A mom wrote to me, As I type this, our son just started methadone treatment, and our daughter is in a 28-day treatment program after being released from detox. I have to admit that I think it’s unfair that both our children are drug addicts, but I never lose faith. I keep praying for them to get well. It has been a nightmare of epic proportions and my husband and I are so very tired of living all that comes with dealing with addicted children. We just want them to get better and be able to lead healthy and productive lives.
My reflection: This mom is correct that addiction is a nightmare of epic proportions. I remember well the depression, the ache and the suffering that our family endured during Jeff’s addiction. I remember praying to find the silver bullet that would cure my son and stop the addiction. Unfortunately, there isn’t one.
Today’s Promise to consider: We all need someone to believe in us and to have faith in our abilities to overcome. The words that I wrote eight years ago remain true today:
“Never quit believing, OK, Momma?”
“I won’t quit believing, Jeff.”
Thank you. If I give up hope for the person I love most in the world, than I have lost hope in all of mankind. May God Bless all families of addicted love ones and the still suffering that have not found their way out of the darkness.
What perfect timing in these words. My son starts methadone treatment tomorrow. We still wait on rehab. My other son-whose drug is alcohol– still lives in denial. One is tortured and not functional, the other oblivious and functional. After deeply plunging down the rabbit hole of grief and sorrow relapse/addiction brings—I realized again : yes, watching my sons struggle and self medicate is a nightmare of epic proportions — but I cannot let it destroy me or our family. I cannot accept this reality no matter how hard I try —and i’ve tried —it is like it won’t go in my brain and heart — but I cannot deny either — so I can acknowledge its truth –work at being at peace with the sadness in this reality. This lifts my heart — makes me quietly happy and leaves the door open for hope and healing for all of us and even joy. There is no magic bullet. There is no why that will ever make sense to me. But there is a way to go on even if sadly happy. Or at least at peace. Thank you all for prayers. We are staying close but out of chaos as much as possible. I am so grateful to be able to come here.
It takes so much courage to acknowledge a family problem of epic proportions (drug addiction). It hurts so much that it seems we must feel the denial first, so we can feel the hurt, so we can get get on with the lives that God has chosen for us. I believe it’s God’s plan to rely on one another. We are all connected. I continue to thank Libby and Jeff for allowing us to come into their lives, this way, so we can stay connected and continue to help one another on a daily basis. I appreciate all of you who come here. I can’t tell you how much it has helped me grieve the loss of my son and my grandson. If my son knew that his son died the same way he did, he couldn’t have lived with it. My grandson was very special to me and my entire family. We just didn’t get a chance to see him very much because he lived so far away. He was only 19 when addiction stole his life,too. He had only dabbled in heroin a little bit, but, the overdose didn’t discriminate. It took his life at such a young age and he had just had a baby son, himself. My great grandson never got a chance to know his father. At least my grandson knew his father and my son loved him so much. All of this comes at this holiday season, as I think of how my son would get filet mignon to have with his son every Christmas Eve (if he wasn’t incarcerated).
The message this week, of ‘never stop believing’ means so much to me, thank you Libby. Never stop believing that your son or daughter will get clean. It can happen at any moment in an addict’s life. And,above of all, never stop believing that there is a higher power.
With much love to all of you. If I don’t get the chance again, I wish you a Merry Christmas. Let us rejoice in our Savior’s birthday.
I can totally relate to the “nightmare of epic proportions” as I, too, have two drug addicted children, one being a daughter who just gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, who unfortunately was born with the affects of the addiction. Faith, has helped me survive this nightmare because I’ve “Let Go and Let God,” for although it is His plan for our lives and that of our children, He has also given us a willpower. My daughter was just put in Detox/Rehab, for this is the only way she is going to get her baby back. I could not interveine, for this, I believe is His plan to fight and get better for this child’s sake. I, too, live a “sadly happy” life with the termoils of addiction and the disasters of Cancer. Thank you Libby for being there for us and Happy Holidays to all. God bless and keep the FAITH!
What I learned is addiction wants and needs my involvement, my mental, physical and emotional involvement – especially my emotional involvement and certainly NOT my spiritual involvement.
