The Revolving Door

Mirabelle

Member
When I last posted, my stepson was following his pattern of leaving a homeless shelter on benefits payday to live in a hotel. He spent about 5 days in the latest hotel before he had to leave because he ran out of money. Smoking crack and meth the whole time. Said he didn't want to return to the shelter because people were stealing from him. So best as we can make out, he ended up in another hotel with a drug dealer who beat him up when he couldn't pay for the drugs he had been forwarded. He also claimed that this individual molested / attempted to molest him. He was so upset - my husband believed him, and that is good enough for me. He had a shelter friend die of a heroin overdose in the same week. How much lower can we go?

Yesterday he entered a 28 day rehab / sober living program. He spent several days in the hospital prior to this. He told the evaluating staff that he was suicidal so that they would allow him to stay, as he had nowhere else to go. During this hospital stint we actually got some help. The case manager he was assigned worked with the rehab center that my husband found to allow him to go straight there from the hospital. She also spent a lot of time talking with him, had the resident psychiatrist spend a lot of time talking with him, and had his medication re-evaluated. They concluded that although they believe he was correctly diagnosed as bipolar, they do not believe he has schizophrenia, which he had previously been diagnosed and treated for. They said that bipolar disorder can also cause delusions and breaks with reality, and in combination with heavy drug use, this is exacerbated. They said his patterns, for example, long periods of unmedicated lucidity, do not line up with those of someone suffering from schizophrenia.

I don't know that I have ever wanted something to be true more in my entire life. Still a mountain to climb, but taking one major mental illness off the table is like winning the lottery for us. This will not change his behavior / choices / addictive personality. It just makes things seem not quite as impossible.

The last three rehabs he went into, he flunked out of. People were bothering him, he didn't feel like talking, he didn't care to conform to rules etc. We are two weeks away from payday so hopefully he will at least be open to staying for the rest of the month. His mom said she would consider having him come to live with her if he successfully completed rehab. I am hoping that learning that he possibly does not suffer from schizophrenia will lift his spirits. I am hoping that getting beaten up and almost raped is an experience he will not want to put himself in a position to repeat. Time will tell. :rolleyes:
 

mindinggaps

New Member
Dear Mirabelle, thanks for sharing this update. It sounds like there is some positive news here and hope for the future. Wishing the best for you and your stepson.
 

Ascending

Member
Thank you for update.

I hope things continue to have some improvement for all of you.

I realize you just wrote that it probably is not schizophrenia, but wanted to share in case also helpful with other things or for others, that a Bryan Ardis video said in a study around 80% of people had schizophrenia symptoms resolve by going completely off any milk products (milk, cheese, butter, ingredients in other foods such as dressings), and that he found 100% of people he knew himself with the problem had it alleviated. I personally know someone who had delusional symptoms whatever diagnosis (possibly ptsd or Bipolar) sparked by eating fast foods and improve dramatically with regular home made foods (not processed even at home and avoiding also sugar and caffeine).

Plenty of Water also made a difference.

And nutrition

My son, I pray it won’t be revolving door, was helped to drop what he was on (less hard than yours) cold turkey by taking a variety of nootropics and vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fish oil, etc researched online to help.

It also gave him some sense of control of the situation, not being dependent on a “rehab”

And I shared with him my own take away from Jack Trimpy book Rational Recovery: The Decision to stop is all important. Replace using ___ with abstinence from ___ .
No excuses. No expectation to fail.

Your stepson is young enough, like mine, to really turn his life around well! It needs fundamentally to come from him!
 

Mirabelle

Member
Thank you MindingGaps and Ascending for your responses. I do appreciate the support and input very much.

Ascending, I have heard of and read some about the influence of diet and proper nutrition on mental disorders. I am so happy to hear that your son was helped by taking supplements. And yes, the idea for our sons that something within their control could improve their health, rather than being entirely reliant on outside interventions, is very exciting.

My stepson has always been something of a junk food addict. Before I came into his life, him and his sister pretty much ate nothing but processed foods - lots of yellow, brown, and orange. After a few years I successfully got them on to eating proper dinners, which they enjoyed and looked forward to.

When his drug abuse and mental illness came to the forefront at around 17 or 18, he came to the table less and less. Copious amounts of salt, fat, and sugar became something of an addiction. So bad for him, I know. Hopefully if he can take a few steps in the right direction, he would be open to eating better and trying some natural remedies as you describe. I never stop trying!

Tomorrow he will have been in rehab for a week. We have only heard from him once, ironically enough to ask us to drop him off some chocolate, chips, and soda. He is still there, hasn't walked yet, no one has called to express any concerns, and we are still over a week out from payday. Fingers eternally crossed.

Thank you both again for your kind words, and I hope things are well for you also.
 

Blighty

Member
The rehab I know is strict on things like soda and junk food. Cravings for drugs being passed onto stimulating foods. They need to learn to deal with feelings in different ways than 'using'
 

RN0441

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

I'm so sorry because I know what you are going through. He probably just isn't ready to change and follow the rules of society. Our son will be 27 Friday and has had a rough time of it and his teen years to early 20's were HORRIBLE for us.

We always hope for his stability and happiness and have yet to achieve both for a long period of time. We want him to be independent.

Prayers that he will turn this around and for your peace.
 

