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My son is getting out of rehab next week.

Old 01-19-2012, 10:40 AM
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My son is getting out of rehab next week.

15 years old, in for pot abuse and stealing my Ativan out of my purse. This is his first stint in rehab. He'll have been in for 29 days.

I'm scared.

I don't want to be disappointed. But I know whether he uses, or doesn't, is out of my control.

Forgive me. I'm new to all this.

But he has LOVED rehab. I think coming home will be a letdown. We live in a rural area where he has to be driven to see friends (who were potheads like him), so i think he has enjoyed the close companionship with the other boys.

No kidding--I really am scared. When does Al-Anon kick in?
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:48 AM
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Is there a young person's half way home that would be an option?
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:57 AM
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I don't know if there's a halfway house for teens in our area. The counselor at his rehab didn't suggest it. Maybe because he's "only" in for marijuana? Or because it's his first time in rehab?

Maybe I will mention it to his counselor today--we have a family session at 4. I figure, if he's gonna go to rehab, go the whole way, baby.

We are in the Reading, PA area--if anyone knows of a sober house for teens, please do let me know!
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:59 AM
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Continue prayers of healing for your son and for YOU!

As they say in Al-Anon - don't give up until the miracle happens in you!

PINK HUGS,
Rita
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Old 01-20-2012, 12:33 AM
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In your shoes would try talking to his counselors and my own. Your discomfort about his coming home doesn't seem like a good reason to seek a half-way house for him, even though I know the prospect of having to deal with this alone is really scary.

In the longer term would you consider looking around at residential schools for him? It seems like he's isolated and...what little I know of Central PA teen rural life leaves a lot to be desired. (Or maybe life is the same everywhere these days...)
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Old 01-20-2012, 04:45 AM
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At the very least I would recommend trying to find an intensive outpatient program that includes weekly family therapy sessions. If that's not possible, then individual and family sessions with an addiction specialist a couple of times per week. Also may want to ask if there are any "alternative peer group" programs in your area that will provide a new group of sober friends.
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Old 01-20-2012, 06:10 AM
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Thanks for responding to my thread. I think my son and i are enmeshed in an unhealthy way...i have enabled, and he has this hostile dependency on me--more so than a normal teen boy would. i just thought a sober house would allow him to focus on learning to live in recovery, without him having to deal with me. But there isn't one i can afford, so he'll have to learn to deal with me the old-fashioned way.

He is being set up in an IOP, and i am going to set up family therapy. He also says he wants to attend NA meetings, and I have Ala-Anon. I've asked my husband to join me--we'll see.

We had a family session and the group meeting with the other families last night. The family session was not good--something was bothering my son. He looked ready to cry. He would not tell us what it was. Finally I suggested cutting the session short so he could talk to his counselor about whatever was bothering him.

Thn we came back for the group session 90 minutes later. We didn't ask what had occurred earlier. He shared that he didn't know what his motivation was for not using. This was upsetting to hear, but at least honest.

Last night, as i was going to sleep, i visualized giving my son a long hug, then leading him by the hand to stand him before God. Then I smiled at my son, waved, and walked away.

I am trying to change to help my son. I can offer him love and support but in the end I have to give him to God.
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Old 01-20-2012, 06:53 AM
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My grown son is in an IOP currently too.
I must say I am so Impressed that your son is 15 and You are doing something about his issues. Doing and actively involved and educating yourself. I am sad that I could not face facts when my son was a teenager. I used the lines like: All kids smoke weed, Oh he is not like his friends, they just have fun and will grow out of it.
My son was busted at 18 for scales and weed by a St Trooper. The trooper called me at midnight to come down the street and get my son. Trooper said the young man wants help, please get it ....I thought I did the best, but the counseling was not the best. Fast forward to 24 years old, he brought a "girlfriend" who was a Heroin dealer into my home. The local police watched my lovely home as they wanted her. I left my home one morning and got pulled over by two cruisers one block from my home. I got explained to what was going down, that they were waiting for two County police to come and it was best if I let them in. They surrounded my home as I sat in the porch swing. I will never let that memory slip from my mind, MORTIFIED, embarrassed, angry and so much more. They did not take my son had no interest in him, but the lady who had the stuff and three warrants.
One Officer took me aside and said "DO something NOW! Get him out of the area he is a nice guy, just connects with bad people". Then the words that are carved in my mind, he said, Your son will be in prison with in two years and dead within 4.
Again I tried to get him help as best I knew how, I sat through the withdraws. Moved him to a great job at his father's work one state away. My son just could not stay away from the trash. With in 13 months of that incident, he was in court for something...mommy paid the fine to keep him out of jail. Within 25 months he was in ICU on heart monitor waiting to recover or die.
That office hit the nail on the head that day.
Do as much as you can for your son while he is still young, you seem so strong.
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Old 01-20-2012, 06:56 AM
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Don't give up on family therapy when things get hard...especially if he relapses. It will provide a safe place for all of you to discuss difficult issues. My daughter and I have been in therapy for 16 months. She has individual therapy 2x a week in addition to that. I know it sounds like a lot, but it has paid off.
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Old 01-20-2012, 06:56 AM
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There is alot of good recovery in your area.Many years ago I went to a rehab near you (Caron Foundation) they are excellent but very expensive. They have a section for teens and do some scholarships it would be worth a try.Good luck to both of you
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Old 01-20-2012, 07:55 AM
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Wow, so much experience and great advice and empathy...this is a wonderful board.

