A Prisoner in My Own Home-When Your Child is an Addict

A Prisoner in My Own Home-When Your Child is an Addict.

I remember one night, when Brittany lived at home, that she came home in the middle of the night, totally messed up out of her mind. Biscuit our dog was barking, Brittany was loud and talking to herself, so we woke up, along with my youngest daughter.

“Mommy, what is wrong with Mimi”? (She called her Mimi since a baby, when couldn’t pronounce Brittany…and it just stuck). 10 year old Brooke had gotten out of bed and came into our bedroom.

I got out of bed to check on Brittany. I saw her in the kitchen, banging pots and pans around, ice cream dripping out of the side of her mouth, with the heroin induced nod and sway going on.

“What the hell are you looking at it”, she barked at me. Quietly, I just backed away. Tears stinging my eyes, my heart skipping a beat, scared of what could happen. We walked on eggshells when Brittany was home, never knowing what would set her off in a rage. I didn’t want to say anything to her as it may ensue an argument. I needed to protect my youngest from seeing all of this.

I went and got my purse and all of the car keys and brought them back in the bedroom with me. When I came in there, my husband saw the look on my face and just knew.

She was high again.

I shut the bedroom door and locked it. I then hid my purse and the car keys under my pillow. I was so scared she would try and take off and drive in that condition. I also needed to hide my money and credit cards.

Now, my husband, myself, our youngest Brooke and our dog Biscuit, were all in the bed together. John and I looked at each other with worry and anger. Here we are, in our own home, locking ourselves in the bedroom! This isn’t fair!

We are good people, we thought we were good parents, how did this happen?

I stayed up all night that night. So worried she may use again and overdose, worried she may leave, worried she may hurt herself, worried she may kick our bedroom door open, just WORRIED about EVERYTHING.

We felt like prisoners…we couldn’t go on vacation, for fear something would happen with her or the house while we were gone. We never wanted to leave her alone, in fear dealers may come to the house and know where we live. My youngest couldn’t have friends over, as we never knew how Brittany would be.

Our safe haven was no longer safe….and I needed to do something about it. But what?

Being the mom of an addict tears your heart apart.

So I just prayed…and prayed….and prayed….

If you or a loved one is struggling, we have resources that can help.  Please don’t hesitate to reach out, we are in this together.




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  1. Keith Whitmer July 11, 2016 at 4:22 pm - Reply

    Hi Katie, Ive been taking Oxycodone for over 2 years due to a back injury.
    I worry about getting addicted. Alot of my family are worried that it will happen too.

    • Sandy July 12, 2016 at 11:31 am - Reply

      Keith, if you have tried to stop taking the pills and can’t, you are addicted. Please look for help asap. Rehab, pain clinics, refuse addictive medications. Be strong, believe in yourself and place your faith in God who is the ultimate Healer. Prayers for you.

    • Jennie July 12, 2016 at 11:58 am - Reply

      If you are worried about getting addicted, then you probably are already. Could you stop taking them today and your life wouldn’t miss a beat? Probably not. Oxycodone is where it all starts. Then the doctor cuts you off or lowers your dose and you need your dose. The streets come after that as you need more and the doctors just cut you off. Your body is physically addicted, whether you like it or not. That is what happens with most meds you take for a while. Caffeine, sugar, smokes, antidepressants, etc that you take for 2 years you will withdrawal from. Everyone would. The addiction comes into play when it becomes mental also. Thing is, what doctors don’t understand, is that it has to become mental when your body is put into withdrawals because you get CUT OFF at some point, like it never was anything. Well, it is something and it becomes our way of life after an extended period of time. To change it overnight is not possible. Doctors should know this, but they don’t it seems all too often. Or they simply do not care. If you are worried and feel you are not an addict yet, try tapering off of them slowly and you’ll be happy you did. I can almost guarantee you are not going to do that. Opiates help us in so many ways to function. Just stopping them 2 years Into it is not easy. Good luck my friend.

