POWERLESSNESS AND SURRENDERING

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Photo credit: Charles Roussel

A father wrote: We have been fighting this battle with addiction with two sons and for five years. We are in a place of never knowing the right thing to do. We find it impossible to practice “tough love” the way the “experts” say it is done. Just last week I asked my wife if there are situations worse than death – what a terrible question to ask about your child.

My thoughts: We don’t know what to do in the face of addiction. We try our best, but sometimes nothing works. We force our children in rehab, throw them out of the house, wring our hands and make promises to God. We try to follow the advice of experts. In the end, we realize that this is not our fight to win. It is the fight of our addict.

Today’s Promise to consider: I will surrender my will because I know this battle is one my child must fight. I will stay close and continue to love him, but he must make the decision to stop the drugs. I know I can’t do this for him. I will pray and hope.

 

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Pat Nichols
9 years ago

An addicted daughter speaks of Her mother, “She was a different woman today from the mother I’d grown up with. She was powerful and stood her ground and told the truth as clearly as she could. My mom would not allow addiction in her life, and I believed her. Her clarity helped solidify my resolution to stay sober.”

I spoke to a man in recovery in my church and I asked him, “How did you get sober?” and he responded, “My parents finally got out of my way.”

To allow my son to fight this battle by himself is the most difficult thing I have ever had to do.

I can’t do this by myself. I need God.

I need the twelve steps, I need my sponsor.

I need other parents, like you, to guide me and give me continual hope.

Thank you all.

Jane
Jane
9 years ago

This weeks blog brings me back to the days when I too uttered to myself and others in the room, The exact same statement that came out of this parents mouth. The pain is so great watching our children in active disease. Then when they go to rehab because we “forced a solution” we are afraid of relapse and having to start at square 1 again. Chaos is endless until we are strong enough and clear enough to say no more Some of us get to that point sooner than others. Some cannot reach that point.
One thing I know for sure, Al Anon guided my journey along with God. I am a recovering co dependent and my growth and journey will continue until the day I no longer breath because addiction has affected my life.
We are all there for the newcomer now, as well as ourselves

God bless

Nanci
Nanci
9 years ago

Thank you, Pat and Jane, for your comments…I, like you, recall those days of desperation and constantly feeling as if I was in ‘crisis mode.’ Those days are far and few between now. For the newcomers, I offer you the promise of Alanon…it works if you work it and it doesn’t if you don’t.
Alanon, along with Libby and all the incredible people on this blog have literally, saved my life. We are all in this together. I join you in prayer and hope for our loved ones.
Love,
Nanci

Jane
Jane
9 years ago

I am thinking of Barbara tonight who has suffered so much with the loss because of this disease. How are you Barbara. Sending hugs and thoughts in your direction through the cosmic air waves.
Love
Jane

Barbara
Barbara
9 years ago

Thank you so much for thoughts, Jane. It means so much to me. I send hugs to you!

This disease of addiction is so powerless. It’s all consuming to the addict. The only thing we can do, is just what Libby says in her book. Stay out of the chaos and for God’s sake, don’t give them any money.

I tried the “tough love” on my son. It just didn’t work. I believe he knew what I was doing. He was very intelligent, but so devious when he was in active addiction.

I’ve been praying for all of you, and praying you never have to go through what I went through. Because it’s just so final. I still miss hearing my son’s voice. And I miss the facebook photos my grandson would send me.

God Bless,

Barbara

Barbara
Barbara
9 years ago

I want to express a heartfelt Thank You to all of you. Thank you for your words of comfort and thank you for being here. Thank you for thinking of me. It means so much to me.

God Bless you all

JOY
JOY
9 years ago

My son called today from the “farm” – medium security after 70 days -21 hours a day in lock up. He wanted to talk. He’s calm. He’s grateful to be out of the other place. He’s scared. He’s clean. He’s depressed. He’s gained 20 pounds. The longest he’s been clean since he was 16. He’s 32. I listened, thinking of Barbara, all the times she said how she longed for those calls. So I listened a LONG TIME. He’s getting help in a program he’s chosen. This means he stays in longer. Good, I thought, Good. One day at a time. One breath at a time. I’m dedicated first to my journey. I’m learning to stop wanting everyone to be healed “now.” InIf anf when and how in God’s time. I’m breathing into what is. For today, I am grateful he is safe and not using and not on the street.

Love to you all.

TJ
TJ
9 years ago

I found this blog yesterday after reading Libby’s book in a day. Thank you, thank you Libby, for putting this out there–a place to come and not be alone. I also went to my first Al-Anon meeting last night. Although I first found out about my daughter’s heroin addiction last May, I hadn’t reached out to many people. I will keep coming back here…reading, listening, letting the tears flow. Thank you to all whose comments have already given strength and comfort. XO

Jane
Jane
9 years ago

Welcome to Libby’s blog. It is a place for all of us to support each other and learn from each other T.J. Good decision to go to Al Anon as well. It is a family disease and we all get sick so we all need treatment. Keep going to Al Anon meetings, and frequent this blog. It all sinks in slowly and we start to make better decisions for ourselves.

Barbara good to hear from you. Thinking of you and hoping you are able to have some serenity
Love
Jane

Barbara
Barbara
9 years ago

Welcome TJ. We’re glad you’re here. You are not alone. All of us here have gone through the same thing. Jane is right. We help each other and learn from each other.

Good luck with the Al Anon meetings. They’ve helped so many people in your shoes.

I’m glad you came here.

