This has to end

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by LauraH, Mar 7, 2019.

  1. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    I think I mentioned that my son walked out of his job at Pizza Hut, blew a long-standing friendship with the girl that gave him the job, blew his living arrangements with another friend (I'm sure there was more to it than just the job situation but I don't know) and threw himself on our mercy. My husband agreed to let him stay with us long enough to get another job and save up some money to move out. Between the three of us, we decided on three weeks to get a job and another three - four weeks to get the money saved to move. Six weeks...period. Not an open-ended ongoing "whenever" thing, six weeks and no more. If you don't have a job and/or money by then you're still leaving, even with no job or no money in your pocket.

    We set down some firm boundaries and rules, number one being a zero tolerance policy on drugs. Initially he seemed to comply, or at least I saw no evidence of drug use. Until yesterday. He was hired at a busy full service restaurant, went to orientation, and was supposed to start training this past Tuesday. Monday night/Tuesday morning a bad tooth became impacted and his face was so swollen it looked like he had mumps. I took him to the ER and they gave him an antibiotic and Lortab for the pain. He called the restaurant manager and they said he could come in on Wednesday. But on Wednesday he was having what was apparently a reaction to the antibiotic, blisters and sores inside his mouth and around his lips, so he went back to the ER for that. He called me from the ER as he was being discharged and said he would be home in about 30 minutes. Six hours later he showed up, obviously "tweaking" ("tweeaked"?) on meth or something. Within minutes of walking in the door he started his typical rhetoric bouncing back and forth between "I can't stand the worthless POS I've become. I've killed every relationship with anyone who ever really loved me" to blaming me for all his problems past, present, and future, to blaming his ex in Chicago, to knowing that our apartment is full of hidden cameras and recording devices because we're in cahoots with our neighbors who he swears are FBI agents in an attempt to frame him for some felony crime (we don't even know our neighbors other than to say hi in passing...they aren't feds as far as we know...and there are absolutely no cameras or anything in our apartment) But he took it to a new level and accused me of going through his things when he wasn't home. He said he had "proof" because he had arranged certain things in a certain way to "test" me and I failed. WHATEVER! And then for the first time, my husband got to hear all this as well after he got home from work.

    The sad thing is that my husband had just ordered a futon to put in the second bedroom so my son would have somewhere to sleep other than our living room couch. And while it's true that we've been planning to put a futon in there for a while, we were going to do it later in the summer after we get our finances back in order, not at the end of a financially difficult slow season. But I digress.

    Anyway after hearing that rhetoric once yesterday and then hearing it again a second time after my husband got home, I had had it. I went for a walk and then stopped by my local bar to have a drink with my bartender friend. When I got back home they had decided that since it was in the 40s my son could stay for the night but because of the drug use he had to be out the next day. At that point I was very uncomfortable being alone with my son so I added the stipulation that he needed to leave either before my husband left for work or at the same time.

    My son then asked when my husband and I were going to bed, because he wanted to lie down and go to sleep. It was late, 1:30 to 2 in the morning, so we said yes we should go to bed. And I have no idea what triggered what happened next. As we were getting ready for bed my son yelled at me that he had taken all his medications as well as the Lortab and he hoped I was happy. He stormed out, slamming the door so hard the window rattled. I was shaken by the hate and animosity coming out of his mouth but otherwise not worried, because this isn't the first time he's expressed a desire or threatened to end his own life. It's always turned out to be a ploy for attention or sympathy, a means to an end.

    But when I got up this morning I found to my horror all his pill bottles completely empty. I guess we should have called the police last night but I don't know what they could have done as I had no idea where my son went when he stormed out. I thought about calling the police today, or tonight when my husband gets home, or calling hospitals, but I figured if there was a worst case scenario either the police or hospital would contact me.

    Anyway about an hour ago I got a call from the psychiatric ward and was told that as soon as he left our premises he called the police and had himself Baker Acted and taken to the hospital voluntarily. At least now I know he's safe for the time being. A Baker Act carries a minimum of 72 hours but can go as long as the doctor deems necessary. And I've decided that when he is discharged he can NOT come back here.

    Honestly I wish he could be hospitalized for an extended period, because I truly think between his bipolar and his drug use he's lost his mind or very nearly so. I just don't know if he meets the criteria for long term hospitalization. I don't know if I'll be able to speak to his doctor but if I do I intend on asking him about that possibility. I can't think of anything to help him or guide him towards helping himself that I haven't already tried, and like I said, yesterday he made me extremely uncomfortable being alone with him, to the point where I was looking at the clock every few minutes to see how much longer it would before my husband got home.