    • Bill griffiths July 13, 2016 at 10:11 pm - Reply

      Keith, I like you had back injury 5 surgeries rods screws 4 levels fused.7 yrs addiction I was on oxycontin ,fentanyl,morphine.2 yrs is a long time and they have concerns.When I was on the pain meds they have to increase doses to get same affect Be careful I knew I had problem 3 weeks into take oxycontin,my body needed it to function let alone number pain.Good luck God Bless

  2. Cindy Genord July 11, 2016 at 4:24 pm - Reply

    Thank you for sharing your stories. It is so sad, the stories are all too familiar to me. I have felt that way for a very long time. My daughter, is in rehab now, so we are getting a bit of a break at the moment.

  3. Leslie July 11, 2016 at 4:28 pm - Reply

    Oh mom, I know your story, because it is mine! I understand and sending you support , strength, hugs, and prayers! These children of ours,create hurricanes in our homes and then complain when it rains on them!

    • Marietta M Clark July 12, 2016 at 3:16 pm - Reply

      Its my story or WAS mine. I had to shield my then 2-3 year old granddaughte . I had her toddler bed in my room . I had a quick “get-a-way” overnight bag packed in my room for her and i in case needed. I never took vacations.. Ever! Finally I woke up and got out of the rental, bought a home 12 miles away …he had totaled his car by the time of closing so I was safe….at least until he would steal or ‘borrow’ a car to try and see his daughter or play on my sympathies for $ or whatever. At least I didn’t have to let him in. Was embarrassing having to explain to my new neighbors that my son was an addict and if he was at my house they needed to call 911. I am grateful today he is 79 days clean and lives and works 2 hours away . I can only pray for more. His doc is meth ….the drug of the devil…destroying the mind!

      • Genia B Barnette September 10, 2016 at 8:09 am - Reply

        I always said Meth was the devil’s brew. My daughter and son in law were on meth. The rages were horrible. Eventually they both got caught making it and went to jail. After they were released, they both went to a Christian based rehab for 8 months. They were new creatures when they got out of there. They now are serving a 4 year sentence for manufacturing meth. I have my grandson, and he is doing well….considering what he’s been through. I’m so glad I had him before they were arrested….otherwise Children’s services would have been involved.

        I’m so happy they are both clean now and are serving their sentence. Hopefully drugs are a thing of the past for them.

        Hugs to all you mom’s. We didn’t ask to be in the this club.

    • Donna October 1, 2016 at 8:58 pm - Reply

      That was perfectly written.

  4. Sherry July 11, 2016 at 4:52 pm - Reply

    This was so our family’s life at one point. It still lingers in the air, even with our daughter out of the house. We want so badly for her, our daughter to return to us. But every time we attempt to move in closer to her, a storm blows in and we find ourselves scrambling to shut and lock the shutters and hide again

    • Scared October 2, 2016 at 8:48 am - Reply

      Please don’t hide! Get her help NOW! My cousin died of a heroin overdose December 30th, 2014. I can’t find the word’s to explain the pain this has been for soo many. My best friend is in prison right now for illegal activity to support her heroin habbit- that nobody was aware of.
      Addicts NEED their friends and families to fight for them! My biggest regret is not doing enough to get them away from the drug’s and people who supported their habbits.
      Don’t let this continue! GET HELP TODAY, NOW!!!

  5. Rick Vidal July 11, 2016 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing , Monique took aderall and cocaine , she was 21 holding on to our front door knob for two days. If anyone got near her she said she run and we would not
    See her. Local police talked her into letting me take her to a hospital, on the way there she tried jumping out of my moving car. She was hospitalized for 40 days in a mental hospital , the hardest thing for a loving father to witness. She’s been in out of rehab since then , she’s 27 now clean and sober by the grace of God.

  6. Suzanne July 11, 2016 at 6:31 pm - Reply

    I know that fear. It plays on me too. My addict sleeps next to me so I have nowhere to hide from the anger. He is actually good when he’s had his fix. He doesn’t so match get high as he kills the pain. He doesn’t use so much that he nods off, in fact I’ve never seen him do that in the 5 years I’ve been watching him abusing himself. But the drug does not care what you are using it for. You will still become addicted and you will still need it to survive and it will still ruin your family. It is coming dangerously close to ruining mine.

