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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.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I Wish You Didn't Adopt Me

That is what Beth said when I would not drop everything and gather papers from her accident that she needs for court tommorrow morning. She also wanted a check for a hundred dollars to pay the public defender. I said no more checks. I will mail it in. If they put you in jail then so be it. I am done going to court and stopping my life to run around for you.

That is when she said, " I wish you did not adopt me."  I replied that  " I wish  you had never become an addict or better yet never touched drugs."

This was the first time I had talked to her in a week. It felt better to get a little distance. She does not want to go to jail. Amazingly, she was able to get her own accident report within an hour from the police. She also found a trustworthy relative to walk her check to the courthouse in the morning.

Her public defender tells her that she will get off from the parafanalia charges she got on a technicality. That is too bad as there is a possibility that she would try to comply with the court. Any tips on getting the court to send her to mandated drug program? She had another paraphanalia charge (needles) previously but it was dropped after she completed a 30 day rehab. She missed her last court day because of the car crash where she broke 6 vertabrae.

The local police know her but keep giving her a lot of chances. She was a pathetic figure in her body cast the last time she was in court. Anyone would have assumed that such a serious accident would wake her up.Soooo, ther is a previous charge of shop lifting a candy bar, wandering in a drug zone and possession of paraphanalia. Then, a new charge for paraphanalia in the car while being pulled over and asleep at the wheel, followed by this terrible accident. At what point do they serve time or make them do probation with drug testing. Is this a possibility at this point?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

The New Thanksgiving

What a lovely(for the most part) Thanksgiving we had. Last night I made 3 pumpkin pies. They made the house smell heavenly. This morning we washed both dogs and spent some time playing with them. It was bright and sunny outside which we have not seen for one whole week.

My youngest daughter's boyfriend came over in the afternoon. He and S are working on a Xmas CD and they were practicing. They sound beautiful together. I am always grateful when the house is filled with music. Then we drove to my sister's house for dinner.

My brother in law loves to cook so the feast was amazing. There were literally three tables full of beautifully presented, lovingly prepared and delicious food. It was fun and heartwarming to spend time with my sisters and their children. We laughed, we ate, we remembered the ones who were not with us in fondness. I am grateful to have my sisters so close by.

Beth had told me that she did not want to come today. Normally, I would have asked her a couple of times but I didn't. My sister did include her in the invitation and I did tell Beth but she said no because she was mad that I am not buying her a car. I told her we would leave at 2 eventhough I knew we would not leave until 3. It was 4 oclock before she texted me. She texted to say that I had left her alone on Thanksgiving. I reminded her that she knew about the invitation and declined it. She thought that I should have tried to get her to change her mind. I texted back that I was going to turn off my phone.

My sisters say that I am not aloud to win. Beth manipulates and it has to be my fault. Sooooo, that part was sad and distracting but we did not dwell on it. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Often, when she gets me feeling guilty like this, I will find out that she was not alone but had her own invitations. She has learned to play me like a fiddle. I am learning to at least turn the volume down on that shrieking fiddle!

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Voice of Experience and Compassion

Here is an answer to a question written by Her Big Sad. She understands addiction and she understands how to protect herself from addiction while still being a mother. I learned so much from her response to Barbara who could not understand why her son called her to say that he was going to use. I hope Her Big Sad does not mind me copying this here.

Oh Barbara, this is where it gets so so hard.... everyone's thoughts here match my own experience exactly.

(in my opinion)...This is an attempt to scare you into continuing to place the long arm of Mom in between him and his consequences. He is at a fork in the road. He can continue to use til he's done. Or he can start the hard work now. But there is nothing more that you can do.

I had to tell DD2, "let me know when you are done. Until then, I can't have frequent contact with you." And I made it clear that "done" meant done and detoxed (in order to set foot in the house). Otherwise, I could do nothing for her. We worked out a system that she would check in once a week by phone, just to let me know she was still alive. Literally. But it was a brief conversation about inane things like taking her dog to the vet for her shots (since she wasn't here to do it), and I steered the conversations away from her glorifying of what she was doing (she liked to sensationalize her adventures and I would change the subject each time - she finally got it and stopped telling me about what they were doing).

No matter how angry those conversations made me, I ended each one by telling her how very much I loved her, and that I would be waiting, when she was done. I'd hang up and then again have to work my way through the emotions and reminding myself the last thing she heard from me was that I love her and that now I was putting her back in God's lap again.... and letting go.

This is hard, hard, hard Barbara. I've been there - where you get up and check the "who's in jail" and the "J.Doe list" at the morgue online and then go on with your day. Eventually I stopped that - if she was in, I knew I'd get the collect call. And they have her DNA, so if anything worse happens, they'll let me know. Worrying before that time (which certainly might never come!) was a waste of time/energy.