Mirabelle

Member
Hi

I'm so sorry because I know what you are going through. He probably just isn't ready to change and follow the rules of society. Our son will be 27 Friday and has had a rough time of it and his teen years to early 20's were HORRIBLE for us.

We always hope for his stability and happiness and have yet to achieve both for a long period of time. We want him to be independent.

Prayers that he will turn this around and for your peace.
Thank you RN. Those three words - stability, happiness, independent. The things we want the most for our sons. But you are so right - they continually elude them (and us.)

I don't think my stepson is really buying into this latest rehab. As you say, I do not think he is ready to change and follow the rules of society. We have some friends with a daughter who went through the same program and has been able to successfully maintain her sobriety for 7+ years. She says the place was the best she had been to and that it really saved her life. So I think the quality help is there but it doesn't work without buy in from the patient / client. My son admitted to my husband that he has skipped some sessions.

He already has ideas about getting a place to live with a fellow rehabber when they finish the program. We would like him to get into some kind of supported housing / sober living - the rehab offers several after care options. To be totally negative but totally honest at this very moment, I think he is looking forward to getting back to sitting in a hotel room getting high, with no job or responsibilities to cramp his style. If he had money in his bank account right now I think there is a good chance he would have walked already.

Real talk lol. I just want peace of mind for my long suffering, lovely husband.

I thank you for your prayers, and you have mine in turn. :):)
 

Nandina

Member
Hi Mirabelle,

I have been giving a lot of thought lately to the lack of motivation to change that our still young, though technically adult, kids experience.

It’s a well-known biological fact that boys, especially, don’t mature until they reach their mid to late twenties. Add drug abuse into the mix and it will probably take longer, since maturity doesn’t co-exist with all the partying and lifestyle of being high that our kids crave.

After my son’s three unsuccessful drug treatment attempts by the age of 21, (and I should add that one concern was his young age and not yet being mature), I have decided to let it go for awhile and allow him to experience the school of hard knocks.

My thinking is that I can continue to throw money at treatment, apartments, whatever, but until he gets closer to the age of maturity he’s not going to change because that young, underdeveloped, impulsive brain is still in control. And he may never reach maturity, this remains to be seen.

My hope is that by letting him experience the consequences of some of his choices by not jumping in and trying to save him, maturity might show up a little sooner. In any event it won’t happen until he is mentally as well as developmentally ready. So I am just wasting my time and money trying to “help“ him right now.

If I make an attempt to step in again, it will be when he is closer to his mid-twenties, or if he reaches out to me indicating he wants to change for the better. He is living in another state currently so I don’t have close contact at this time and it’s for the best, although his living situation is not.

This helps me in those moments when I question whether I’ve done enough or the right things. I kind of look at it like his immature brain is in control right now and I can’t change that, only time can.

It is so very hard to do, though. Hugs to you and everyone here who has to make these hard and painful decisions.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
Hi.

Long time Nar Anon member here who has spoken to hundreds of parents of unmotivated addicts through the years. The basic common message is that there is nothing at all that we can do to help them, that they do it themselves if/when they want to. Or they don't. But it is not dependent upon us. Our money, second chances, legal help, etc only makes them want more from us and they can be very abusive. They tend to refuse medications for mental help, refuse therapy, screw up rehab, miduse money we offer them, lie to us constantly, then blame us for their problems. This is not rational but addiction is not rational. Help doesn't help. It cant even keep them alive.We all tend to figure this out eventually. Then we shut down our bank and let them go...often to God, if we believe.

What we can do successfully is seek out help to learn to take care of the one person we can control...us.....and we can seek out help to learn how to live a wonderful life even if our adult kids are not doing well. We can control our reactions, our thoughts, our priorities and our boundaries. Ours. Not theirs.
Now I have read on here that Narcotics Anonymous, which is for the addict, is not that successful and I can't say if that's true or not. I do know that Nar Anon, which is for loved ones of addicts, is very successful if the member sticks around. I see it. My husband and I live with the benefits of the program.

Everyone affected by addiction and/or mental illness also becomes sick. However we can recover even if our dysfunctional loved one chooses not to. And it is.not a bad thing to let go of his or her chaos and just enjoy our lives.

I send prayers and love to your family. You matter! Take care of you!
 

Mirabelle

Member
Hello everyone. The last time I posted I predicted that my stepson would leave his latest rehab when the opportunity arose eg. when benefits payday rolled around. And what do you know..........the day after payday he walked out, leaving all his stuff behind, and saying he was done with the place, although he would not give a specific reason why. If he had stayed he would have been eligible for their supported housing / sober living program. He only had 7 more days to go.

He had to pay us back what we copayed for this rehab (the agreement being that if he saw it through we wouldn't ask him to pay it back.) So after just a few days out he has just a few hundred dollars left, if that. A few nights at a hotel and now he's back on the streets, and telling my husband all sorts of cockamamie stories to try and get money.

As I had suspected, he was not ready to change. He simply had nowhere else to go. And after getting beaten up and allegedly molested by a drug dealer, three weeks later he has put himself back in the same situation.

Some comments I have read on the forum lately have rung true with me. Someone said they did not think the drugs had as much to do with their child's continued fall as the fact that they wanted to be in control; that they felt they were smarter than everyone else. I can relate to this. My son simply cannot abide being required to do things that he does not care to do, even when doing these things offers a clear path to a better future. I think he has a different lifestyle now, one that we do not understand. He is becoming a street person in his ways, his thinking, his approach to the world. The thought that he and he alone has made this choice has made it easier for me to detach just that little bit more over this past weekend. My husband is trying, but he struggles, which I completely respect and understand.

