2nd Generation of Drug Addicts

I have been struggling with drug addiction for the last 45 years with no end in sight.  Let me explain.....I am not the addict but I couldn't be more devastated by it.  Today was the final straw. 

My son started experimenting with drugs when he was around 14 years old.  Today he is 42 and as we speak in jail for about the 10th time in his adult life.  I have prayed, cried, begged, committed him, loved him, turned my back on him, you name it, I tried it.  I put my son in a hospital at 14 to try to find the source of his need to rebel and stay continuously in trouble.  I had him in one on one counseling, drug programs, turned him in to the police, his probation officer.  I did whatever it took to try to save him with no long term good results. 

At 19 he married and had his first son., 2 years later, new wife, second son, two years after that a daughter.  I raised these three kids from birth or early infancy and the youngest 16 is still with me today.  Both his wives also suffered from drug addiction.  All of them cycled in and out of jail and in and out of the children's lives.  I helped them start over, I can't recall how many times.  Only to watch them lose it all as a result of drugs.  I tried to shelter the children through it all and instill in them a need to NEVER EVER even try drugs.  It fell on deaf ears.  My 19 year old grandson sits in another jail about 2hours from where his father is for driving with no license, DUI and alluding police.  While out on bond he went into a store and stole a tool to sell and buy crack with.  He gets out next week after 6 months with no clear plan on where or what he wants to do next. I've laid out his options and if history is the best indicator of future behavior.......I see him wandering around until he once again gets into trouble as a result of his addiction.  I had him in counseling and 2 years ago he spent 8 months in an inpatient intense treatment program.  Within 3 months of being released he overdosed on methadone and its been downhill ever since.

My granddaughter has been on probation for ...yes drug possession for the past year.  She goes up and down.  She got her GED and enrolled in college and went back for what was to be her final court hearing and release from probation and tested positive for marijuana that day.....back to square one.

Today was the final blow.  My 23 year old grandson, living with us while trying to go into the job corp decided to try to sell pot to earn money when he couldn't find a job.  I thought the kids were hanging out in front of the house playing cards and listening to music.  As I went in and out to go to work or the store or whatever, this is what I saw.  I foolishly thought things were turning the corner.  At 10am 15 police officers came bursting through the door, throwing kids on the floor and handcuffing them.  My husband and I were put in handcuffs and made to sit out front while the police turned over our beds, emptied all the dressers, dumped every box in the house out, pulled all the pots and pans out of the kitchen cabinets...in search of drugs.  They found only a small amount on one of the kids in the garage.  Not one thing anywhere else.  All the kids were taken to jail.  My grandson was charged with selling (sold to an undercover police officer) my granddaughter was charged with possession of paraphenalia (found an unused pipe in her drawer); various other charges for the remainder of the kids ages 16-23. 

As I look around the turmoil that yesterday was my house, I can't even move.  I don't know what happened to my life?  My marriage has always been rocky and I stayed to try to give stability to the kids.  I attended church regularly, I've worked full time my whole adult life.  The kids all played sports when they were young, the girls were in dance, gymnastics etc.  My two daughters are both married with children and doing well, no drugs, no alcohol.  But my son and his three children can't seem to break free......I don't know what I did wrong and I don't know what to do now? 

My life feels like its spinning out of control.  I  don't know where to turn next......




BadChoiceQueen BadChoiceQueen
56-60, F
10 Responses Oct 6, 2009

Oh how I wish I could say or do something that could give you comfort right now. I am so sad reading your story. All you did was try to help your son and his family and all they have given you is heartache. When is it YOUR turn for happiness? My heart is breaking for you. Hang in there and keep praying. God has you and won't let go.

I truly appreciate the kind words and advice. I have finally found what I think is the middle point where I continue to love and support my adult children in any way that I can without sacrificing my own well being and happiness. My three grandchildren (my son's children) that I raised have found their way to better lives without drugs and I do believe that it was God's strength that got them there. My son sadly is still floundering and I know that one day I will get that dreaded call and will have to bury my son, something no mother wants to do. He suffers from liver disease and related damage to his body. I pray now that he finds God's path before its too late. Again thank you everyone who took the time to comment.

I have been working with addicts and the field of rehab for seven years now and have been married (unknowingly at the time) to two addicts. It is a terrible environment for young people to grow up in. Some of these drugs are so addictive that just a couple of uses can lock them in and then the cravings make them insane, make them turn their whole energies toward getting more drugs. You have been in the middle of a war. Chance are good that these kids were poisoned in the womb and when they got their hands on drugs, the whole pattern just triggered for them. I admire you greatly for what you have done for them. It is a tough battle for you and for them. It's why I do what I do every day, to give people a chance to be the wonderful person they can be without drugs. There are always things we can do better as parents but you should not feel that you caused these problems. You know in your heart that you didn't. You do deserve happiness with your husband. I can't solve this for you but I can just acknowledge your hard work on behalf of your children and grandchildren. It took everything I had for 11 years to salvage my son and put him on a straight, productive path. God bless you.