Everything within me wanted to tell her to come home and even her Dad at one point was giving me the line about "using here is safer than using out there" - Wrong! Safer for her maybe, but it totally removed our safety (dealers delivering here?!) and it would have forced us to give up our right to a safe home where we can still find all our belongings!

There is really nothing else you can do. You won't live with drugs. He isn't done with them.

I am praying for you and Keven and your family. Stand strong and give Keven that statement verbally and by your actions - you won't live with drugs.

Keep writing, keep listening to a lot of different voices here.... We're thinking of you and literally walking this with you.

Obviously this is all just my two cents worth. WhatEVER you do, please know I care and I'm here for you!! BIG HUGS!

New Day and New Life

Beth started calling me early in the morning or late last night. I am not sure which because I turned the phone off. I had already told her that I would talk to her on Tuesday. I did call the Social Security Department after all.

Get this one.  She has the right to request a different rep payee. Anyone can serve in this capacity as long as they do not have a felony arrest on their record. This person must report in person to the nearest social security office and the process takes about 60 days. There is no process for social security to assign someone else. My local office might give me a list of organizations that volunteer to do this or they might not. I will then have to get a particular organization to agree.

My husband says that he thinks I could just freeze her assets and let her handle the rest of the process. The important thing is that the assetts are frozen if I am no longer taking responsibility for them.  We have added a couple of items to the list.

1. No checks and she must submit bills and addresses to us from her creditors.
2.  We will only discuss discretionary funds (there are precious little of those) on the 30th of each month. These discussions are to go through the Dad.
3. Allowance for food and transportation is given once a week. It is her job to get a ride there.
4.  She can make her own arrangements for the disabled bus to take her places as I will not be in a confined space alone with her while she is still using even if she happens to be drug free on that particular day. (Her withdrawals make her meaner than a hornet.)

I felt decent today. I could concentrate and enjoy my students.

I am taking Annette's advice and doing my best to be a good wife to my husband, a good mother to my other children. I also want to spend more fun time with my friends. This is what I got from Lou. I do need my virtual friends. These people are dear to me but they do not have a clue about the world of addiction. They do assure me however, that they saw how these children were raised and it was good.
Bless their hearts because they say that it could have happened to them as they raised their kids the same as I raised mine. Thanks also to Barbara who is always there for me and so many others.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Making More Distance Between Us

I have decided to hang on to my rep payee status for a little while longer. There is one big reason for this. When I see the withdrawals being made I know that Beth is still alive. This will be particularly important if she goes to Florida. As bad as I have been feeling lately it is not so bad as when she was gone for 6 weeks without a word and I thought she was dead. I was looking for her at various morgues throughout South Florida at the time. It was the hardest thing my husband and I have ever been through. Especially knowing at the time that we would not let her stay with us, she had no money and no where to live.

In case some of you think that we are enablers, you should know that we tried the whole tough love thing and kept it up for 4 long years. She was homeless a lot during those years. She also went to about 7 rehabs during those times. Our position was that it is rehab or the street. We will only pay for rehab and nothing else.

She only has enough money to barely cover the necessities in life so she may be spending her food money on drugs but then there is no food money. We do not give her money. She was able to doctor up two checks that I gave her to pay legal fines so that she cashed them at the food market. This means that those fines are now not paid. I will not pay them from my money. If she goes to jail than so be it.

There will be no more checks given to her under any circumstances from now on. This will mean that she has to wait on many items because I will not go running around paying things at her convenience. I am giving the check book to her Dad. He will pay legitamate bills by mail twice a month.

I am no longer going to take calls from Beth regarding giving her allowance to her a day early because she has a ride to the bank on that day. No more of that, her food allowance will be in her spending account once a week on Friday by 4 pm.

Other than that, she will have to talk to her Dad and getting money from him is like getting money from a stone.

I am not telling her that my intention is to talk to her as little as possible but that is my intention. She will dissapear just to punish me if I tell her so she will not be told. She does just about everything in dramatic contrast to what we have ever taught her or how the rest of us behave. This is what I think they call oppositional defiant behavior.

To summarize:

1 no more checks
2. less contact
3.less communication
4. no more discussions about money as it is all systematized.
5. Anything that does not fit in the system must go through the Dad.

There are no good choices here. It is contantly a trial and error process searching for the lesser of the evils.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Beth Plans to Get Out Of Dodge

I got a few texts today from Beth. She tells me she is going to settle her legal matters and fly to Florida to move in with an old boyfriend that she met in rehab. She wants me to make his mother her rep payee. This guy supposedly has rented a studio apartment for them. He will let her borrow his scooter. He has a car and a fat settlement that he got from a terrible accident. He is about 40 years old while she is 25.

