My son went crazy ten years ago

RN0441

100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
As my son approaches his 25th birthday next week, I cannot help but to reflect on what we have been through as a family for the past ten years when as we say, our son went crazy.

We had a happy blended family; husband and I came into the marriage with one son each and our youngest was our son together. Our pride and joy. The tie that binds us all together.

Ten years ago, at the age of 15, our son stopped being who we knew him to be when drugs entered the picture.

It turned his life, our life and the lives of our other two sons upside down. It was a long and scary ride for all of us. Some of the most recent years are found in my signature. As we all know, there isn’t enough paper or print or energy to begin to write about everything that we go through as parents and as a family when addiction enters our lives. But we all know.

I feel so much compassion as I now read the stories of other parents going down a similar road that we went down. I wish I could say that I know the answer on how to fix this and there is no one answer as we all are so different but I do feel that it’s a new way of parenting that worked for us and was so completely opposite of everything we want to do that we felt “could work”. I do pray for all the parents that come here looking for answers and hope. I know that going through this strengthened my faith and my faith in turn gave me peace that I could not find any other way.

My son is doing so much better than I ever imagined now. He is in college full time pulling A’s and B’s and working part time. He sees a future for himself now. He seems like he found his old self. I honestly didn’t even know who he was during those years but I do know that I did not like him and I couldn’t bear to have him in my life.

I am so happy as I write this because I feel like we have come full circle in this ten years and I feel like with his maturity that only came with age, he is starting to know himself and even like himself too. COVID has not been a good thing but in many ways it has been good for us to bond with our son for the first time in many, many years.

Please keep reading and posting and don’t give up hope. Take care of yourselves and your spouses and other family members that are in this thing with you. Pray if you can even if you don’t think you know how because that could be the best thing for all of you.
 

Copabanana

Well-Known Member
it’s a new way of parenting
Dear RN

I can't fully nail what I felt reading your post. There just doesn't seem to be words that capture the combination of wisdom gained, faith, loyalty, hope, and love all of them born of horror. I am just so very pleased for your family that your son has come out the other end of this. And it just keeps getting better and better.

If you were to describe what to you is this "new way of parenting" what would you say?

I am remembering here how frightened you were when your son was leaving the program to come home. I was amazed and surprised, because I was here on the forum when he was in Florida and you had shut down. The whole thing had become unbearable to you and you seemed to have created a wide, wide moat. And yet you accepted him back with hope and courage and commitment. Your boundaries softened. It was as if you too had been transformed.

I don't want to assume anything about what you mean. If you have a few minutes I would so much like to hear what your thoughts are about how you as parents changed, or changed your parenting, through all of this.
 

MissLulu

Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing this, RN. There is always hope I guess - your story proves that. Like Copa, I'd love you to expand on the "new way of parenting".

My son is almost 25 and we are still "in it". When I say that, I feel a bit of a fraud because as far as I know my son is stable. He is working, has a girlfriend, is living independently from us and paying his own way. (Key words: as far as I know.) I know there are people here with much bigger issues right now and I probably should feel better than I do.

I haven't seen him the flesh since June (and he only lives in the next town) so I don't really know what's going on. The past three weeks he hasn't been able to see us because of the new lockdown, but we hadn't seen him for over a month prior to that, so he's avoiding us for some reason. Or maybe he's just living his life - I don't know. I try to tell myself not to worry about the "what ifs". To not concern myself with things that haven't happened yet. But the fear is still there in the background - is he smoking too much weed/depressed/not taking medication? etc etc.

Obviously I have no idea whether any of this is true and I'm trying to let go and not let the fear consume me. I have stopped myself from contacting him too frequently. I allow myself a text once a week, and beyond that I leave him be. I am living my life and trying not to be overwhelmed by my fears for him. I do have mostly good days - nights are not so great, though. I fear I will carry this background sadness with me for the rest of my life.

In any case, I didn't mean to make this all about me. I am grateful to you for the sliver of hope, RN, and also to you for sticking around here to support people like me.
 

RN0441

100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
Thanks Ladies.

Yes Copa you are right I pulled very far away to protect myself. My son was not valuing his life and making dangerous choices over and over again and I came to the realization that we could lose him so I think I started breaking away for my own emotional survival. I have had several losses in my life but I felt nothing could compare or prepare me for the loss that may very well be coming our way.