  7. Susan July 11, 2016 at 6:44 pm - Reply

    You just described my life to a T.
    I would like to hear the rest of the story.

  8. Rene Drake July 11, 2016 at 6:59 pm - Reply


  9. Maria July 11, 2016 at 8:55 pm - Reply

    As a nurse and former drug user, I have seen both sides of this story. Just last week I watched a 45 year old woman die on hospice from end stage AIDS, which she never treated due to being a heroine addict. She starting using at 15, by 16 she was a mom and tested positive for HIV. Her addiction was her top priority and unfortunately the HIV never got treated. She was a slave to the drug all of her adult life.
    I know it’s a daily struggle. Once you are an addict you are always vulnerable to slipping back.
    I am hopeful that with time this will be treated like the serious medical and psychiatric problem it is. That long term rehab will be covered by insurance and that oxycodone and it’s ilk will be prescribed by a select few for extreme pain management circumstances. That we will stop incarcerating users and provide treatment.
    Keep sharing your stories and I wish your daughter stays clean for a lifetime, and her experiences give her a voice to help others.

    • Lydia September 21, 2016 at 7:03 am - Reply

      I so agree with you. Here in Maine at least they expect addicts to wait to basically detox at home due to lack of funding I presume? Then if they get through that they find an I. O. P. If they want suboxone and they have to be detoxed but they aren’t in hospital. I do not understand how we can expect people so sick and craving to succeed like this. Did they do studies and decide addicts weren’t worth the trouble? I’m so shocked at what is not available. In order to get long term treatment it seems you have to fail all the other programs first. It seems like we’re playing roulette with their sobriety and lives.

  10. joyce barton July 11, 2016 at 9:04 pm - Reply

    I can totally relate to all she spoke about…. have been there

  11. Maunie July 11, 2016 at 9:47 pm - Reply

    I know first hand and lived this life. Prayer Prayer Prayer and more Prayer.
    Thanks for sharing what so many of us live.
    God bless you

  12. Terry July 11, 2016 at 10:49 pm - Reply

    Living hell, till, we learn to practice detachmnet, set boundaries, after educating, and realzing, we do not have to be manipulated, abused, or accept the behaviors, practice the the motto, (Not In My House), No one IS Allowed there, no friends, unless you have known them, and know for sure, they are not a contributor, to the addcit, but only for moral support, also do not make them comfortable, seek help, throgh a local PD, some have reach out programs, that will assist you they can offer, check-ins, and information for other family services as well help with the addict!!!

  13. Kerry July 11, 2016 at 10:53 pm - Reply

    I cannot begin to tell you how
    Much this story resonated in me. I know it well. God Bless us all.

  14. Janece July 11, 2016 at 11:00 pm - Reply

    Totally get it. Been there many times….

  15. debra July 11, 2016 at 11:55 pm - Reply

    Go to a Nar onon meeting, it will definitely help you.

  16. Linda Laba July 12, 2016 at 12:53 am - Reply

    What is happening now?

    • Katie July 12, 2016 at 7:06 am - Reply

      As of today she is now 18 months clean!!

      • Amanda July 12, 2016 at 10:47 am - Reply


      • Sandy July 12, 2016 at 11:33 am - Reply

        Praise God !

      • Shannon Rozell July 13, 2016 at 3:41 pm - Reply

        We love happy endings to the addiction and happy new beginnings for the addict and family!

      • Jan July 25, 2016 at 1:48 pm - Reply

        Hi Katie,

        Does Brittny work now or in school?…My daughter is 120 days clean; I still worry about relapse – she is 21 lives 2300 miles away in sober living…so far so good,,,I asked about work because my daughter is struggling to find what she wants to do in life…I have become very vocal in my community against drug “Heroin” and have joined NCHC and TAM along with my home NarAnon group…I have a demanding job but have found helping others has helped me heal…by the time she went t long term rehab – I was emotionally very sick as well. Your story is inspiring…did you find Brittany even today does better with less “Mom” 🙂 Just curious, I still feel I may be contacting her a little much due to my fears.

