Where will he go?

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Karenvm, May 13, 2013.

  1. Karenvm

    Karenvm Member

    Hi all.
    Just need to write this out...
    in one month exactly, my difficult child will turn 18.
    The past two years have been so incredibly hard for us, with inpatient admissions for anxiety/depression/suicidal thoughts, frequent marijuana and alcohol use, constant lying (about anything, and everything), police at the house because he is freaking out, a 40 day stay in residential facility, only to start drinking and smoking again two weeks after discharge (and stopped all the medications they had finally gotten him to therapeutic levels on).
    After the 40 day stay (actually, DURING the stay), we told our difficult child this was his last shot. I can no longer live with the lying, finding pot pipes hidden in my 9 year olds room, finding a little bad of pot hidden in the pages of a book that my 9 year old was bringing to school, etc. we are DONE. Told difficult child that if he didn't stop using, that he needed to be out of our house at 18. No more support from us.
    He already missed all college application deadlines in the fall ( this from a kid taking all advanced placement classes for the last two years, who wants to get a PhD in physics some day), and so we thought he could take community courses in the fall, and find a job.
    So, he went right back to using. I am still finding bongs made from water bottles in different places in the house, rolling papers, etc. ( though have not found actual marijuana, because if I did, I would have called the police). We have told him he needs psychiatry, but he says he is "fine".
    We have told him he will need to find a place to live on his own. We will not support him any longer.
    But here is the reality...he has nowhere to go! No girlfriend, no friends with a couch to crash on, no relatives to stay with. Most of the kids he knows are going away to college.
    So what do we do? Where can he go?
    I can't continue to live with him like this, as he is wreaking havoc on the family. And now, being off all medications, he is constantly in a state of "hypo mania/mania", and driving me crazy. Not even sure he will graduate, because he has missed so much work, but he is in denial about that too.

    He definitely needs help, but refuses to accept it or seek it out. I can't do it for him anymore.

    i feel terrible. Do I just pack up his stuff and send him out on the street? Legally, we will not have any responsibility for him (as long as he is not enrolled in school...we already met with an attorney).
    I struggle with feeling I need to help him, and then feeling I need to protect my other two, younger kids. They don't deserve to live like this.

    Ugh. This is horrible.
  2. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    HI Karen, this is not my area of expertise, there will be others along who have been there done that with a kid who is using.

    I don't know if there are any right answers to your inquiry, as you can see from many of our posts, we all struggle with what the boundary is between allowing the behaviors and just throwing them overboard completely. Somewhere in there is the balance point you can live with. And your son is young too. Are there shelters in your area? Is there a YMCA or inexpensive housing which might provide a sort of in between respite for you from him and his antics and for him to perhaps realize you mean business? He wouldn't have his old comfy room at home and at the same time, he is facing consequences for his actions. I've heard that alternative mentioned by other parents here. In the towns around where I live there are these cheaper motels that rent by the month, if you can afford that, you might try it month to month with a cut off point in say 3-6 months where he will have to work to support himself at that point. But, at least he can have some time on his own to figure something out, or not. But, this way, you might feel better too. Sort of a transitional period for all of you. In the meantime you could explore other options. I am no expert here, just another mom, I feel for you, it's a terrible place to be.

    You can't live with it and your heart hurts to just cut him loose when he really has no skills to take care of himself. He has a mental disorder, have you contacted NAMI? (National Alliance on Mental Illness) They may be able to provide you with some options. You can access them online, they are all over.

    If it were me, I think I would look into alternatives between him living at your home and throwing him out. I say that because of his age and his Bipolar. But, really, the most important thing is for you to follow your heart, only you can decide what is ultimately the right thing to do for you and for your family, and for him too. It's a tough call no matter how you look at it. I wish you peace and for a solution to arrive which brings you solace.
  3. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    This is so familiar and close to home. Mine has no friends or relatives either. The water bottle bongs. The giftedness that is wasted. We even have 2.5 years of residential treatment. I just got done texting her the county rehab. The youth homeless shelter numbers. She didnt bother going into work tonight. Probably lost this job. She is getting more disfunctional. She was court ordered to therapy last week and still has no therapist 4 business days later. She is making me sick. I feel like I need to keep her here because the whole suicide event thing is aweful and scary when she is away, yet she wont let us help. She doesnt have a problem.....so she thinks.

    We have let her sleep outside in the cold for a night and locked her out another night only to have her go into an almost psychotic state because she had taken a bunch of her acne medications. The answer?? The police were called and we had an all nighter at the ER and then they did not pink slip her....even though she tried to committ suicide!

    You have to do what you have to do at any given time. Tonight she is not coming into my home. Found her high and with no remorse at all. It is warm outside ad well. Tomorrow? I want to take her to the youth transitional living place provided she will let me. But only after work as I refuse to miss for her on this one.

    Maybe you try this for your son. I found them under shelters....trouble is they have to want that help as well. Trust me pot smoking wont fly there either.

