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Thursday, 27 June 2013

Improvement?



I have an understanding about positive reinforcement, but am I suppose to be praising my son that he is on Methadone yet nothing else has improved and in my eyes some things have deteriorated? He seems to think that I am ignoring a very important element in his recovery, that he is not using opium any more. It is not that I am ignoring that, it is the fact that his behaviour and lifestyle seems to be worse than ever. Do I expect too much?






He has not washed in a week and doesn't even go to bed any more. He passes out at his desk...like for this morning for example: Up all night. Still awake at 6;45 am when I wake up. At 7:00 he is eating his "dinner" which I cooked 12 hours before. He is drinking a beer with it and on the computer. Later I look in at him, say about 8:20, he is slumped over, hand on his computer mouse, dinner on his lap and fast asleep.




How can I praise him for being on Methadone when he is living like this? He spoke to the people who run the Structured Recovery Program a few days ago and had a nice conversation and said he would be in this Thursday at 10:00 am. Well, here we are, it is Thursday and it is past 10:00. We have managed to speak, he even managed to half coherently call the clinic and say he wasn't coming. He then went back to sleep slumped over in his desk chair.


His room is filthy, he stays in his room more and more. He has not had a shower since I don't know when. He is eating less. How is this improvement? Yes, it is GREAT that he is not taking opium, but he is still smoking cannabis and taking benzos. I might be able to overlook this and say, "one addiction at a time" if he was living a more "normal" life. I want to see a slight improvement in mood, structure, activity...not a lot but some. Am I wrong? Am I thinking like the non addict here and not understanding the addict? I wish I knew. I think that is why groups are sometimes helpful because than we hear other people's experiences.



My son does not like group situations. I except that because I am also less comfortable in group situations. However, I wonder if the worry that he has verbalises, that he will make drug contacts in group and the temptation to "score" will be heightened, may be a load of rubbish and a rationalisation. I am wondering if maybe my son is also slightly worried that in group he will encounter people who are desperate to recovery and trying really hard to make big improvements in their lives and willing to try anything. If this is the case than it may magnify within himself that he is not at that place, or it may make him feel his previous arguments are less valid and that it really can be done to try to change your life? Or maybe it is both fears, meeting contacts as well as meeting people who are desperate to recovery? I really do not know and I wish I did know.  I want to find a way to understand more of what it is to be an addict.






Tuesday, 25 June 2013

HELP: Giving and Receiving

There are hard lessons to learn in life. Some of the lessons I am learning is that I was taught so well to be a "good girl" and do what I am told, that maybe that is part of the reason why I seem to "allow" the bad behaviours that are destructive to my life and my family's life. Perhaps with all my trying to be good and kind and helping those I love I am actually enabling other's bad behaviour to continue? Maybe we should raise strong girls and not the stereotypical "good girl"?



Another lesson that I am beginning to realise more, though I have not wanted to before, is that perhaps I will not be able to help my son, but I may help others. It is not a nice thought at all and I am still struggling with it, but it might be the case. Maybe I am "meant" to help people who want to be helped, others who have been through the same struggles as myself? Is that the direction all this is taking my life towards? In that same vain, maybe it will be someone else and me who will eventually help my son with his addictions and psychological issues and not me?




I went to my session today for support and I thought it was all going to be talking about how bad things are with my son and what can I do. It led to a discussion about mentoring because I had picked up one their leaflets about volunteering as a mentor. I had not really thought of it before but the more we discussed it, the more I thought, "yeah, I could do this". I actually felt more positive that maybe this thing I am living can become a life, a life in which I make a difference and help others.





As well as feeling more positive about my self and the "purpose" of my life, I also felt slightly more positive about my son and his possible recovery. As I spoke to my support worker and we started the conversation of becoming a mentor, she went to call in a colleague who deals more with the mentor program. I was a little nervous and hesitant, but to my relief and delight it was a support worker who I had already met with my son and who my son felt a connection with. We therefore, not only discussed the program they offer and how I could apply, go through training etc,, but we also discussed my son and what has been going on and what is being offered to help. We talked about the idea of some mentoring for my son and that perhaps we can push bypassing the group sessions and trying to get him some one on one, which my son says he would be interested in. Also next time I come in I can bring my son if he doesn't want to pop in on his own and he can ask to talk to this guy at any time. I hope that this may encourage my son to go to the clinic and have a discussion on what they can do to help. Maybe, just maybe, this is one of life's wonderful serendipitous moments which might bring forth some positive changes for my son AND myself!



