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Welcome to my blog. I hope we can help each other endure the pain of the addiction of a daughter or son.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Relief OF Tears

I woke up at five this morning crying and crying. My daughter's situation seems to be mixed in with the emotions that keep washing over me regarding the death of my mother and two dear friends in the last three months.You might think this would be negative but I actually felt a lot better today. It seems it was good for me to cry intensely and then get on with the business of living for the day. It is sort of like the difference between feeling nautious all day or just throwing up and feeling better.

I went on to spend the day visiting a number of very talented teachers. The first class was a guitar ensemble. They were playing some very complex but soothing pieces from Mozart and Bach. It was really beautiful and serene. It occured to me that I could listen to this type of music everday for some interludes of comfort.

Next, I visited two art teachers that were so talented. Their students were doing self-portraits. The likenesses were incredible. They invited me back at the end of the day to create a hand painted silk scarf with some other faculty members. All in all it was a good day. It was a bit of calm amidst the storm.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Beth Cancelled Dr. Appointment

She cancelled her appointment and rescheduled for next Wed. She is back in her apartment and taking her psych meds. She called me over and over again wanting to know why I think she is doing poorly. I was like...... well it is your business but I do not want to watch you kill yourself. You were living with a heavy user, you have needle marks in your neck so that is what leads me to think you are doing poorly.

I said that I would only believe a urine test that was observed by a nurse or Dr. If she wants me to hold the suboxone for her then I need to know that she is taking it. I need to know that she is not bringing in someone else's urine. She called me a bitch and hung up. Then she called back several more times but I did not answer. Then, she texted that she would consent to such a test at her next appointment. She feels bad that I do not believe her. She is a different person. She did not have to tell me she was living in a drug house but she did.

OK we will see how it works out that way. One in a million chance that she is telling the truth or will at least try to get a grip on herself between now and next week. The suboxone does help but she has to still live without the high and take it.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Big Day Tomorrow

Tomorrow Beth will go to the suboxone Dr. at 4. I will meet her there and she will be drug tested. We will see if the suboxone is in her system and what else is there as well. I am not sure if we will see the results right at the office or in a day. I stopped by the Dr office today. I told her that Beth is staying with a very heavy user. This much she admits to. Even if by some miracle she is not doing heroine right now, it is not a healthy place where she can stay clean.

Tom from recovery helpdesk is supposed to talk with Beth on the phone at 1. I will be surprised if she picks up but she said that she would. I finally told my husband all about this. It started just before he left with dd2 for the weekend.

He was a big help in getting my emotions back in the box. You know what I mean don't you?. I mean not exactly where my emotions are not hurting me but out of sight, somewhat organized and contained.

Beth was going to work with a life coach as well but today she told me that she does not need anymore counselling. Did I mention that she told me she is shooting water into her neck because she misses the needle but she is not doing crack or heroine?

I am trying to detach with love at this point. I have to create some distance to protect my sanity and my ability to sleep, work and interact like a somewhat normal person.

Monday, March 28, 2011

What hurts worse?

I knew that I was suffering watching Beth slowly kill herself but it was not until recently that I really understood just how excrutiating the pain is.  I watched my mother writhing in pain from blood clots, then gangrene. I watched her kineys fail and tried to comfort her. My father, my sister's and I agonized over the end of life decisions. When to let go and when to hang on. It was exhausting and excrutiating. When the end came it still caught me by surprise. It made me nautious, weak and gasping for breath through my tears. My mother's death was very painful but was it more painful than the many many days, weeks and months of my daughters addiction?

Eventhough I loved my mother.......... the addiction is worse because the loss goes on and on. I am exposed to a level of degradation and desperation that I did not know existed. Many of you are parents of addicts so you know the pain. I wonder if the addicts know how much they hurt us?  I wonder if their counselors know how much they hurt us.?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Not The Boyfriend Tells Me She is Still Using

     Beth's friend Mike tells me that she is still using crack...... injecting it in her neck now. She has left his place and her psychiatric meds behind. She is couch surfing from place to place. Will not go back to her apartment it is too far away. Will not come to my house as the rules are too strict.  Is there any point of getting off heroine if you are still doing crack? Especially if you are still using needles?

Yesterday was one month since my Mom died. I have had two good girlfriends die since December. All of these deaths were preceded by short but difficult illnesses of a few months. Yesterday my husband said that I talk about death and depressing things too much. I said......." but that is all we have left in our lives."

