Blogs


Notices

Is she using?

Old 04-30-2012, 08:56 AM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 113
Question Is she using?

My adult daughter is an alcoholic who has used heroin and cocaine. Until recently I thought her biggest problem was alcohol, but recently I have begun to wonder. Now I need info to help me decide.

She has been living with her drug addict boyfriend and his parents for over a year. Before that she had lost everything, including her child, because of drinking. The bf introduced her to drugs. She came to our house using, once. That was the last time we let her into our house.

She is telling us now that she is clean and sober, and her behavior supports that. She seems clear-headed and is trying to get away from the bf and move back closer to her daughter. The thing that is nagging at me is that she has darkened skin in the crooks of her arms and the last couple of times her hands and forearms were swollen. I am suspicious about what that means. Could it be from past abuse, or does it mean she is presently using? She said it is from doing yard work. Can someone be under the influence of heroin and still be functional? Forgive me, but I know nothing about drug addiction. I am thinking I may have to learn.
PerhapsLove is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 09:02 AM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Member
 
EnglishGarden's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: new moon road
Posts: 1,545
It is very hard to tell when someone is using heroin. They do not appear intoxicated like alcoholics or cocaine users. They are happy and content, as long as they get their heroin fix several times a day. It is only if they are out of the drug and starting withdrawal that you'd see the pronounced drug addict behavior come out. Some heroin users nod out after injecting, but not always. Many users are able to hold successful jobs and to hide their addictions from their spouses for years.

She may be injecting heroin.
EnglishGarden is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to EnglishGarden For This Useful Post:
bluebelle (05-02-2012), PerhapsLove (04-30-2012), Vale (05-02-2012)
Old 04-30-2012, 09:28 AM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
 
cc88's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Boston, Ma
Posts: 184
Originally Posted by EnglishGarden View Post
It is very hard to tell when someone is using heroin. They do not appear intoxicated like alcoholics or cocaine users. They are happy and content, as long as they get their heroin fix several times a day. It is only if they are out of the drug and starting withdrawal that you'd see the pronounced drug addict behavior come out. Some heroin users nod out after injecting, but not always. Many users are able to hold successful jobs and to hide their addictions from their spouses for years.

She may be injecting heroin.
Im sorry I need to disagree. I can tell instantly if someone is using heroin. be it my brother or complete strangers. Does she say that she didnt get much sleep or is working double shifts, or is just exhausted alot?

Yes they can function. Typically though, depending on how much they use, not very efficiently till a little bit after theyve used. Right after injecting they are falling asleep, nodding, eyes half closed, etc. My brother attended my grandfathers wake/funeral completely high and no one who wasnt his parent or brother/sister had any idea. WE know cause we are all used to the signs and dont believe the lies anymore.
cc88 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to cc88 For This Useful Post:
PerhapsLove (04-30-2012)
Old 04-30-2012, 09:39 AM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 113
Yes, she does complain of being tired a lot. She lost her job because of alcohol abuse. But she frequently gets up at 4 or 5 in the morning to "ride along" with the bf on his job. I have always attributed her fatigue to that. She appears to be overeating still and is skinny as a rail. Just so hard to know. I don't expect that she will be honest. It scares me to death. Last summer her bf injected her with an overdose of heroin and then tried to "undo" it with cocaine. She ended up on life support. She keeps telling me she isn't using and everytime she has gotten "caught" it has been with alcohol.
PerhapsLove is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 09:49 AM
  # 5 (permalink)  
1000 Post Club
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 2,284
Unbelievable. He helped her over dose on heroin & his answer was to inject her with cocaine?? Heroin users are able to hide it better than alcoholics because they don't smell, aren't loud and/or aren't staggering around. But look at the eyes. They will look like little pin holes while under the influence of narcotics.
Justfor1 is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Justfor1 For This Useful Post:
CanfixONLYme (04-30-2012), Marcus (05-02-2012), PerhapsLove (04-30-2012)
Old 04-30-2012, 09:55 AM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Member
 
cc88's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Boston, Ma
Posts: 184
Originally Posted by PerhapsLove View Post
Yes, she does complain of being tired a lot. She lost her job because of alcohol abuse. But she frequently gets up at 4 or 5 in the morning to "ride along" with the bf on his job.
If this doesnt sound like using heroin i dont know what does. I would put money on yes even if you hadnt said that, simply by virtue of the fact that she is living with someone who DOES use.

For my mom, the thought of 'i cant just accuse if i dont KNOW!' or 'what if im wrong??' always stopped her from making healthy boundaries and allowed my brother to continue to manipulate her. I always tell her "if you have to ask me 'did you think he was high' the answer is YES." even just at the title of your thread, before the page loaded completely in my head i went "hmm. yes. if you have to ask"

Clean drug tests wouldnt even convince me that this person isnt using drugs. Sorry to say it. Im sorry you're going through this.
cc88 is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to cc88 For This Useful Post:
CanfixONLYme (04-30-2012), PerhapsLove (04-30-2012), story74 (04-30-2012)
Old 04-30-2012, 09:56 AM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Member
 
EnglishGarden's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: new moon road
Posts: 1,545
The heroin user of my acquaintance managed a high-end metropolitan restaurant during his using years and also won an extremely challenging athletic marathon, while on heroin.