Monday, 24 June 2013

Conversations

This weekend my son and I had an insightful conversations with the same person, but they were two separate conversations.




The person we both spoke to is my son's last remaining friend. He is around 18 years old, finished 6 Form, plans to go to University, has a girlfriend and a 2 year old son, comes from a nice family and is liberal and open minded. He has taken an interest in my son's problems and tried to help him along in his early stages of recovery.



I spoke to him Sunday afternoon to explain why we did not make it to his son's birthday party, which had to do with issues and miscommunication with my son. This invariably led the conversation of how he is actually doing. This mature young man started to ask me what my feelings about rehab were. I said that I am 100% agreeable with the idea, think it is the best option, but my son does not. We continued to discuss this and he said that if my son could have done it alone, things would have improved by now but they haven't and that he would benefit from a structured environment with professional staff. We went on further to discuss that my tolerance, patience and support is uncommon. He said that he knows no other parent who would still have their child living in the family home after so much time and trouble especially now that he is 18. He knows that it is because I love my son. He also suggested a plan in which I give my son a time limit to enter rehab or structured accommodation and if he does not comply then he knows that on that given date, he is out. I have obviously thought of this and have intimated it to my son, but have not had the courage or strength to see it through. I have to find that now and actually mean my words and go through with it. He said he would speak to my son later and start the conversation of rehab with him.

Later Sunday evening my son and his friend spoke. A conversation that lasted roughly about three hours. Much was said in that conversation that I could hear and much more I assume that I could not hear. Sometimes the conversation got heated and voices were raised, but never did things turn nasty. They spoke about my son's drug usage, his progress if any, his plans, rehab, his triggers, me, the pressures he feels, some of his feelings, his feelings of rejection from the rest of the friendship group, his moral ideas of right and wrong, his need for normal friendships and the fear that he is being ostracised because he is an addict.



Some of the things that were raised in the conversation that my son did not like and obviously disagreed with, but in the end I hope they will sink in and do some good. I do not know too much about the conversation because I went to bed before it finished. However, the phone cut out a few times and during the brief time in between phone calls my son did spew out to me some of the topics being discussed, and he was not happy. Things about how my son was quite drunk/high on one or two occasions and became very angry and threatening to one of their friends. Another occasion when my son stole bottles of wine from this friend he was having the conversation with. How some of the friends thought a few of my son's actions on several occasions were strange. How some friends do not know what to say or do not want to make matters worse for my son by inviting him out to social gathers at the pub etc. where drinking is involved. How perhaps he has been labelled an addict and therefore been shunned. How my son has borrowed money and not paid it back....

My son's quick and defensive reaction was of course, "Great, no one likes me and no one wants to hang out with the addict!". While I heard him then trying to justify his stealing and his aggressive behaviour, I couldn't help thinking that maybe this open conversation will get him to serious examine his behaviour and realise that yes, he does have a problem that other people are also recognising. Of course, my son can also continue to be defensive and blame others and only sink deeper into his self loathing which will make him want to turn to drugs even more.

As this mature and kind friend said to me, my son started taking drugs so very early in his adolescence that he has not learned any other coping skills and this is going to be so hard, but he can learn new skills and coping techniques. He must have said something similar to my son at some point in their conversation because I heard my son's raised voice as he said on the phone, "You don't understand what it is to be an addict". No, I guess his friend doesn't. Nor do I. This is why we think places like rehab would be a good thing and meeting other addicts might not be such a terrible thing like my son thinks. Yet, my son does not want to meet any "of  those people". Again, as my son's friend can now see as as I can, my son is in limbo. He can not function in "normal" society (he does not want to give up all the drugs, he doesn't want to go to school or get a job, he wants to lay about in nothingness) yet he does not want to enter the world of fellow addicts who are starting a road to recovery (he doesn't want to attend group sessions at the clinic, doesn't want structured accommodation, doesn't want to go to rehab with "those" people).



