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My Son Is an Addict

My son is 19. He is a beautiful person and has so much to offer the world, I just wish he would realize the path of destruction he is on. Last night was one of many over the last two years, I layed awake, wondering, is he in jail or dead? He finally came home about 4:50am, and I was able to thank God for keeping him safe another day.

Over the last two years, he has been charged with possession of marijuana and paraphanalia three times. He also has a pending driving under the influence from marijuana charge. The first time, he was caught with marijuana in high school as a junior.

He spent the remainder of the school year in alternative school. After that, he has been a different kid. He skipped so many days of school his senior year, I don't know how he graduated.

Since he graduated last May, he has had four different jobs. He got his first job and moved in with his cousin. I thought, this could be the change he needs. Away from his "friends". But in only the second week, his cousin kicked him out because he caught him with marijuana in his apartment.

The job was too far away from home to be able to afford to drive back and forth and he ended up quitting. His next job was a very good factory job, great pay. He had cheated on the pre-employment drug screen.

After about five weeks, he stapled his hand with the industrial box stapler and was drug tested for the accident report. Of course, he failed the drug test and lost that job. Shortly after he lost that job, he got arrested for DUI (which is the pending charge).

I am an owner of a company. I really did not have a job opening for him and always told him I would not create a position for him. I also knew he would take advantage of the job and it would just create more problems at home.

I think family should be a good example in a company. Family should not take advantage and slack on their duties at work, because they are family. I knew this would be the case with him. It just creates bad morale for the other workers, if a family member doesn't pull their weight.

Of course, the main reason, could I be putting my other employees or myself at risk with my son working? But I went against my own judgement and told him he could work temporarily until he found another position.

Yes, I know this is enabling and I knew he was facing fines and attorney fees that he needed to be able to pay. So I put him to work. There were good and bad outcomes of his temporary employment.

The good, I had more control of his money. He was able to save enough to pay his previous fine and pay for an attorney. The bad, he had a poor attitude and complained in front of other employees.

I allowed him to work about six weeks and I told him he needed to find another job. He did find a temporary position during the Christmas season and actually completed the assignment.

Over the last two years, I have repeatedly talked to him. Of course, I get the answer every parent wants to hear, but from an addict, it has no conviction. "I know, I am stopping." He always says it in a way that I think maybe he has finally learned something, but we always end up with the same outcome.

I am familiar with addiction, my brother has been a drug addict for over 30 years. He is still fighting his demons. I don't want that for my son and would love to know the magic words or actions that would get through to him.

I know about enabling. I know it is not just bailing them out and giving them money. Its about not making them have consequences for their actions too. I did read on one of these posts, that it also about making accomodations in my own life.

This is one of the places I have went wrong. Trying to make sure I am around at a certain time so I can try to keep him from being faced with an opportunity to smoke pot. If I am home, he can't smoke. This is one of the many things I need to learn and work on myself.

So my struggles now are, do I kick him out of my house, with no money and no where to go? How will he get to work if he does get a job? Knowing that this may be the next step is hard for any parent to go through with.

How can you stand by and essentially make your adult child homeless? Will this spiral him further into a lifetime of abuse or is this what it is going to take for him to change?

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