I began to notice that addiction always resented my spiritual involvement. So, I made sure I became more and more spiritual each time he showed up. I remember the first time I answered a call from addiction and responded in a “full” and “heartfelt” spiritual manner. Addiction said, my car was stolen and I lost my driver’s license. I need a little help, I just need a couple hundred. So, I paused and asked the Holy Spirit for guidance and strength. I responded, your mother and I pray for you and your recovery. We love you and know that you have the ability to handle this situation but we cannot be involved. I remember there was a long pause on the other end of the phone. I suspect addiction was caught off guard and wasn’t quite sure how to respond but respond he did. He became quite upset and told me that no parent would leave their child on the street without money or a place to live. My response during this desperate outcry was succinct. I simply said, you are loved and when you are ready for recovery your family is here for you. I then I hung up.
It took my family many, many years to understand the power of “Let go, Let God.” However, it changed our lives and I believe it brought our son’s recovery date in sooner rather than pushing it further and further out due to our unhealthy involvement.
I learned to trust God with my son. I even prayed for His forgiveness for my lack of faith and always getting in His way.
Once I accepted God fully my life changed. I no longer stayed in continual fear. I put the focus back on me and my family. I lived my life and allowed my son to live his knowing God was with him every step of the way.
I love and respect each one of you who read Libby’s Blog and those who post – I always learn so much from each of you. All of which strengthens my own recovery.
Merry Christmas and my continuous prayers for you and for all our addicted children.
Today I will never quit believing that God is in control.
What a beautiful photo, and as always, a beautiful and moving post(and replies).
These three lines gave me chills, from head to toe, and brought tears to my eyes:
“Never quit believing, OK, Momma?”
“I won’t quit believing, Jeff.”
I am so thankful that I found you, here, when I did… You and others here, helped me stay close, stay strong, stay hopeful and BELIEVE.
My son has 18 months clean and he is getting his life on track, one day at a time. Michael has his health (a miracle), a beautiful girlfriend, wonderful friendship’s, a decent job, his driver’s license and a car and has also dealt with all of his legal problems.
Michael is lucky to be alive – He is so grateful and so happy, AND he knows that he is truly blessed. WE are truly blessed. The other night, he said to me “Momma, it’s the most honest 18 months I have ever lived.”
I never gave up hope, even when things felt hopeless. Thank you Libby. When I had no place else to turn, in the middle of the night, oftentimes, I came here.
Forever Grateful. Sincerely.
There have been so many times I have felt paralyzed by hope. Hoping she will call, hoping she will turn up, hoping she is alive and well, these thoughts consuming my every waking moment.
I’m am not sure what has changed now because I do have hopes but I also have some peace.
I think the difference is that along with hopes for my daughter I no longer have those expectations of a fairytale life for her. When she was trying to get clean I kept hoping she would return to school, fix her financial issues, clean up her act and quickly to rejoin life as we expect it to be so all would be well.
I know now that those expectations are not hers and I only set myself up for disappointment each time I got my hopes up. So I now view hope in a different way- without my added expectations.
I will never give up on my daughter and I am slowly learning to live my life again. It will never be the same, I will never be the same but the change has been for the better.
I love the picture of you, Jeff and Jeremy. How beautiful the smiles are.
Even though addiction stole my son’s life, I never, ever quit believing in him when he was alive. For, if I quit believing, I would have surely died along with him.
I did “let go, let God” and God had a plan for my son, and it was not a plan for him to live in this life.
It’s so difficult to describe the emptiness, the hurt, the sadness associated with my son’s death. But, I never quit believing. For it was my faith that kept me from the depths of hell. And, believe me when I say, the devil tempted me to go there.
Prayer has kept me alive. Prayer has allowed me to keep my faith strong.
I pray for all of you who struggle with this horrible disease. And, I pray for you, every single day. Prayer is powerful and I hope that someday, somehow, these prayers will help your sons and daughters climb out of the darkness and into the light.
With loving prayers,
As I reread what I wrote in the blog and as I think deeply about your comments, the line that I hold onto is, “We all need someone to believe in us and to have faith in our abilities to overcome.” I’m beginning to think that this is critical to all of us – children and adults. As I see my younger son wrestle with life’s decisions, I understand that he doesn’t want my answers but he wants my support. Jeremy told me the other day, “What I need from you is shade from your tree. I already know if you think what I’m doing is right or not. Just tell me, ‘You’ll figure it out. I believe in you.’ ”
Maybe we all need ‘shade.’ When Jeff was sick, I wanted to fix things, but there was nothing I could do to ‘fix’ the addiction. For me, I think the answer is what Pat and Barbara and so many others wrote: prayer. With both sons, I need to stay close, but out of their decisions and their chaos. As Barbara says – our children know we love them. That’s not the issue. The issue is that it is THEIR life and they must decide how they’ll live it.