I hope things start to sink in, but I will also start pushing the rehab more and look into visiting one soon. I need to be doing all I can do, but I also need to be firmer. I will also push for the mental health side of things and try to get my son properly assessed and maybe the dual diagnosis might benefit him. I will meet up with his friend and maybe if enough people are on his case we will get some positive results.




Saturday, 22 June 2013

It's all about ME

I keep wondering why no one can understand that this boy has serious problems. I guess that I am the one with the real problem. I am the one who is persisting that someone can help us. I am the one who keeps hanging on to hope. I am the one who could not live with the guilt of putting him out. I am the one living a life I don't want to and watching my daughters live a life I don't want them to.


`
I am listening to him now about how I have to buy him everything, I should be paying for EVERYTHING. I should pay for his i pod to be repaired, books, guitars, passports, internet, caffeine pills, bus fares, phones, prescriptions, beer,...



I  have caused his sleep to get worse because he can't listen to his i pod in bed, it is because I have not fixed his ipod or bought him a replacement.

We missed a birthday party today because he kept saying that I was not invited because its at night and no parents are invited. I said NO I was invited and his sisters and I was told midday and that he would give me the address. We kept arguing and disagreeing. When his friend txted him that the party is over why didn't we go my son lied but did not think he was lying. When I challenged him on why he is lying, he wanted to convince me that it was my fault for not convincing him that I was right and that I should have made him get up and get ready and I should have got us to the party! It is my fault that we didn't go.

It is my fault that he has no more friends because I had to make everyone know about his addiction problem...I think his friends knew there were problems and I never even spoke to them! But apparently I have ruined everything and I am to blame for EVERYTHING!




I should help him in his "recovery" with buying him the things he wants so that he can be occupied and keep his mind of the dugs. It is not good enough to go to the library if he wants to read. I have to buy him books. I wanted this "recovery" therefore I need to pay for the Methadone. I want him to get up so therefore I should buy him caffeine pills to help him.

I also want him to do chores around the house, help in the garden, look for work or get on benefits so he can start contributing financially, go to all the sessions offered at the clinic, go into rehab....yet those things I really want do not seem to be relevant!

Funny thing is he has bought 200 Nitrazapam for £90, his money. He wants a passport which is roughly £90 but it is my responsibility, because he wants to go to a festival in France. He wants to go on holiday with us, but we sure the hell do not want a holiday with him. I bought him a passport last year, he lost it...yet it is my responsibility to buy another?

I am stupid because I do not understand that in order to give up opium he needs to increase his benzos. I am the one who wanted him to give up opium....so I need to support his benzo habit! What I actually wanted was for him to give up EVERYTHING and for him to WANT to get help and "fix" things.




OK I am starting to see that I am actually the one in the wrong here and I am putting up with this and I am letting the girls be exposed to this. I am the one that is hoping that someone, somehow can rescue us all buy offering the solution. I am the one who thinks that somehow the light will be turned on in my son's mind and he will WANT to get better. I am the one to blame that this situation is just going on and on. No will will put my son in the hospital. No one will put him in rehab. No one will give him a magic wand to WANT to recovery. No one will lift the burden of responsibility off my shoulders. No one will come in and rescue us. It is all on my decision how I allow our family to live. If I keep thinking that my son will get better while under my roof, then I am the one who ultimately is to blame that all of us our suffering. No matter what I do I will ALWAYS have some guilt and I just have to come to terms with this and bite the bullet and stop waiting for help.



Friday, 21 June 2013

Everything ...Online

Well, it is Friday. No appointments today. No phone calls...yet (I never know when social services might ring). It is the weekend starting. We should be happy and have plans or just comfortable hanging out at home. Not the case for us unfortunately. The weekend often brings with it a sense of dread. Will my son be asleep all through the days or will he be awake and making my daughters weary because they are not comfortable in his presence and they worry about potential arguments. Instead of planning my weekend, I am thinking about drugs.....



