: Drugs, alcohol and mental health

Discuss the twin challenges of mental health and substance use

6 replies

Where to get my son help

Hi, my son is nearly 27 years old and I don't know what to do or where to get help. For about the last year he has had depression and is on prozac. I have tried to support him emotionally and try to put strategies in place to help him. I couldn't understand why he wasn't following through with anything and getting worse. Anywho, he moved in with my mum briefly who told me she could smell weed. When I asked him about it, it transpires he smokes every night for 4 hours but categorically denies it affects his depression.

I just don't know where to turn or what to do, he has given up his job, has no social life, is paranoid and verbally aggressive.

This is all made more difficult as my mum has bought him a flat and despite my wishes financially supports him. My son has a Masters and could have a great future but at the moment he's crippled by his depression and habit. I have tried his Dr's and a few agencies but just get told he is an adult.

I need to do something but what?

replying to Sjbm50

Offer him support , help and love. I lost my son at 27 years just 12 months ago. He worked had his own business but smoked skunk/weed every day . He stopped for 3 months and got extremely depressed and suicidal, but he had been suicidal many times before so we never thought he would take his own life .

Talk to him , find out what he wants . There is a good doctor in London that can help him stop smoking weed with alternative supplements , if thats what he wants. Tell him he is loved and needed. Ask what you can do to help? If anything .

Diet, exercise , Redbulls , computer games and social media play an enormous part in Depression and emotional health problems. Hope this helps. Julie

replying to Sjbm50

Thank you for your reply Julie. I am so sorry for your loss, my son is in total denial that his habit is impinging negatively on his life. I am really angry with him but that's not helping. I am trying to calm myself but it's so hard to step back and watch your adult child make bad decisions. I feel so helpless.

replying to Sjbm50

Hi Sjbm,

I am so sorry to read your post and can understand how difficult it is to see your son making the choices he is.

If you would like some support for yourself, maybe you would like to contact The Icarus Trust. We are a charity that provides support to people who find themselves in similar situations as yourself, having to deal with a loved one's addiction. We have a team of experienced people who you could talk with and maybe start to see a way forward as well as finding out what other support is available to you.

You can contact us on help@icarustrust.org or visit the website www.icarustrust.org

Good luck.

replying to Sjbm50

It is so sad reading all these different posts on here but it has also made me realise I am not alone. For the past 10 years or so I have been living in fear of finding one of my grown up sons dead through depression or the drugs. My life is a nightmare yet they both feel they do not need help and they are not addicted. Gambling on top. So sad seeing your kids destroying themselves. All I do now is get angry with them as they say they don’t need help and to let them get on with it. Any help will do please

replying to Sjbm50

Hello S. This is my 1st time on the forum. I really do sympathise . I also have a son aged 18 who smokes cannabis on a regular basis and has all of the problems that accompanies it like your son. Mybson lives with me and my husband. It is making family life impossible. My dilemma is whether I should force my son to move into supported accommodation. I feel I can keep him is a safer place if he is at home but I also feel I am enabling him to continue his addiction if he stays. I know if he goes into accomadation he will take a real nose drive and end up in trouble with dealers and police. Does anyone have any experience or advice for me .

replying to Sjbm50

Hi, I can understand your frustration and sadness. Depression is a whole thing on its own and drugs another, although I know either one can cause the other. These things both require the person to take action for themselves to a large degree and if they don't want to, there isn't much we can do but feel helpless and get help for ourselves. It makes me sad to know that our kids lives go on going downhill instead of up or at least functioning to the degree that they are able to live a near normal life. I lost my best friend to Heroin when she was only 21 and she died at 48. Two of my close friends' brothers killed themselves due to drugs and my son has used Cannibis from the age of 12 and is depressed. He was in the fast track at school ace ing everything, then got kicked out of school for bad behaviour and refusal to do any work, due to cannibis. He's had psychiatrists, educational psychiatrists, mentors, offers of extra curricular for troubled kids, offers of every sport and activity you can imagine but no difference. He was then kicked out of pupil referral unit and we eventually got him into college where he achieved a partial level 3 in carpentry, although he works in a pub now, where he was introduced to Coke, and is also doing part time with a construction bloke who pays him cash and lets him smoke cannibis during lunch! Now he has found cocaine we're even more terrified. We've offered rehab, CBT, anything, but he say he doesn't have a problem. He admits he takes drugs to escape his feelings, ie anxiety, upsetting situation, depression, lack of friends etc. Due to our jobs, his aggressive behaviour and the trouble he has brought to our door, we have had to arrange for him to rent a room nearby and now know even less of what he gets up to and when I can't reach him on the tx to see if he's alive today, I can't sleep. He's only 21. He has also just had his second child! He isn't in a relationship with the mum and is being assessed to see if he's allowed to see his children. His sibling has travelled the world, is doing their Masters and has a fantastic job and a new car. It's heartbreaking to watch my youngest flounder through life like he is making such bad choices for himself. I remember years ago watching a neighbour's son of 31 constantly bashing at her door for money for drugs and she eventually had to move to avoid him as he was so aggressive!

Do you think your son has always smoked Cannibis and the depression has come from that or the other way round? I've been told from all sorts of places that 'he's an adult' and we are powerless to step in as we can't make them do anything as adults. A part of me is glad your son is in a safe environment and is being looked after, as I wonder if he were left alone to his own devices that things would possibly be much worse? Who else is out there to give a single male a roof over his head and food for more than a night if he's lucky?

Although I spent a long time being angry with my son, I find now that being kind and still showing my love actually has a better outcome for both of us. Sometimes we are in a cycle of feeling so angry and upset they we forget to convey to them that we actually love them dearly. You may feel your mum is enabling his environment, mb she is I don't know, but he could be on the street without support mb? You would worry so much more? He outcome so much worse, including the road to recovery longer and more difficult? You mention your son has a Masters? I struggled with being angry with my son for wasting such a brilliant brain when others struggled with what he can breeze through without a blink, I think it made me angrier and more upset because he was so bright? I may be wrong but I would try and have hope that this is a chunk of his life where he needs love and support to get through it, (as he must feel very isolated, lonely, embarrassed and angry, ) in the hope that he will come out the other side, which only he can do. Mb with constant love and support he will try? Every child needs their mum, no matter what age and no matter how wretched they are feeling and are pushing you away. I don't offer my son money, but I supply food, when needed, a listening ear, show my love but don't let him have a set of my house keys. I invite him to dinner and tx him often. A sort of routine is immerging. Our relationship is improving and he listens more and has been more honest than he was and tells me he loves me. In this I hope he takes my advice when I've managed to squeeze some in carefully and subtley along the way when I see a window where I think he may be receptive to listening to it. I wish there was more help out there for 'adults' who are in denial and are struggling with depression and drugs. :((

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