Our son was arrested

Parentofdrinker

New Member
Our son is a heavy drinker. He has been for years. He has been arrested for a serious felony. While the alleged crime is not typical of him, the fact is his alcoholism makes it impossible to discount it. He was arrested a week ago.

We have posted bond and paid an initial payment to an attorney; we really lack the means to adequately do the charge justice.

He cannot live here with us. He cannot live with his family. It MAY have been better to have left him incarcerated, but before we posted the bond, the charges were enhanced, and we were clueless. The terms really leave him unable to work and unable to do much of anything.

It stands to affect our church work, our jobs, and our much younger child. We are a wreck. Our sleep is affected. Our appetites are affected. I don't even know what else to say. Help us to cope. We realize no one can fix this except God.

Please do not ask specifics of the arrest.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
Hi there. I am sorry for your grief. It's hard. I know due to my drug addicted daughter. Took me ten years to smarten up. Ten years.

I am in a group very similar to Al-Anon. One of our members has a 21 year old daughter waiting to see if she will be going to prison. After being in a 12 step program for loved ones of addicts, she and her husband decided not to get their daughter a lawyer, hoping that she learns from her experience by going to prison and, of course, she can't use drugs in prison either. She will have opportunities to stay clean in rehab once she gets out in about a year. As it is now, the parents know that if she gets away with this she will go right back to doing what she does. They feel that keeping her from consequences won't help their daughter and they can't neglect their younger daughter who is going to start college either.

I would do what this parent is doing. After 10 years, learning how to best deal with my daughter, I know that my help did not help her one bit. And half our retirement is gone. And my other kids who are flying right...they got cheated while my addicted, abusive daughter got all of our attention. Plus my husband and I matter too. Yes, we do.

We learned this in our 12 step group. "We didn't cause it, we can't CONTROL it, and we can't cure it."

God is huge in our 12 Step recovery program.

We also had a therapist. He was not as powerful as God, but he was so helpful too. We were a mess before we got help. You don't have to be a mess and you don't have to choose to rescue your son this way. Only your son can help himself. You can not do it for him. You have no control over him or anyone except you. It is your son only who can fix this. If you save him he may just do it again. Then what?

You matter too. YOU MATTER TOO.

Prayers and hugs and lots of love.
 
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Copabanana

Well-Known Member
I am so very sorry for the circumstances you find yourselves in caused by your son's alcoholism.

There are sober living houses where your son may be able to live, however, there may be restrictions in light of justice system involvement, I don't know. In my town, they are accessed through the Rescue Mission. For indigents (without funds and income) they are free. There is usually a program involved, in treatment and volunteer work. For those who want there is faith-based recovery. My son lived here for two stints. It was good (for me, at least.) There is also Rehab. But again, there may be restrictions presented by his charges. Participation in Rehab may be seen as positive by the Court.

I don't know what the next steps might be, but I do know this. Your son must take responsibility for the consequences of his choices and behavior. He is the one who must identify his options and find a way forward. It's enough that your lives are impacted. You don't have to solve this. You can't.

But that puts you behind the 8 ball, like all of the rest of us here. What you DO have to do is to face consequences that you did not cause. For me, this has been the hardest thing I have faced, in a difficult life. These kinds of things trigger us in ways we are not prepared for. We are geared to protect and respond to the needs of our children, even adults. We can't. This in itself is crushing.

And then there are the circumstances themselves. The shame, fear, guilt, helplessness, and overwhelm. Intolerable is too mild a word.

Welcome to you. Please stay with us. Posting and reading here can be life-changing and life-affirming.

Please know that you are not alone in this. And there is a way through it. For you and for your son. But you can only walk your walk. He must walk his own.
 
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Crayola13

Well-Known Member
I’m sorry about your son. Has he ever been to a treatment center? Has he figured out why he is compelled to drink (depression, anxiety, etc.)? Is there mental illness? Many times substance abuse goes hand and hand with mental illness. If he hasn’t been evaluated, he needs to be.

I hope things get better. There are resources available for families going through this. You might want to get counseling for yourself to learn how to cope. Seek support from those around you. Not everyone will judge or criticize. Many families have this problem and there are a lot of empathetic, compassionate people in the world who will treat you with kindness.
 

Parentofdrinker

New Member
I am so very sorry for the circumstances you find yourselves in caused by your son's alcoholism.

There are sober living houses where your son may be able to live, however, there may be restrictions in light of justice system involvement, I don't know. In my town, they are accessed through the Rescue Mission. For indigents (without funds and income) they are free. There is usually a program involved, in treatment and volunteer work. For those who want there is faith-based recovery. My son lived here for two stints. It was good (for me, at least.) There is also Rehab. But again, there may be restrictions presented by his charges. Participation in Rehab may be seen as positive by the Court.