The more I think about how my son has been supporting his drug habit over the years via the internet really disturbs me. Generally I think the internet is a wonderful thing and of course I would not have the opportunity to write this blog or gather information if there was no internet.

Reading this article from a couple of years ago, I see that buying opium poppy pods are available on line in the States as well. As I have shared before, it is opium found in the dried pods and not the seeds that creates the intoxicating drink. A fear of mine has always been that too much opium will result in respiratory failure in my son as in the boy in the article, but as one of the comments says, he is an experienced user and always measures out the dose and gauges the affect. That is not to say that even the most experienced opium tea drinker is not at risk of a possible overdose.

http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig/2009/03/21/university-of-colorado-student/#comments


Of course, if it isn't the opium poppy pods my son was buying over the internet, it would have been and still is prescription drugs. That is just outrageous that you can acquire these on line either through some quote unquote pharmacological websites, or even worse privately being sold via emails. I remember once my son getting large white tablets wrapped in newspaper and cotton wool from India. These were not in blister packs or boxes, no indication of what it was you were actually getting. I disposed of many of those, but I am sure some got passed me.





Powders, smoking chemicals, cannabis, the lot...all purchased over the internet or email and then delivered to your door by the postman! CRAZY. And all under my nose....how blind are we at times?



Thursday, 20 June 2013

Dual Diagnosis

Last night I told my son, like any mother of any child would do, "It really isn't nice to spit in the kitchen sink. I want you to go to the toilet or get a tissue". Normal. Reasonable. Understandable. From this comment and request came resistance, explanation, argument, hostility and an onslaught of verbal abuse which lasted 45-60 minutes! The things my son said to me was hurtful, spiteful, disgusting and uncalled for. I do not even want to remember them long enough to write them down.

My daughters sat in one of their bedrooms behind a closed door, together, the older one reading aloud to the younger one trying to block out the noise of his horrible shouting voice. I sat in my room, with my fingers in my ears, trying not to hear. I started to think, "I keep blaming the drugs for everything, maybe there is more to this than just drugs? This is not normal".



He stayed up all night and dosed on the sofa this morning while his sisters and I began our day, had our breakfast and carried on as if everything were normal. His reason for not sleeping last night was because he had a 10 am appointment with the social worker in his office in town. Knowing this and planning his night of no sleep in order to allow him to get somewhere in the morning did not mean he was acting responsibly. He still dozed a little too much and I had to spend my time trying to wake him and urge him to get ready for his appointment. When  I finally got him awake, I had to urge him to get ready. When he was ready it was past 10:00 am and I dropped him off in front of the Social Services Office.



Upon his return home, I ask my son how it went. My son tells me that the social worker thinks he is making good progress. The fact that he has made it out of the house and to an appointment is a great step and sign of his improvement! I had to ask the following question: "Did you tell the social worker how you stayed up all night and how I had to wake you up still, tell you to get ready and take you to your appointment?" No, my son did not. So to the social worker it appears that my son had a night's sleep, got up on his own accord to get ready for his appointment and walked out the door and headed off to his appointment like a responsible adult. Not quite what happened, but if that was what happened, than fair enough, my son would have made an improvement.

Even more amusing or disappointing, depending on your viewpoint, is that my son said that the social worker says that if he does the group sessions at the drug and alcohol clinic he has finished his recovery! Seriously??? The boy still orders benzos on the internet and self medicates, he still smokes weed, he still drinks he still takes codeine and he is nearly finished with his recovery??? I think not Mr Social Worker and the last time I checked you not an expert in drug rehabilitation!


What do these sort of comments do? They belittle our situation. They make me look like the "bad guy" or the "unreasonable one" and my son thinks, "see the social worker is praising me, why aren't you?". I would love Mr Social Worker to live with my son for just one week and see what his opinion would be after that week! This is reinforcing, in my son's mind, that I have too high of expectations.

