Son finally moved out


Active Member
So our oldest son, who has been struggling with anxiety/depression and substance abuse, finally moved out.

He is working a labour job, not full time, but enough to eat. He says he is looking for full time... Not sure how hard, but that is not really my concern I guess.

Younger son found full time work and is saving to move out by end of summer and go back to school part time. I'm proud of how he has taken ownership of work and money... I'm thinking he will be ok.

Older son says he isn't using or selling. He still uses pot, doesn't see it as a drug :(.

But we don't think he is using harder drugs, or dealing. If he is... At least it isn't in my house anymore.

I'm still sad about how the last few years have gone... And have mourned the loss of my dreams for him.. College etc.... But I am slowly realizing it's his journey and not mine to make. Trying to be loving and supportive while still maintaining my own space away from drugs etc.... I love my son, but I have to admit I am ashamed of some of his choices and his lifestyle. None of our friends have dealt with this , all their kids are doing the traditional college etc... Route. Most have gotten scholarships and are very successful. I know it's pathetic to compare, but I can't help it. I do feel that somehow I failed as a parent... Having a drug user and dealer as a son is so shameful. I feel so sad about it... Still.

Anyway, just wanted to catch you all up. Over all it's good, we are moving forward.

so ready to live

Well-Known Member
Colleen I see so much good and growth in your post. For you and your sons. Separation from your home is not a negative, he'll make his own way if he has to do that. Try not to forget when looking at other families that you only see their outside, don't compare that to your inside. Apples and oranges. There are many of us who have felt shame and failure but feelings aren't facts. Many troubled people come from great families, many totally messed up parents raise good kids. What's the rationale for that? It must be that people make their own choices....his are not yours...and now you allow him the respect and dignity of going his own way. That's what your job has been, to raise him as a child, that little part is done. He's young and there is so much hope that at some point he'll realize that what he thought was fun isn't fun anymore. You have done a good job, fight remorse. Do something for you today. Prayers.


Active Member
You would surprised how many families are dealing with this sort of thing. Most people do not talk about it because they feel just as much shame as you or me. Only when I opened up to others did I learn that so many other families were battling this as well. And not just lower economic families, but attorneys and other people who have high paying careers and are able to provide handsomely for their families. Drugs do not discriminate. It affects us all.

Your sons, my children, they each get to choose who they want to be. Your older son had the same opportunities as your younger son. Each is picking their own path just as we did when we were growing up. The best we can do as parents is to try to teach them every tool available to help them succeed. When they wonder down the wrong path all we can do is to try to nudge them back on the right one. Ultimately, it is up to them to decide.


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
Colleen that is good news.

It's a move in the right direction for both your sons I think and you can have some peace in your home too.

My son is going through a lot of changes too right now. It's all so very hard watching them on their journey and hoping they make good decisions for themselves.

New Leaf

Well-Known Member
Dearest Colleen, I know this has been a difficult journey for you and your family. From your posts I can see that you gave your boys a wonderful life and built a firm foundation for them to stand on. Now that base, becomes a platform for them to launch, spread their wings and fly in the direction of their choosing. The end of the story is not yet written and though your eldest has deviated from the path you so hoped for, it is not failure you are looking at, just someone searching for their meaning. He has a place to live and a job. This is good. He has to become motivated to care for his needs, to discover what he wants out of life. No more holing himself up in your home.
Younger son sounds like he has a good direction to set his sails for.
Now the work begins to try to focus on you and your life. It is a transition for sure, but it is a precious time for you and your husband. All of the years of sacrifice for your sons were well worth it, hopefully, they will one day look back and realize how much you did for them.
It is a process, working through all of the feelings that come with our d cs choices.
We are both grieving, you for the path your eldest is on, and I, for the loss of my husband.
One of my biggest regrets is the amount of time we lost together by trying desperately to help our d cs.
It was because we were grieving their choices too, and couldn't see beyond bargaining away our own lives, that really, they needed to learn from experiencing the consequences of their actions.
I cannot turn back the hands of time and redo it all, but I can at least use this life lesson to try and help others. From the bottom of my heart, I understand what you are going through.
I must write to you that this is a moment in time where you can rejuvenate your relationship with your spouse, make plans to have new adventures and experiences. Show your two boys that your marriage is precious and comes first now. In this, your sons will learn to become self reliant, and know that they must honor and respect the sanctity of your union with your husband.
Peace be yours dear, as you work through this grief and discover what the future holds, I too, will be headed towards the horizon knowing that the road ahead may be difficult.
Our lives have great value, and time is precious and short.
We can no longer hold our children's hands and lead them on their way, but we can show them the way, by how we lead our own lives.
Take the time you need to work through your feelings, and I will as well.
Me ke aloha,