The last time they saw each other they were both a lot healthier prior to both of their car accidents. Well. the less I think of it the healthier I am. My other daughter told me today that I need to see a shrink. She says that I have too much anxiety and have a lot of physical symptoms related to the anxiety.

She has a point there. However, I know that the treatment for anxiety is xanax and I do not want to start taking that again. I did it before until I could not sleep with or without it. At that point I tapered down and quit. It took about 3 weeks and it was hard. I do sleep now but I have spasms in my esophogus, and extreme acid reflux. I sleep sitting up.

I got dizzy tonight which I think was low blood sugar not anxiety. I felt much better once I ate some bread with peanut butter and jelley. I have been trying to loose weight and ate a little bit less than I actually needed today.

My youngest daughter is usually sympathetic but today she thought I was dramatic. She wants me to get fixed. She only knows what it feels like to be young and strong. She has never heard a doctor say that this is not curable just something you have to live with and manage.

I feel sort of bad about it. DD2 always admired my strength. Now she sees me weak and weary.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Crack Inspired Chaos

I had a very emotional 24 hours. The police were knocking on my door at 1 in the morning. Of course, I thought that Beth had died when I saw two policemen at my door at that hour. Turns out they were investigating a reported gunshot and wanted to know if we had heard anything.

All of us had heard some rattling around but none of us thought that it was gunfire. The police also told us to close the garage door which my son had left open. After that little adreniline rush none of us could get back to sleep for awhile.

I woke up crying convinced that Beth had killed herself and was in the neighbor's shed or our addition which is accessable from inside the garage. My husband said that it was going to happen one day but that it had not happened yet. He said that we have enough to cope with without conjuring up or giving in
to any morbid fantasies.

I dragged myself through the morning unable to really maintain a good focus on any given task. The sun was bright and the sky was clear but I was slushing through my own mental fog. Depression was pulling me down as I tried to stay a couple of steps ahead of it all day.

By the afternoon, my errands were accomplished, the house was organized and I actually started to feel like a person again. Then I checked the rep payee bank account. The first thing that struck me was relief that Beth had withdrawn her allowance today. She can't be dead somewhere if she is withdrawing money. The next thing I noticed was that about 400 dollars had been withdrawn last week.

Beth does not have access to checks unless I give them to her so this really confused me. It took a couple of hours to figure out what had happened and it is not good. To make a long story short, she found a way to erase who the checks were made out to. Instead of paying her court fees, she cashed the checks at a Mom and Pop supermarket near her home.

When I asked her about this she claimed to have purchased groceries with the money. When I asked how it was even possible to erase ink she said triumphantly without any hint of regret...."Well I found a way to do it!". 

Without going into all the little details, it is unnervingly clear to me that she pulled this little caper with a clear, premeditated plan. She started with a small amount to see if it would be noticed, then took the larger amounts while I was away. The last time I saw her she wanted me to go with her to the court house to pay some more fees. I was too exhausted by the end of that day which probably kept the rest of her account from being depleted.

Beth, I said evenly, "I just want you to know that on Monday I will call social security and request that they appoint a new representative payee. I will not put up with you jerking me around like this."

Her body is rapidly deteriorating as are her looks and her memory. In spite of this, she can orchestrate elaborate deceptions and schemes. She seems to be a little proud of this not a bit regretful.

So, the roller coaster of my life goes on. I doubt that I will hear much from her when her money is handled from someone else. She does not feel much for me anymore and perhaps never did. She once told me that one of her counselors did not like her anymore since she admitted that she had never felt close to her family eventhough they were always good to her. It hurt me when she said that as I thought we gave her a good childhood. We did give her a good childhood.

She tortures me. I have just about burned out with her. We are about to get even farther apart.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Good News Bad News

I took Beth to the orthopedist today. He said that she could quit wearing her body brace and go to physical therapy. She threw the perscription in the trash and stormed out because she did not get pain meds. I do not understand or necessarily believe that her bones have healed correctly. She was frequently taking the brace off and walking around without it.

She spent the entire 4 hours we were together insisting that I let her buy a car. When I left her off she said F--- You and gave my car a pretty hard kick. Then she called me on the phone threatening to kill herself. After that came a texted apology for kicking the car.

I basically let her abuse me for FOUR  hours just to get her to the doctor to see if those bones were healing. I should be happy that they are because if not she would have needed a spinal fusion. At the very end I sort of lost it . She wanted me to take her back into the drug area. I told her that I was not anxious to take her back down there to her moral and physical distruction. I even offered to buy her the damn car if she would go to rehab for 90 days. NO GO  She claims to be stuck out in the country with no transportation but that is not true. She refuses to take the bus for disabled people which is available for her. She just has to call ahead.