But he may be quite an exception.
EnglishGarden is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 09:57 AM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Member
 
cc88's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Boston, Ma
Posts: 184
Originally Posted by EnglishGarden View Post
The heroin user of my acquaintance managed a high-end metropolitan restaurant during his using years and also won an extremely challenging athletic marathon, while on heroin.

But he may be quite an exception.
what a coincidence! My brother was also the general manager of a high end restaurant in the prudential tower in Boston while in active addiction. What a waste of such charisma huh?
cc88 is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 10:02 AM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Member
 
outtolunch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Chicago area
Posts: 4,269
Is she demonstrating normal adult responsibilities? Is she employed? Does she own her own car and have insurance? Pay the rent? Have a phone that she pays for, each month?

I Dk if your daughter is sober. I do know there is a huge difference between being sober and taking responsibility for one's own life.
outtolunch is offline  
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to outtolunch For This Useful Post:
Kindeyes (05-02-2012), PerhapsLove (04-30-2012), story74 (04-30-2012), Vale (05-02-2012), wicked (04-30-2012)
Old 04-30-2012, 10:03 AM
  # 10 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 113
Yeah the long-term heroin addict still has his job (though he lost his license for a year). My daughter got fired for alcohol and would be on the streets if it weren't for this addict. She met him in rehab. He is abusive, physically and mentally, and she wants to get away from him. But she is trapped because of money. She burned all her family bridges. My husband and I are slowly starting to reconnect. I have to ask her, but I don't think she will tell me the truth. She will be afraid that we will cut her off again.
PerhapsLove is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 10:05 AM
  # 11 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 864
Blog Entries: 2
Always go with behavior, playing the using not using head game with yourself will more likely drive you nuts and you still won’t have any clear answer.

If she says she is ok, then she is. Accept that for what it is, no matter what is the truth it will show in time. There is no reason to love/treat her any different either way. I think this is a constant problem parents have, they think they need to shift how they treat their addict child based on if they are using or not using. There is no need to do this, all you have to do is love her as she is, see her as capable and she can do the rest.

Swollen hands could be using or not using and the not using with swollen hands would worry me more. Iv drug addicts are prone to circulation problems during active addiction and after.
Marks on the arms the same, faded out, healed nothing fresh, doesn’t really mean she isn’t shooting up somewhere else and could be a sign she is clean. But nothing says clean more than behavior…
incitingsilence is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to incitingsilence For This Useful Post:
bluebelle (05-02-2012), CanfixONLYme (04-30-2012), Chino (04-30-2012), Ilovemysonjj (04-30-2012), PerhapsLove (04-30-2012), wicked (04-30-2012)
Old 04-30-2012, 10:06 AM
  # 12 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 113
She lost all of the things she was responsible for because of her drinking. Job, car, license. We bought her a pay-as-you-go phone which she pays for. Her only source of income is unemployment, which is about to run out. She is trying to get a roommate in the city where her daughter lives. Knows she will have to get a job asap to pay the rent.
PerhapsLove is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 10:13 AM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 113
Information about pupils and behavior is very helpful. I will still talk to her, especially about the swelling. I do love her dearly. My husband and I are her only connected family at this point.
PerhapsLove is offline  
Old 04-30-2012, 10:21 AM
  # 14 (permalink)  
Member
 
Chino's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: In a good place
Posts: 4,482
Blog Entries: 3
Pin point pupils from opiate abuse will stay the same in any type of lighting. I can look at old photos like a time line of my daughter's addiction. Even in full sunlight, her pupils were tiny.
Chino is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Chino For This Useful Post:
bluebelle (05-02-2012), Marcus (05-02-2012)
Old 05-02-2012, 08:27 AM
  # 15 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 16
I think those that know the addict is using opiates and see the addict frequently are able to tell.

Those that don't have the contact or knowledge - can't tell.

My ex was an opiate addict for years - but I didn't know and couldn't tell.

My AB is different - same opiates - and I could tell within 5 seconds of walking into the house if he used that day. I could tell in the emails he sent to my work if he used. I could just tell. I could actually see AB in the mornings, and I would know if he was going to use that day.

Now bring your personal addict to me, and I might not be able to tell.

You can ask and see what her response is - might not be what you want to hear or it might be a lie.

But actions do speak louder.
gorrie is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to gorrie For This Useful Post:
bluebelle (05-02-2012)
Old 05-02-2012, 09:57 AM
  # 16 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,384
It sounds like she is still abusing alcohol? So, does it matter whether it is drugs, too? Plus, someone who is clean would be
Using no substances--including alcohol. Are you trying to decide whether to help her financially?
bluebelle is offline  
Old 05-02-2012, 04:37 PM
  # 17 (permalink)  
Member
 
Vale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 2,279
point of science.

Pupils will be pinpoint for EVERYONE in bright sunlight.
But in dim light they should be huge.
Vale is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Vale For This Useful Post:
LoveMeNow (05-02-2012), smileyblue (05-04-2012)

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:29 PM.