We have been waiting on a useless Social Security agency / contractor to find housing for a year. But my husband actually said he doesn't know if his son could handle even that. He would have dodgy friends coming and going, drugs, etc., and the place would be trashed in short order. If he had just a little more money coming in he could afford a long stay hotel on a permanent basis, but the money he has just runs through his hands, and he refuses to work. Just the other night we were blamed for 'making him' sleep outside in the park because we would not give him money.

Thank you for listening all. Hugs.
 

Crayola13

Well-Known Member
I’m sorry your prediction came true. It’s impossible for us to understand the way they think and behave. They will never comprehend that when people play stupid games, they win stupid prizes. I’m not even sure some of them have the ability to understand this concept. Even when drugs are involved, many homeless people still have this mindset. They don’t feel the need to live a conventional lifestyle and follow rules.

As far as diet, I’ve read the data on a gluten-free diet concerning schizophrenia. I don’t know anyone personally who has done the diet other than for stomach problems. From personal experience with my son, I really don’t believe B vitamins are helpful for anxiety. Maybe a few people have anxiety caused by vitamin B deficiency, but I don’t think that is true for the majority of people with severe anxiety disorders.
 

Mirabelle

Member
My stepson had my husband go to where he has been staying to bring him some shoes and socks. I don't know if my son planned this or not as he is incapable of planning, but my husband came back really shaken up. Son cried and begged to move back in with us. Said he couldn't bear to go back to the homeless shelter. Said his only other alternative is to pay a guy $20 a day to let him stay with him. He intimated that he is not sure what this guy's intentions are. I honestly don't know if he is getting so desperate that this is his latest story but this is the third time he has brought up possibly or actually being molested by someone (most likely different people as he moves around a lot.) The only option he has for at least the next three weeks is the shelter, because 7 days after payday, he is broke. If he moves back in he'll steal everything we have, including the small shred of peace we cling to on the daily. Help y'all!! I need some sense talked to me. I can feel my judgement getting cloudy. I hate to see my husband so distraught. Right now it feels like we are putting our son out on the street to be violated. I need a shot of sage advice stat.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
They are.not incapable of planning things if they care about something. They plan how to manipulate us with ease. Most of our adult kids are addicts with personality disorders in there a bit too. Adults with personality disorders, which many obviously have, don't care about anyone but them. And they won't follow societal rules. So while they may dismiss ways to wake up in time to get to work on time, they are very crafty about guilting Dad to bring them socks so they get a face to face audience for their "poor me and bad you" performance. They are almost all very similar and they are brilliant manipulators. It is part of their survival of living without responsibility. They work very hard to get Dad and Mom to feel guilty enough to keep contributing to their lazy and often drugged lifestyle. Think about how clever they are.

Some of them may have challenges, as many people do, but almost none of them seem to be challenged as far as manipulation and taking, taking, taking. They get straight A's in Guilting too. Yet they can't bother to set an alarm clock to get to work or hang onto a warm blanket you bought for him/her. Of course, they probably don't WANT to go to work so they don't try. And that nice blanket was sold for $50 which is drug money. But....then they look helpless and try to get sympathy.

"My alarm clock malfunctioned so I was late to work and was fired! Please come give me $20! It wasn't my fault!"

"Somebody beat me up and stole my blanket and money!! I am so scared! Can you please bring me money? You won't? You are an evil parent!"

And so the game goes. I get tired just remembering it. Remember that they lie as easily as breathe and that living with you doesn't keep them from trouble. Just makes us in danger too. He stole from you? His intentions for wanting to come home are bad. Don't do it. He can change his life. You can't change his life.
 
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Mirabelle

Member
Thank you Busy. I needed that. And I know that. I just needed someone to tell me again. I fear we will be dealing with this for the rest of our lives. We go to NarAnon. I read the book and practice the steps. I get frustrated with my husband because we have done everything we can.......therapist, NarAnon, meditation, spending quality peaceful time together.......and he is still very vulnerable to his son. His son gets kicked out or walks out of his latest housing situation and my husband has a stress headache that lasts a week - a week! He gets so tired from being filled up with worry that sometimes he can't remember what we did the night before (no matter what it is - staying in or going out). My husband holds firm on boundaries but doing so is tearing him up. And his son absolutely positively could not care less. I feel my husband won't use the tools we are learning about and just stays mired in the pit. I am afraid this will put him in an early grave. :):)
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
Part of Nar Anon, the hardest part, is realizing we can not control anyone but us. This includes husbands. If your husband wants, he can get further help...maybe more migraine treatment. Maybe more therapy. Maybe more meetings. Whatever he needs. You can not provide the fix nor can you tell him what he needs. Only he knows.

This is in my opinion very important.. Your husband CAN enforce strong boundaries and refuse to bring to his his son what his son asks for, like shoes and socks. Your son works. He can get these things at thrift shops cheap. On his own. If he stopsvworking, he can find another job or go ask a church for help. This is not his fathers job since he is an adult.
Your husband can control his phone and only allow his son to talk to him for five minutes twice a week, and he can end any conversation where his son asks for money or especially for a face to face visit. Often we are worse when we are around them. But you can not control what your husband does. One day perhaps he will set better boundaries. Maybe not.

