The dreaded word

Old 10-22-2007, 03:59 PM
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The dreaded word

AS had 9 months clean, living in an Oxford House and totally on his way to a new life. But, his work gave him a ton of crap, threatened to fire him, sent him "away" for more training and even tested him with fellow workers wanting to do "shots", etc. at the local bar. He said no, went back to his hotel and came home. Kept calling his "oxford house" after every incident...we think they were "testing" him and he was getting advice from his fellow Oxford House guys. His housemates were terrific, helping him through the temptations and got him through the whole week. Says he called them repeatedly every night.
Well, he relasped last night, after coming home....knew it, heard him leaving at 12:30AM, driving MY car, and I just said to way, he could never do that again....But I was wrong (or right) depending upon viewpoint.
I know it's only one screw-up and can be handled, esp. since I just discovered that he has bi-polar disorder, and with proper meds, that can be controlled.
Unfortunately, there is at least one SR board member who was hoping this would happen...since I kept saying he won't relapse...well, you got your wish...hope you can sleep better at night because of it. You win! You know who you are!
(Can you even imagine a former friend hoping your son would relapse?)
Well, I have a full month with him before he can get back into another Oxford House! He's going to learn how to keep a checkbook register. He's going to get help for his psysiological (not pyschological) probs, such as Bi-polar disorder.
I only learned recently that bi-polar disorder is a prime suspect in any sort of substance abuse. Never saw a single post here about has always been the addicts fault here. We were always co-dependants. Never our fault, never our genes that we have transmitted to our kids. She said sarcastically....I have recently learned about a ton of info about all this! However, we are no more at fault than our parents, who handed down the gene along with it's epi-genome (enviornmental factors) to us.
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Old 10-22-2007, 04:12 PM
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First, I am so sorry you are going through this. I DO remember the pain of discovering my daughter had relapsed... and how deep was the pit I fell into.

Second, none of us know for certain the 'reason' behind addiction. My belief is that it is a genetic predisposition, and in my family, my own kids have discovered they do better with medication... son takes meds for ADD and depression and daughter for depression.

I don't know which came first, in thier cases, the condition or if the addiction "broke" something... but it doesn't matter, long as they take care of themselves the best they can.

I do have a confession to make, tho; and it is your post that reminds me. My brother-in-law has a son who is addicted to meth. My daughter is addicted to meth. Their son got clean for several years using a faith-based program. One evening, I just went on and on about this cool 12-step program I had discovered. I was pretty gung ho, and it did not occur to me that by being so enthusiastic, I might have been construed as being "better than". I was talking about AA and Alanon and the joys of a 12-step program and my brother in law looked at me and said, "Josh is free of all that." And then sat back and smirked at me (my interpretation). That, I think, was his way of stating that HIS son's program was better. At the time, his kid was in recovery, and mine was not.

At that moment, I did wish his son would relapse. I thought about it, and I even expressed it to a program friend. But never to them.

Then last year, his son - with 4 years clean - relapsed on meth. It was terrible. Lots of folks got hurt, including his beautiful wife and sweet, sweet baby girl.

And I felt guilty. For even wishing it on them. Even tho I was early in my recovery. Even tho I didn't express it. I thought it.

And I regret it.

On the other side of things. When I carry a resentment... you know who gets the pain? Me. Every time. (Boy, is THAT not fair!). But that is how it works.

To lay down MY resentments, I've had to pray about it, look to others who have been able to lay theirs down and do my best to follow their example.

In some cases, I've been successful... enough so that I can say that lowering my expectations DOES help me sometimes.

My hope is, in sharing this with you, that perhaps you can see that the person who said that to you was hurting, too... and could not see beyond HER way. The same as I could not see beyond my way ... and in my case, I may even have had a part in inviting the comment from my brother-in-law.

Please know you are welcome here... any time. (((Barbdee))))

And I am truly sorry your son is struggling. Prayers that this is a short learning lesson, and that he gets back on track soon.

