ADDICTION TAKES PRISONERS: THE FAMILY

by libbycataldi under family

A mother wrote to me: My son walked out of his fourth rehab, and in November of last year my husband kicked him out of our house, again. I couldn’t help but mourn. I lay on my bed and didn’t move for two days. He’s presently in an outpatient methadone program. His addiction has claimed him for five years. Methadone is not the answer I wanted for my son. I want to see him whole, clean, and well again. His drug addiction has had such a big impact on our lives.

My reflection: Addiction takes prisoners: Parents argue, mothers mourn, siblings are heartbroken and angry, while the addict is in his own world, chasing his next fix. The entire family spirals into chaos and despair.

Today’s Promise: What can we do to loosen addiction’s grasp? Family resources are available including Al-Anon, spiritual support groups, and online information, blogs, and call centers. Every day the medical community becomes better equipped to treat addiction, opposed to chastise it. But throughout the struggle, we need to take care of ourselves. We must learn to maintain boundaries that keep our family safe. We must reach out our hands. We are not alone.

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Pat Nichols
3 years ago

Addiction has all of us cornered at some point but we need not ever be defeated. We have the resources we need if we are “willing” to use them. Our willingness is activated when we can no longer bear the pain that addiction creates. Addiction plays on our emotions then uses us as its puppet! We move in any direction our strings are pulled. There is no blame or shame as this is just the nature of the illness we are dealing with. The madness never ended until I gave my addicted son over to God. How could I honestly believe in God if I didn’t trust Him. At 1:00 am I receive a call from jail, my son tells me he is released and has no money, no place to go, no car, no friends to call. He was down to nothing! I finally had addiction cornered. The roles had reversed. I told my son to walk to the bus station and when the station opened I would buy him a one way ticket to San Antonio and from there he could walk to the Salvation Army and work their recovery program. He said, “Why are you doing this to me?” I responded, “Because you mother and I love you more than you could possibly imagine.” After twenty-one years of dealing with addiction my son has been in recovery for over six years, is an electrician and a joy to be around. Miracles do happen. Never give up!

Abbie
3 years ago
Reply to  Pat Nichols

Thank you for sharing SO MUCH HOPE!

joy
joy
3 years ago

This week ‘s meditation resonates so strongly. Just keep loving is all I want to say. Even when it seems impossible Loving yourself enough to know the boundaries to keep and loving our children enough to know when to let go. Hope always and ever. Love is the first response.

Judy
Judy
3 years ago

My son came out of his sixth, maybe more, of rehab (5 weeks), on November 5, 2014.
He overdosed and died on November 9, 2014. Addiction touches anyone, anywhere, and age. He was a college, Div. 1, athlete (scholarship holder), a wonderful man, 36 years old, an addict for 14 years.

B Y
B Y
3 years ago
Reply to  Judy

Dear Judy, that is so painful. You are not alone. Some stranger cares and weeps with you tonight.

J O
J O
3 years ago

Addiction is a symptom of trauma and social disconnection. Its “grasp” cannot be “loosened” by self-absorbed families. Addicts do NOT live in a “world apart” from their parents and siblings. Toxic domestic surroundings are a leading cause of addiction. If you truly intend to help families free ALL of their members from addiction, you’ll need to hand them a few more “resources”: Narcan, contact information to REPUTABLE rehab facilities, and a construct of “boundaries” which DOESN’T entail shunning or failed reciprocity. Some of your readers DON’T view addicted relatives as less worthy of love or support. The rest of your readers are piling up our nation’s daily body count of addicts. “180 people die each day from addiction” is a popular, yet erroneous stat. Most of their lives were not claimed by their physical limits for narcotics. Instead, they’re killed by abusive families, caregivers, and authority figures – parents who evict them, an insurance industry that doesn’t fund their treatment, cops who turn them into “superpredators”.