Hoping to hear some success stories

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by tryingtobestrong, May 14, 2018.

  1. tryingtobestrong

    tryingtobestrong New Member

    Feeling really hopeless at the moment. It feels like my son will never ever accept help or admit he needs it. He will just wallow in self pity and cry and refuse to seek help. Cries his life is slowing falling to pieces but doesn't change anything or seem to think the weed is harming him. (Not sure if he is still drinking- I can only assume he is)
    So, I had seen where one mom did say a year ago her son was in a similar situation so I just wanted to know what made him change the corner and get help? Did he go to rehab? Any ideas what finally made him accept help?
    Really hoping to get some feel that there is hope.
     
  2. ksm

    ksm Well-Known Member

    Maybe those with success stories maybe aren't on here as often to reply. I'm sorry no one has responded yet.

    I am still in the thick of it...we adopted out two granddaughters 14 years ago. They are now 20 and almost 18. One has struggled with substance abuse, and I believe the other has mental health issues.

    I hope I can write a success story in the future. Ksm
     
  3. BloodiedButUnbowed

    BloodiedButUnbowed Active Member

    Trying,

    The answer is simple.

    We need to accept that we, their parents, are not God and cannot do for our children what they are unwilling to do for themselves.

    As long as our peace of mind depends on what someone else is doing, we will never know peace. We cannot control others. We can only control ourselves.

    Our job is to live productive, happy and healthy lives to the fullest regardless of what our children do, or do not, accomplish. Regardless of whether they do what we think is best. Regardless of whether they choose to treat their mental illness or not. Regardless of whether they choose to stop using drugs or not. We cannot control them. The more we try the worse our children seem to become.

    Let go and let your son find his way on his own, because this is the only path for all of us.

    I highly recommend that you check out Al Anon or CODA (codependents anonymous) meetings in your area or via phone. These programs have saved my life and kept me from losing my mind. They are a gentle reminder that our kids have to write their own happy endings and that we cannot make them accept help, accept that they have problems - any of it. We need to let it ALL go.

    I know this is not the answer you probably hoped for, but in my opinion it is really the only answer for any of us.
     
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I apologize. I am not wide awake enough yet to tell my whole story, but my daughter used meth, cocaine and other substances and we made her leave at 19. She quit. She is now 34 and doing great. Has a career, a house, a SO of many years and a fantastic little girl, my precious grand.

    It is up to your son. My daughter decided to quit. No rehab or therapy. Nothing. She was ready. It is different paths for all but the two commonalities for all is that WE can't stop them and THEY have to decide they have had enough and want to change.

    Love light and good luck!
     
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  5. wisernow

    wisernow wisernow

    I totally agree with the above post. Our adult children must be left to write their own stories and we as parents must go on with writing ours. Oddly once we step back and let them take accountability and face the consequences everything begins to change. Stepping back is painful, and takes courage and resolve not to swoop in to fix it but it is needed to help them launch in whatever way they are going to. Try to focus on yourself, and being good to you. Hugs!
     
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  6. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Welcome

    I don't know if mine is a success story or not....YET.

    He is doing well in his long term faith based program. Would he leave tomorrow if he could? Yes, but he knows it is helping him. He has been sober 9 months so thinks he is STRONG enough. We made a deal with him that he must finish what he started and graduate from the program in November. I constantly repeat that the BRAIN takes a year sober to even BEGIN to think straight. He will be stronger the longer he is there. He agrees with me but it is very hard. But life is hard. The hard work really starts when he leaves!

    We have seen major changes in him since he started the program. This has been a LONG road for us. Many have shorter roads and many have much longer roads. It's their journey but we love them and it kills us watching them struggle. We forced this on him as in we left him no choices. We would not do anything for him if he did not do this. I knew in my heart this is what he needed. Nothing else worked. I do believe that God led us to this program in this town. I really feel it was divine intervention for us. We were torn and tattered and helpless to his addiction.

    The best thing you can do in the meantime and what I have done is to educate yourself. Find support for yourself. Some go to meetings, some go to private therapy. Whatever it takes to make YOU be okay is what you need to do. This really is a family disease and it can and will take you down with it if you don't build up your artillery. It is a long and difficult process. I have been working on my recovery while my son is working on his.

    Good luck.
     
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  7. Tired mama

    Tired mama Active Member

    My brother was an addict and an alchoholic from high school to his mid 30s when he hit bottom. He lost his home his business everything. He now owns a different business happily married . has a moderate but nice home and has been clean for many years. Hope this helps.
     