Then it was Methadone time. Shortly thereafter the police officer came out to talk to me and then my son about the situation at home and the increasing issues with uncontrollable anger.

I could have had my son arrested today, but I did not. I could have had him arrested for his violent outbursts when he damaged my property. I said no, but next time I will. She talked to me for a long time. She took a lot of details for their "domestic violence" report. She kept telling me that he is not contributing as an adult and is an adult and is misbehaving and so I have every right to put him out. She then talked to my son and reiterated all that to him. She said that even though family relationships can become stressful there is no excuse for his behaviour and he needs to control his behaviour. Since he is not contributing to the household he is a guest in my house and needs to behave. And she said he will be removed from the house or arrested the next time they are called out.



My son was calm, but not surprisingly so, he just had his methadone. I expected him to be nervous or angry.

She told my son that she is not saying the arguments are always his fault because there are of course other factors, but the way he reacts is up to him and him only. And from all the things the police officer said, what he took away from it was that because she said there are other factors involved in arguments, he started to go on to me about how people keep saying it is not all up to him and that I also need to start making changes and be more reasonable and control my anger and other people need to stoke provoking him....OK, clearly him and I are not hearing the same message!

The support worker/counsellor I saw earlier this week (who was the one who made the call to the police) mentioned about wanting to try to pursue the mental health avenue and said that my son should be assessed and perhaps there is need for a dual diagnosis in his case. I will see her again next week and I think this is something that needs to be pushed and maybe even demanded. I feel that some behaviours have changed with the drug usage but were there before, namely the anxiety and depression. Also it is hard to say whether or not the rages would have happened without the drugs or not. There are the incidences like last night and with most of our arguments which get out of hand for hours, his reaction is not quite "normal". By the way, I never liked the term "normal" but sometimes it is the only word that seems to work. My son is also very obsessive about some things, which is often the trigger for arguments. Not to mention that his obsessive behaviours have also made it very difficult to leave the house when others are ready and waiting because he is not. These are all mental health issues on some level and we are not even taking into account the psychological impact that his emotionally, and sometimes physically, abusive relationship with his father has had! So yes, a THOROUGH mental health assessment would definitely be in order! But it is not that easy, especially as soon as you mention any substance use/misuse the mental health professionals wash their hands of you.



This excerpt from the following Wikipedia article sounds very much sounds like my son's own form of self medication:  Khantizan proposes that substances are not randomly chosen, but are specifically selected for their effects. For example, using stimulants such as nicotine or amphetamines can be used to combat the sedation that can be caused by higher doses of certain types of (usually typical) antipsychotic medication.[29] Conversely, some people taking medications with a stimulant effect such as the SNRI antidepressants Effexor (venlafaxine) or Wellbutrin (bupropion) may seek out benzodiazepines or opioid narcotics to counter the anxiety and insomnia that such medications sometimes evoke.

Full article:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dual_diagnosis



Lets hope this counsellor will be successful in asking for a full mental health assessment, but if she is, I hope we don't have to wait weeks before he gets an appointment!

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

History Repeats

Here is a strange epiphany I had on the way home from my initial counselling support session at Open Road Drug and Alcohol Centre. I realised how the same mistakes are being made again and again and how behaviour is learned and how I need to break the cycle.



Six-seven years ago while my husband and I were still together but clearly not happy, we went to a few marriage counselling sessions. After the first few sessions our counsellor phoned me during one day that she was concerned about our case so went to get advice from her manager. They wanted me to come in alone to discuss their concerns. Due to the amount of pent up anger and hostility our counsellor detected in my husband, as well as the incidences with him and our son, the professional opinion was that they were concerned for my safety and our son's safety and what would happen if my husband can no longer contain his anger. This conversation was the catalyst in me gaining the courage to tell my husband to leave.

Now I am sitting with a counsellor and we are discussing the situation at home with my son. My son, probably because of his age and his drug usage, can not contain his anger and his anger seems to be increasing. Ironically the same words were coming out of this woman's mouth that I heard years ago from a different woman. "I am really concerned for you and I will need to speak to my manager about this". She did say that she can not tell me what to do and she does not want to sway me in one way or another, but I need to think about my safety and my daughters' safety but realises that since it is my child we are talking about it makes it a much more difficult position to be in.