      • Melinda July 30, 2016 at 12:48 am - Reply

        Wonderful! ! I am praying for the same results for my Son.

      • Lori September 7, 2016 at 8:34 am - Reply

        Did you ever kick your daughter out of the house because you couldn’t watch her kill herself any longer?

  17. may July 12, 2016 at 7:26 am - Reply

    Way too many families going through the same thing in one form or another. It really sucks that you can never really feel relaxed or worry free as it is always on your mind that anything could happen at any moment. You just get blindsided. the middle of the night phone calls are terrifying. prayers to all.

  18. Cheryl lee July 12, 2016 at 8:10 am - Reply

    Thats fantastic to hear

  19. Nic July 12, 2016 at 9:04 am - Reply

    Please go to an Alanon meeting, go to as many as you can. It helps SO much.

  20. Jodi Dale July 12, 2016 at 9:48 am - Reply

    Katie, I hated my role of prisoner, security guard, nurse, and cop. I just wanted to be a loving mom, as nature intended.

  21. Gabriel July 12, 2016 at 4:18 pm - Reply

    This is a big eye opener I never had to steal to support my addiction but I can see the worry I put in to my own mother’s house thanks for sharing and God bless your home

  22. Sheryl July 12, 2016 at 5:37 pm - Reply

    Hi Kate your post hit home hard. My husband and I are living the prison life right now and have been on and off for over eight years. What do you think was the breaking point for your daughter. We are at the point of feeling so helpless. Do you think I should call my daughters probation officer in order to save her life ? I am undecided because she may just throw my daughter in jail and not get her the help that she so desperately needs. Please any advice would be so helpful.

    • Kris July 14, 2016 at 6:14 pm - Reply

      Sheryl – we leveraged the legal system to get our son in jail (he had a petty theft) and wouldn’t have served time – by asking his pre-trial probation officer for help. We told him of son’s addiction and the needles/packets we found. The PO said he could get him put in jail. At that point we knew our son was knocking on death’s door so against his grandmother’s wishes we did it. One of our cousins knew a prison guard and he checked on him once in a while but reported that he was sleeping all the time with a blanket covering his head – probably going thru terrible withdrawals. Now you hear about prisoners dying from opiate withdrawals. We did this with the condition that the judge would appoint him a long-term bed, which our insurance would not pay, despite a few ODs. PO said it would be 2 months at the most. it was over 4 months. He did great at the long-term, I got my son back. He didn’t follow-thru with aftercare and relapsed but was not as bad as on death’s door for a few years. So did I make the right choice – yes, I think he would have died. Except if I could do anything different besides insist on aftercare – I would insist on communication with the medical in jail and insist that he was kept hydrated and vitals checked because of these people dying in jail. Just this year he was at death’s door again. Two ODs ten days apart, only by the grace of God we were home and he hit something while ODing and alert us to the OD so I could Narcan him. We got him to the hospital both times but after the second time got an interventionist to assist (not with the whole family) and she told us what to say to get him held at hospital until we could get him to agree to go to treatment. He was risking his life. It took a day or two but she convinced him, she was awesome. He flew to Florida – there are no beds in my home state of Connecticut. I didn’t even have to have him call around for a bed – she took care of all of that! She is amazing – if you are on the east coast – let me know! No charge. She works with over ten facilities. Worked magic with insurance too, where in the past I always had to fight them. Plus she said if he tried to bail she’d marchman act him (commit him to treatment) – he didn’t try to bail. You can’t do that in my state! He’s been there 3 months now. He just left the place where he was to go to another rehab in same town (met a girl – highly not recommended).

