sorry i'm back, i need some help (or a slap upside the head)

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by missy44, Jul 7, 2009.

  1. missy44

    missy44 New Member

    Okay, my difficult child is doing much better lately. For the past 2 months really. He had 2 slip ups over a month ago (smoked marijuana twice), but has recently moved home (about a month ago), started a job about 2 weeks ago, signed himself up for an outpatient program with his psyc (he works on a farm once or twice a week with the doctor and counselors and gets regular therapy sessions at least once per week), registered again for college in the fall, stays home, has a new girlfriend who is completely opposed to drugs of any sort, takes his medication everyday (celexa), helps around the house, is pleasant most of the time, has gained about 20 pounds back of the 30-40 that he lost and the list goes on...

    My problem is... everytime he leaves the house my heart stops. I think he's going to use drugs every time. The neighbours kids came over tonight to jam with my son. My son is a drummer (a very good one) and our neighbours need a drummer. The band consists of the father (he was best man at our wedding) and their son and another kid and now our difficult child. These are good, successful, people. All of their kids are in university and the parents are great people. They like to kick back and have a few drinks at times. I'm so worried that their son may smoke pot from time to time and that my difficult child will too. My difficult child just came in and said I'm going out with Andy for bit (the other boy) and I'll be back soon. I started to say "be smart" and my son stopped me and said "mom, stop, I'm not stupid".

    I know that there is nothing I can do to stop what he does, whether it's good or bad, but I hate this feeling. I don't know what I'm looking for from everyone, maybe just to know that we all feel like this at times... The problem is, now that he's doing so well, I don't know what I'll do if he slips up. Would I kick him back out? I don't think so, I'm so afraid he'll fall hard again. What should I do if he slips? I don't think I'm strong enough for it right now, I just feel that I've been through all I can handle this last year.

    I hate this. I want to trust, but over the last year he has given me zero reason to trust him. I know he's on the right path, but it hasn't been long enough for me. I praise him everyday, hug him, tell him I love him and I am so very proud, but the memories aren't fading yet.

    Thanks for listening... again!
  2. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    You just have to let it go.

    I felt that way once Nichole reached stability. I was so scared she'd go off the deep end again. And maybe she will in the future. But I can't control that. So I had to learn to let it go. She has the know how to remain stable, she knows all the right things to do. Now it's up to her.

    Enjoy what you've got right now and try not to worry about it. Distract yourself if necessary so you're not thinking about it. This is his journey, not yours.

    It's not really a matter of trust. It's a matter of choice.......HIS choice.

    The only thing you can do is not enable him. The rest is up to him.

    So far it sounds like he's doing all the right things.:D

  3. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    How much does your son weigh?
    Would you like to carry him around forever?
    It is very hard, but you have to accept that you can not do the impossible.
    Sure, you can hope that he makes good choices from this point on. And there are good signs that this is what will happen. I think you need to feel good about this. However, you can not make choices for him. If at all possible, you need to let go. Understand, that you have done all that you can and then some to help him move forward and live a better life. It would sting if he were to mess up now. However, if by chance that were to happen, what of it? Maybe he would be able to get back on track faster?
    It is killing you to worry like this. It is breaking your back to carry this burden. Why? Because it was not meant to be. He has to carry his own weight. It is time. Time for him...time for you. You can not fight the laws of nature, so stop doing it. It is a lesson for him and a lesson for you. Let him carry his own burdens. Hope that he will make the right choices...and rejoice in the fact that things are looking positive. Take this opportunity to grow...find strength to give your son's burden's to your son. Find the strength to move forward in life regardless of your son's behavior. Your son has found strength to make better choices. It sounds foreign to you, because it is a new way of thinking....but your son is 18, the rules are different now. Do what you asked your son to do...find your inner strength. Hope for the best, rejoice in the good all around you, understand that you can not control another human being and you decide each and every day to make good choices that will lead to a happy and healthy life. Trust that he will do the best he can and if something should go wrong, trust that some sort of correction will be made and that you will make a choice to be content throughout it all.
    Lasted edited by : Jul 7, 2009
  4. missy44

    missy44 New Member

    Thanks so much, I needed a wake up call last night! Everything is fine and I do try to live by the advice below, every once in a while I break.

