jail epiphany

Old 11-20-2008, 09:57 PM
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jail epiphany

I visited my son in jail on Saturday. It tears me up to see him behind the glass window, and he tries to smile at me to reassure me. We had an argument. I was trying to get him to face facts about his addiction, but he insists that he's fine. If i pretend that everything's okay like he wants it to be, we don't fight. When I talk real honest talk, we fight. So anyway I left after he told me he couldn't trust me with his paycheck. (I was going to pay off some of his bills that he has ignored.)

So anyway while I was in there, I heard other conversations going on around me in the silences of our conversation. One father begging a son to stay out of trouble and go to rehab when he gets out. One woman crying, wanting to see her husband. And it struck me. So many wrecked lives because of drugs. If it wasn't for the drugs, then they probably did something for the money for the drugs. And their addiction affects so many people.

He didn't call me all week,and even though I 'm mad at him, I want to hear from him once in a while to know that he's okay. He finally called me tonight just for a minute and I feel better.

I hope that the longer he is in jail, the more he has time to face reality, but there are no guarantees. I'm okay for today, that's all I know.

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Old 11-20-2008, 10:24 PM
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It took me a while, when I was locked up, to face the reality of my addiction. It sounds stupid, since I was in a lovely orange jumpsuit, behind bars, and had no freedom, but it really didn't sink in at first. I actually knew it was all due to my addiction, but my initial thoughts were just to not get caught again.

It didn't take that long, though, before I realized I really, really don't like jail and I was going to have to make some major changes in my life in order to not go back behind bars.

I know how much you want him to "get it" this time. Just remember, though...we A's don't "get it" until we're ready, just as we codie's don't "get it" until we're ready. Since I'm an A AND a codie, I've found out it's a lot of work in both recoveries, but it's harder (to me) to detach from someone I love.

I'm glad you're okay today, and he's safe.

Hugs and prayers!

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Old 11-21-2008, 02:42 AM
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krhea, I only visited my son once in jail, it was just too sad and depressing for me.

My prayers go out that your son will find a better path and that jail may give him the time to find clarity, like Amy did.

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Old 11-21-2008, 05:12 AM
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I only visited my son once while he was in "camp"

Once was all this mom could take...
Did I mention that it was on Christmas Day.
It was the saddest, most depressing moment of my life....

Never again.

Praying that your son finds his way out of this terrible addiction.

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Old 11-21-2008, 06:04 AM
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THanks for the support. It's good to know that I'm not the only one who can't take it. My son will be in jail over Christmas too. I haven't decided whether to go see him or not. I'm trying not to go there yet. First I have to get through Thanksgiving.
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Old 11-21-2008, 07:56 AM
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I just wanted to give you a hug for your courage. But you know what why punish yourself. As an addict he made these choices and you suffer enough for them. He put himself there. There isnt nothing you cant say in a phone conversation or in a letter. At least right now. Maybe when he starts facing his consequences and really starts to seek help for himself , then maybe you could go with a better view of things. Because at this moment he isnt really paying the consequences, you are. He just thinks this is just something in his way. I was in jail too once. ANd the damage it did to my mom and my kids was ten fold for what it was for me. I never wanted my mom there. The phone conversations were enough for me to understand the enormous pain she was in. She didnt need to see me there. Only when I took a positive attitude that I wanted to get better was it easier for my mom to talk to me. I never once let her come see me there. I will never put her in that position. It was one thing to put myself there but another to make her and my kids go thru that. Stay home and just talk thru phone or letters. Do not pay his mistakes also.
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Old 11-21-2008, 08:36 AM
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The last incarceration my oldest had, I debated long and hard whether to see her. I finally did...once. That was enough for me. 30 minutes with her on one side of the glass, me on the other, and of course, she has no problems. She smirked the entire time.

I walked out of there with a sense of closure, knowing I have done everything humanly possible and turned her over to God.

Next time she's incarcerated, and there will be a next time, there will be no visits from me, period.

I'm done with her while she continues to live the life she lives.
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Old 11-21-2008, 10:59 AM
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I visited my oldest AS a couple times, and that was it for me. Somehow I just don't feel comfortable in a prison setting....