      • Sheryl August 1, 2016 at 6:04 pm - Reply

        Thanks so much for your response. We live in nj and my daughter has state insurance. She is ready to go detox but no place will help, they put her on a waiting list. She finally makes the call and they put her on a list. NJ is terrible.
        She is suppose to go to a detox in north jersey in 2 days, I can only pray she stays. One thing I have learned is that the addict has to want it as badly as I do. She says she is not staying past the detox so I will see. I know she needs long term treatment.

  23. Lisa July 13, 2016 at 6:20 pm - Reply

    Wow. Never new was the same for others. There were many times while screaming at me to give him money and the car. I would try to leave and he didn’t allow me to. Block the way force the keys from me even stand behind the car so I can’t leave. Hopefully getting better now. Hopes for you too

  24. Leslie Ray July 14, 2016 at 1:57 am - Reply

    I am also a mother of addiction. I have a 31 year old heroin addicted daughter living on the streets for the past four years, working the system to receive food stamps and detox services. This detox process is so wrong. Her experience is to get admitted to detox, however, the clinic will only allow 3 days of detox and releases her back onto the streets with siboxin, while she is still withdrawing and have her call them daily to see if a bed is available for her in a rehab. She starts up with heroin to help with the withdrawals and sickness she endures due to the meds are not providing enough relief she needs for the withdrawals. She has pleaded and begged for help to be told that there are not enough beds at this time. She can call daily to see if she can get a bed while she sleeps in the streets waiting for one. She will die before she gets help. I struggle with this everyday and pray that somewhere, somehow she will get admitted to a rehab bed and recover from her addiction. Has anyone else experienced this type of challenge while seeking help for your kid??

    • BRK July 17, 2016 at 10:24 am - Reply

      Dont give up. You think this is painful….which it is. Its a horrible life for the addict and the family. Addicts are miserable and living in hell. Once they conclude they have no one, and that they cant fight fight this disease any longer, they choose to die. And this pain, is paralyzing. Its been 2 years, 5 months since my daughter gave up. I will serve this prison sentence forever. My soul is gone. My heart hurts. Losing a child is far worse than anyone can imagine. Until you join the club.
      Fight for your child. Nobody else will. I fought for years and finally turned my back and gave up. This pain and regret is my new life. Blessings to you.

      • karen jewell January 24, 2017 at 12:18 am - Reply

        My heart hurts for you.I hope you are not accepting pain and regret as your life..As the mother of an addict,heroin overdose death nov 2011,I know the hell you have and are experiencing.everybodys different,but I’m sure we share many of the same stories and feelings.Take as long as you need to heal,it’s been 5 years and I will never be the same..but I learned to laugh again.At the beginning I would take out scrapbooks,listen to certain songs and sob and heave.every day..for hours..A therapist called it “ripping off an emotional band-aid” this made sense to me..Why was I torturing myself?To prove my love through pain?was I worried I wasn’t suffering enough that I had to cut a little deeper?I will never forget anything about her & made a conscious effort to replace painful memories (her death) with 29 years worth of,mostly,good times.Don’t let her death define the rest of your life,or her legacy.It’s not easy,I don’t always succeed with positivity,but be gentle to yourself..I don’t believe you gave up,more than likely you had to protect other people & your own sanity..I hope you have found a little peace for yourself.

  25. Keith E. Whitmer July 14, 2016 at 9:19 am - Reply

    Prayers to you. Thank you for your response. Be strong.

  26. Kris July 14, 2016 at 6:00 pm - Reply

    Wow, so much of this is my life and I guess every parent of a substance use disordered child. My poor daughter never had friends over for fear of how high her brother would be or how angry we would be at him. Not a great way to grow up. Siblings are the forgotten ones. So many nights I lay on the floor in his room awake in case of overdose then go to work in the morning – or not – if he used more while I drifted off for a few minutes. The nights I’d wake him when I heard the “death rattle” snore that is an indication of overdose. The nights I’d watch him nodding in the most uncomfortable positions. The nights EMT’s narcan’d him. The two occasions I narcan’d him (I still have PTSD from it). I’m so glad your daughter is clean. My son is in treatment in Florida, just switched from the one we had originally put him in. We preferred he had not switched, but at least he’s still in treatment. Still a bumpy, winding road, not a straight one.