Nar Anon and all 12 Step programs are for us. They teach us how to care for ourselves without focusing on others, spouses included.

My husband "got it" before I did. He stopped engaging Kay, giving any help or allowing her near him as all she did was use and hurt him. I was a slow learner and berated him and even called him cold-hearted (he is the kindest man I know).

We fought so much that he finally left because he wanted a peaceful life without fighting and without Kay's nonsense and chaos. We had two other kids and he moved in with our son.

As I had my form of a nervous breakdown, I finally realized that my husband was on the tight path and I was not. We got back together as one in mind and I am now very happy and serene. But my husband could.jot make me see that zkay was making me sick. I had to finally see it before I decided to change it.

We can only change one person...ourselves.

Love and hugs.
 
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New Leaf

Well-Known Member
Hi Mirabelle,
I am sorry that you are living this hardship. I have been absent for a time, busy with life and raising my granddaughter. I once had a revolving door and understand the misery. I woke up to the reality that our attempts to help really didn’t help and dragged our family down the rabbit hole. Unfortunately my dear hubs (since passed) was still pretty thick in the cruel game of it.
There was always some calamity that had to be addressed “yesterday” which led to this utter feeling of despair. Ruminating circular thoughts, anxiety. I would rearrange the house to accommodate my daughter and my grands (that was the hard part, having littles) in the craziness of it all. We had two young ones growing up in the midst of this chaos, and I was so blinded by the ever present need for help, that I did not realize the effect it had on them. My younger children. Watching and suffering in the mess. Money went missing, jewelry as well. We started locking valuables in our vehicles and sleeping with our keys. It’s amazing how we shape our world to accommodate our addicted loved ones who have absolutely no desire to get out of the quick sand they got themselves into with drug use. So into the quagmire we went, hypnotized by their desperation. As if, as if we could actually really help them. All they did was help themselves to our valuables and the most precious of all, peace of mind.
Gone.
I think it is by addictions design that we are dragged into this aura of desperation that seeps into our very souls. Addicts are desperate for their next fix. It’s as if we are drawn into the flame of it by their choices and the consequences they face. I call it the swirly-whirly. This desperation keeps us in a frame of mind that we have to do something to help get them out of the quicksand, but in reality we are pulled in right with them. It’s not fair. It sucks, to be blunt. It’s a lonely existence, having a loved one on the streets. It’s torture, really.
The thing is, my two would always have an emergency, but always ended up going right back to whatever situation that caused it. It was madness!
They were never diagnosed with mental illness but I am sure by now after so many years of meth use, their thought process is compromised.
Mine is as well, the stress of this is overwhelming.
Looking back, I wish I would have just stopped. Ahhh retrospect. Hubs and I were certainly not equipped to deal with our twos active addiction. An adult addict begs to “come home”, not because they want to change, they want us to bend to accommodate them. My daughters felt entitled to what we worked hard for. We felt obligated, because they are our loved ones. It was a vicious cycle.
I’m sorry, I’m venting.
The difficulty is when a couple have different mindsets about how to deal with the unpredictable/predictable calamities having addicted loved ones presents. You may be further along in your understanding of the manipulation you are experiencing, than your hubs is, and that is a tough spot to be in. It’s not that our addicted loved ones don’t get themselves into dire circumstances, they do. It is a consequence of their choices. The more we bail them out, the more they expect, the more they try to manipulate us to do their bidding, at our expense. It’s not just the money, valuables, it’s the time and energy spent, the stress, the deep hurtful loss felt, the pain and suffering we endure.
I began to say “no more”, before hubs. He was more than willing to continue to throw down for his girls, our grands. There was no changing his mindset. That’s where it gets doubly hard. I feel for you in this. It’s impossible to convince someone else that our “helping” is not helping. Our attempts to help just prolonged the madness. If an addict is truly tired of the mess active use gets them into, they will seek to quit. Quitting never happened in my home. It still hasn’t happened, and I still fall prey to the emotional rollercoaster when my daughter tries to draw me back into the thick of it.
We had an admin named “Recovering Enabler” here, and that is such an appropriate nom de plume. I think I will forever be working at recovering, as much as my addicted daughters need to work on their own recovery. I have come to realize that none of our rescuing them ever helped. It just drew us into the chaos. There will always be an emergency with active addicts. Always.
I am presently battling my own backwards feelings of obligation towards my daughter who is in jail, wants money for her phone account, wants to “come home” if she is released. “It’s the only place I will get better.” She wrote to her 14 year old daughter. Gasp. How awful to drag her own child into that. But, there it is. The truth is, the only place she will get better is at a rehab, with people trained to work with her to battle her addiction. Then, sober living. Having the responsibility of getting a job, a home.
We become just as ill as they are, I believe, and addictions aim is to keep us in the FOG, so that we are dragged about in the muck, dazed and confused, heart wrenched and exhausted. How can we make good decisions in such a state of mind? We can’t! It’s not possible! That is the design of this crazy whirlpool, that we become so dazed and confused that we are fooled into thinking we are capable of changing the course our loved ones are set on.
We are the last people on earth to truly help. Truly help. It’s because this relationship we have with our addicted loved ones is not born of true love on their end. Our loving attempts are not reciprocated, we become objects, depersonalized, degraded. This “relationship” is born of desperation, and an addict will keep you in that cesspool to drain your resources, keep you anxious, nervous and miserable so that they can have their cake and eat it too. We are not trained to see through eyes wide open, what is really going on. We are reaching through our own heartfelt desire to see our loved ones well, functioning, safe. The reality is that they have to want that for themselves, they have to see what actively using has done to them, and is. We can’t convince them, or control their choices. So it behooves us to do everything we can to pull up and out of the quicksand, re-educate ourselves over and again, realizing that we matter. The peace in our homes, matters. If we don’t stand up for ourselves, no one else will, certainly not an addict. They will use us up and spit us out in a nanosecond, then expect us to jump to the next “emergency” without batting an eyelash.
Nope. Not happening. I’m writing to myself as much as I am writing to you. I started ruminating again, after having no contact for months, then the phone calls came from jail, again. I decided to ignore them. I need a break from all of this. So does my granddaughter and grandsons. I decided that I was not going to be the conduit for her attempts at communicating with all of us after months on the street with nary a word. The calls kept coming, I didn’t pick up. But oh did the FOG slip in and it got so thick, I started fretting and imagining every bad thing that could happen because I didn’t engage. That’s how I came back to this site, to find relief and set my head straight again. She did write me a letter and within weakly apologized for being an “inconvenience”.
Huh. My stomach turns writing that. An inconvenience. Geez. That doesn’t begin to describe what we have all suffered.
This is not a fair game for any of us. It is literally hell on earth. It is the toughest thing, grieving over and again. I say that it is harder than losing someone in death. There is a permanency to that. This battle we go through with addicted loved ones is ongoing.
The thing is. We have our lives to live. It is not selfish to switch focus, to practice self love, to say NO! No, not going to pick you up, house you.
My 14 year old granddaughter is wise in her young years. She said to me “Tutu, my mom has to learn to figure things out for herself.”
She’s right, she does have to figure her life out. There is true help out there for our beloved wayward adult children, but they have to really want help.
Stay strong.
I’m going to work at that, too.
I hope your hubs will see that he needs help and gets it. Your strength will be an example, but he has to see for himself and work harder at detaching emotionally. That’s a tough one.
Much love to you.
I am so sorry you are dealing with this.
(Hugs)
Leaf
 