I know that is not the right way to feel and I know I have to get my own life back on track. I do not particularly like cleaning house but I think I will. It appeals to me now as something that I can actually control!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How TO Pace Yourself at Work


I have been so depleted lately. I just come home, sit in the chair and can not move. It occured to me that I forgot to apply what I know about pace.

1. People are more efficient and make less errors when they take breaks.
2. I can and should make my own breaks.
3. Take a full hour for lunch or how ever much time you are aloud. If you have some time left over go for a walk, sit in your car beside a pretty place or listen to an audio book. I ate my sandwhich while watching the ducks.
4. Stand up and walk around every 60 to 90 minutes.
5.  Do not add anything to today's list of things to do. When something comes up put it on the next day's list unless it is a dire emergency. If it is a dire emergency move something from today's list till tommorow's list.

I followed these rules today and had a good amount of energy at the end of the day. What a relief! Life was worth living. I plan to repeat this behavior tomorrow. Maybe you will too!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Who Would Break Up A Romance by TEXT?

My youngest daughter Chris just got dumped by her boyfriend of 6 months. He seemed to be absolutely infatuated with her and she with him. Turns out he was communicating with the x girlfriend all along. When Crhistine was away for the weekend with her Dad, boyfriend got together with old girlfriend and texted Chris that the feeling was gone. They are young. She is resilient but she was left, shaken, crying and throwing up.

I feel bad that I did not see through this too much too soon over the moon bullshit but there it is .  He ws a player mascarading as a true blue so much in love good guy.  He fooled me too!  Also do not understand why he wanted to ruin her little get away with her Dad. He could have been a man, waited one more day till she came home and then done the deed in person.

I sure hope this is not the norm now breaking up by text!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

These are my boundaries. They help me cope with mental illness/addiction

1.  No drugs in my house.
2. No needles in my house.
3. No shady characters in my house.
4. No cash gifts.
5. No replacement of non cash items that dissapear.
6. No bail or paid attorneys for crimes commited.
7. If you loose you car or get a traffic ticket  you pay it or not.
8. I will help you but I will not put myself in danger to help you.
9.  No rides out of bad neighborhoods.
10. I do not answer my phone in the middle of the night. I turn it off.( My husband's phone is on but she does not abuse that for some reason.)
11.She  does not have keys to my home. She is not allowed in unsupervised.
11. No threats, no hitting, no throwing objects or damaging property. This kind of behavior results in expulsion from house , the police or mental hospital will be called.
12. The addict is not allowed to bring people into the house without prior approval.
13. No visitors are allowed knocking on the door. They must call and bde approved.
14. I never leave my purse, money or credit cards unsupervised. They are locked in my trunk or in the safe.
15. I will not lie or cover up for the addict. She knows that if I am questioned by her boyfriend, Dr. employer etc. police, I will tell the truth.
16. I will pay for medical attention and help with medical transportation when scheduled in advance.
17. I will include her in family affairs if she behaves. That is does not come around high or cause chaos.
18. She must take her medications to live with me for even a short time. She must maintain her own household on a regular basis but I will take her back home if she gets sick or has anxiety attacks. I will invite her home when she has to cope with something upsetting like death or other upsetting events.
19.  She knows that she can take a break at any time. That is go outside or to a separate room to regain calm or lessen anxiety.
20.  I do not comment negatively on herr appearance unless she is dirty or obscene.
21.  I will helpwith and sometimes pay for any healthy activities within reason. This includes school, hobbies etc.
22. I manage her ssi money so that rent , utilities etc are paid. I give her an allowance from her own money on a schedule that she sets up ahead of time.
23. I admire her courage in dealing with this awful disase of bipolar that was no fault of her own. Over and over I  support her as she fights and fails the fights again against this addiction. I will fight as long as she does. When she wearies of fighting and wants to give up I will encourage her to try again. I love her and she loves me. We have a bond that goes beyond disease and addiction.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Suboxone Dr. Says that Bipolar was not Adequately Treated

Beth's suboxone Dr. who is a neurodevelopmental specialist surprised me. She said that if Beth started using again then she the Dr.  must have done something wrong in treating the underlying bipolar disorder and or ptsd. Wow, that was a shock. The Dr. really does not see this using as free choice. She sees it as triggered by some part of her mental illness that is not adequately treated.