I don't know what the next steps might be, but I do know this. Your son must take responsibility for the consequences of his choices and behavior. He is the one who must identify his options and find a way forward. It's enough that your lives are impacted. You don't have to solve this. You can't.

But that puts you behind the 8 ball, like all of the rest of us here. What you DO have to do is to face consequences that you did not cause. For me, this has been the hardest thing I have faced, in a difficult life. These kinds of things trigger us in ways we are not prepared for. We are geared to protect and respond to the needs of our children, even adults. We can't. This in itself is crushing.

And then there are the circumstances themselves. The shame, fear, guilt, helplessness, and overwhelm. Intolerable is too mild a word.

Welcome to you. Please stay with us. Posting and reading here can be life-changing and life-affirming.

Please know that you are not alone in this. And there is a way through it. For you and for your son. But you can only walk your walk. He must walk his own.
There is one out there, but he may think of it more like a clearcut homeless shelter. While he may want to be sober, his desire to actually live with his circumstances may not be so grand.
 

Copabanana

Well-Known Member
There is one out there, but he may think of it more like a clearcut homeless shelter. While he may want to be sober, his desire to actually live with his circumstances may not be so grand.
You are not responsible for this. Whether or not we want to live with our true circumstances, we are all of us called upon to do this. All the more so if he has brought on himself the suspicion that he has broken a serious law. What he thinks about his options is really not the issue, is it? He can't go home to his family, he can't come to your home, and it seems he will have no income, what are his other options? All of us have to at one time or another in our lives face circumstances that are delimited through prior choices or omissions.
 

MissLulu

Well-Known Member
I just wanted to voice my support and tell you that you are not alone. Most of us here live with the guilt and shame of our children's actions, something that, as adults, they are responsible for. Know you will not face judgement here, only acceptance.

Your story could so easily be mine. I'm never sure what will happen with my son due to the combination of substance abuse and mental health issues, but he is a fully grown adult (26 years old) and I have to accept that I cannot change (or be responsible for) his actions.

Whatever happens, you are welcome here. If the world becomes a harsh and unforgiving place, you will find solace here.
 

good vibes

New Member
It's normal for a parent to internalize the actions of their adult children. It may feel like you are responsible - maybe you were a bad parent? I suspect you weren't. It's difficult to divorce yourself from your son's alleged actions but you should try. There may be members of the community who will gossip, but these aren't your allegations. I'm hoping your church will rally round you rather than reject your work. After all, Christian theology holds that God created a beautiful angel, whom we call Lucifer.
 

Parentofdrinker

New Member
I think the church is good for now at least. We seemingly want to help him. This is the first jam he has ever got in that we didn't feel entirely comfortable that he was getting what his misbehavior had asked for.

Even if he is indeed guilty (and I still cannot wrap my head around the idea that he is,) the charge is far more egregious than the alleged crime. He is obviously guilty until proven innocent and there is virtually no way to prove anything (either way.)
 

Nomad

Well-Known Member
Welcome. So sorry for your anguish. Quick thoughts…
Sober living house makes sense.
Also…similar…rehab. Some insurances cover this. And it might help a tiny bit when he goes to court that he is working on his drinking problem. If you can’t afford to pay for a lawyer, seriously consider not doing so. And do this without ANY guilt. This is not your problem. It’s his. These 12 step programs can be very helpful. Not just for him (like AA or NA) but for you. Al anon , for example. Also now available on-line. Helps to look at things from a different angle, encourage boundary setting and to personally move forward.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
I am so very sorry you are upset over your sons ex wife and what she does.

Even so, you and I have no control over any other person but our own selves. This is always true even when we think they are wrong and should listen to us. We have no control even when we love them (or dislike them). We have no control over anything, including the weather, Covid, bad timing, the way others think of us...I learned the best life lesson ever while in 12 Step and that was to let go of my expectations of others. Instead, I set boundaries.

I can say our child has to respect us, but we can't make him do it. If he won't, we can severely cut contact or we can allow ourselves to be treated poorly. We have choices about our reactions but not theirs. My expectations are what I expect of myself, and I expect to be treated well or the disrespectful person will not be in my life. But I can't make that person care enough to be nice so that he/she will be in my life. I hope this makes sense.

We can take care of us but we can not take care of anyone else. If we feel wronged, we can choose anger or we can pray and let go to God when we feel ourselves or a loved one has been mistreated or manipulated. That is the extent of what we can do. I usually choose prayer these days. Yes, it is hard to do sometimes, but I want peace, not internal chaos. The way I got there was acceptance and letting go. It does not require God being in ones life, however I am grateful that God is in mine.


Wishing you well. Sorry that I left this long post. I just got out of an amazing 12 Step Zoom meeting and we were talking about this topic. Thought I'd share. Hugs and love.
 
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