When my husband took my son to Florida to sober living I told my husband to promise me that I’d never have to live with our son again. How sad is that. Fast forward 2-1/2 years later and he wasn’t better, actually much worse, and my husband promised him that he could return home if and only if he finished the 13 month program in Memphis. I was not sure how I felt about that promise. We were at the end of our ropes.

The love I have for my sons is so very deep and I have tried so hard to teach them things that they will need to help them get through life and be good people, and to be good to themselves and to each other. I always wanted to hold them close as mothers do.

I had to learn to push my son away and let him sink or swim because being close to me was destroying me and wasn’t helping him. I guess that is what I mean by “a new way of parenting”. That is the only way that I can explain it. It’s very hard to do that when they are minors or barely no longer minors. It went against every fiber of my being and I cannot imagine anything harder to rationalize yourself to do.

While my son was away I worked on myself too and on my marriage. It was such a gift of time.

I also have to add that when my son was almost 16 and we were about a year into this, one night he asked me to lay down with him to talk because it was night time and he was having extreme anxiety (probably due to pill abuse) and he told me that he wished he could fast forward ten years. I didn’t really know what he meant but I said that I thought he was wishing he was older and more mature so he could better deal with whatever it was he was dealing with. He agreed. I remember thinking good LORD do we have to wait ten years for some reprieve?? Maybe that is why the ten year mark is a focus for me.

Miss Lulu I think that your son is doing pretty well from what you say but of course we never really know what they are truly doing. My son still drinks but it seems like the worst is over and his maturity has kicked in. We have had a few rough patches in the 2 years that he’s been home and a few times I was terrified but thankfully he redirected and is seeming to finally “get” life. It is still hard to not have the “waiting for the other shoe to drop” feeling. I think it will be many years for me before I honestly don’t feel that way anymore. I cannot wait!

I recently heard on a radio program that God lets us go through bad things so that we can help others with what we learn. That makes so much sense to me now. That is really my purpose of staying on the site.
 

newstart

Well-Known Member
As my son approaches his 25th birthday next week, I cannot help but to reflect on what we have been through as a family for the past ten years when as we say, our son went crazy.

We had a happy blended family; husband and I came into the marriage with one son each and our youngest was our son together. Our pride and joy. The tie that binds us all together.

Ten years ago, at the age of 15, our son stopped being who we knew him to be when drugs entered the picture.

It turned his life, our life and the lives of our other two sons upside down. It was a long and scary ride for all of us. Some of the most recent years are found in my signature. As we all know, there isn’t enough paper or print or energy to begin to write about everything that we go through as parents and as a family when addiction enters our lives. But we all know.

I feel so much compassion as I now read the stories of other parents going down a similar road that we went down. I wish I could say that I know the answer on how to fix this and there is no one answer as we all are so different but I do feel that it’s a new way of parenting that worked for us and was so completely opposite of everything we want to do that we felt “could work”. I do pray for all the parents that come here looking for answers and hope. I know that going through this strengthened my faith and my faith in turn gave me peace that I could not find any other way.

My son is doing so much better than I ever imagined now. He is in college full time pulling A’s and B’s and working part time. He sees a future for himself now. He seems like he found his old self. I honestly didn’t even know who he was during those years but I do know that I did not like him and I couldn’t bear to have him in my life.

I am so happy as I write this because I feel like we have come full circle in this ten years and I feel like with his maturity that only came with age, he is starting to know himself and even like himself too. COVID has not been a good thing but in many ways it has been good for us to bond with our son for the first time in many, many years.

Please keep reading and posting and don’t give up hope. Take care of yourselves and your spouses and other family members that are in this thing with you. Pray if you can even if you don’t think you know how because that could be the best thing for all of you.
 

newstart

Well-Known Member
RN, I prayed a prayer of gratitude for you, your son and your family. I wish him a very blessed 25th birthday and a joyful celebration for all of you.
 

Albatross

Well-Known Member
What a great post, RN. I’m sure those 10 years felt more like centuries.

I am very grateful to you for the counsel and example you have offered over the years. You showed me that it is OK to step away from the insanity. It doesn’t mean we love them any less.

Best to your son and your family.
 

Littleboylost

Long road but the path ahead holds hope.
Very heartfelt and what a decade you have been through. I am so happy that your done continues to progress. Much love to you.
 

Helpless29

Active Member
So happy for you, your family & your son, such a wonderful post. It gives me hope with my son & hope one day , I will be able to write my happy ending here. Thank you also for all your advice & words of wisdom since I joined this site.
 
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