jbrain

Member
Hi Mirabelle,
I am sorry that you are living this hardship. I have been absent for a time, busy with life and raising my granddaughter. I once had a revolving door and understand the misery. I woke up to the reality that our attempts to help really didn’t help and dragged our family down the rabbit hole. Unfortunately my dear hubs (since passed) was still pretty thick in the cruel game of it.
There was always some calamity that had to be addressed “yesterday” which led to this utter feeling of despair. Ruminating circular thoughts, anxiety. I would rearrange the house to accommodate my daughter and my grands (that was the hard part, having littles) in the craziness of it all. We had two young ones growing up in the midst of this chaos, and I was so blinded by the ever present need for help, that I did not realize the effect it had on them. My younger children. Watching and suffering in the mess. Money went missing, jewelry as well. We started locking valuables in our vehicles and sleeping with our keys. It’s amazing how we shape our world to accommodate our addicted loved ones who have absolutely no desire to get out of the quick sand they got themselves into with drug use. So into the quagmire we went, hypnotized by their desperation. As if, as if we could actually really help them. All they did was help themselves to our valuables and the most precious of all, peace of mind.
Gone.
I think it is by addictions design that we are dragged into this aura of desperation that seeps into our very souls. Addicts are desperate for their next fix. It’s as if we are drawn into the flame of it by their choices and the consequences they face. I call it the swirly-whirly. This desperation keeps us in a frame of mind that we have to do something to help get them out of the quicksand, but in reality we are pulled in right with them. It’s not fair. It sucks, to be blunt. It’s a lonely existence, having a loved one on the streets. It’s torture, really.
The thing is, my two would always have an emergency, but always ended up going right back to whatever situation that caused it. It was madness!
They were never diagnosed with mental illness but I am sure by now after so many years of meth use, their thought process is compromised.
Mine is as well, the stress of this is overwhelming.
Looking back, I wish I would have just stopped. Ahhh retrospect. Hubs and I were certainly not equipped to deal with our twos active addiction. An adult addict begs to “come home”, not because they want to change, they want us to bend to accommodate them. My daughters felt entitled to what we worked hard for. We felt obligated, because they are our loved ones. It was a vicious cycle.
I’m sorry, I’m venting.
The difficulty is when a couple have different mindsets about how to deal with the unpredictable/predictable calamities having addicted loved ones presents. You may be further along in your understanding of the manipulation you are experiencing, than your hubs is, and that is a tough spot to be in. It’s not that our addicted loved ones don’t get themselves into dire circumstances, they do. It is a consequence of their choices. The more we bail them out, the more they expect, the more they try to manipulate us to do their bidding, at our expense. It’s not just the money, valuables, it’s the time and energy spent, the stress, the deep hurtful loss felt, the pain and suffering we endure.
I began to say “no more”, before hubs. He was more than willing to continue to throw down for his girls, our grands. There was no changing his mindset. That’s where it gets doubly hard. I feel for you in this. It’s impossible to convince someone else that our “helping” is not helping. Our attempts to help just prolonged the madness. If an addict is truly tired of the mess active use gets them into, they will seek to quit. Quitting never happened in my home. It still hasn’t happened, and I still fall prey to the emotional rollercoaster when my daughter tries to draw me back into the thick of it.
We had an admin named “Recovering Enabler” here, and that is such an appropriate nom de plume. I think I will forever be working at recovering, as much as my addicted daughters need to work on their own recovery. I have come to realize that none of our rescuing them ever helped. It just drew us into the chaos. There will always be an emergency with active addicts. Always.
I am presently battling my own backwards feelings of obligation towards my daughter who is in jail, wants money for her phone account, wants to “come home” if she is released. “It’s the only place I will get better.” She wrote to her 14 year old daughter. Gasp. How awful to drag her own child into that. But, there it is. The truth is, the only place she will get better is at a rehab, with people trained to work with her to battle her addiction. Then, sober living. Having the responsibility of getting a job, a home.
We become just as ill as they are, I believe, and addictions aim is to keep us in the FOG, so that we are dragged about in the muck, dazed and confused, heart wrenched and exhausted. How can we make good decisions in such a state of mind? We can’t! It’s not possible! That is the design of this crazy whirlpool, that we become so dazed and confused that we are fooled into thinking we are capable of changing the course our loved ones are set on.
We are the last people on earth to truly help. Truly help. It’s because this relationship we have with our addicted loved ones is not born of true love on their end. Our loving attempts are not reciprocated, we become objects, depersonalized, degraded. This “relationship” is born of desperation, and an addict will keep you in that cesspool to drain your resources, keep you anxious, nervous and miserable so that they can have their cake and eat it too. We are not trained to see through eyes wide open, what is really going on. We are reaching through our own heartfelt desire to see our loved ones well, functioning, safe. The reality is that they have to want that for themselves, they have to see what actively using has done to them, and is. We can’t convince them, or control their choices. So it behooves us to do everything we can to pull up and out of the quicksand, re-educate ourselves over and again, realizing that we matter. The peace in our homes, matters. If we don’t stand up for ourselves, no one else will, certainly not an addict. They will use us up and spit us out in a nanosecond, then expect us to jump to the next “emergency” without batting an eyelash.
Nope. Not happening. I’m writing to myself as much as I am writing to you. I started ruminating again, after having no contact for months, then the phone calls came from jail, again. I decided to ignore them. I need a break from all of this. So does my granddaughter and grandsons. I decided that I was not going to be the conduit for her attempts at communicating with all of us after months on the street with nary a word. The calls kept coming, I didn’t pick up. But oh did the FOG slip in and it got so thick, I started fretting and imagining every bad thing that could happen because I didn’t engage. That’s how I came back to this site, to find relief and set my head straight again. She did write me a letter and within weakly apologized for being an “inconvenience”.
Huh. My stomach turns writing that. An inconvenience. Geez. That doesn’t begin to describe what we have all suffered.
This is not a fair game for any of us. It is literally hell on earth. It is the toughest thing, grieving over and again. I say that it is harder than losing someone in death. There is a permanency to that. This battle we go through with addicted loved ones is ongoing.
The thing is. We have our lives to live. It is not selfish to switch focus, to practice self love, to say NO! No, not going to pick you up, house you.
My 14 year old granddaughter is wise in her young years. She said to me “Tutu, my mom has to learn to figure things out for herself.”
She’s right, she does have to figure her life out. There is true help out there for our beloved wayward adult children, but they have to really want help.
Stay strong.
I’m going to work at that, too.
I hope your hubs will see that he needs help and gets it. Your strength will be an example, but he has to see for himself and work harder at detaching emotionally. That’s a tough one.
Much love to you.
I am so sorry you are dealing with this.
(Hugs)
Leaf
New Leaf,
I needed your post this morning. I am an old time member, have not posted here in probably 14 years but have kept reading daily. Now my teenager who brought me to this site is 34 years old and its kind of the same old same old. I'll start my own post when I have time and energy, just wanted to thank you--your reply resonated with me and is helping me remain strong.
 