    My husband and I have another appointment with "our" therapist in a few weeks, those sessions always help.

    Today I'm going to be thankful for what I have, a wonderful husband and 4 wonderful children.

    Good point about the trust, I never thought about it that way. It is my difficult child's choice and so far he's been making good choices. I have to take it at face value right now.

    Nomad, my son now ways 140. He is a small person by nature, 5'6 and small boned. I'm only 100 pounds and 5' and his dad is small too. HIs weight loss was signicant to say the least, but the hollow look in his face is gone and he has a belly again.

    Off to work now, thanks again...
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Missy, trust me, it takes time. He seems to be doing GREAT. He may slip up and smoke pot once in a while. My daughter did for a few years once in a blue moon. Maybe, even now, she still does. It's not the end of the world to smoke pot once a month (this is JMO). I am grateful she is no longer a drug addict. My daughter drinks on special holidays, but that's it. I hate when she drinks because I remember her wild days, although she has become very tame and domesticated. I'll say, "J., don't drink and drive!" She'll laugh and say, "Mom, I"m not that stupid kid anymore. One of us won't drink at all." Meaning her SO.

    He has to earn your trust, but he is acting very much like a kid who has turned the corner. Cool that he's a great drummer! I'm always surprised at how many of our kids who get into drugs are creative. My daughter is fantastic artist and is going to school now for pastry arts. She stands out, has gotten tons of scholarships, and is on the Dean's list. Her cooking is untouchable--she has a real gift. I'll bet a lot of our kids are creatively gifted.

    Missy, when your son is out, try to watch a movie or take a long, relaxing bubble bath (with candles!) or read a great book. Your son is acting like my daughter did when she'd had enough of being high and drunk 24/7. I don't think he's going to be a hardcore, longterm drug abuser. He's doing great and you're just being a mom :D. (((Hugs)))
  6. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Yes or maybe you could go to a bookstore and look at books! That is what I do when I feel powerless I go find something I like to do just to get out of the house. You cannot control what he does when he is not "in your control". It is hard to trust them when they have not completely earned your trust back. At least he is exhibiting some good choices. Try to let him know you are trying to trust him - he has to earn it. Your reaction to when he leaves is normal. Try repeating the Serenity Prayer also and turn those things over you cannot control but control the things you can - and the wisdom to know the difference! Hang in there - you are doing good!
  7. missy44

    missy44 New Member

    Thanks again,

    Oops, in my earlier post I meant to say "weighs" not "ways", it was an early morning!

    I agree, trust has to be earned (and it will be) and each day is getting better. I'm not usually so paranoid, but last night i was.

    It's nice to have a place to vent.
  8. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member

    Hi missy - I think you're experiencing some mild form of PTSD. I went through the same thing. My trigger was the phone ringing. I used to actually get nauseated when it rang. It was awful.

    I agree with stands - find a diversion. A walk. A book. Surfing the web. Whatever helps you calm down and distract your thinking. It takes time. Lots of it.

  9. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Speaking of PTSD - I experienced that too. EVerytime I saw my difficult child or he called I got this anxious, panicky feeling like people would experience that had been beaten by their husband!!!!! I just felt like running away. Sometimes I would feel like saying to him "dont get near me - or feeling scared. You need to just go somewhere. I couldnt even stay in my house.
  10. Star*

    Star* call 911

    I'm not sure if I know any parents who have lived thorough it - that don't go through this to some degree no matter how old their kids are or how far removed their children become from drugs or alcohol.

    When you are asking us if you should kick him out if he messes up, it makes me wonder if you have a plan - and haven't ironed things out with him. It's like you want to ask him - "Well if you smoke weed what do you want me to do? Throw you out, live through it, take you back, just have me be a wreck and throw up, be a mess at work while you fall apart again?" That's not a healthy statement Missy.