  27. Beth July 22, 2016 at 2:46 pm - Reply

    I’m anxious to read more of your story.

  28. Sue Z July 28, 2016 at 3:10 pm - Reply

    I’m a mom with a 25 year old son who’s an addict as well. He’s been battling 8 years now. We all have. The story is the same as so many I read here. Today he is trying, he is really trying, but it’s a struggle. Every day.

    Ironically enough, about 6 years ago, I fell to the floor in pain and my husband had to pick me up and take me to the ER. I had a severely prolapsed disk sitting on my sciatic nerve and osteoarthritis along with degenerative bone disease. I was in a lot of pain. I was sent to a spinal doctor who did MRI’s and then referred me to the pain management doctor for quarterly spinal epidural injections and a bottle of 120 percocet every single month. For FIVE years. So, while my son was battling addiction, I was slowly becoming an accidental addict myself. It got to the point where one pill didn’t help anymore, so I’d take two. Pretty soon, I could take 90 in 8 days. I’m going to be 50 next year and over the course of the past 2 years I’ve tried to stop taking them and never could. The withdrawal was too bad. Something lit a fire under me and I finally decided I had enough. I’m tired of living my life numb, waiting for the next script. Standing in pharmacy lines. I talked to my son about it a lot. For 3 months I asked my doc to cut back on my pain meds. He never did. He increased them! Finally, last week, after taking 94 pills in 8 days, I said that’s enough. I saved the last one for Sunday afternoon because I knew the withdrawals would start that night and right now I’m on day 4. Day 4. The longest I’ve gone without prescription pain meds in 6 years is exactly 21 days. I can’t tell you what changed in me, but something did. I don’t ever want to see another pill. I’ll fight the pain another way. My son knows I’m on day 4, he knows I called the doctor and told him under no circumstances to ever refill my scripts again and he was amazed that I did it. Of course he did remind me what I could sell them for if I wasn’t taking them. OMG. Like really?

    I’m hoping in my journey it might also help to save him. He see’s how hard I’m trying and he knows I didn’t ask for this, just like he didn’t ask for his. He was a star athlete who suffered an injury was prescribed percocet and bam, it was on for him. I know he’s been into heroin. I have video of him tipping over at his sister’s college graduation. He’s been to jail numerous times, rehab twice, lost his license for 3 years and has been in the psych ward. But he’s fighting. He talks about the future now and his hopes.

    I’m hoping in my quitting that I’m helping to save him. I’m in the middle of writing our story. Someday, maybe I’ll post it here.

    Here’s to day 4 of sobriety and I hope to God I can keep it up.
    ~peace to all

  29. Janet July 29, 2016 at 10:04 pm - Reply

    Hi. Finally after many years of enabling my son, Dan, I began tough love. He is now in a three month treatment center. I am hoping that the insanity is near the end but I also realize the relapse potential. I am also a recovering alcoholic having relapsed after fifteen years of sobriety. I now have two years and 9 months..I have worked in the addiction field and was married to an addiction counselor, Dan’s dad, who died nine years ago from an overdose after long sobriety. We went through many of the same things that you described. Dan’s moods weren’t predictable and we began to fear, we slept with keys and purses and we avoided fights whenever we could. I am a single mom of three daughters in addition to Dan. None of the girls have issues with substances so they have trouble relating to his struggle.. I appreciate all of the comments. I miss him but I also dread him getting out of treatment. I am hopeful. I have hard-lined him that he can only live with us if he remains sober and works a program. Thanks for your help and your commitment.