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  8. Origami

    Origami Active Member

    Hi Trying,
    I'm not sure my story qualifies as "success," but maybe "improvement," which might be a more realistic and hoped-for outcome. When I first started posting here, my two difficult sons were embroiled in a crazy feud that led to fistfights, broken household items, and two police calls (by me). My older son was on house arrest and an active heroin addict, and younger son was a high-school dropout with no job and a bad attitude.

    Today, older son (age 31) has finished a 5-month residential rehab, and is clean for the first time in over six years. He's got a part-time job with a real company, and is working on getting a full-time job and his own apartment. He's living with his wife in the meantime (they were estranged before), and has not asked to move back in with us.

    Younger son (age 21) has now emerged from his lair (bedroom) and has had a full-time job for a few months. He is paying his own phone bill and a small amount of rent to us, and is saving to be able to move out at some point. He has calmed down a lot, and isn't nearly as much of an ass (sorry) as he used to be. To get to this point, he was in weekly therapy for several years, and I think simple maturity finally kicked in.

    I'm happy for their improvements, but am under no illusions that this is permanent or that they won't go back to old habits. But I'm choosing to celebrate the good while not getting too wrapped up in future expectations.

    So I'd say the other posters are all correct, the best hope of success is to work on yourself and how you deal with the issues. Although we all hope our children live positive, fulfilling lives, there is nothing we can do to make that happen. I've found that the support from this site and like-minded parents helps keep me on track.
     
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  9. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    I have a different sort of success story. It is because my two have been on this path for so long.
    If I remained focused on their choices and consequences, I realized that I wouldn’t have much of a life myself.
    So, the success I am writing of is disentangling myself from whatever my two are doing. It may not be the answer you are seeking, TBS, but it is the only one I have to give. It is not that I am so strong, just tired of waiting for an outcome that I have absolutely no control over. To my two, or others reading along, it may seem cold and uncaring. I do love them very much and hope the best for them. I realized after so much grief over their lifestyles, after countless times of trying to help them, that they need to want to help themselves. While I was deeply engaged in trying to provide solutions for them, they were helping themselves to my time, my hard earned money, sucking my emotional well being and my health. They weren’t really helping themselves, and I was miserable.
    There was always a reason to stay as is, it was “my fault that they are the way they are. I don’t understand, don’t listen, etc., etc.” Nothing I would say was the right thing.
    I stopped. I didn’t stop caring, I stepped off the hamster wheel of trying to help my adult children who didn’t want to help themselves.
    I channeled my Mom and Dad, who would tell me as an adult, that I need to be self sufficient.
    I won’t be around forever to pick up the pieces for my adult kids. Besides, when I did try to help, it wasn’t appreciated, they would try to blame me for everything, and acted disrespectful.
    My spin on this is that we gave them the tools to live successful lives. When they want to live differently, they will choose differently.
    I want to live the best rest of my life. I wish the same for all of my children. How I live as an adult is up to me, it is just the same for them.
    (((Hugs)))
    Leafy
     
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  10. wisernow

    wisernow wisernow

    Leafy,SWOT and all others...where were you when I needed you 6 years ago? You all give such wonderful and heartful advice . Every time I come to this site since I found it over a year ago I am reaffirmed by the advice and stories you share with all. Thank you so very very very much!
     
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  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Wisernow, you give some pretty great advice yourself!
     
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  12. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    I think everyone here has so much to offer. I would say this forum is a wonderful tool for success. Thank you Wisernow and everyone for being here and sharing your stories. Trying, it will be okay for you and your son. I am sorry for your heartache.
    (((Hugs)))
    Leafy
     
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  13. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Great responses.

    You will find many success stories in here. They're very skewed toward parents who finally decided to stop "helping" their difficult adult children, and then things got better.

    Getting to that point is a long road. For us it was a LOOOONNNNGGGG road. Even our early efforts at *NOT* helping were focused more on how we thought *HE* would react than on our own needs and feelings.

    It wasn't until we took the focus off him and put it back on us (where it belongs) that things got better. Better for us, then better for him, because it finally forced him to face his situation honestly.

    That being said, even if things had not gotten better for my son, I would still call our story a success story. So many of my days were spent swinging wildly from frantic to hopeful to hopeless and back again because of something I had no control over. Now I have my joy back, regardless of my son's choices.
     