    So what WOULD a healthy statement be? "If you smoke pot in my home - HERE is what will happen the first offense." if you're more liberal about it then you can even say "IF you smoke pot in my home here's what will happen the second offense." If you're really understanding and liberal you can even say "If you smoke pot in our home the third time THIS is what will happen." and then have a plan. YOU have no plan. He has NO consequences. There are rules - but if he breaks them - what happens? Does he even know? Do you? YOU have to sit down with him and set the boundaries - and consequences and he can be part OF that process - but there has to be and understanding from both sides that if THIS happens X will occur. No questions.

    It helps with the PTSD too.

    As far as what he's going to do when he goes out. (shrug) He's really blown all your trust and that doesn't get regained easily. It takes a LONG LONG time of him working VERY VERY hard to grow that back to where you can even believe him on the simple things like "I'm going to play with the band or I'll be right down the street." for you to believe him. Let alone believe that he's going to play with the band, be right down the street and stay sober and not high and come back when he says he is or not be confrontational or without attitude or anything else that isn't respectful or age appropriate behavior. So yeah - they expect us to ASSUME a lot when they are trying to change their behaviors because they have 1 day or 1 week sober and clean - and we're trying, but they have to understand that we're STILL trying to deal with all the fall out from their leftover behaviors and lies - and THAT doesn't go away as easy and trust isn't something you get back JUST because you are clean or sober. Trust takes YEARS of being spot on honest - before it's built back.

    I think you would both benefit from going to Alanon or Alateen....sounds a little lame but it could help. Narcanon was really great for me - I found more people there that was able to help me understand from a drug users point of view and what the nagging and mistrust issues felt like to them from their point of view. I got a clear picture of how NOT to be so that it was helpful in dealing with people in recovery.

    I'm proud of your son. He needs to know there is no such thing as perfect - but he also needs to know that it all starts again with one toke or hit too. Find him places to vent and get him interested in other things - a punching bag can be a great tool for releasing energy....

    Best of luck Missy -
  11. missy44

    missy44 New Member

    HI All,

    Things are going really well, I just had a "weak" moment. I have them time to time.

    Yes, we do have a plan. Sometimes when I think of possibly having to put that plan into place in the future I get panicky. I do try to live by the "12" hour rule, just get through the next 12 hours.

    Our plan is "any drugs" whatsoever and you're out. He's clear on that, he has random drug testing with his psyc and has agreed to share those results with us. So far, so good. Everyday seems to get better, but I have those moments where my thoughts run away with me. The therapy I"m receiving with my husband helps, but other times I look for suggestions from this board where I know there are those who have been down the same road.

    Star, I'm very my proud of my son as well. He has taken all of these steps on his own, we're just helping him along. He loves his psyc, his counselling and his medications. He knows he needs them and he really wants to live the type of life he grew up with (which wasn't a life of drugs or criminal behaviour).

    His relationships with everyone have improved. Especially his siblings. I love the fact that laughter is back in the home. I tell my son everyday (and my other children) that I'm so proud of him and that he can do whatever he sets his mind to.

    Trust will take a long time, that I'm sure of. I find each day I trust him a little more but for now it's overshadowed with doubt.

    As a parent it's so hard to detach. I did that (very well I think) during the time when he was unreachable. Now that he's doing so well detachment becomes more difficult. I'm trying to work on detachment when things are going well, being hopeful but being prepared for the worst case scenario, and trying to enjoy everyday.

    I am so lucky to have the husband I do, the children I have, my job and just life in general. I'm hoping this a "bump" in the road. I hear that many children come back to their roots, I know I did. I hope this is the same (in my heart I feel that it is).

    I'll check back soon, thanks everyone for taking the time to share your thoughts and advice with me.

  12. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Glad everything is levelling off some! It is amazing that he can see the life he needs to live. I dont think my son sees it at all and he is 25.