I am, by nature, a strong person--I never give up, had a great career, hard-driving and stubborn. I am a survivor. But it was my Higher Power who turns that natural strength into a strength that has kept me sober, in an AA program, for the past two years. I have learned that there is a better kind of strength. You find it by letting go.

I was not drinking when I raised my son, but not in a program, either. So I was not the best parent to him. I "fixed" his problems for him, too, from a young age, because of my guilt over my failed relationships causing chaos in his life. He never learned that bad behavior led to bad conseuences, because I always fixed those consequences.

When he went into rehab a month ago, I was devastated, but determined to do everything I could to help him. Doing everything I could involved changing ME, so I could be the mother he needs me to be now.

I must accept who I am, accept that I made mistakes in his parenting. I am accountable for those mistakes. But only HE can make the decision to be accountable for his choices going forward.

I am learning to love and accept myself--with all my flaws--so I can love and accept him for who he is. I am also learning that I am not responsible for his choices, and that it's okay for my husband and me to have a loving, peaceful home, even if my son doesn't want it for himself.

We love him, are going to support him in his revoery, but we are stepping out of the hurricane of his addiction.

Will he make it? I don't know. I am working on acceptance that his disease could take him to some very bad places, even death. I have made a bare beginning.

But I will do anything within my power to help him. The most loving thing I can do, I now believe, is to let him accept the consequences of his actions. I will let him fall, as one of the posts on this board, written by an addict, says so eloquently.

One of the hardest things I will ever do. But I have faith that my Higher Power is right by my side, helping me, suffering with me. I will leave my son in his hands.

But man, it really helps to talk about it. To write about it. Thanks for all those who responded.

BTW: Caron is about 45 minutes from me--have led AA meetings there. WAY too expensive for me. He may be going to Caron's outpatient IOP, though, so that's good.
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:19 AM
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Dear ISO, your son is still very young and impressionable. He still looks to you and your husband as the lifeline. You are doing the right thing in showing him at this early age, that he IS accountable! I am a classic "fixer" and I "fixed" my son all the way to a felony arrest. Stories above from those who walked before you all say the same thing. The sooner we let go and the addict has to see the err of their ways, the sooner HP can come in to support them if they want it. I still think you have every right to set the expectations at home but YOU also have to stick to those expectations so he sees he cannot play you or manipulate you. Don't worry, even sober 15 year olds are selfish and at times hostile . I have 3 kids, 15,17 and 21. They all have tested the waters with rebellion. The best thing you can do is let him know that you won't stand for the drug use in your home AND that you are there to support him in his desire to stay clean.
So far so good for my 21 year old. He is working a very stringent and strict inpatient rehab and is going on 76 days.
Hugs and support from another Momma,
Teresa
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:42 AM
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Thanks so much, Teresa! Great advice...somehow you put it all into perspective in one short post. Prayers for you and your son...he is lucky to have you on his side.
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Old 01-21-2012, 12:39 PM
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Cynical, I have often suggested outside activities (and paid for them).
Now it's up to him. He hung up in my ear yesterday, from rehab, when he found out we'd taken the electronics (TV, XBox, computer) out of his room. He can play them downstairs if he follows the house rules. Boy, he didn't like that at all. Tough noogies.

He follows the rules of the house or he can find somewhere else to live. I will love him, support him, take him to meetings and to other places where he can engage in positive activities with positive people, but he will not run the house his way.
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Old 01-21-2012, 02:36 PM
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Sounds like a normal teen temper tantrum at having his toys taken away. He's lucky to have parents who care about him and do these tough things instead of ignoring the issues and allowing him to isolate himself with electronics.

Hugs & Prayers!
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