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Old 10-22-2007, 04:12 PM
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get it, give it, grow in it
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So sorry to hear about the setback. It seems that recovery is rarely a staight line.
It sounds like your son has the skills and determination to get back on track.
Wishing you well. I tell myself that when my son relapses it is my job not to relapse with him but to keep working the skills I learned via Al-Anon so that I
keep my own sense of equilibrium and gratitude fpr the life I have.
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Old 10-22-2007, 04:25 PM
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I am also sending prayers that your sons relapse is a short lived one. I am glad you found out he has other problems so he can get the help he needs. I feel addiction is a disease and yes it runs in families. Some are addicted to smoking, drinking, eating, etc but it is all addicition.
Good luck, I am sending you an extra hug
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Old 10-22-2007, 04:25 PM
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Barbdee, I am sorry that your son relapsed. But maybe he learned something from it and will continue in his recovery even stronger than before. Sending prayers for your family and your son. I know it hurts. Hugs, Marle
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Old 10-22-2007, 04:57 PM
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Worst word in the English language

I think it's purely selfish, since I was so sure son was on track.
I knew there was a problem two weeks ago (mother's intuition) and I heard him sneak out of the house last night and "knew" where he was going. I should have called him, immediately....should have waited up. Should have, should have, and more. But I didn't. Was I just being normal way? Dunno.
Back to ground zero. Damn.
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Old 10-22-2007, 05:09 PM
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Sorry to hear of your sons recent setback. Hopefully, from being at Oxford house, he has the tools to get him back on track.

I do remember that Bipolar being mentioned on the forums.
In fact, I know this because I had wondered aloud to myself if my oldest son is bipolar. (I still wonder)

I believe addiction is a genetic disease. With addictions on both sides of our family, our 2 sons had a 50/50 chance.
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Old 10-22-2007, 05:16 PM
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get it, give it, grow in it
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Don't beat yourself up on the "should haves" Remember you can't control it and you are not responsible for it
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Old 10-22-2007, 05:35 PM
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Im sorry

Barbdee, wouldnt it be great if we could do it for them? (stay clean?) Unfortunately it isnt that way....sending you (and son) my prayers....Mary
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Old 10-22-2007, 06:24 PM
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This is so hard for everyone. The relapses come for some not for others. My son had tried to quit drinking several times but I picked up on his games...such as buying non-alcoholic beer, drinking it...reading the paper....and making quick trips to the garage where his stash of vodka or beer was. His wife was so proud of him and she easily was fooled by his "games alcoholics play". I did this too, and also our family has alcoholism and depression on both sides of our family.

Then there came the day of the "wreck". We had been to see them two days before and took them out to lunch. We could tell that he was super depressed. He did eat all of his lunch though. We drove back to where we live...about a two hour drive and got a call on Friday morning. He was asking if we could pay off their Visa Bill so his wife wouldn't have so much to worry about it. He kept losing his jobs due to drinking on the job. This was a clue right here but I didn't catch it. That afternoon after his wife went to work, he loaded his truck up with his dogs and an ice chest full of beer and took off to the hills. He drove his truck over a 150 foot embankment. He is a quadraplegic now. He gets VA Benefits because he was in the Navy for four years.....learned how to drink there. He was in during the Gulf War.

He has his own home and hires caregivers to help him. He spends almost half a year in the VA Hospital for minor surgeries and other health problems and also receives counseling. He has been married twice and has two teenage boys. He and his second wife had been married a year when this happened and they agreed to divorce.

He went for help, alcohol treatment 4 times, mental health treatment for major depression but like me, chose to drink rather than take the meds. So sad but a reality that cannot be changed.

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Old 10-22-2007, 06:30 PM
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No words. Hate that it happened to him and to you. Just hate that it happened.

Gosh girl.. you have seen enough .

I am so very sorry. I had a boss once with BiPolar and I am certain his other problem was addiction. I had a husband who was terribly depressed and his other probelm was addiction. Mental illness or chemical problems in the brain can lead to self medication and often that is with some drug that is addictive (alcohol and all the other stuff).

Just sending you support, love and hugs cuz I am sure you need that.

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Old 10-22-2007, 06:48 PM
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I feel your pain and disappointment. MY AS has relapsed too many times.