IMO, trying to get an Addict to face the facts related to their addiction and responsiblity, and where it has landed them, is like trying to teach a fish to ride a bicycle....

I go OUT of my way to have any conversations with "addiction" in the sentence. When they are ready to be sober, THEY'LL bring the subject up.

Don't beat yourself up trying.

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Old 11-21-2008, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by mooselips View Post
IMO, trying to get an Addict to face the facts related to their addiction and responsiblity, and where it has landed them, is like trying to teach a fish to ride a bicycle....
Now that is an analogy I can dig! I'm writing that one down for future reference, my dear! :ghug
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Old 11-21-2008, 12:19 PM
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I used to visit every time. This time i'm not visiting at all. He spent last christmas in jail and will spend this christmas in jail. i wont be there with him. seems like he would have learned before but he obviously didnt. seems to me the more they go the less effect it has on them. its sad but true. he doesnt really care anymore
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Old 11-21-2008, 12:24 PM
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My niece is in jail also, this is the second time around for her.

Some things I've learned (don't know if they'll help you, but here they are):

1. I used to think loving my niece was doing things for her (paying her bills, putting money on her books in jail, etc.), now my definition is "being there for her", listening to her and when I can do so calmly, telling her the truth in short, compassionate calm sentences. If she hears me, I might say more, if she gets defensive I shut up.

2. I do visit her - about once a week. I can't fix her and I won't do things for her, but I want her to remember that there are sane, normal people (her family) who love her no matter what and always have her best interest at heart.

3. As she moves through her journey, if I want to be there for her and love her, I have to be willing to stare straight at reality and try not to flinch, control or let it get the best of me... which means an ever deepening trust in my HP (easy to say, a daily challenge to do)

4. Whatever a person thinks is right for them is right form them in terms of visiting or not. I always check out my intention when I go to visit. If I am going to show I love her and see how she's doing with no expectations and I know I can handle whatever I may see, I go. If I can't do it with that intention, or I'm in a place where I might want to change what I see, I don't go.

5. No matter how careful I am , no matter how much spiritual growth I go through, I still make mistakes. Sometimes I say something I regret, sometimes I do things I regret, sometimes I visit and wish I hadn't sometimes I don't and wish I had - and I'm trying to be easy on myself because I'm doing the best I can with what I know today.

God bless you for trying your best.
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Old 11-21-2008, 01:34 PM
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KRHEA..........just sitting hear crying as I read your post, because I know that sooner or later my AD will be back in jail.

Troubledone......I really like what you have to say..especially #5.

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Old 11-21-2008, 03:27 PM
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Thanks guys....I think I will be staying away for awhile. I like what you all said about I'm not the one being punished. I also think that time is important for both of us. I agree that I probably shouldn't have tried to talk about his addiction. It just came out when I saw him behind the glass. Not that I shouldn't bring it up. Just that I should be prepared for holy heck if I'm going to. There always seems to be so much to learn each step of my recovery and his recovery. I too feel like I have done all that I can do, probably too much. So now it is up to him.
Thanks again for the words from kindred spirits. It helps more than you know.
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Old 11-21-2008, 03:34 PM
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Krea....I ache reading your post. One thing both my AS and I are greateful for is that there has been no genuine jail time, just the occasional overnight stay in the tombs...that I don't hear about.

It was hard enough to see him homless in the street...

Prayers and angels to ease the pain for you and to help your son.
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Old 11-22-2008, 12:58 AM
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kreah, I really can identify with you today. I got into an argument with my AD yesterday because she started telling me how she can't/won't get clean, can't face life without drugs, blah, blah, blah. And like a fool, I reacted and got mad!! If only I had just let her ramble on (it was her disease doing the talking anyway)...

But yeah, we all do make mistakes, even after learniing all the non-codie rules!

You are correct about the jail and addiction connection. I read someplace that over 85% of everyone in jail is in there due to drug/alcohol related reasons - directly or indirectly - either things they did while under the influence, or things they did to GET the drugs. If we found the cure for addiction today, soon the jails would be nearly empty.
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