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Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Thinking About Change

What does it take an addict to get to the point of wanting to change? When does an addict feel their current life is undesirable and want to make their life better? There obviously is a point when the high or the security an addict is experiencing from his/her drug(s) of choice is no longer better than anything else, but I guess it is an individual thing people come to at different times because of different experiences. My son isn't at that point.

I keep hearing from tough love advocates that my son needs to be kicked out and then maybe a life on the streets will be a harsh reality call that will make him "come to his senses" and see that things do need to change. I am sceptical about that tactic. I think that would be the final rejection that could quite possibly push him over the edge.

I have examined my behaviour and I am consciously trying to stop enabling my son in any way because I now accept that those actions were not in fact helping anyone, rather they were hindering us all. Those brief moments of respite resulting from my enabling,  actually did more long term damage. However, I still can not comprehend how putting my son out is better than offering my love and support and reminding him of what services he can be engaging in. I do comprehend that with other people, especially other children, in the house sometimes loving and supporting a family member with drug and/or emotional problems can actually cause damage to the others living in that environment  Then I am faced with this issue of "choosing", even though on a deeper level I know it is not so simple as a mere choice, it is about doing for those who you can still do for as opposed to trying to do for someone who does not want you to do what you are trying to do!

So I am trying to accept that there is only so much I can do and one day if my son does not accept that he needs help from a rehab centre, or that in fact he can find an alternative way of improving, everyone else in the family home will live a compromised life. That is not what I want for myself or my daughters. This does not mean that I no longer love or support my some, it means that I also love and support my daughters and I will have to bear their emotional well being in mind.

I have written out the contract and my son has seen it but will not sign it. I will have to give him an ultimatum to sign it within a given amount of time or he will have to leave. Also if he does sign it but doesn't live up to it, then again he will have to leave. Speaking to him yesterday he was assuring me that he would do just fine as a homeless person and that is what he would rather be than in rehab. He might just get a chance to test his theory how easy being homeless is.

In six days it will be the last day of school. Six weeks of summer holidays are upon us. I can see the doom in my daughter's face because she is dreading being home that long with her brother. My youngest daughter expects us to go on vacation because that is what people do during the holidays. My son is expecting to wonder off on his own to festivals in Europe. I am hoping that we stay housed and that we survive through it and stay sane and maybe, just maybe, even have a little improvement by the end of the holidays!