Barbara
Barbara
9 years ago

Dear Joy,

I’m so glad your son is doing well. Of course, he’s scared. That’s all a part of his consequences. I smiled when you said your son gained 20 pounds. My son did, too. When I went to visit him after he’d been in for a couple of months, I hardly recognized him. But, he looked healthy again.

I know how difficult it is for you. But, I’m glad you talked to him for a long time and listened to him telling you about the program he has chosen. I wish him luck. He’s clean and sober now. Whether he’s in prison or out of prison, he’s clean and sober for now. What a milestone for him!

I will pray that your son will stay clean and sober, work his program and get the strength from God to stay in a place until he is freed. I will pray that you keep getting stronger for those phone calls.

Take good care of yourself, Joy. It’s time for your journey. Your own journey back to health, peace and serenity.

Love,
Barbara

Fay
Fay
9 years ago

my son was in jail for 9 days due to shoplifting, before the was arrested, he was on suboxone treatment. When they took him to jail he had to jump off of 16 mg cold turkey, he was in withdrawal and they took him to court for his preliminary hearing. he waved his court and they let him out on unsecured bail. The minute he got home, he went to take a shower and overdosed. I found him in the tub unresponsive and started CPR and called 911. Police came as well as ambulance and they found 2 small empty bags of heroin and one with a white powder as well as needle. The took him to ER and gave him narcan and he woke up. The police said that they are going to charge him with possession of drug and he will go back to jail. In our state if you call 911 they will charge you. Now I don’t get this legal system, if he is guilty then while are you letting him go on bail. If he is not guilty then why are you putting him in jail and interrupting his treatment so he can come home while in withdrawal and overdose. Sad situation

Jane
Jane
9 years ago

Dear Fay
I was so saddened reading your post. My heart goes out to you. There are so many horrible stories of families caught in Noman’s land; caught between a rock and a hard place with our family members disease and legal issues. Chaos surrounds us leaving us with lots of questions on how best to handle most difficult situations, and no easy answers. The legal system is a crapshoot in handling. Sometimes good, many times horrible. Hospitals don’t always handle the medical end well. We are always left with a huge burden that we learn we cannot fix. Know that we have all walked these steps too and we can offer an ear, support and our experiences . We learn from each other. Prayers for you Fay. Take care of yourself in whatever ways possible. Prayers for your son and his healing.
Jane

Barbara
Barbara
9 years ago

Dear Fay,

I’m so sorry you have to go through this. It seems to always be the shoplifting that gets them first. They need to shoplift for money so they can get their next fix….until they get caught. Then the real problems begin. The withdrawal, the court system, the hurt it brings to the family. I’m praying to God to lift your hurt. I hope he hears my prayer before it’s too late.

Your son is alive and hopefully he will thank you and God for giving him another chance.

Take good care of yourself. It’s important. And, be kind to yourself. Don’t ever blame yourself.

Barbara

Barbara
Barbara
9 years ago

Dearest Libby,

I’m worried about you. Are you ok? I hope you are doing something fun and are not feeling under the weather. Prayers are with you.

Love,
Barbara

Libby Cataldi
9 years ago

Dearest Barbara,

You are an extraordinary woman who has great instincts and senses. You’re right – I’ve been ill for practically two weeks, battling sore throat, cough, aches and low-grade temps. Just when I thought I had recovered, it hit me again. Today, I’m feeling better, finally. I pray it continues.

I’m delighted that you are back. How we missed you! You are our heart. A story comes to mind: When Jeff and Jeremy were adolescents, my dad (a former Marine drill sergeant), was lecturing them about something. Jeremy was frustrated in a kind of ‘how can he tell me that’ kind of way. Jeff, two years older, said, “Hey, he can say it because he lived it. Don’t you get it? He walked the walk. He has nothing to prove.”

You, our dear Barbara, have walked the walk. We are all the grateful listeners to your advice and words of love. I smiled with deep gratitude when I read Joy’s comment that she listened to her son when he called because she remembered you writing that you wished you had. When you wrote to Fay (Welcome, Fay) and said that it all starts with shoplifting, your experience shines through. Do you see how you make us better? Keep coming back. I will, too.

Jane, Pat, Joy, Nanci, TJ (Welcome, TJ), Fay – I send you all my love and thanks. Together we are strong. We will continue to reach out our hands to help another.

L

Jane
Jane
9 years ago

Feel better Libby. Homemade chicken soup!!

Libby Cataldi
9 years ago

Love to you, Jane. Thanks for your care and compassion for all of us.

Fay
Fay
9 years ago

Hi Libby, Barbara, jane, thanks for all your support. My son over dosed last week and today agin he used. he is on suboxone and I don’t get it. My younger son called me at work and said that he found needles and small bag in the bathroom. He was upset and he took it away from him. My son is facing charges ( shop lifting , he was waiting for his drug court and he did it again and was arrested. he was in jail for 9 days and they released him on unsecured bail, he came home that night and overdosed and when police came over they found needle and small bag of heroin. He is facing another charge and possible goes to jail again for violation of his bail. He does not get it yet. I don’t know when he is going to reach his bottom if he reach it. He is a college graduate and very handsome and intelligent but when it comes to drugs he is blind and don’t see what he has done to his life. If he stop this drugs he can still make a good living with our help but I don’t think he is ready to stop. I am sad, depressed, and ashamed of what he did. He keeps saying that he is sorry and he is going to stop but he does it again. I am praying that god help him to open his eyes and stop it.