    I'm also hoping that this stay in the hospital will get him on some kind of fast track to drug rehab (I don't know if it works that way)...he says he's on the waiting list, which I'm skeptical about, but even if he's telling the truth, I do know that the typical waiting period is around 6 months. So maybe, if the doctor feels he needs rehab, this will help speed up the process. Or not.

    Bottom line, I think he'll have to have somewhere to stay before he can be discharged, but I'm adamant that it's not here. That ship has sailed for the foreseeable future.
  2. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    I'm so sorry. I think being hospitalized is the best treatment for him right now. Maybe they will stabilize his medications and really make him understand why he needs to stay on them.
  3. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    His medications don't seem to be doing anything, other than possibly his anti-anxiety medications preventing him from having panic attacks. But otherwise, he offsets that with the street drugs so as far as I can tell they're virtually ineffective. It looks like the only thing they do at this point is keep him from having withdrawals when he's off them. That and he refuses to get any kind of counseling and therapy in conjunction with his medications. I don't even know what the point of him taking them is anymore, but that's not for me to say or decide.

    I know medications can work, because my neighbor was hearing and reacting to voices in her head and once she got on medications that seems to have gone away. So I guess there's always hope for my son. From where I'm standing, though, it's looking pretty bleak and hopeless.
  4. RN0441

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


    Wow so much has happened in the last few days.

    I'm so sorry you are going through this. This is very hard and I hope you have some self-compassion for yourself!

    I agree that medications cannot and will not work if he is using street drugs or drinking.

    HE and only HE has to get so sick and tired of living this way that HE wants to change.

    Anything we do to help is enabling yet we do what we have to do for US.

    I hope that you have some support for yourself because this is a long and hard road.
  5. elizabrary

    elizabrary Active Member

    Wow- you're really going through it right now. Remember you can't make him do anything. He has to be willing to get into treatment, stop using drug, comply with his medications, etc. My daughter is super irrational when she's not medication compliant for her depression and anxiety and then tries to self-medicate with alcohol. She has a hair-trigger temper and you never know what will set her off. I strongly believe you should not let him move back into your house. He's an adult and he has to figure this out for himself. If your love and assistance were enough he would be healthy by now, but that's not the case. I had to put my daughter out of my house when my granddaughter was a baby because she refused to follow the rules agreed upon. She floundered for a few years and still has ups and downs. But she's much more self-reliant now and much less likely to blame me or her father when things go wrong in her life. Although it stressed me out like crazy worrying about her and the baby I think that was the best thing for her. She learned she could take care of herself and her daughter and she could improve her situation if she chose to. Sending peace your way. I know how awful this stuff is.
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  6. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    I had thought my son was in the psychiatric ward after being Baker Acted the other night, but it turned out he was admitted to ICU. That scared the heck out of me. Every other time he's been Baker Acted he was sent straight to psychiatric. I can't even think what would have happened if he hadn't called the police immediately after leaving my home. He's now out of danger physically and is in the process of being transferred down to the psychiatric ward. I'll be going out there to see him once they get him situated.

    I need at some point, hopefully sooner rather than later, to speak with someone on his case to find out when and how the best time is to let him know he can't come back here when he's discharged. I'm thinking it might be better if I tell him when a nurse or doctor is present but I need to run it all by a professional there at the hospital before I do or say anything to my son.

    I've seen "baby step" evidence that when forced to and left with no other options, my son can solve his own problems, i.e., the day I refused to pay for one more of psychiatric medications and he miraculously was able to get out to a facility where he enrolled in a program to get all his medications for free. If he can do it in small ways he should be able to do it in larger ways. It's time for him to solve his own problems and face his own consequences. My husband and I have have given him ample opportunity to make positive steps towards fixing his situation, but he's been back in Florida since shortly before Thanksgiving, and nothing much has changed since the day he first arrived. The other night was the end of the line as far as we're concerned. We have nothing more to prove to him, and it's time for him to prove some things to us as well as to himself.
  7. RN0441

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

    Why was he admitted to ICU Laura?
  8. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    He deliberately overdosed on a combination of his psychiatric medications and Lortab. I guess they needed to make sure he was out of danger physically. But I don't know exactly what his condition was when he first got to the hospital. By the time I saw him yesterday all his stats were normal or close to normal and other than extreme dizziness where he couldn't sit up or stand he seemed okay (physically).
  9. RN0441

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

    Ugh so hard to watch. Has he been doing this self destruction in his entire 20's? That is what I call it anyway.

