We care, for the better.
A place for families, because you don't have to use drugs to be affected by them.
- How do I know if they're using drugs?
- Why do they use drugs/alcohol?
- Is it my fault?
- How can I cope with their behaviour?
- Understanding the stages of addiction and recovery
- Where do I get the help I need?
- Getting support for your loved one
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Posted by Trapped on 15 July 2014.
Trapped in a well where I can't reach or help my son... and trapped because I can't walk away :( My son is 17, Ive been a single parent since his birth. His father had minimal contact (1hr a week) which came to an end when my son was 5yrs old. There was no contact at all for the next 11 years. On starting high school in a new area my son struggled to make friends and was the victim of bullying for just over a year. The school didn't want to accept that bullying went on in their school and just swept the problems under the carpet. Teachers witnessed the bullying but failed to protect my son. Eventually I involved the police and they dealt with the problem although not in the most appropriate fashion. They mentioned to the main bully that my son was feeling suicidal as a result of the bullying and so as to be expected the bully told others at school and before the day was over everyone was talking about it. My son lost all respect for the teachers, his behaviour became challenging and disruptive in the classroom and he started to self harm. The school called in an educational psychologist to carry out an assessment who recognised the failings of the school during all the bullying as being a major contributing factor and referred my son to CAMHS. Now being able to show they ticked all the boxes the school then felt justified in throwing him out the system 2 years early and so my son suffered further alienation and ultimately lost out on an education. My son attended CAMHS but wouldn't open up and share his thoughts. He started smoking which in later years lead to cannabis. Throughout these troubled years he displayed a great deal of repressed anger particularly towards me. He said because he knew I was the only person in the world he could say what he really thought knowing I would never give up on him and walk away. Everyone else had. He completed 2 years of college, two separate courses but struggled with his behaviour with both. People either love him or hate him. He has little respect for most adults. He is very articulate and expresses his feelings/annoyance at any behaviour that the adult displays that he considers to be unjust or just plain wrong. He finds it impossible to tow the line and this has made him an outcast. He has no real friends and so the few he does hang around with invariably use drugs. I have given him all the love, care, attention, time that I possibly can. I feel such a failure as a mother. I have never taken drugs or smoked and I very rarely have a drink so these are not learnt behaviours yet I still feel responsible.... for disciplining him too much... or not enough. For not doing more about the schools actions (even though I was at the school most days). For foolishly thinking that I could raise my son single handedly into a fine young man without the involvement of his father. For being naive and not appreciating the impact an absent father would have on his teenage years (even though this was out of my control as his father wasn't interested). My son is now much taller and bigger than me and can be quite intimidating when he thumps walls and doors in anger. A couple of months ago he told me he owed a drug dealer £600 for throwing drugs that were being given to his friends into a river. I didn't believe his story but believed he owed the money. He was given 2 days to pay and was quite distraught about the possible consequences of not being able to pay. Rightly or wrongly I came to the decision that I would rather know it was lies but pay the money to ensure his safety than call his bluff and end up putting flowers on his grave. So I gave him the £600. A few weeks ago whilst he was upstairs in bed he text me... admitting to an addiction to cannabis and methadrone as well as dabbling with cocaine and ecstasy. Whilst I was suspicious of some drug use I didn't imagine this. I felt like my heart had been ripped out. I took a deep breath and went up to his room and laid on his bed next to him and just cuddled him whilst he cried and apologised. I reassured him of my love and support. The following day my son text me saying things were not quite as bad as perhaps he had made out and that his problem was just with cannabis and methadrone. We went to the GP who referred my son for drug counselling, this took a week or so to come through by which time my son had gone off the idea and decided he didn't need the help. He has nothing to fill his days. He is bored and very depressed. He is desperate for work but can't find any. He doesn't appreciate or realise how much money he gets from me but whatever I give is never enough. I hate giving money because Im terrified Im possibly funding a drug habit and I don't want to completely withhold money incase he isn't spending it on drugs at all. He is in my opinion at rock bottom. He texts (as he finds this easier) me often saying how he doesn't want to live like this, how he hates waking up. I can't make him accept help and of course I have to respect patient confidentiality. I don't really want to go down the route of discussing a formal admission as I work in the healthcare profession and know firsthand what this would be like and I honestly and truly in my heart know he wouldn't cope. I am at my wits end. I don't know what to do anymore. I think about it day and night and all of the above has not happened without much tears and heartache. All his anger is directed at me, he is so rude and abusive and I can't tell you how much that hurts :( and Im ashamed to admit I put up with it because I know all this pent up anger is because he is hurting even more than me. And Im afraid I will lose him :( that he will be pushed to the brink and give up completely. Lights out. The thought of that makes me feel like I can't breathe. Im not coping. Im working full-time but Im not sure how much longer I can keep this act up. Sometimes, more recently very often, I feel like getting in my car and driving a million miles. I can't fix this and so instead I fantasise about running away. I tell him everyday that I love him. He tells me everyday that he loves me. The troubles we have overcome have meant we have a very strong bond... but its not enough is it :( He knows how much I love him but yet I can't do anything to make his world a better place and he's so low he's not doing anything to help himself because he doesn't think its possible. If anyone has managed to read this far... thank you :( I apologise for the incredibly long post. Ive just rambled without re-reading. Im just feeling very down and desperate and am sat here crying :( I guess tomorrow is another day x
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