Active Member
Oh dear sweet Leafy....

You are so wise my friend. I have learnt so much from you. You give advice but always in a loving way that makes me feel I can be strong and learn too.

" One of my biggest regrets is the amount of time we lost together by trying desperately to help our dcs."

Again.. You are so right, this is the time to focus on our marriage and precious time together.

Take care Leafy.....


Active Member
We took oldest son out to dinner tonight, and at first I was focused on how greasy he looked, and dirty.... I decided to put it aside and instead focus on him, and enjoying the fact he was out with us and wanting to be with us ( basically because it involved a rib fest ) but hey.... That is progress!

I did feel a bit embarrassed of his appearance... I'm being brutally honest here ..... But we had a nice time.

Trying to celebrate the small stuff!


Active Member
It's now been over a month... So far it's been ok. He comes by occasionally, but not too often, and never for very long.

I think younger son is doing so much better now that older one is out. It could also be my husband and I are much better too. Healthier home life.

He is still using pot. Not sure about what else. I can't really say if he is better, I hope he is.

I messed up big time this week though... I leant him money

I know I shouldn't have. I am definitely still weak with him. My heart is too soft. I am ashamed I did it. I told him I couldn't do it again. I hope I don't. Ugh....

My husband was not happy. I don't blame him.

Younger son is working full time at a local building supply store in the lumber yard. He is doing great. I am actually sad he is moving out at the end of the summer, but I think he will learn so much from the independence.

Older son mentioned he might have to move back in at the end of summer... I shudder to think of it. I don't know how we will deal with that. We are in process of cleaning out the whole basement... All drug paraphernalia has been tossed in garbage... Even the desk he used to cut drugs... I don't ever want that stuff in my house again. Ever.

My mother comes this week and my husband and I are doing a dream trip to the Mediterranean. We need this, we have been so disconnected these past months.. Heck years... Sigh...

Having my mom at the house makes me feel safer.... She is so good with the boys. They adore her.

I have had a rough end of year at school too, several of my grads have drug problems, and three have new babies! So draining... I really need a rest from all this worry....

Just wanted to check in....


Well-Known Member
Glad for your check-in update, Colleen. I have followed along with your story. This new post sounds like encouraging progress. Little steps, one by one, all moving forward. Don't beat yourself or be ashamed for giving the $$. You have learned from it by recognizing it. Recognizing our weak spots and learning is all part of the process. We are all learning and muddling through the process. Your detachment is growing.
... Cleaning out the house, having your mom there, plans for a trip, a rest .... all sound good and right for you.
Stay the course, dear fellow warrior. You are strong. Take care. Bless


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

I also have been following along. So happy your younger son is doing well. That is great news!!

I also so identify when you said older son was greasy at dinner. I wish that didn't bother me either.

Why does older son think he'll need to move back home? I don't know if I'd go down that road again but I know you have to do what you have to do.

I'm glad that your life is calmer now. My life is calmer too but my insides are chopped liver with my son's current situation. I HATE how he lives his life. HATE HATE HATE it.

How wonderful that you have this trip planned and your mom's visit. Those are both such positive things to look forward to!

Are you off all summer?