    Sorry but I don't remember whole story and at work so can't spend too much time on reading.
  10. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    More or less, yes. He'll get on a good track for a short time and then start doing things to sabotage himself. When he first went to Chicago it took him less than two days to find a good job at a major bank and within two months had been promoted from customer service to fraud analyst. That's when he started messing up. He took a leave of absence under FMLA to get treatment for hepatitis. During that time he received only half his normal pay and my sister loaned him $1500 to fill in the gaps. He made one $20 payment towards that debt and never made another attempt to repay her. Two weeks after he returned to work he took another leave of absence to go to rehab. He left rehab after one week but instead of going back to work he took a three week "vacation" since he had been approved for four weeks. After that he never worked more than a week at a time before taking yet another LOA until he reached the limit of how much time he could use for one year and then started staying out without pay. He eventually lost that job, and then his apartment. And that's just one story among many.

    I can't begin to fathom what makes someone so determined to destroy their own life, and then to blame everyone else and take as many others down with him as he possibly can. But that's exactly what it seems like he's been doing and continuing to do.
  11. RN0441

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

    Yes it doesn't make any sense at all to us. How can it? It's insane and I find it truly disgusting and not anything I want anything to do with. I will never never understand it.

    In truth, I don't want to deal with any of it. My mother was an alcoholic when I was a child and I feel so much of the same feelings with our son that I felt then. I honestly made a pact with myself as a child that I would not ever live like that again. And it is my son that has brought these long buried feelings up to the surface. I feel so cheated in so many ways.

    I think the determination to destroy and blame is part of the addiction. That make me sad and want to go into save mode but been there/done that and it does nothing good for anyone involved.

    I do think you are doing the right thing by NOT letting him live with you. If you do, this will NEVER END.

    Our son is with us again after a 13 month program. He is doing fine. Not perfect but fine. I cannot wait until he is out on his own to be honest. I cannot wait for that day.
  12. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    You have every right to look through his things. If he doesn't like it, then he can find somewhere else to stay.
    My son used to do this with me when he was still living at home and I made it very clear to him that his choices had led me to not be able to trust him and as long as he lived under my roof he had no expectation of privacy.

    I'm glad he called. I agree with you, he should not be staying with you.

    A proper diagnosis cannot be made unless he is completely drug free for a period of time. I too suspect that my son may also be bipolar but then I think, maybe it's just the drugs and alcohol.

    I'm so sorry you had to endure all of this.

  13. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    He was diagnosed as bipolar when he was 18, long before (as far as I know) he got involved in any serious drug use other than occasionally smoking weed. But now I'm wondering if he might be Borderline Personality, in which case you,re right, they can't diagnose anything new as long as hard drugs are in the mix.

    I do pray that his paranoia and seeming psychosis are brought on by the meth and not schizophrenia or some other brain/mental disorder. Because then perhaps if he can get and stay clean it might go away for good. Those are big ifs, though, and maybe pipe dreams on my part.
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  14. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    I never felt the need to go through his things (this go round) and I never did. But you're right, I would be within my rights to do so. It just grated on me that he said he had "proof" that I had gone through his belongings when the fact was I rarely set foot in the room where he was storing his stuff. But I also wasn't about to argue the point because, like my husband said, how can you argue with a sick mind?
  15. Acacia

    Acacia Active Member

    I agree with what others have said about not having your son in your home. The situation sounds chronic, relentless, scary, sad, and on and on. You deserve to have your home as a safe haven. I can imagine how exhausting this whole thing has been for you.

    Whatever your son's diagnosis or substance issues, you are NOT the one who can heal him. Love him, yes, but love yourself and your husband as much by taking care of yourselves. It is not selfish to do so.
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  16. Beta

    Beta Active Member

    I'm glad your son is stable physically and in a safe place for the moment, and I'm sorry for the stress and sadness this is causing. I too think you're making the right decision.
  17. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    My biggest fear is that he could show up and be aggressive or even violent. When my husband and I were dating I had gone next door to his apartment to escape my son's chaos. He followed me and yelled and banged on the door. When I didn't let him he broke in through the window. When I picked up my phone to call the police he snatched my phone out of my hand and literally twisted it like you would wring a wet wash cloth, demolishing it.

    I thought that the bullying and aggression (other than verbally) was a thing of the past, and I haven't seen any real evidence of it resurfacing, but like I said, the other day I felt extremely uneasy and apprehensive and thought there was a distinct possibility he could act out physically (thank God he didn't). So I would have two choices...keep the doors and windows open to let in the sunshine and fresh air and take the risk, or keep everything closed and locked and be in a cave.
  18. LauraH

    LauraH Active Member

    Oh and to add to the drama, his ex is in town for his (my son's) birthday and has been to see him in the hospital. He says he doesn't know how the ex got in, as he hadn't put his name on the list (I'm skeptical about that) but there's only one way the ex could have even known where my son was in the first place. Those two are toxic for each other and yet obsessed with each other and can't leave each other alone.