February 19, 2011

The Crazy Things We Think and Do

Way back in 2009 when I first suspected that my son was "up to something" I tried listening to his conversations in hope of gaining some insight.  I even used a stethoscope to listen through his bedroom door!  How embarrassing is that?

The "funny" part of this is that I don't know what I would have done if I did hear something because I was drowning in denial at that time, unaware for my need to surface and breathe.  It was like I held my breath for months waiting for some dramatic event.

Then the dramatic even occurred.  The rest has been a long, tedious journey of ups and downs.

I do believe that knowledge is power, because the more I learned, the better I was able to cope.

Note to parents who are new to this:  The relapse issue was the hardest for me  to grasp at first.  Sitting in AlAnon listening to other parents talk about relapse after relapse, sitting in family groups listening to addicts say it was their second, third or fourth time in rehab.

That upset me.  I had the mind set that once the addict decided to stop using and got in a program and was serious - end of problem.  When I learned that "relapse is part of recovery" and accepted it, I was still disappointed, sad and/or angry when it happened....but I was never surprised and always knew it was not the end of the world.

Right now Keven has 16 days but now I find myself thinking "oh good, this must be the last time he's ever going to relapse because he's done it so many times now....this last time was the grand finale and he's finally done!!"


I need to be careful with my expectations.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara


beachteacher said...

oh how I know what you mean....back when, I just so hated that saying about relapse being part of recovery...really hated it. But oh, how awfully true it is. And recovery sure isn't an "event" but an ongoing process. And yes, knowledge has helped a lot....and I sure have learned about addiction in the past 4 yr.s,..more than I ever wanted to know. I too,...as much as D is doing well now,...I stop myself short when I start going with those "this is really the last time and it's not going to start again thoughts". I know that's not what is good for me to think, in the way that my hopes and more so, my happiness are all hung upon that expectation.
I do hope that Keven IS now going to stay in recovery though, of course. And oh boy...that stethoscope thing did make me smile ,...I can really relate to that too,...even though I didn't have a stethoscope. But if I did, I'd have used it ! We should all make a list sometime....all of the ridiculous things we've done as a result of all of this. I know we'd shake our heads at each other, but surely understand.

Stacey said...

I know what you mean, this is relapse number 3 or 4 I think. He is in rehab right now, just finished up Family Week. He is due to be release next week. SCARED but more importantly how do I make myself not try to control his recovery. SOOO hard. I am glad I found this blog

Annette said...

I hear you....been there and done that.

Syd said...

Barbara, I see relapse and recovery as two different things. No where in the steps does it say that we drank or used again as part of recovery. At least that is what I hear in open AA meetings.

Anonymous Mom said...

Lori, I thought of making a list! I think it would provide inside and also maybe a bit of humor.

Stacey, I'm glad you are here. Not sure how old he is (son?) but the resource most people have found helpful is Al-Anon. You're right its SOOOOOOOOOO hard and I feel like I take two steps forward one step back.
Let me know how things go when he's released.

Annette...yeah, seems silly now but you know how it is.

Syd, I hear that relapse is part of recovery all the time in meetings, but perhaps its said in relation to heroin addiction?

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