The insanity and emotional drain of a loved one’s addiction

This from a friend who is suffering the addiction of her son.  These are the stories I heard for years at Families Anonymous. 

Jason has been homeless since the end of November 2016. The insanity peaked last week. He sent over 20 emails to me at work last Wednesday.

Somehow he managed to get himself accepted in to a rehab out in LA and they sent him a ticket. He was in their detox program last Friday and on Sunday he called and said he was going AA.

He has a warrant for violating his probation which is nothing more than staying clean and checking in with his PO. He settled down, worked with the therapist until Tuesday, called his PO officer who went ballistic and told him to get back to Richmond.

He was on board to fly back and turn himself in. His father and I both met him at the airport, got a hug, walked outside to go to our car and he said he needed to smoke a cigarette.

He handed me his back pack and started walking. I watched him as I no longer trust him. He walked across the street and in to a car. I took off running and threw his back pack at the hood of the car.

It was an Uber driver who was yelling at us. Jason just sat behind in the backseat. No reaction. My husband called the police and took a picture of his license plate. They took off.

My husband called Jason and said, “What are you doing?” Jason called back and said he was at the WaWa down the street. We went looking for him. Not there. He is gone. Again. This is so unbelievable.

We are seeing insanity at its worst. We are 12 years in to this nightmare and every time he relapses (or collapses) we go further down the hole emotionally.

He has never made it longer than 9 months, relapsing every year for last 10. What scares me is that the insanity has grown exponentially. He has become delusional and has had every disease possible these past few weeks–Hepatitis C, HIV, a concussion after running from us.

Today he texted me for food and $30 so he could go buy socks before he turns himself in. He called sobbing this morning.

I just say no. I know it’s a disease but I can’t do this any more. At this point I am just trying to take care of myself. Multiple threats of suicide, trouble with the law, physical and mental health problems. The up and down, the back and forth. We’ve spent hundreds of thousands, we’ve tried to help and we are slapped in the face, stolen from, lied to and taken advantage of.

He was such a wonderful little boy. What happened?

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Dear Heroin, I F-ing HATE you!

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AnneMoss Rogers

AnneMoss Rogers is a mental health and suicide education expert, mental health speaker, suicide prevention trainer and consultant. She is author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW. She raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost her younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. She is a motivational speaker who empowers by educating and provides life saving strategies and emotionally healthy coping skills. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now that's the legacy she carries forward in her son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website.

5 thoughts on “The insanity and emotional drain of a loved one’s addiction”

  1. The author says her son was a wonderful little boy and asks, “What happened?”

    Addiction happened. Once we understand that addiction is a chronic brain disease that no one chooses to have and that affects the chemicals in the brain…the neurotransmitters, the dopamine, etc., then we can begin to understand that we have to treat the brain. Areas in the brain, such as the pre-frontal cortex are damaged by alcohol and other drugs. This affects impulse control and craving and executive function ( decision making ).

    Heart disease and diabetes and cancer all require medical intervention. So does addiction. We would not think of using tough love with a heart patient. Addicts die in isolation. What they need most desperately is connection.

    1. I think as parents we struggle with the enormous change in their behaviors and personalities. It takes us a looong time to understand it is a disease and how we set boundaries to help ourselves and not interrupt the growth of our addict. It’s hard to watch a child self destruct and not be able to take them to a doctor like cancer to be treated. They have to submit to it. So there are nuances of this disease that make it unlike any other. We have to learn a new way of parenting that at first seems counterintuitive . We are learning now that sensation seeking, impulse control and other traits make some predisposed. While others are not at all triggered by alcohol drugs.

  2. My son Tyler was much like Jason. In & out of treatment & rehab with only very brief episodes of being clean & sober. Lying, stealing, sexual promiscuity, etc. Also diagnosed with Bipolar, Depressed Type but refused to take prescribed meds. The last day of his life, I prayed to God, told him I could no longer live this way and asked Him to handle for us! Four hours later, Tyler had taken his life!

  3. An all to familiar story. My heart is breaking. Thank you for sharing the horrific experiences of having a son in active addiction. I pray for him and his parents😢

  4. My heart breaks for this young man, this family. And yet I know it is not uncommon. I hate this disease. I’m so sorry…

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