Later that day, this counsellor phones me and said that she spoke to her bosses and they are concerned!
It is such a weird feeling of deja vu, talk about history repeating itself! Why can't history repeat the good stuff???




The counsellor told me that she also called the social worker because she wants to know what help has been put into place for me and my children. All he could say, repeatedly, is that he advised me to call the police if my son ever behaves in a threatening manner. I informed her that the social worker had already phoned me and we had words over this perception that the only form of help they can offer me is to phone the police. He went as far as to say that if it can not be evidenced that I have protected my younger by calling the police on my eldest child that I will be seen in the eyes of the law as NOT protecting my children and I will be in the wrong.

I took a deep breath and made my point clear to Mr Emotionless Social Worker, that they are not offering me help but just saying, phone the police. It is a vicious circle because if I phone the police my son will either run or after they leave or the next time he is provoked he will be even angrier, making our situation worse. Calling the police is not a real solution in my point of view. It does not solve any problems. And the social worker more or less agreed with that but also said that I have to demonstrate to social services that I am indeed protecting my younger children and the only way of demonstrating that is by having it documented that I have in fact called the police out on my oldest child....who in all likelihood will either not be present when the police arrive or be calm and rational with them. And at the end of the day, my son will not be removed and he will still be living with us regardless of the police coming out. Not a real solution.



Back to the conversation with the counsellor I saw. When she phoned to tell me that she had spoken to her manager and the social worker, she told me that since social services are keen to have the police out and she knows that I am very hesitant because he is my son, she said that perhaps a good way to satisfy social services and more importantly give my son a little wake up call is for their organisation to make a report to the police that they are concerned about a potentially dangerous situation at home. The police would call me up and we would agree when they would come out and speak to my son, inform him on matters to do with his aggressive behaviour toward me and also do a welfare assessment. I actually agreed to that and I have been walking on eggshells ever since because that was 20 hours ago and I have not heard anything yet, but I feel they will be phoning me today!

My son does not know about this yet. I saw him for only a couple of hours yesterday and the atmosphere quickly turns argumentative and defensive so my daughters and I went upstairs. He has gone to bed this morning so more than likely will sleep all day...how and when can I have a rational conversation with him about what is about to happen?

The shit will be hitting the fan soon....but then what?


Sunday, 16 June 2013

Decisions






How do you know what the best decision is as a parent? Often you don't until after that decision has been put into place and sometimes it takes years to transpire whether you did the right thing or not.


An even harder question for parents to answer is, "How can I choose between my children?". Most parents would say they could not.



I still feel like I can not choose, yet I am also being reminded that I must if things do not start to drastically change. I am reminded that I need to make some tough choices when I see my older daughter's scars on her arm from where she self harmed, something she resorted to because of all the intense arguing and dysfunction within the family home. I am reminded that , yes, I may have to choose between my children when I come across paper with my younger daughter's scribbles on it. Paper on which she has recently written:  "He" is horrible. I hate him. I wish I can see the people (she means the social workers). Please take him away. I can't take it any more. There is hardly any positive. I have no positive to think of". I am brutally made aware that no matter how hard I try to provide a stable and loving and "normal" life for my daughters, it is not a stable, loving, normal environment for them to be growing up in. When I try with all my might to ensure that my older daughter has a wonderful return home from a recent French exchange visit, my efforts are soon crumbled. I bought gifts, cleaned the house, made sure everything in her room was clean and fresh, put up balloons and banners, brought flowers to welcome her with, baked cakes, bought her favourite foods, made one of her favourite meals for dinner......all this was wonderful, yet when her brother finally came out of his room (1-2 hours after she arrived) and we started watching TV the usual arguments ensued and rather than be the older, more mature and understanding older sibling, her brother uses this to burst out in an aggressive manner and started calling her all the same, horrible, vile names and blaming her for it all. She of course reacts with screams and tears and storms up to her room. After nearly 6 weeks of not self harming, I fear that she might regress and start again. I go to see her and she is scratching at her marks and scars...but luckily  we started talking and stayed upstairs...what a welcome home that was!!!





