A mother wrote to me: It’s May 21st at 10:24 pm and about an hour ago I got a call that my daughter walked out of the rehab. Just today, I was telling my coworkers that I had such a good feeling about this rehab – a full one-year, Christian-based program. No outside contact, only immediate family. Twice I talked with her on the phone, and she loved it there. She didn’t even make it one full week.
My reflection: I lost count of how many times this happened with my son. He entered a rehab center and, after a week or two, he walked out. Hope smashed. We parents feel betrayed, and our dreams feel suffocated.
Today’s Promise to consider: Dr. MacAfee told me that that relapse is not always failure, “It can be a great stepping-stone that directs the individual toward her own understanding of loss of control of her use, and how much work yet needs to be fostered.” When our children accept help and enter rehab, we celebrate with trepidation, hoping this is the time long-term recovery will stick. Today, I will pray that if my child relapses she remains safe and is able to learn more about her illness. I will acknowledge the powerful hold that the drug has on her. I will stay close.4971
I’m so sorry, to the mom that wrote this. We too have had the awful feeling when they walk out. Such excruciating disappointment, fear, and hopelessness. In fact, on one (of many) occasions, my son was in the hospital detoxing. I got a call that he had torn out his I.V., and left. We found out later that he had turned his jacket inside out so the staff or security wouldn’t be able to identify him. These people are resourceful ♀️.
As I wrote last week, my son relapsed again. He just got out of the hospital to detox. He refused another rehab, isn’t going to AA, and is sober today, but how long will it last? Hubby and daughter are both fighting cancer, so for me, this time is different. I just can’t make him a priority. (Yeah, right. ), Especially since he’s not staying in a program.
It’s so discouraging. Keep the hope-your daughter might just regret her decision to leave .
You are not alone
Dear Laurie, How right you are — “These people are so resourceful.” When I think of the many deceits carried off by my son, I have to wonder how I didn’t see things more clearly, a whole lot sooner. But I didn’t.
Please take care of yourself right now. You have a full plate – hubby, daughter, and your son. They need you to be strong….and, for you to be strong, you need to take care of you first.
Thanks for your advice to the mom, who wrote to me. We are not alone. My love to you.
My love to this woman who shared about her daughter.
Thanks, Brigid, for your compassion and empathy. Together, we are stronger. My love to you.
I too , am unfortunately in the same boat. My son keeps relapsing. He relapsed on Mother’s Day. So far, the longest period of sobriety is 4 months. He is currently being detained in a detention center for a previous charge and violation of probation.
During the last 4 sober months , I felt a joy that I had not known in a long time. One that I never thought I would get to experience . I was slowly getting my son back. I felt as though I was falling in love with this person and seeing him in a new light. I was cautious though, not to be too joyful! We as parents, can’t even enjoy our children when they are sober because we are always waiting for that phone call!
I feel so defeated and sad . I don’t know if he can ever be sober and that terrifies me. He has OD’d several times and I am so fearful for him.
At least for now, I know he is safe.
I need to keep hopeful but it is getting more difficult.
I am trying to keep busy and stay healthy to be stronger, but my heart has been broken so many times.
I pray for all of the families struggling with this awful beast . Love and prayers
My dearest Ann, I understand. Your words hit me hard: “During the last 4 sober months , I felt a joy that I had not known in a long time. One that I never thought I would get to experience . I was slowly getting my son back. I felt as though I was falling in love with this person and seeing him in a new light.” I know that feeling of hope, love, and joy, almost as if they are being born again. Then – boom – the deep, reverberating sadness of relapse.
I join you in prayer for your precious son. May he stay safe and come back to himself and your family once again. I’ll stay close in love and prayer.
Libby these words were so powerful to read:
Today, I will pray that if my child relapses she remains safe and is able to learn more about her illness. I will acknowledge the powerful hold that the drug has on her. I will stay close.
Jennifer Storm shared that her term for relapse is that it is “feedback” something more to learn. I pray for safety for all those living in their disease and that families give themselves the support they so deserve through the tsunami addiction creates in the family.
Dearest Margaret, Thanks for sharing Jennifer Storm’s term for relapse as ‘feedback.’ Yes, it can be a time of introspection, decision making, and change for our suffering loved ones. That’s our prayer for all those who relapse. For me, as a mom, relapse was a gut punch, a betrayal, a sadness so deep that it left scars on my very soul. It took me years to appreciate that relapse didn’t have to be the end, and that it could be a beginning. I join you in prayer and love. My love to you.