Teen run away

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Chele, Oct 22, 2007.

  1. Chele

    Chele New Member


    I just got this log in last week or so and now I really need some advice from you more experienced parents. I feel a bit silly sharing today after suicide discussions but I guess we all matter in life and we all need different kinds of help for our kids.

    My son, 17, who has been using cocaine, weed, and alcohol decided to run from the juvenile detention center once his probation counselor decided to take him into custody today. We went to get help from the county a year ago, when we learned of cocaine use, enrolled him in an inpatient drug program then outpatient. While in outpatient, he failed a drug screen again for cocaine so my husband and I decided to remove him from his home environment long term and placed him in a boarding school for therapy, treatment etc. Unfortunately, after 7 months, we discovered that his liver was malfunctioning and during the diagnosis, the school said he had to come home. They could not have him enrolled during treatment, testing and recovery.

    So, as scared as we were, we brought him home, to continue to learn what was going on with his liver, and what needed to be done to help it. My husband and I knew that he had not been gone long enough to change friends, and make all the life style changes needed to get clean and sober. But, we did not have a choice.

    So- here we are six months after his return back in the juvenile system but this time he ran. He passed three drug screens when he first got home but he has been loosing it since July. When we were in court last month the judge said he was going to take him from our custody and put in him detention, indefinitely the next time he messed up, failed a drug screen or got in trouble.

    Our court date is next Tues, but this morning when I hold him he had to see the probation counselor for the drug screen today, he told me that he smoked again and that I had to help him to pass the test. I had to get him something to drink so the weed would not show up. Well, I just lost it and started yelling. What do you think I have been trying to do for the past 4 years? We have spent thousands of dollars to help you. I can't express all the fear I had knowing that the judge said he would take him next week if he did anything wrong. So- I told him that if he wasn't ready to go in 30 min, I would call the probation C and tell her that he refused to come for the drug screen. He began to cry but got ready and went. The drive over was like going to a funeral, all silence. What can you say, we both knew he would not test clean, we both knew, we would end up in jail...

    During the meeting with the probation C, our son told her he smoked and she explained that, that was a violation of his probation and that since he had given him a warning before that she had to take him into custody today, for his safety until court next Tues. As they were preparing him, at the front desk, with NO Handcuffs, he just bolted out the door, 100 miles an hour. GONE.... I couldn't believe my eyes, as my husband went running after him and all the police ran to their cars after him. So- now its 7 pm and I still don't know if they got him. But we are doomed because even if he shows up here tonight or in 4 days, I have to call the police to come get him because he is wanted now. I just hope that his is ok; he lost his flip flops, as he ran in the rain and now it is dark. He had never gone anything like this before. How, do you stay strong, no parent should have to call the police and tell them to lock up their son. I will never forget the sight as he ran down the street today, not having a clue as to where to go or what to do. No ID, money, phone or even shoes.

    Anyone have any words of wisdom for us? We know he will end up in custody, I just fear for him until they get him, or even after they do... Please help.......
  2. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    I am so sorry. I know you are hurting. Hopefully they can apprehend him soon and without any problems. Juvinile detention is hard, but not as hard as adult incarceration would be. In SC they would treat him like an adult at 17. Hopefully after he is detained you can seek treatment through the justice system. Big hugs and kind thoughts.
  3. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    Chell, first off let me say that I am glad you posted. The folks on this board have gotten me through many a hard night.
    Nest I want you to take three deep breaths and let them out slowly. Try to let the tension leave your body while you exhale.
    Once your mind is clear get yourself organized. Start calling his friends and yours and family, anyone that he might contact. Ask if they have seen him or heard from him.

    Think about where he might go to feel safe or hide. Where did he go to get high? That would be a good place to start looking. Stay by the phone while the others search. Do not let anyone approach him if you think he might do them harm.

    I found that doing mindless tasks such as cleaning helped me keep my nervous energy in check while I awaited news of my son.

    Your son is most likely OK just scared but it is important that he is found before he sinks into despair. Post here we will hold your hand through this. And please let us know when he is found.
    (((HUGS))) -RM
  4. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Rejectedmom has given you some great advice.

    My daughter was a runner. Her situation was never as desperate as your son's but a runner nevertheless. The police could never find her. I usually did. She would run to her friends. Odds are your son will do the same -- other family or friends. He probably won't come home since he knows you will turn him in.

    I don't know where you are. If you're near a large(r) city, he may run to it, stopping at a Target or the like and stealing some shoes if he feels others locally can't help him. Our kids have an amazing ability to survive. When things get bad, he will try to get back to you because he'll decide even jail is better than the streets.

    I hope you hear from him soon.
  5. KFld

    KFld New Member

    First of all don't ever feel your story or crisis is any less then any others on this board. What you are going through is awful and you are reaching out here for help. This is a great place that you have come to.

    It sounds like you are doing everything right. You are long past the point of enabling and allowing your son to manipulate you. Good for you. That is a huge step that it took many of us here a long time to get too.

    My son is a recovering heroin addict. He is 20 years old and a little over one year clean, after about 2 years of pure nightmare. I was once one who would have brought him down to get him that drink to help him pass a drug test. It wasn't until I realized that I was harming him by trying to protect him, so much more then I was helping him, that I stopped doing things like that and let him hit bottom.

    My son never ran though, so that I cannot relate too. I'm sure he is scared and not even realizing or careing at this point how much worse he just made it for himself.

    I hope he turns up soon, or you figure out where he is and they can pick him up and get him the help he needs. He is still so young and there is still so much time for him to turn his life around.

    Welcome to our board. You will find many careing people here who have experienced much of what you are going through now.
  6. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member


    Welcome aboard.

    My daughter was a runner. She once bolted out of an inpatient drug program much like your son did. Middle of the winter ... no coat ... no money. She lived in a truck stop bathroom and got by on the kindness of strangers. *sigh* I know how scary this is.

    I don't know what words to offer you.

    I too hope they pick him up quickly. I hope that after a night out he realizes that he must face the music so to speak.

    I am so sorry. Please let us know when you find him.

    I will keep you all in my prayers.
  7. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I have not had a runner but I did have a teen who slipped out
    at night and partied. Many...yes, many...nights I spent on the
    computer with CD family members who were also up in the middle
    of the night. These kids have friends who provide support when
    they run, most of the time. There is a bond being teens and there is a powerful bond being druggies. Certainly you are worried with cause. on the other hand, statistically speaking your son is
    probably "chillin'" somewhere he feels safe.

    Like you and your husband, we opted to seek help and worked with the
    Department of Juvenile Justice to try to get him to "get it" when he was a juvenile. It
    only worked to the degree that after three residential programs
    he was convinced that only pot and booze were "safe". HUH???

    Welcome aboard. Sorry you have to be here. You are not alone.
  8. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    my son ran so much! he also escaped from a juvenile detention ctr that no one ever had escaped before...barefoot.
    he made it to north carolina from pennsylvania, telling people sad stories about needing to go back "home to gramma in NC" one person bought him shoes.

    he was gone several times and for many days. the longest as a juvenile was 11 dys.

    he always called me at some point, scared, hungry and tired. I would make him come here then call the cops.

    once he ran to florida with a girl.

    it is terrifying. it makes your skin crawl.

    when they get him they will most likely put him in a secure facility-juvenile jail. my son was in one as well. they are safe there but it is jail.