Then the next morning when my daughters and I sit down for a special breakfast, (since my daughter was not being fed the food she liked in France, the 1st few meal times I wanted to be special) and my daughter tells me how good I am to her and what a great mum she has.

Another piece of paper I find while cleaning up is my younger daughter's drawing of a tree. Above the tree it says "things I love about you". The tree has branches. On the branches there are words; love, hope, care, there are things you care about". Inside the folded paper it says "mummy I love you".

I feel like a cheat. A traitor. I feel I have betrayed my daughters and let them down and do not deserve these words. Obviously, they hate their home because of all the shouting, the aggression, the dysfunction...but they still love me and think I do wonderful things for them. How can I deserve that love while I allow their brother to live here and affect their lives and their developing emotional well being?



 I can not choose...yet. I think if I offer my son all the support he needs and allow him to stay in a safe family environment while he hopefully starts engaging in services as well as the self actualization to want to get better and change, that surely is the best way forward. Yet, am I fooling myself and should I realise that the safety and comfort of home will never allow him to get to where he needs to be to want to get better? Does he need to hit rock bottom? Does he need to be rejected by everyone and be put out and turn to a life of a heroin addict sleeping in the street before he wakes up? Will he ever "wake up"? These are the questions that leave me paralysed and helpless and hopeless about what is the right decision as a parent and the serious realization that if I make the wrong decision I may loose him forever, or I may harm my daughters' long term psychological make up/happiness forever. How does a parent choose from that?





Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Cold Turkey

OK, so my son says he is tired of all these people involved and it is all my fault, yes, we all know that by now! He asks me if I would "be happy" with him going cold turkey at home and then finding some other service to provide counselling/therapy....but maybe he doesn't even need it, he can just make things better himself at home.



Well, first of all, if that were the case why has he not already tried to make things better? Also, as his plan is revealed as to how he will go cold turkey at home, its clear it is not a good plan. He would require some funding to obtain the proper medicines to help him go cold turkey: i.e.. muscle relaxants, anti nausea meds, Tramadol, Valium, among others. These are the types of medicines that patients receive in detox rehab while they are going through the painful and dangerous detox period (he says). Will I help him get these? No, I will not. Go and talk to the drug advisor, the GP, the Dr at the clinic....not me.



This is the part that I am adamantly disagreeing with my son about and I would think that any recovering addict would take my side, but please correct me if I am wrong: "I can give up the opium tea, but I don't need/want to give it up forever. If later I feel like having a cup, I can. It does not mean I will start my habit again. If I want to reward myself, or have a good time, or whatever, I can have the occasional opium without getting back into the habit of using it daily".

If anyone who has been a smoker and has given up knows, you can not quit smoking and then casually have a cigarette and that's it, no more. Or the recovering alcoholic knows that you can not treat yourself to a drink when you think it is well deserved and then, that's it,  no more. Any addiction is the same. Of course my son tried to be smarter than me and said that nicotine and alcohol affect the brain differently, and that it is a short term physical satisfaction and that is why you need more, whereas opium works on different parts of the brain and stays in your body for a long period and the affect is therefore longer and you feel content.....bull shi* if you ask me!




I can only offer my "ignorant, unfair, judgemental, selfish" advise to my son. Go speak to the doctor. Speak to a different drug counsellor. Go to a N.A. or A.A. meeting and talk to others who have been through it. No, he does not like my ideas and thinks I am being unreasonable.

When he says to look for other therapy possibilities, I ask him where he will find such possibilities. Well, how silly of me to even ask. The answer to that question...I bet you know....I WILL, not him. I said it would be up to him, but even if we do find other services, what service would take him on that  #1, is part of the NHS and not private since we can not afford private doctors (as we are already on the NHS service now and he doesn't like it); and #2, what therapist would take you on while you are self medicating?  He has no answer to the first issue, but to the second, "they don't need to know about the drugs".....OMG!!