    • Sandy August 21, 2016 at 8:59 pm - Reply

      Janet, I’m glad you are back into recovery. I have to ask, after 15 years of sobriety, what triggered you to start drinking again? My boyfriend had been sober over 20 years. He lost his wife of 18 years to Multiple Sclerosis. He had to quit his job to care for her. A month after she passed, their son went off to college out of state and the pet cat died. All his losses put his life in turmoil, uncertainty and depression. He started dating and thinking he could “handle” alcohol again. He went off and on the next four years. I met him in the last year and a half of his binges. He has now been sober 8 months. I’m apprehensive in moving forward with our relationship for fear of relapses again. He stayed sober for 20 years. Is it possible to go 30 years? Addiction is so scary and heart breaking.

  30. Janet L Wroblewski July 30, 2016 at 8:08 pm - Reply

    Four days is wonderful!!! You are doing the right thing for you and for him.i was sober for 15 years and started swallowing my mouthwash which evebtually led me back to vodka. I was in and out of recovery for the next ten uears. I now have two uears and 9 months. It feels amazing. Keep it up a day at a time. I know your condition hurts. My mom suffers from rhose same spinal issues. Thanks for sharing

  31. Keith Whitmer July 30, 2016 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    Hi Sue,
    Thank you for telling your story.
    Im similar to you. I have had 3 back surgeries over the past year and a half.
    I went thru the series of 8 steroid shots, Pt, cant work my job, etc.
    Ive been on oxycodone for 2 and a half years.
    I have sciatic, degenerative disc disease, damage to my L5/4/3.
    The last surgery was Xlif for L4/L3, 2 months ago, still no better.
    Im paranoid about getting hooked on the pain meds.
    Im sorry that this happened to you, and Im praying that you totally get off of the drugs.
    Your too pretty to be taken down by them.
    If you would like to support each other, just let me know.?

    Prayers for You, Sue. ?

  32. Susan Gregory August 5, 2016 at 3:18 pm - Reply

    Hi Katie,

    Reading this, it was like you were writing a day from my life. One exception, my son is the youngest child. Thankfully he didn’t have someone else living at home watching him destroy himself except me and his step-dad. When you referred to the heroin nod and sway a light bulb went on for me. I have seen that same nod and sway over a dozen times but didn’t realize it was due to the heroin.

    When this first started with my son 14 years ago (with pot, he worked up to heroin) I felt like I was the only mom going through this. I didn’t talk about it because I felt like I must have done something wrong for him to turn to drugs. When I finally did talk about it, I found that I was not the only parent going through it. We compared war stories and what tried and what we didn’t try.

    Thanks for creating a space for parents to know they are not the only one.

  33. Kirsten Fouracre August 21, 2016 at 9:19 pm - Reply

    So many nights we slept with our car keys, my purse, credit cards, cash, check book, etc….hidden wrapped around my legs under blankets. We have struggled, not with heroin, but with pretty much every other drug with my son. Your stories touch my heart because i know exactly how you felt and I still struggle.

  34. Janet L Wroblewski August 21, 2016 at 10:10 pm - Reply

    Take heart, I think long term sonriety is doable. For me, I can’t ever get to a place where I begn “negotiating” with my addict self. I have 2 years and 10 months now and stay dilligent that my periodic binge allowances mist never even begin as a thought. I used the excuse of a divorce and stress to justify the fact that I was wanting that vacation from my head. I wanted the buzz. Pure and simple. Addicts like to rationalize, analyze and justify their use. Bottom line is poor coping skills and a desire for a high. If he can develop and honestly keep good coping skills and an ability to study his relapse flags and patterns then he can do it. Dont ever allow yourself to be enslaved though. It is never about loving someone enough to stop. I couldnt quit for my four kids who i cherish. It is powerful. Honesty is the best antidote. Make sure you have your own life and money and independence before committing to him. Love him and help him see gratitude for sobriety on a daily basis and require he is working a program with other sober people. Addicts tend to isolate and then are able to talk themselves into anyrhing. My son who was in treatment walked out over last weekend and is now in county jail waiting to see what his sentence is foer violating parole which was 3 month treatment program. I did not post bail. I will not let him live with me until he has been through recovery. He is homeless so will have to find a transitional hoising after jail……hard for mr not to nurture bit my enabling was killing him. I am letting him feel his nsequences and choices so that maybe he will choose sobriety. I want him back and i am willing to look like i have turned my back on him so that he will be serious about recovery. I urge you to give yourself permission to draw lines and love yourself too.