I have never in my life seen someone as miserable and unwilling as she is to do anything to help herself.   I know this is emotional blackmail. I fear this is damaging my own health. I have an appointment to get an endoscope to check for an ulcer. How much more do I owe her?   I am depleted and defeated.  She is sick but she is also emotionally abusive.                     God Help HER and God Help ME TOO! 

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Mania or Drug Induced Mania is Still Mania

Well. Beth is cranking up the guilt. She texted me several times today until I said that I was exhuasted and had to sleep. I would be turning off the phone for a few hours. She now says that since I do not trust her and she is going stark raving mad from being so isolated that she will enroll in the damn free outpatient drug patient program to provide me with testing.

She feels quite put upon that no one trusts her. She is in a deep deep depression like she was in high school when she was cutting herself. She has been breaking things in her apartment and throwning glass bottles against the floor.

I replied that trust is earned. I love her because she is in my heart and soul. Trust, on the other hand is earned. I also told her about my premonition that she would be a student at my University. I really did have that premonition on Monday. I could just feel her excitement at being there. I shared that with her and she got really pissed. All she wants is a car. She does not want a drug program, she will do it if she can get ahold of them but she does not want to.

I ignored that tirade via text and reminded her that she can call 911 if she feels worse. I said that a few days in the hospital might get her more stable and they could help her set up the other program.

DD2 will be in charge of whatever issues come up with Beth in my absence. There are two people who are willing to help her. I will be available by phone. I have not told Beth that I am going away because she ALWAYS has a crisis when I am away. Hopefully, she will not fine out as I think we can communicate well by text from PR.

Hubby is up and getting around pretty well. He almost went back to his office today. I really really want him to retire! Money would be tight but we could do it. I am glad I retired eventhough I cried when the first pension check came in. There is such a big difference between that gross and net especially when you retire. I always counted on a pension that goes up with the cost of living. Our governor took that away since I retired. This does not seem legal but it is true.

Anyhow, I am very appreciative of my new life. I have more time to take care of my family and do the things I want like teaching at the University.

 My job was very high stress. I supervised over 200 teachers in 4 different departments spread out between 6 different schools grades k-12. I never forgot that school was about learning. The most important players are the students and teachers. My new boss said that I thought like a teacher. That was supposed to be bad. I could not please him even when he gave me the worst assignments and I did them well. Funny thing is that there are a lot of other middle aged women and some middle aged men experiencing the same dilema.

We went out for a nice dinner tonight to celebrate DD2's birthday. She is 23 and a sweetheart.
If I had only had this one child, I would have thought that child rearing was easy and that I had a real knack for it. Anyway, we followed a family tradition and she went out to eat with just my husband and I. We will have more of a group celebration after the trip. DD2 loves her speach therapy classes. She feels called to do this work. I am so glad that she has found something that she likes.

We are keeping our fingers crossed for PR!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Let IT Flow

We are celebrating my husband's restored ability to pee. He can now walk, sit and bend over much more freely. He went to the urologist and they removed his catheter, pumped him up with water and he was back in business again! FYI ....... this post surgical complication is more common now that hospitals are ordering non latex catheters. They just hurt more to make a bad situation worse.

I spoke to soon about Beth getting to the Suboxone Dr. It seems that she and her ride were late. She called in but the Dr. could not see her. She wanted me to take her tomorrow. She also went on an on some more about a car and told me that she had talked to her neighbors and she is well old enough to handle her own SSI.

I told her that I am swamped right now with her Dad but that I also do not want to cart her back and forth to this particular Dr. because I believe that she is selling the suboxone instead of using it. I asked her not to dispute this with me it is really her business and words will not convince me just a series of clean drug tests. I just want to stay out of this affair. I also explained to her that her age is not why she has a rep payee. She has a rep payee because her mental illness can cause poor judgement and she has both a history of not complying with her pscyh medications and also a history of drug addiction punctuated by periods of short remission. I said, that a judge might change the order if she could establish more extensive sober time. Now I wonder if she told the neighbors that I am mishandling her money.

It is interesting how this drug stuff is supposed to be just her business (alanon) but it has had a tremendous impact on my reputation and standing in this community. Actually, my community seems to be a lot more forgiving than my bad old job was.

We were supposed to leave on vacation on Saturday. That may still happen if DH continues to recover. That is what DH and the urologist say. He is getting stronger each day but I just do not know how he will manage the airplane ride. We will see what he decides and how his recovery proceeds. If he could stand the travel itself then one might as well convaless in Puerto Rico at a seaside resort than here in Cold Cold NJ! Also, praise the Lord that his bathroom skills are pretty much normal today.