Staying strong.... with your support

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by toughlovin, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Hi all,

    OK my son is a this new sober house which is the very strict place they go after detox. He seems to be doing fine as far as I can tell. The night he got there they gave $25 for food, then we added another $50. He he had left with no toiletries or anything so we agreed to give him a little more. So total he has had $100 for the week. The week is up tomorrow. Yesterday he texted me because he is running out of money.... I had gone online to get him a grocery card but he has not yet gotten it. I did not give him money yesterday figuring he would get the grocery card soon. So today he texted me, he has not gotten it yet. They tend to go to the store everyday... rather than stocking up for a week and he buys meat, veggies and a starch. My guess is he is hoping I will think that is healthy. LOL.

    So of course it pulls at my heart strings a little as I want him to eat...... BUT I also really think he needs to learn to live on the $75 a week we are giving him for groceries.... that is so doable but of course his cigarette habit doesn't help his budgeting. He did say yesterday that he will be getting a job and then we won't have to give him much money.... BUT I have heard that many times before. Just as an aside it is true that while he is in the stricter program he can't get a job.

    So I decided to call the house manager who is wonderful. I talked Occupational Therapist (OT) him about it. Decided that tomorrw a week is up and if he hasn't gotten the grocery card by then I can give him some then.... so I texted him and told him he needs to learn to live on the &75 a week, tomorrow is a week and if he hasn't gotten the card by then I will put some money into his account (which is controlled by the sober house not him).

    I believe that is the right thing to do and fact is he can go hungry if he has to for one night. It won't kill him. My fear now though is that he will steal to get money and get thrown out again.... and yet i know my giving him grocery money so he doesn't do something stupid is just my continuing to try and protect him from himself... and really I need to NOT do that.

    So logically I think I did the right thing... let him deal with it for a day for Goodness sakes... but I still feel a little guilty and a little worried.

    I have kept my mouth shut about the cigarettes... but he is going to have to figure out it may be a trade off between smoking and eating.

  2. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    You did the right thing. Rarely is the right thing the easiest thing, which is why you are feeling a tinge of mother guilt. Just keep reminding yourself that you are doing what is best for him... not what he wants.

  3. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Yes, you did the right thing. He will always run out of money if he thinks you will cave and send him more. My limit for my difficult child is $50 a week and that includes her cigarettes. She usually spends $35 for food and $15 for cigarettes. So far, she hasn't had any problems staying in that limit.

    As far as him stealing if you don't give him the money . . . that is his choice to make . . . and he will have to suffer the consequences. It is not on you!!

    I struggle with that, too. difficult child has mentioned a prostitute at the halfway house that offered to "hook her up" for spending money. I think was trying to manipulate us by scaring us that she would turn to prostitution in we didn't give her what she wanted. husband just said that it was her choice but it would be a very sad way to live.

    She never mentioned it again.

    Stay strong! You are doing great.

  4. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Thank you both... I needed to hear that.... Oh Gosh the thought of prostitution is pretty scary. But yeah what they choose to do is their choice.... He didn't respond but that is better than him responding either nastily or manipulatively!!!

  5. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    75 is easily enough to live on including cigs. Well I dont know where he is for the amount of money cigs are. Cory and Mandy have to share a pack a day because they cant afford more. I would imagine he could get cheap cigs for about 3 bucks a pack. You can here. If not, learn to smoke those cheap cigarillos I guess.
  6. Elsieshaye

    Elsieshaye Member

    I think you did the right thing. And, oh my goodness, what a lightbulb moment for me reading the line I quoted above. I spent a couple of years giving difficult child a sizeable allowance every week because, at the root of it, I was scared he'd shoplift and get arrested again if I didn't. I was totally trying to protect him from himself, which was so NOT my proper job. I didn't see it for what it was until you posted that, so thank you.
  7. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Holy smokes! I go to the grocery store every other week, spend less than $200 and that's food for all 3 of us (+1 occasionally!) for 2 weeks...
  8. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Thanks all. So the first week is up and the grocery card is not there yet. So I put money in his acct today and told him that was for this week and by next week the grocery card should be in so I will not be adding any money for 2 weeks. I think cigs are about $7 a pack.... so either he is going to have to find cheaper cigs, eat cheaper food, smoke less or go hungry. He needs to learn and yes he is getting enough to live on if he is careful.

    Everytime the phone rang last night I wondered if it woudl be "THE" call he was kicked out or arrested.... luckily it never came. LOL. So baby steps for me too.... but now I have made it clear no more for 2 weeks!!!!

    And today he told me he is going to start a job selling light bulbs over the phone, only problem is the pay is totally comission... LOL I wonder how that will go?? He actually has some good skills to be a salesman!!! Anyway I will be happy if he is at least trying to earn some money.


  9. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    TL when my difficult child was in rehab she found that maverick cigarettes are the cheapest around so we would get those and bring them to her. I think we paid like $47 a carton, as oppossed to $71 for her other brand. She had to cut down quite a bit too because it was either cigs or food.

    Every day that call doesn't come is good news. It's one more day he is clean and sober and one more day for that information to get into his brain.

  10. Elsieshaye

    Elsieshaye Member

    TL, how would you feel about turning your phone off in the evening, at least sometimes? I started doing that at one point when difficult child was living in a group home and I knew they'd handle whatever happened (they had primary custody of him and could get him medical care, etc, with my insurance), and it was amazing how much it helped my anxiety and my ability to sleep. You can't be listening for the phone to ring if it's not actually turned on, Know what I mean?? (((((TL)))))