I shared with her that Beth rarely sleeps and is plauged by anxiety. She wrote a perscription for clonoprin which I am holding for Beth. I am to give her one pill a day to help her sleep at night. I asked Beth what she was willing to do for herself so that she could sleep better. She said that she would drink less caffeine. (Not quite the response I hoped for but I let it go. How about exercise, sleeping in bed instead of the couch and doing something productive during the day?).

Rose is a heroine addict who got absolutely clean using suboxone and xanax for anxiety held my her mom. Kelsey is a  cocaine addict/ schizoaffective disorder patient who is close to clean. This one goes on a cocaine bender 2 to 3 times per year. The rest of the time she is up and down in her mental illness but does not use drugs that are not perscribed. These are people that I know and I know that the stories are true.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Suboxone Treatment

I was advised that at the levels my daughter was using heroine that she should be observed taking her suboxone for the first few weeks. I watch her take one dose. Her friend watches her take one at noon and she takes her own dose in the middle of the night. Overall she looks pretty good and is trying to keep busy.

Without my alanon experiences I would have insisted that she stay here so I could see the 2 am dose. Or I would have called or who knows what. I was very upset on her third day when I saw her looking very groggy. That is when I called Tom from recovery helpdesk. He said that an observed dose is typical at this stage and that she might even be still using some but that it is likely to resolve if she has the dicipline to keep up the suboxone. ( Well, that is quite a concept!) Actually I have a girlfriend from rehab that told me her daughter tried suboxone several times but that she finally got off heroine when she was willing to come home and have her Mom give her all her doses. I give her exactly the right amount each day. So, she could be diverting one dose but not all three. I will tell you how it goes.

Also, she had cut back from 10 bags of heroine per day to 5 before doing the detox. I saw her during the detox and she looked pretty bad like she had a bad flu. She threw up some. Her muscles and bones hurt all over. She also was taking 50 mg of xanax every 4 hours to keep from screaming into the night. She procured those xanax on her own. The Dr. did not perscribe them. Incidentally, although I was certainly leary about this, I do know that they give the addicts xanax and a lot more when they detox at a medical facility. She knows it too as she has done it about 8 times.

I went to an alanon meeting tonight. I have not been there in several months and the meeting has gotten much smaller. I wonder what happened. It has been a great meeting for the last 5 years. tYou may wonder how I go along with suboxone and alanon. Well, modern alanon and aa is supposed to allow any drugs taken as perscribed by a Dr.  That being said, I have tried the tough love approach and the AA approach and the alanon approach each for long periods of time and got no more than 6 weeks of sobriety. This latest harm reduction, keep my detachment with love but assist in recover as much as I can approach has yielded 9 months clean with a recent relapse.

I do not kid myself though. She stopped herself but she was just lucky not to be arrested. I hope that she did not share needles or put her health at risk in other ways but she probably does not even know all that she did. I actually wanted her to go on methadone or preferably a rehab followed by methadone.The longest periods of sobriety that I have seen in heroine addicts have come from methodone or total aa dedication. Her bipolar disorder does not lend itself to group sharing and participation. That is a fact.

I am not advocating this path but people should know that it exists and many have found sobriety or a law abiding relatively productive life in this way. At this point, I would be very happy with a safe, law abiding, relatively productive life for my daughter.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Death Leads to Relapse

Beth was using again. She called me at work last Tuesday to tell me. That was less than two weeks since my mother's death. She arranged to start taking suboxone again. The Dr. wanted her hospitalized to detox prior to the suboxone as she did not think that Beth could hold out the necessary 48 hours prior to suboxone induction without using heroine.

There is no detox within 100 miles of us. She would not go to Florida and decided to ride it out on her own. I offered to sit with her or bring her to my house. She stayed with a friend  in town close to a drug area.  She threw up, she ached all over, she looked horrible but she stuck it out. She says that she was clean for 9 months but started to use again to cope with the sleeplessness and anxiety that she experienced surrounding her grandmothers death. The last time she went on a major bender and we though she was dead was right after my father in law died.

Her neck and hands were full of needle marks. It made me feel all nautious and shaky. This reminds me of a story I heard long ago. A friend told me that her sister was married to a recovering cocaine addict. He had not used in years but when their baby got sick and almost died he dissappeared on a cocaine bender. They can not handle the stress and that means that we can predict that when we are at our lowest they will also be in crisis.

 I knew she was not handling it well. She was very tearful. She could not sleep. She worried about her grandmother being in pain. I told her that I needed her to be ok so that I could go and take care of my mom. Beth said she was ok but she was not. It seems as though she started to settle down after the death. That is when she finally quit worrying about it and accepted it.