drug your child when you give him a medicine to care his ADD. You help him care with his ADD.
    If your child were diabetic, it would be exactly the same.
    And if you care his ADD with the right medicine, you can avoid substance abuse.

    After, stimulants may not be the right class of medicine because of its side effects on your child. But you have other options than stimulants.
    It's not because stimulants didn't work for your easy child and your difficult child had substance abuse with it that your easy child will be a substance abuser if we medicate his ADD. The challenge is finding the right medicine, which may not be a stimulant for your easy child.

    Your "wanting to learn how to cope with his issues as you did" is not incompatible with giving medicines.
    Instead, he will be more able to learn to cope with his issues if he receives the right care than if he does not.

    If he struggles so much at school and you refuse to give a medicine because you fear a substance abuse, you set up the situation for a substance abuse. Instead of preventing the situation you fear from happening, you set up the situation you wanted to avoid at all cost. Paradoxical, but it's the sad reality I could see on my father, a such classical situation instead.
    Of course, it's not your intention, but it's exactly what the situation you fear so much will become. If he self medicates his symptoms with substances, it's not any better, even....

    I promise you that you don't drug your child by caring his ADD. The most challenging is finding the right medicine.
    But don't feel like you drug your child, because it's exactly the contrary : you find the right medicine to avoid him self medicate his symptoms with more harmful stuff.
    You are not a "bad mommy" if you give a medicine to your child with ADD. And it's not because he had issues with one medicine that we have no ability to find the right one for your easy child. The right medicine for me may not be the right one for another person.
  18. wantpeace

    wantpeace New Member

    PatriotsGirl - I understand that it's a personal decision. My son's personality really didn't change at all, but I've seen it in students. Sometimes the non-stimulant medications (like Stratera) work better with kids that don't have the hyperactivity issues. My easy child goes to a doctor of psychology for his treatment and this is combined with counseling.

    I do think many of our difficult children started self medicating with drugs because of underlying conditions such as ADD.
  19. lovemysons

    lovemysons Well-Known Member

    Hi Signorina,

    I am thrilled to hear that your son is showing some responsibility...for work, apt, taxes, etc. He is still trying to survive out there and am so glad you had a chance to visit with him. Your husband is a keeper for sure!
    Happy to hear about your easy child's college situation as well. Congrats.

    As for me...I was up at 5:30am writing a letter to young difficult child in prison...Trying to stay connected to him.
    I see my grandbabies...they came and visited me a few mornings ago and brought me donuts too! I will probibly go to the casino tonight with my sweet daughter in law...must get out of this house and take a break from the worry over young difficult child.

    Thinking of you,
  20. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Yeah, he is not hyper AT ALL. difficult child was. I am trying to call doctors this morning to see if we can book him an appointment. I think I would feel better with non-stimulants and it is worth a shot to see if it will help him...but heck if any of them have answered a phone today!! :/