    A hug to you and a genuine understanding is all i can offer.
  4. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Member


    Have you talked w the rehab? They may know some good options. You might also try United Way for referrals.

    I know how you feel. It's amazing how my difficult child can find people...aka new friends...with exactly what he needs at the right time.

    They have a knack for landing on their feet.

    *Do you have to formally evict him?
  5. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member


    I so feel for you. Being in this situation is horrible, and facing having a child homeless and possibly on the streets is horrible. I know this, I have been there, I am there. When my son was 18 we did kick him out for similar reasons you describe... he did couch surf for awhile and that whole situation got worse before it got better and eventually did lead him to rehab. I think there is something useful in a kid learning that really he cant just live at home, take advantage of the family with no consequences, and a few days at first may very well lead him to rehab... problem is you have no idea how long it will take.

    My son has been in countless programs and sober houses since then and is once again homeless now at the age of 21. He has learned to survive on the streets so that no longer keeps me awake at night like it once did. It feels awful to me that I have a kid who is homeless living on the streets though.

    What I have learned is that there are a number of programs geared towards homeless youth....my son is now aging out of some of those services...depending on where you live.

    So my suggestion is to look in your area for two things... one is programs/shelters for homeless youth and to look for information on rehabs in your area. The first is to give your son when he leaves so that he can find options and the 2nd for when he is ready to stop being homeless. If you live in Denver or in Southern CA send me a private message and I can give you some contact info. My son has been in both of those areas.

    The other possible suggestion would be to find an interventionist who might be able to help you convince your son to go into rehab... we are past this point with my son but if your son has not been in rehab before this might be worth a shot.

    However I have come to the sad conclusion is there really is nothing I can do for my son unless he wants help for himself.

    And you absolutely need to protect your younger two kids. That is the one thing that keeps me going and also the one thing that makes it clear to me I did the right thing.... if my son was still at home my 18 year old daughter would not be thriving like she is.

  6. Tiredof33

    Tiredof33 Active Member

    My son was born a difficult child and started using early. After a nightmare of his teen years (during which he was court ordered rehab twice) he left my house. I have had him in every program I could afford.

    Fast forwad to about age 30 (him) and he was finally clean and sober for about 1 to 2 years - I actually began to trust and look forward to his phone calls. The he and girlfriend from h*** started using again and he is worse than ever in my opinion. He reverted back to the lies, schemes for money etc.

    I am retired and I finally have just had all I can take. I refuse to give him money after spending a lot to get him resettled after girlie came after him with a knife and she was sent to detox and he Baker Act himself. I had to call the police to stop her harrassment. Thank God they live in another state.

    I begged, pleaded, and gave phone numbers to mine to get help, nothing done. It is so hard to watch them self destruct, I've been there, actually still am there. The hard facts are there is nothing you can do to make him get help. If you can afford it counseling helps, learn to detach and turn it over to your HP. All very hard to do!

    My difficult child has gone NC with me since November, he has slipped off the face of the earth, NC with anyone I know. It's very hard to accept, but he can call collect, and everything he does is his choice. The girl is very spiteful and he is a follower so she influences him a lot, but, it is still his

    When they know that THEY have to take care of THEM, it is amazing what they can do.
    (((huggs and blessings for peace)))
    Last edited: May 14, 2013
  7. lovemysons

    lovemysons Well-Known Member

    I agree Karen, It is a horrible place to be in but it sounds like difficult child is leaving you no choice but to get serious.

    We currently have my 24 yr old difficult child living with us. He just got out of prison in December after spending 9 months there convicted for spitting at police (because was rearrested while on probation for putting his hand through windshield of wife's car with his children in the backseat).

    In any event...Our difficult child has recently started drinking again and though we are not putting him out into the streets yet we are making life uncomfortable for him. We are not allowing him to use our laundry room, we are not allowing him to have his family spend the night on the weekends now, and we had his phone shut off on Friday.
    Until he complies with "no drinking"...we will put the squeeze on him!

    I hope you and husband can reach a decision that you both can live with regarding son.
    And you're right...Your other two children should not be sacrificed.

    It's painfully hard to know what to do sometimes...I understand.
  8. FlowerGarden

    FlowerGarden Active Member

    If he doesn't graduate, will he be repeating school next year? Repeating school would mean you can't throw him out, correct? If that is the case, I would look into help from the school's child services dept. to look into a residential school. Our school was willing to help us with our difficult child. If he does graduate, then I'd give him the numbers your state's social services office for mental health and substance abuse. I'd give him the phone numbers to places like Salvation Army for their help. Then I'd have the police escort him out of your home.
  9. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Sending compassionate thoughts and hugs your way. I have not been there done that (we were on a road less traveled) but I do understand the shock, the fear, the bewilderment. This is not a journey for wimps. In the CD family we support each other even if the journey is slightly or mightily different. You have my support. My suggestions? Do what YOU feel is best for your child. Lord knows it is hard to figure out but once you do...repeat the Serenity Prayer. DDD