For me, I’ll deepen my faith. That’s my answer.
Love to all of you. Thanks for your love and support.
Thank you, Libby for sharing this beautiful photo and meditation. All of the comments above remind me of our unwavering connection and support to one another in the midst of this ‘nightmare’ disease.
Thanks for believing in (the possibility)of recovery.
Love to all, Nanci
I’ m late in weighing in and sharing my thoughts on this weeks meditation. I certainly read it on Thursday night but I closed the blog after I read it and decided not to write anything. I decided not to write anything because what I felt in my heart was that I had given up hope. I felt that I did not believe that my son could turn this around, and he is his own worst enemy, very resistant to change what is.
Sue, your post could have been written by me, as that is how I feel as well. I too feel a certain amount of being at peace with this too. The hope becomes painful. I do not hope., I just pray for him and his connection to his higher power and his desire for a better life.
But Libby, your post about providing shade from your tree is a nice way to look at it. I can provide shade, and shade from a tree on a hot summer day is a nice respite. I do do that now. I do stay close, but so very out of the mix of his life. Prayer is a staple in my life. Without God and prayer I would be lost.
Thank you Sue for putting words down as to how I feel.
Thank you all
Jane and Sue and all : I am so grateful with depths of honesty here and hearing the truths–even sometimes so hard to hear. But it helps. These past few days I repeat “my son is on methadone and that is a good thing.” Then this voice goes how can that be? Yes he is man, but he is still my child.
I saw him. He hugged me hard. Said he was sorry. This always kills me a little because I know he is sorry but I want to say no need, I know you did not mean to hurt me–not about me -you hurt you and that kills me most. He looked okay– said methadone was helping, He still waits for a rehab. People die waiting to get in. He said he screwed thing up again. I said no, the disease is powerful,and this is where we are now. And we go forth. And i love you. Love you so much
But I cried all the way home. For him. For his spouse and children. For my family.
For all of us here.
Seems like just another place in the nightmare right now. But I have to make peace with that.
Prayer helps me. But not a lot this week This time of year I am not sadly happy. Just sad. And kind of numb. Maybe Numb that comes naturally is a good thing. Maybe it is others’ prayers lifting our hearts from the perpetual pain the disease inflicts –so we can have some rest.
Lift up our hearts we left them up to prayer — faith in something … maybe healing power – no cure but the hope for healing goes on. I have rock that says believe. I’ll keep trying. Grateful tonight he is safe and more stable than this time last week. Grateful to come here and be honest.
My poor Joy. I know how you feel. I know what you’re going through. It’s painful, it’s sad, and it’s difficult to see your son when you know that methadone only prolongs the relapse. I always hated when my son started a methadone program, because, you’re right, addicts have died waiting for rehab. You’re also right when you say that addiction is a very powerful disease.
I also understand that sometimes prayer doesn’t seem to help. Try to keep the faith. As Libby always says….we will bombard the heavens with prayers for you, your son and family.
God Bless you sweetheart,
Thank you Barbara. Thank you. This is the first time on methadone. This afternoon he finds out if they send him to jail for breach of parole instead of letting him wait for a bed. He needs doctors not prison. not in my hands. He is trying to be brave and say he accepts whatever. Thank you fr prayers B–the whole world needs your prayers today — Love you.
I will pray that your son gets a bed and not a bed in jail or prison.
Joy – the methadone will help him feel more comfortable and it’s why he’s more stable this week.
Jane & Sue – I will continue to pray for you guys and your families. You are both in my thoughts, always.
All my love,
Thank you Barbara for your prayers, we do need them.
Joy I do hope the courts were sympathetic today and recognize that rehab is a better place for your son. It is so frustrating waiting for beds. This is such a weak spot in the treatment process, they need beds when they decide to take those steps toward recovery not weeks later.
I will be thinking of you and your family
Sending hugs. II felt your pain, your feelings through your post. My son too, is on methadone. First it was suboxone and then methadone. It does keep them from craving, but it has been years now. Supposed to be a tool in the toolbox, while recovery gets stronger, not a lifetime plan. I’m not a fan of this, but I ‘m not the one living with the disease.
They feel so much shame and guilt. They don’t want this either but the disease is so powerful and overwhelming.
We get what you are feeling, and will pray for you and for the best plan for your son.
Love to you all