Need to Help Son

by Karen

My son is 20 yrs. old, and has had 3 MIPs (minor in possession of alcohol, with the last arrest including a small amount of pot) in a short 4 month period. He’s paid fines, done volunteer work, gone to meetings for the first 2 offenses. I believe he has been involved in drugs (Meth)after not getting help for severe depression.

He was able to work full time up until his layoff about a month ago. His troubles began almost 2 yrs. ago. He’s lost weight and can’t seem to manage his life. He usually has an active cell phone but not at this time. This is when my anxiety really strikes up!!

He lives about an hour south of me, currently living with friend. Which one? Not sure anymore. He shows love, remorse and is respectful most often when I am able to squeeze a short visit in (say I’m in town) which keeps me going until I don’t hear from him again. I just can’t stop worrying about him and don’t want to wait for that dreaded phone call and/or worse yet.

He was put in jail for not paying his last of his fine ($172) for 2 1/2 days. He said “it wasn’t that bad”. That hurt! He hasn’t done his required treatment for the 3rd offense, therefore,, therefore, right now he is waiting to be picked up and put into jail.

I’ve pleaded with him to call and explain that he made mistake about showing up for court on wrong date. He is afraid to turn himself in. Do I speak directly to judge to beg for mandated treatment rather than jail? I am thinking about putting myself in Al-Anon too for my sanity. I have to be able to function for a younger sibling at home.

Please help. Thanks!!

Courts Might Help You

by: Ned Wicker

Dear Karen,

The courts can often be a great friend to those seeking that “mandatory” treatment for their son. Your son may be respectful to you and maybe loving at times, but his life is out of control and he needs to get into treatment. The meth use is very problematic.

It sounds like he is not doing well physically and it’s likely that he needs medical attention. The run-ins with the law are the least of his concerns. His addiction is not just going to go away by itself, so short of getting arrested, he isn’t going to seek help, want help or get help. With no job, his life will spiral out of control. You need to get him out of his drug culture.

You also need help and support, as this whole ordeal is trying and emotionally charged. Al0-anon would be a good call for you to make. Their members are moms like you, who want to help their sons and need help to get the job done.

Now that he is unemployed, maybe getting him into treatment will be easier. Jail time is only valuable if they offer treatment. Otherwise he is just an addict who is not using at the moment. Right now, his disease progresses because there is nothing to stop it.

He troubles with the law aren’t fazing him. He said of jail “it wasn’t that bad,” mainly because he sat around, didn’t work and got fed for a short period of time. A longer sentence will get his attention and will change his mind, but I hope that doesn’t happen.

You might also consider a family meeting and get everybody involved. As a team, pulling together, you might be able to influence his decision making.

Response to Nick

by: Karen

Thanks for the feedback Nick. I understand completely that my son needs help. I’ve already begun the process of finding the right treatment center.

Question: Do I wait until he’s put in jail (any day he will be picked up for no show in court) before I present the full truth of his addiction habits (using both drugs and alcohol) and the offer to go to rehab?

I would physically have to drive around town to find him right now, and who knows what shape I could find him in. I don’t think that’s possible for me to do. He would also be extremely resistant with that kind of surprise visit.

I expect any day to hear he’s in jail. My next plan of action was to go and talk directly to the county attorney and do my plea for mandated treatment in treatment center. I am almost happy that he got busted for the small amount of pot, because now they have to listen more to me and realize that he has dual problem at hand.

My son’s dad has alcohol issues, therefore, I am on my own to save my son! My immediate family is clear across the country and my husband and I are it. But I know we will get the job done through God, love and commitment to our son.

I will be looking for Al-anon group to join. Thanks for your support.


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