Sunday, October 17, 2010


My wife and I certainly didn't sign up for the situation we're in. But there's really not much we can do about it. There's no magic wand, no time machine (hot tub or otherwise), no special pill to make everything better. I wish there was, but there isn't. We just try to make through life one day at a time. This weekend has been a bit of a challenge, though.

Friday night, right before dinner, our son tells us that he owes money to the guy he buys his pot from. That the guy gave him pot the last couple/few times "on credit," and that Friday was the day the money was due. Fuck. The last time this happened was a couple of years ago when our kid owed his heroin dealer money. I must say, it's kind of surreal when your kid drops this kind of news on you.

So my wife and I had no idea what to do. Give our son the money so he can pay the guy? Don't give him the money and risk trouble for him (or us...or both) because the guy gets pissed off? And, of course, there's the wondering if our kid really did owe the guy money, or if he was just making up that story so he could get money out of us and go buy more pot (or whatever). I can't tell you how sad, disappointed, and angry I was. I took Friday off of work because I really felt a need to de-stress. And then, right before dinner, this shit hits the fan.

To top it all off, our son is pretty much going through withdrawal because he's stopped taking Suboxone, the opiate "substitute" he's been taking for the last couple years. His addiction specialist wouldn't refill the prescription for Suboxone. Why? Because our kid is still getting high by smoking pot. That was the ultimatum from the doctor: Stop smoking pot or lose the Suboxone. Well, he didn't stop using pot, so the doctor cut down his dosage of Suboxone and then finally stopped it altogether. I don't know what this will do to my kid. He was sick all day yesterday. It's not as bad as when he kicked heroin, but it's no fun.

So that's how the weekend has gone so far. Such is being the parent of an addict. Oh, and by the way... We gave our kid the money. And he supposedly went and paid the guy. But who really knows? We told him he'll be drug tested in a month, and if he tests positive for anything...Well, then he's in for some heavy duty shit. Assuming my wife and I don't wimp out again.

It's incredibly hard having a person who suffers from addiction in your life. It's about a million times harder when that person is your kid.

1 comment:

  1. Lord! I can't imagine dealing with something like this for so long and not becoming a complete raving lunatic. I always have seen you as a calm and nice person-you hide/bottle your stress very well.

    You are totally clean and your son has gone from actively using heroin, to withdrawing from Suboxone while using marijuana. So basically you've got a teenager using pot (bad, but not the end of the world, comparatively). It seems like an upward trend-albeit a very long, slow climb towards the positive. More like one step forward and then one step sideways; instead of two-steps back.

    I guess just keep on with expressing your expectations and consequences and enforcing them: no more drugs (apparently his doctor knew he was still using illegal substances and enforced a consequence), no more money for drugs. It's hard though: no more drug money-then what happens?

    Personally (and I speak from NO EXPERIENCE at all-so don't be offended if I'm way off the mark): I would begin testing as soon as possible and not wait a month. This has been going on for too long (unless you have to wait a month or longer for his system to be clear-assuming he stops). He's using drugs now (according to his doctor) so why wait a month to HELP him stop?

    Also I would search his room/car/bike/bathroom/backyard areas. Basically tackle the problem like it's the beginning again-because he's still using and still breaking the law. There's just too much of "within the next 5 weeks you must do xxxxx". Maybe there are things he could be doing NOW that are constructive (school, study for driver's test, clean room, clean gutters, take a drug test, come up with a 'To Do List' of life goals, etc.) just things to do instead of sit around thinking about doing/not doing drugs.

    What were the consequences for black-mailing you for drug money and using marijuana? Besides the doctor cutting the suboxone script? Do you still give this kid an allowance to spend on drugs? Finally, if the drug test in a month comes up positive you wrote that there would be 'heavy duty shit' as consequences.

    I hope you actually spelled out to your son what those consequences will be. If not, discuss with your wife and write down what you decide and show it to your son as soon as possible. Giving someone with a problem deadlines in the future (I do have experience with a messy cat-hoarder in the family) NEVER works. They just put it off-and then you re-evaluate and put off your consequences.

    If you read the above and roll your eyes and think "if only you knew what it was really like..." or "we already tried that for years..." yeah: I understand that I DON'T understand what this is like. Basically, I just wanted to say that someone (a lot of people I think) read your blog and feel for you and are pulling for your family to make it through this.