Mirabelle

Member
Hi Mirabelle,
I am sorry that you are living this hardship. I have been absent for a time, busy with life and raising my granddaughter. I once had a revolving door and understand the misery. I woke up to the reality that our attempts to help really didn’t help and dragged our family down the rabbit hole. Unfortunately my dear hubs (since passed) was still pretty thick in the cruel game of it.
There was always some calamity that had to be addressed “yesterday” which led to this utter feeling of despair. Ruminating circular thoughts, anxiety. I would rearrange the house to accommodate my daughter and my grands (that was the hard part, having littles) in the craziness of it all. We had two young ones growing up in the midst of this chaos, and I was so blinded by the ever present need for help, that I did not realize the effect it had on them. My younger children. Watching and suffering in the mess. Money went missing, jewelry as well. We started locking valuables in our vehicles and sleeping with our keys. It’s amazing how we shape our world to accommodate our addicted loved ones who have absolutely no desire to get out of the quick sand they got themselves into with drug use. So into the quagmire we went, hypnotized by their desperation. As if, as if we could actually really help them. All they did was help themselves to our valuables and the most precious of all, peace of mind.
Gone.
I think it is by addictions design that we are dragged into this aura of desperation that seeps into our very souls. Addicts are desperate for their next fix. It’s as if we are drawn into the flame of it by their choices and the consequences they face. I call it the swirly-whirly. This desperation keeps us in a frame of mind that we have to do something to help get them out of the quicksand, but in reality we are pulled in right with them. It’s not fair. It sucks, to be blunt. It’s a lonely existence, having a loved one on the streets. It’s torture, really.
The thing is, my two would always have an emergency, but always ended up going right back to whatever situation that caused it. It was madness!
They were never diagnosed with mental illness but I am sure by now after so many years of meth use, their thought process is compromised.
Mine is as well, the stress of this is overwhelming.
Looking back, I wish I would have just stopped. Ahhh retrospect. Hubs and I were certainly not equipped to deal with our twos active addiction. An adult addict begs to “come home”, not because they want to change, they want us to bend to accommodate them. My daughters felt entitled to what we worked hard for. We felt obligated, because they are our loved ones. It was a vicious cycle.
I’m sorry, I’m venting.
The difficulty is when a couple have different mindsets about how to deal with the unpredictable/predictable calamities having addicted loved ones presents. You may be further along in your understanding of the manipulation you are experiencing, than your hubs is, and that is a tough spot to be in. It’s not that our addicted loved ones don’t get themselves into dire circumstances, they do. It is a consequence of their choices. The more we bail them out, the more they expect, the more they try to manipulate us to do their bidding, at our expense. It’s not just the money, valuables, it’s the time and energy spent, the stress, the deep hurtful loss felt, the pain and suffering we endure.
I began to say “no more”, before hubs. He was more than willing to continue to throw down for his girls, our grands. There was no changing his mindset. That’s where it gets doubly hard. I feel for you in this. It’s impossible to convince someone else that our “helping” is not helping. Our attempts to help just prolonged the madness. If an addict is truly tired of the mess active use gets them into, they will seek to quit. Quitting never happened in my home. It still hasn’t happened, and I still fall prey to the emotional rollercoaster when my daughter tries to draw me back into the thick of it.
We had an admin named “Recovering Enabler” here, and that is such an appropriate nom de plume. I think I will forever be working at recovering, as much as my addicted daughters need to work on their own recovery. I have come to realize that none of our rescuing them ever helped. It just drew us into the chaos. There will always be an emergency with active addicts. Always.
I am presently battling my own backwards feelings of obligation towards my daughter who is in jail, wants money for her phone account, wants to “come home” if she is released. “It’s the only place I will get better.” She wrote to her 14 year old daughter. Gasp. How awful to drag her own child into that. But, there it is. The truth is, the only place she will get better is at a rehab, with people trained to work with her to battle her addiction. Then, sober living. Having the responsibility of getting a job, a home.