I'm in a calm before the storm right now....he is sitting in the county jail for a few months.

"Thou shall not should on thyself."
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Old 10-22-2007, 06:51 PM
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Where there's life there's hope. Sending prayers your way that son gets back with the program.

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Old 10-22-2007, 07:36 PM
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i am sorry this has happened to your son & to you too. as a mom i know how u feel. it happens & it is up to them to get back on are powerless. my son too is bipolar. there are a few on here that there addict children are bipolar. it is not your fault that he relapsed.if you had gotten up & called him it does not mean that he would not have relapsed.he may not have answered the not blame yourself or the genes.i have only 1 addict child out of is choices in life that they make. take care of yourself & leave him to your H.P.
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Old 10-22-2007, 08:10 PM
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Sorry he relapsed hopefully he'll get back on track quickly. I know alot of addicts are bipolar but don't know if it caused or was caused by the addiction. My AD didn't start having panic attacks until after she started using drugs.
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Old 10-22-2007, 08:23 PM
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(((Barb))) I'm so sorry this happened. I know how much this can hurt and disapoint. He sounds like he has a great support system. I bet he will reach out to them for some help. He will also learn from this relapse. So trust his HP that there is a lesson for him & he will be back on track in no time. Sending prayers & hugs.
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Old 10-22-2007, 09:35 PM
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My daughter was addicted to drugs....I say was because she is sober today. She is bi polar and she takes bi polar meds. Actually she was diagnosed when she was a young teenager. We chose not to medicate her at the time because we weren't sure how much of her mood swings were her being a teen or if it was really bi polar. That was a hard call to make. The doctors told us that by her using drugs she was self medicating. She is on the right track now and she takes her bi polar meds everyday and she feels a lot better.

Sending positive thoughts to your son.
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Old 10-23-2007, 04:57 AM
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Barbdee, I hear a lot of pain and bitterness in your post. I'm sorry this happened and I know how awful it is when our son's relapse. Something that helped me a lot was going to meetings and working a program that helped me keep my balance and let go of the fear.

Sadly or not, recovering addicts have to face life on life's terms and learn what situations they must simply avoid to keep themselves safe. Hopefully your son has learned from this and learned that it's not "those people" who made him relapse. It takes time and healing and if he came away from this a little wiser, then maybe it was a lesson that he just needed to learn.

My prayers go out for him, that he can get back on that good path again and stay there.

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Old 10-23-2007, 06:38 AM
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Thx, for all of your understanding and support. I know from past experience how great everyone here is so turned to you guys first.
However, I just don't think I have it in me to deal with this again. I guess that's my real fear. It was soooo hard for almost 2 yrs and to think we are back to square one is probably the most depressing thing I can imagine. Yesteday, I just wanted to scream at the top of my I don't even want to get out bed. Probably won't.
As for others "wishing" this would happen...I don't care anymore. We're all human with jealousies and insecurities and it's totally ridiculous to blame this on others "wishes"..... no blame anywhere. Except maybe on AS.
I always try to find at least one positive in even the worst situations. The only thing I can find here is maybe with him being here a month, I can get him financially responsible....almost a tougher job than keeping him clean. Best positive I could think of.
Back to under the covers in a fetal position!
Love, B
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Old 10-23-2007, 07:14 AM
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The only thing I can find here is maybe with him being here a month, I can get him financially responsible....almost a tougher job than keeping him clean.
Barbdee, sweetie, you can't get him responsible any more than you can get him clean. He is the only one who can get himself there.

The addiction of our children is not our cross to bear. What keeps us sane is to turn all this over to a Higher Power and do what we need to do to keep our balance. For me that was meetings and learning to work a program that promised to restore my sanity and give me my life back...a promise that has been kept.

I know this is hard for you and has been all along, I've been where you are and I promise you that nothing you do or don't do, nothing you say or don't say, all the mother's love in the world won't get them clean and keep them there. It's just bigger than all of us.

I don't feel helpless, even though my son is out there lost in his addiction somewhere. I can pray, I can have faith that God can do for him what I cannot, and then I can let go and let God because my way just doesn't work.


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