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    Last edited: May 15, 2018
  14. startingfresh

    startingfresh Member

    I will cautiously add my son's success story here! Its been 3 and half months since we finally got tough and made our son leave our home. He was smoking weed regularly and to excess. He refused to follow any of our house rules and regularly exposed siblings to that and the chaos created by that. He has been sober since moving out and supports himself. He has always wanted to do things his way and without anyone telling him what to do. He is thriving on being in charge of himself and knowing that he needs to keep his job to have his freedom. If he messes up, he can't channel the blame my way. He got himself a very good job that gives him so much confidence and self worth. Before this we were always working on that one thing that would help him. Support in school, tutors, therapy , a new medication, partial hospitalizations, wilderness therapy, getting the law involved, etc. I spend his life between 15 and 18 spinning and in total chaos reaching reaching to find something that would snap him back into "life". And it just enraged him. I don't know that I would do anything different because I was watching this talented, happy, kind soul smoke his life away. Hard to believe "just marijuana" was responsible for all that. But when you are spending most of your waking moments heavily stoned and not facing life, it gets awful pretty quick. Stepping back was very and continues to be very difficult for me. He is so young, still a teenager. Yet I can absolutely say it is the ONLY thing that worked.
     
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  15. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    That is great news. It seems like your son did not move on to harder drugs and become a true addict. That to me is an illness and hard for them to snap out of!
     
  16. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My daughter has been sober for over 2 years. We went through 12 years of hell before she got there. She overdosed several times, lied to us, stole from us, and manipulated us. It wasn't until two years of therapy that my husband and I became strong enough to set firm boundaries and stop helping her financially. That is when she finally got sober and has held down a full time job and takes care of all of her own bills.

    She went to five rehabs and stayed in multiple sober houses. It wasn't until the last sober house/IOP that she finally embraced recovery and worked the 12-steps which she had always made fun of before. My daughter is a different person now.

    So there is always hope. We have had many members with success stories. Many of them no longer post as they don't need the support of the board any more.
     
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  17. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Hi TTBS

    It has been weeks since I have been on and it is early days but after several years of hell our so. Is in a long term residential rehab program.
    I cry happy tears very often as he has embraced his program and is progressing so well. He is 10 weeks in with 14 weeks to go. He has had resident of the week twice and is advancing to the next level of his program a month early. I wish I could share a before and after photo the change is truly remarkable. Again it’s ealy days but we mush celebrate every success.
    Hang in there. This time last year was so different for us, and absolute hell. We survived and then some. There would be no way this would have been possible without all the wonderful support from the fabulous peope on this site.
     
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  18. ColleenB

    ColleenB Active Member

    I agree with what many others have said above....it would depend on what success story means? Is my son sober? Am I happy? Is he happy? Those are all questions we ask ourselves to determine a success story......my son is sober, FOR NOW, and I am happy, FOR NOW....but I am not naive enough to know this may not be true in the future at some point.

    For today, and for now....we see a sober and productive son, who seems happier about his life, and we as his parents, are much happier about his life choices. Funny enough it was a year ago this weekend I remember heading to the graduation banquet at the school I was teaching at, and I was a mess. My son had called us the day before and finally admitted he needed help and said he wanted to go to detox. We had been dealing for quite a few years with his addiction and his subsequent depressions. I myself felt depressed and hopeless. That weekend was a turning point for us. It was not all smooth from that point on...it was step one of many. He had many slips, a scary car accident a few months later and an intervention by his friends. He has been sober now since November and we see so many positive changes.

    We also know he could fall again. We have accepted he is an addict and he may have more bumps in the road we will all have to figure out how to navigate. I think I am learning to re define what success means for us....we are learning we cannot control anything he does or really do much to help him. We love him and he knows this, but we also will not take responsibility for his choices.

    I do hope you find some peace for yourself as this is not an easy journey to find yourself on....I know I have learnt so much about my own abilities to be strong and to be brave when facing such terrible circumstances created by my own beloved son. I am trying not to think about what could happen down the road, and instead focus on the successes he is finding today. He actually is graduating from his one year Foundation Visual Arts program in a few weeks..he has never finished more then a few months in any post secondary program despite having the ability to do well academically. He is accepted into a two year studio arts program at his Art College, and we are hopeful he can complete this too.

    I wish you peace and comfort in knowing we have all been in the depths of addiction at some point, and success is simply knowing you can and will survive, and hopefully thrive.

    Take care...
     
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