Come on....people in similar situations must agree; "you can't do this alone, you need help"!?!?



Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Trying to Focus



In two days my daughter returns from her French exchange trip, and she will have been away 10 day when she returns. I want to clean the house and make every thing nice. I would have liked to have fixed up the garden as well. I want to make her a welcome home banner, make sure her favourite foods and drinks are bought, cook her a special meal, have cakes waiting for her and get her a nice welcome home gift as well. But I am not doing does those things. I am trying to clean but keep getting interrupted and distracted by my son who is finding reasons to be angry with me and calling me those vile names and pulling me into arguments which leave me drained.


I am writing now, instead of trying to carrying on with my chores because I am hoping that the cathartic affect this writing tends to have on me will help release some of my frustration and anxiety and leave me a bit more focused at the task at hand.




My son is increasing disrespectful of me and increasing angry and increasing aggressive. He does not want the help that is being offered. In fact he insists that when I took away the Etizolam I was being ignorant and it would have had a detrimental affect on him. Apparently the Dr understand why he ordered it and said it was a "good thing" he had it because he did not have his Methadone that day. I do not believe a word of it and said that if there was an ounce of truth to that statement the Dr would prescribe a benzodiazapine if they felt he was in need of it.

He keeps telling me what a stupid f****** c*** I am and I have no idea how things work and I am the cause of all the problems. I have apparently changed, I "snapped" one day and I am a selfish conniving f***** up b****. He was angry because I would not "lend" him money yesterday to buy pills on the internet, which apparently is "completely legal". He thought I was being selfish!!!!



Now, some how he is getting money and doing things to get money, but I can not see how since he never leaves the house.

I am tired, I am drained.

I got him some forms from the job centre and he refuses to fill them out and once we start talking about it, 5 minutes into the conversation, he gets angry, at me, and says he is not doing this and I am a blah blah blah....my brain switches off, it has to!



I phone the Centre for Drugs and Alcohol where the structured recovery sessions are held, along with family support etc, to see if my counselling sessions have been set up yet. After discussing that, the woman (a very kind and sympathetic and knowledgeable woman I might add) asks how my son has been this week. I tell
her as honestly as I can.

 She asks to speak to him.  My son is starting to lose his tempter now with the people who are offering support. He tells her point blank he is not interested in group sessions or the work they do, he will get clean himself. He will find somewhere else to get one to one therapy. I know he wont, because he has told me over and over again, "it is your JOB to make appointments". He was in his room getting high when I knocked that he is wanted on the phone. He asks me when the phone call is over, "how can we make all this people and social services go away?", by you getting better and listening to the advice the services give you and doing what is expected I explain, not by sitting in your room getting high. "Well I am getting high because this is all making me so angry that the drugs are the only thing that makes me feel better".

There is a knock on the door. It is the post man. Well my son charges down the stairs like there is a bull behind him. He want to get to the door before me or at least with me. Hmmm, I wonder what Mr Postman has for my son? Surprise surprise, it is a nice little packet of Valium that my son quickly snatches from the postman and takes to his room, "you aren't going to throw these away".
This can't go on.......





The woman from the recovery centre tells me I have been very patient but now perhaps my patience is thin...yes, very thin. She does not know how they can help my son if he does not want the help and that he needs some sort of wake up call, yes he does. I ask if she can help me with getting supported accommodation for him, though he was very angry when I mentioned it to him and said no way, she says that  that too is something that he needs to want and we can't just put him there!!!!




I have 2 hours now before my youngest daughter comes home from school and I have been too distracted to do my jobs. In 3 hours another student social worker is coming out to our house to meet my youngest so that she can start having session with  her in school....to talk about how the situations at home are making her feel.



I better get into gear because at the end of the day my daughters deserve better and at least I can try my best to give my middle daughter a decent homecoming, because though she is happy to be coming home to me and my cooking and her bed and so on, I know that there is also a part of her that is dreading coming home to her brother and the arguments and the hostility and tension in the air. How I wish that were not the case, but sadly it is.