New Leaf

Well-Known Member
My mother comes this week and my husband and I are doing a dream trip to the Mediterranean. We need this, we have been so disconnected these past months.. Heck years... Sigh...
Colleen this is awesome. I am so glad for you and your husband. Quality time to rest and relax and get away from all of the worries and strife.
It sounds as if your son is making some progress, out on his own and working. This is good. Hopefully he will not have to move back in with you, one would think he would savor this independence?
Younger son doing better, yay, happier home life double yay.
Sorry for the woes at work, drugs are so rampant in our society. It must be frustrating to deal with on the home front and at work. Ugh.
Thinking of you and husband relaxing in the beautiful Mediterranean. Leave your troubles at home and have a wonderful trip. Please check in when you can and let us know how your trip goes. Soak it all in!


Active Member
We are back from vacation and all seems fairly quiet on the home front. My mom is having a good visit but hadn't seen older son very often. He only came by to see her a few times. Younger son did fine, going to work and being helpful around the house. For that I am thankful.

Older son showed up yesterday while I was out shopping, but he was sleeping. This was around 4pm. He had been at a music fest the night before I guess. He didn't get up until almost ten, as I was heading to bed. I gave him a few gifts from our trip And he seemed ok, tired.

I went to bed soon after as I am still jet lagged. Didn't really talk to him much, probably for the best.

My mom said he told her he plans on going back to work as a teachers assistant like he was before. She told him he would need to clean up his appearance. It's good that he will listen to her and my get defensive. He knows this. When he worked before he was clean and sober. It was the best six months of the previous four years... The most hopeful for sure. He told me once he actually felt good about himself then.

I haven't pushed it with him at all when he brings it up because I know my interference is a huge trigger for him. I'm trying so hard.

Last night my husband said their was a message on our home phone about a work abroad program with Australia. Not sure what that is about but sounds like he is trying to figure things out.

Why does it still hurt my heart so much to see him? I still think about him constantly, and play the what if game all the time.... Sigh.... I feel like I will never feel free. I spend so much energy worrying about his future, and obsessing about his past. Even away in the Mediterranean I had a wonderful time, but thought of him daily. I would see other young people his age travelling and it would hurt my heart. He loves to travel and he should be doing that right now! He is young and so so smart. His friends are all doing that, and starting to be grown ups... But he is still going to music festivals and sleeping all day.....I know this is kind of normal too... But he has no balance. Life is all a party.

My heart hurts now that I am home again and I'm trying to not ask him those touchy questions... It doesn't help.

I told my mom about him dealing and me paying off the dealer. Probably shouldn't have, she is sad now about it. I just hate how this life makes us keep these big secrets.... I'm not one who does that normally. It's too hard.

So when I got up this morning my poor mum was crying saying she is do worried about him. I felt terrible that she now is so upset. She said after I went to bed he paced around and when she asked if he was staying the night he said he was, but was on the phone and then left. I told her not to read too much into it. He comes and goes regularly. We usually have no idea where he could be.

I wish I hadn't told her. I don't want her constantly asking or worrying now.

He has to figure it out.... Just hard to watch.


Your story saddens me and encourages me. I mourn for my Difficult Child life, but mostly for the dreams I had for him...truly, our other children have a better mom for it. The comparing thing is a vicious cycle...but I know that as bad as things can get, it could always be worse. My son has to stay sober for a week to renter his sober living home, he said he politely said no the nice man selling meth outside the store..He was laughing at the situation...Sometimes you celebrate the small things, and trust me when I say small.

I have lectured about appearance too....He plans to move home also...his lip piercing is not welcome here, and I said no more tattoos until you carry your own health insurance..truly, he has nothing without us.

I'm encouraged...your trip was great, my mother is supportive but is a bit fearful I'd Difficult Child....he's never been. Violent but argumentative when younger, it she said she'd drive him to mtgs if we needed that...I will be a long while before I trust him with a. Car. He will need to work for and purchase his own. His. College money sits..someday he may grow updated and use it...but for now we celebrate every 24 hrs he is safe alive and makes a good walking away.

Love to you my friend...We get it.


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

I just caught up with your post. The trip sounds amazing.

I hope things are going okay for you. It's not as you had hoped but at least things are quiet in your home now.

Sorry for your mom being so sad. My parents are both gone and have been for many years but I'm sure if they were alive they'd be in complete shock knowing what their grandson is up to. I can't even imagine.

Keep us posted.