To OurGovSux......you said........"..........I am a firm believer that you are a product of your environment. So to me it seems obvious that something long before the sons problem started this whole thing off."<br />
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I can only take that you are insinuating that I must be an addict from this statement. That couldn't be furtther from the truth. I've spent the better part of my son's life accepting that some things happen beyond our control and finally stopped beating myself up for it. Perhaps you should have asked for some clarification for the "math" before you assert that "........... but someone or something started this downward spiral & I am willing to bet that the problem originated there, long before the sons problem, and it being the root cause of his need to experiment when he did."<br />
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My father was an alcoholic and long before I became aware of it and became the ob<x>ject of his abuse at the age of 13. Now, my son was born when I was 16 so let's redo the math.......At 13 I realized my father was an alcoholic and when son was 42, I was 58.....so 58 minus 13 would be.....um.....yes 45. So....for 45 years I was dealing with one type of addiction or another. <br />
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As for you statement "I am a firm believer that you are a product of your environment"......Your environment encompasses your home, school, friends, teachers, coaches, neighbors, etc. How and when and why my son turned to drugs is still a mystery. THere was no drinking or drugs in our household, so to say he was a product of his environment, ie clearly insinuating "my home", is way off ba<x>se. I don't know how old you are or where your vast knowledge of children, environmental growth, or drug addiction comes from, but I suggest you explore it further or elsewhere as your assumptions are grossly off ba<x>se.

I strongly doubt that you did anything to contribute to your son's drug use. There are times when we do everything we can, but things still don't go our way. During the teenage years, peers have the strongest influence. It is during this time that they are loosening the ties at home and building new ones with friends and classmates. As far as advice goes on here, take what you can use, and leave the rest for the buzzards. Have a wonderful day.

I am a firm believer that you are a product of your environment. So to me it seems obvious that something long before the sons problem started this whole thing off.<br />
If we read & do our math, this person says that a struggle with addiction has been present for 45 years. But starts it off with her 42 year old son who started at 14. So a 42 year old was 14 , 28 years ago.<br />
The title says 2nd generation and then talks about the sons children being into drugs.<br />
For an addiction problem to exist for 45 years in this family, there is a branch on this family tree that seems to be broken off and wanted to forget about. <br />
I am sorry for being the one to dissect this, but someone or something started this downward spiral & I am willing to bet that the problem originated there, long before the sons problem, and it being the root cause of his need to experiment when he did.

Drug Addiction Stories<br />
Please connect with me if you can help a real life drug addict.<br />

I don't want to sound like a preacher but I am a very spiritual person who has had a son that sold weed. If those in your family don't have a personal relationship with God and seek him, they may never break the chains of addiction. It seems to be a stronghold from several generations. God is so faithful to those who ask for his help. It may take them reaching rock bottom and finding an amazing church family that has counceling and prayer warriors that are willing to help. But you cannot make them seek God, they have to want to.

have you considered al-anon? good support to be found there,I'm a member.adult child of alcoholics and recovering addict myself,learning to make better choices.<br />
good luck to you,not an easy hand you and yours have been dealt...

agreed to Joanie4, the best thing you can help them is by insulating yourself emotionally for a while, I mean, not to let the negativity consumes you. You have done more than enough as a "Step parents". You need to stay strong and positive to help them. They are already "grown ups". It is really hard that you can teach them as you used to. The best way is to love them unconditionally and be their friends, not teacher, to try to really understand them in a nonjudgemental and positive way. <br />
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Your change and love they can see in you will change them and will touch them. They have very low esteem and without purpose in life, that is why they escape to the drugs and crimes. They need you more than ever, but you must resist the negativity and be the friend and helper that they need.

You are such a good person for trying to help your family as much as possible. I'm not a parent so I probably have no idea what I'm talking about, but coming from a family where my parents would've done ANYTHING to keep me out of trouble, and and were way too overprotective and overbearing I honestly think I'd just let the kids screw up. There's only so much u can do, and obviously the consequences they've faced haven't been "enough" for them... I think until they face consequences that they can't stand anymore that will be the only way they will start to turn around. I'm sure you probably want to guard them, though, and not see anything destroy their futures and whatnot.. but if they don't learn now.. at some point they'll have to learn later. I think just try not to blame yourself.. they're obviously being influenced by something/someone else.