We become just as ill as they are, I believe, and addictions aim is to keep us in the FOG, so that we are dragged about in the muck, dazed and confused, heart wrenched and exhausted. How can we make good decisions in such a state of mind? We can’t! It’s not possible! That is the design of this crazy whirlpool, that we become so dazed and confused that we are fooled into thinking we are capable of changing the course our loved ones are set on.
We are the last people on earth to truly help. Truly help. It’s because this relationship we have with our addicted loved ones is not born of true love on their end. Our loving attempts are not reciprocated, we become objects, depersonalized, degraded. This “relationship” is born of desperation, and an addict will keep you in that cesspool to drain your resources, keep you anxious, nervous and miserable so that they can have their cake and eat it too. We are not trained to see through eyes wide open, what is really going on. We are reaching through our own heartfelt desire to see our loved ones well, functioning, safe. The reality is that they have to want that for themselves, they have to see what actively using has done to them, and is. We can’t convince them, or control their choices. So it behooves us to do everything we can to pull up and out of the quicksand, re-educate ourselves over and again, realizing that we matter. The peace in our homes, matters. If we don’t stand up for ourselves, no one else will, certainly not an addict. They will use us up and spit us out in a nanosecond, then expect us to jump to the next “emergency” without batting an eyelash.
Nope. Not happening. I’m writing to myself as much as I am writing to you. I started ruminating again, after having no contact for months, then the phone calls came from jail, again. I decided to ignore them. I need a break from all of this. So does my granddaughter and grandsons. I decided that I was not going to be the conduit for her attempts at communicating with all of us after months on the street with nary a word. The calls kept coming, I didn’t pick up. But oh did the FOG slip in and it got so thick, I started fretting and imagining every bad thing that could happen because I didn’t engage. That’s how I came back to this site, to find relief and set my head straight again. She did write me a letter and within weakly apologized for being an “inconvenience”.
Huh. My stomach turns writing that. An inconvenience. Geez. That doesn’t begin to describe what we have all suffered.
This is not a fair game for any of us. It is literally hell on earth. It is the toughest thing, grieving over and again. I say that it is harder than losing someone in death. There is a permanency to that. This battle we go through with addicted loved ones is ongoing.
The thing is. We have our lives to live. It is not selfish to switch focus, to practice self love, to say NO! No, not going to pick you up, house you.
My 14 year old granddaughter is wise in her young years. She said to me “Tutu, my mom has to learn to figure things out for herself.”
She’s right, she does have to figure her life out. There is true help out there for our beloved wayward adult children, but they have to really want help.
Stay strong.
I’m going to work at that, too.
I hope your hubs will see that he needs help and gets it. Your strength will be an example, but he has to see for himself and work harder at detaching emotionally. That’s a tough one.
Much love to you.
I am so sorry you are dealing with this.
(Hugs)
Leaf
New Leaf,

You write beautifully, and with so much insight and wisdom. In attempting to save them from the quicksand, we get pulled under too. We go down the rabbit hole too. It is so true. Like you, we have 'emergencies' about once a month when the consequences come home to roost. My stepson has sold phones, shoes, jackets, backpacks, and now his EBT card, on a monthly basis. In his socks in the street trying to guilt trip my husband into letting him come home. "You can't leave me out here in the street with all these drugs." "So this is how it's going to be, you can't even help your own son." We do not allow him to stay with us at all, but around once a month his chronic self induced homelessness is presented to us as our problem to fix. Another hospital, or rehab, or shelter comes to the rescue, at which point the madness begins all over again. He has no intention of quitting drugs or following rules, he just wants a comfortable and free place in which to lead his lifestyle.