  35. Lori September 6, 2016 at 7:29 pm - Reply

    My husband and I are in the same boat, prisoners in our own home. Our daughter Brittany is a herion addict and has been for the last 3 yrs, and 5 yrs before that Vicodin so a total of 8 yrs, she is only 22 yrs old and has nothing left she has lost many jobs quit college and has no friends just drug people. We don’t know what else to do. She has been in rehab 4 times in the last year but starts using as soon as she gets out. Today I told her I can’t watch her kill herself anymore and she has to move. I keep finding needles and Burnt spoons in her room, my other two adult children are speaking to us because we keep allowing her to break the rules. What do we do?

  36. Maryann September 7, 2016 at 2:58 am - Reply

    I am in the same situation now my Niece is living with me she has alway,s been like a Daughter to me. I have practically raised her since her Momma wasn’t there much for her. I don’t know what to do? I am so scared for her. She stay,s out all hour’s of the night she runs in and out of the house. My younger children are watching all of this. I know she has been taking things that don’t belong to her to get what she needs. And it’s got a hold of her so bad she don’t remember half of what she does. I watch her losing her life slowing to this evil drug and it scares the hell out of me. She comes home so messed up she is nodding out and my youngest kids are there trying to catch her so she don’t fall. We love her so much and want her to get the help she needs before it’s to late. We just don’t know how to help her.she is not going to get help untill she truly wants it. And my youngest kids should not half to see this much less half to take care of her when she is so messed up. But i can’t turn my back on her since her Momma already has and never has been there for her. Lord knows what would happen if she thought she had nobody. I just don’t know what to do. I am caught between my love for her and being scared to death that she will over dose and wanting to protect my other kids. I feel trapped so i totally understand what you have gone through because i am going through it now.

    • Katie September 7, 2016 at 2:57 pm - Reply

      Maryann, I am going to email you right now. I can help you honey, hang in there.

      • Maryann September 7, 2016 at 3:01 pm - Reply

        Thank you.

  37. Maryann September 7, 2016 at 3:08 pm - Reply

    I am just at a loss she stays out all hours she sleeps in parks any where she passes out. She is addicted to heroine i am literally watching her kill herself. She takes things from my home from my kids. She is married her husband is locked up she feels so lost without him. So she uses. She brings all kinds of guys to my house they are not aloud in my home so they wait for her in my back yard. I just feel trapped i am so heart broken watching thus happen to her. Dhe was a beautiful young lady that had a lot of potential i just don’t know what made her go down this road.

  38. Loretta Steffy September 9, 2016 at 10:23 am - Reply

    Hello Katie your struggle and story is so true.
    I am the mother of the marine you sat next too, mine is a female suffering from PTSD due to MST aka military sexual trauma. Since 2008 re-hab 13 times, we are still there, 2 beautiful boys and another on the way. I pray daily, when will it end, I’m scared of how it will end. I see no light at the end of the tunnel.
    Now evicted from her apartment, what next? VA is there to help, but she has to want it, my situation is ugly, I hate the daily bs. Not sure where to go from here……

  39. Debra October 7, 2016 at 10:07 pm - Reply

    I read these stories and lived them all for 8 years now. I’ve Detoxed my done too many times. NowbIm back to the same thing again after tough love. Now my only problem I fight daily is the urge to go find him again. I have been better this time but my son is 34 and my only child. I know where he hangs out homless, but I have now finally learned I can’t help him this time. It saddens my heart every day. I.m his mom, isn’t that what moms should do.. I know both sides and get both sides of advice. His son is going to be 9 and my Grandson says Grandma I’m not mad at him I just need to know he is okay and find him, Grandma you have always found dad, can’t you find him. This is the hardest thing because through all they have always been attached at the tip. This is truly the fist time since Fathers day there has been no communication to us at all.
    A worriedvparent struggling still.

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