Your words : "It is not just the money, valuables, it is the time and energy spent, the stress, the deep hurtful loss felt, the pain and suffering we endure." Nailed it. It hurts so much to see the child you raised exploit your love for them, twist the knife to ratchet up the guilt, for maximum gain. My husband deals with our son mostly, bless him. He doesn't cave to major demands but the toxicity, the trauma of the face to face interaction, it is killing him. No food, no shoes, he feels compelled to assist. But recently dropping off food and shoes comes with a nasty self righteous guilt trip. I hope my husband will get jack of that and stop subjecting himself to such treatment.

I agree with you, for the majority, the only place they will get better is in rehab, followed by sober living, a job, their own home, their own responsibilities. Doing real grown up things for themselves. Trying to play the role of 'our baby' as a grown adult is just so manipulative, cruel, and furthermore, an insult to our intelligence! And yes, the FOG, the FOG! The stress of trying to make good decisions does keep us in undulating states of despair, and perpetually unsure of our own judgement.

I do empathize. It sounds as though you know how you must deal with your daughter. But feeling yourself slipping if not in actions, but in thoughts, is completely normal and to be expected. Much like the addict in recovery, we know that a slip in actions can unravel all we have worked so long and hard to build and preserve. But you got this. I have faith in you!! I could type all day but I must finish!

Much love and hugs to you too.
Mirabelle
 

New Leaf

Well-Known Member
New Leaf,
I needed your post this morning. I am an old time member, have not posted here in probably 14 years but have kept reading daily. Now my teenager who brought me to this site is 34 years old and its kind of the same old same old. I'll start my own post when I have time and energy, just wanted to thank you--your reply resonated with me and is helping me remain strong.
Aloha Jbrain,
I apologize for my late reply, I am not often here, aside from the ever present addiction issues, life comes with daily challenges to focus on. I am a busy grandmother, not only raising my 14 year old granddaughter, but helping as much as I can with my other grandkids who are littles.
My daughter (whom I have dubbed Tornado) spent her 34th birthday in rehab. She has also been a handful from a young age. This is her fourth attempt at sobriety and hopefully something will stick this time. She was mandated to go through a court program, so only time will tell if she will remain sober. I do answer her phone calls, my reasoning is that if she attempts sobriety I will be there (within reason, and on my terms.) The difference I am feeling so far is that I am much less bound to an outcome than previously. I think that is the bane of being a parent of wayward’s, that consequences and outcomes can become more important, time and life consuming to us, than to them. I am trying to keep my emotions in check. My daughter still has a way of expecting attention, it’s feels like she wants us to celebrate her attempts at rehab, without a second thought of what we have all been through. That translates to her asking for favors, clothes, photos of her kids, etc. I have decided to let her know that this will be the last time I am making photocopies for her, it’s about the fourth time I have done it, I am assuming all of the previous copies are gone. It is a physical reminder of all she has lost through years and years of using. I have come to the conclusion that addiction produces narcissistic traits in our loved ones, where they have lost empathy and compassion for the very people (family) who would do anything to have them whole again. My daughter has not been sober long enough to be able to really see the anguish and hurt she has caused. That makes her dangerous in my mind. I will continue to work on catching myself sleep walking towards that rabbit hole. Keeping ones guard up can be exhausting, I know that I can be my own worst enemy at times! Stay strong warrior mama. We have lives that matter. An addicts design, much like a narcissist, is to keep us devaluing ourselves so that we stay in their game. I think what is key to truly “helping” our wayward adult children is to show them by example how to set boundaries and model self care above all else.
Much love and prayers for continued strength.
(((hugs)))
New Leaf
 

New Leaf

Well-Known Member
Aloha Mirabelle,
Thank you for your kind thoughts. I hope you and your hubs are doing well.
I do empathize. It sounds as though you know how you must deal with your daughter. But feeling yourself slipping if not in actions, but in thoughts, is completely normal and to be expected. Much like the addict in recovery, we know that a slip in actions can unravel all we have worked so long and hard to build and preserve. But you got this. I have faith in you!! I could type all day but I must finish!
I am still working on my inner emotional response to both daughters predicaments. After a nice fall trip visiting family, I had an overwhelming urge to try to find my eldest, Rain. I suppose being with family tends to trigger that response. Funny how the universe answered, I spotted her out and about on my way to the dentist one day. She is living the life of her choice. That hurts to write that, but it is true. I can’t imagine living that way myself, homeless, living in parks, under bridges. She has been out there for almost ten years now. It’s sad, but I have to accept her choice and keep praying that she will find her light and choose otherwise.
Keep on striving to keep boundaries and live your life to the fullest!
(((Hugs)))
New Leaf
 
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