A Mother's Worst Nightmare

three days ago, i found out my son is addicted to heroin. I cannot believe i'm even typing these words!..not my son....my son would never do that...well WAKE UP MOM, cuz he did and he does!
His dad and i went to the school councellor, she wanted to talk to us..we figured it was about his lack of attendance, his final chances at graduation etc....never in my wildest imagination did i expect to hear those words come out of her mouth....i lost my mind, the emotions flooded out...i was bawling...my son was bawling...my ex sat in shock. I had to ask the councellor to repeat what she just said...i was hearing NOTHING anymore.
Later at home, my son told me how his body is 'detoxing' right now...he's in pain, he can't sleep, he sweats profusely, he's riddled with anxiety all night long....NOT MY BABY!....how did this happen?? what did i do wrong??
he wants to try detoxing on his own...he doesn't want to go to a facility...everything must be HIS decision, as i'm learning....what as a mother am i supposed to do???...i've tried to tell him, that counselling is the best way to go right now.....he's not convinced.....so what do i do?...do i sit back, and wait for him to overdose???......help me please??!!!

anyone who's gone through anything to do with heroin....please help me
prettyinpink prettyinpink
46-50, F
15 Responses Jun 23, 2012

yes i am a recovering heroin user. i say recovering because even after we are able to stop, there is always the mental side of addiction. it doesn't go away.
i started at 17 and am 21 now. how old is your son? he seems kind and wanting to change.
i see you wrote this a while ago, how is he doing now?

I'm here often anytime you want to talk or share experiences....it really is a nightmare isn't it?...my son has been clean 6 mths now....as a mother you just want it to be the one and only time he 'messes up'...but i'm not naive to think he will never have a problem again...i hope obviously.

My heart goes out to you, hon'. *HUGSSSSSSSSSS* :( What a terrible thing for a mother to experience..and what a terrible thing for your son and for your whole family.

I've never been in your exact situation, but I DO know addiction. It's a terrible thing..whether you're talking about drugs or alcohol or gambling, etc. It's a sickness that takes over and not only affects the victim, but everyone he or she knows and loves.

My prayers go out to you, your son and the rest of your family. I hope he continues his treatment and gets better. It's a tough fight that he's got on his hands, but it's a battle that can be won. I know that as a parent you are blaming yourself and wondering what went wrong..how could this happen..and what can you do. The thing is..none of it is your fault. You sound like a very loving, attentive soul who'd do anything for your child..but these things happen, sometimes. It's a painful part of life that we're all trying to cope in one way or another. Some of us, though, cope in ways that are more destructive than healing.

Hang in there, hon'. xo

I'm dealing with a similar situation now (I myself is an addict). What I've learned from recovering addicts (and know this internally) is once an addict always an addict. Pleae be aware of this and know its a life long battle unfortunately. BUT fortunately it is a battle worth fighting. God bless you and your family.

thank you...and blessings to you as you continue to battle...i know that once he's out of rehab, it doesn't mean this is all over...one day at a time right?!

Bless your heart and prayers sent to you and your son. Since he is refusing treatment maybe experiencing the effects of withdraw will make him never want to do heroin again. I google everything daily from help with withdraw symptoms to support groups. Look up al anon support groups. There are support groups and forums for family members as well as for addicts. I hope the very best for you and yours.

thank you!..things have changed since this...he's entering rehab next thursday the 7th...he's been staying with me the last month 1/2, and has been clean. I am very grateful he seems to be wanting to change.

There isn't much you can do, as much as I don't want to say that. I put my mother through the same thing, but in the end getting clean has to be their decision. I'm very sorry you are going through this and I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. He is still young and seems like he wants to change. All you can do is do anything in you're power to help him, and keep hoping and praying he will be able to kick it. Counseling would help in my opinion, but people do kick it on their own. Best of luck to you and your family.

thank you..he was going to counselling, but he stopped going...he told me that it only helped during the hour that he was there, and that, quite often after an appt. he would go use anyway

God bless you....
Addiction is the hardest thing, then prison is the next. I know your pain and the hell you put yourself through,
so sorry

You responded to my story today & were the first to even read it & I thank you.
I myself am a recovering alcoholic & am dealing with a son who is on meth.I have also worked in psych for a number of years.
First, its very good that, at least your son is talking about it.Denial can be a big roadblock.
Your son would really benefit from a medical detox.He will be much less sick, as they will give him meds that will help him be more comfortable.
They will also provide him with counseling that can offer benefits in the long term.
Narcotics anonymous is effective for those who choose it, for long term sobriety.
Mom, dont let this tear you down! Its very good that you expressed your feeling online.
You cant hold those feelings in! Narconon is a free nationwide self help program that can put you in touch with others in your situation or have successully gone through your situation.You must take care of yourself! You count too!
Your son needs to make some important decisions pronto. He needs to "hit bottom" as they say in recovery & you can help him by not protecting him from the consequences of his drug use, as so many parents mistakenly do when faced with a loved one's drug use.
Not protecting him might include mandatory inpatient drug treatment & 12 step meetings in order to live at you house etc. Its very hard as a parent, but sometimes necessary to save a loved one's life.
The people in narconon can help.If there arent narconon groups in your area check out alanon.It also deals with families of addicted people.
My heart truly goes out to you & you will definitely be in my prayers, I promise!
You have some difficult things to deal with, but, believe me, you can get through this & making some correct, affirmative choices can help both you & your son put this sad chapter behind you.
Your son NEVER has to again if the right choices are made.
God bless you in your struggles & keep me posted ,if you feel it.

thank you

You are not alone, especially in this online community!
God Bless

There's a book called: "In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts" by Gabor Mate you can pick up if you're interested in understanding more about addictions. It's a really great book. Dr. Gabor Mate has some really great interviews on TVO - & you can find him on YouTube also - to help you understand addictions (you can Google all of this).
Know that you're son is stronger than this. He needs love, support & understanding without enabling him.
Another really great book is "The Language of Letting Go" by Melody Beattie. She is an ex-addict who has been through hell and back and back again. Her insights & words are the most inspiring & helpful I've ever found.
I've learned that I couldn't do it on my own. I've also learned that learning to love myself was what I needed to do, but in the meantime there were meetings. Loving myself is the hardest & most rewarding road to recovery. It's a lifetime process. Addicts (cover all addictions from shopping to alcohol to anything you can think of one can be addicted to) have to take responsibility for their actions & for their recovery. It's very hard to change, now imagine trying to change someone else. Yet, so many people try to change others. All we can do is change ourselves. We cannot do it for anyone else. As much as we would like to.
A person cannot be helped unless they ask for help & are ready for it.
Take really good care of yourself pretty because you are going to need to be in tip top shape for this battle.
I hope you will get yourself some help to deal with this. you are gonna need it. No one should have to go through this alone.
Blessings & Love-

thank you for this information my dear friend..

It's my pleasure :)

First and foremost, know this: You are not to blame my sweet friend.
Hi my friend.
So sorry to hear about what you are going through. :(
What I would like to strongly suggest pretty is to get yourself to an Al-Anon meeting asap and then as many Al-Anon meetings as you can get to every week. Support is essential to your survival.
I'm a recovering alcoholic as you may have read in one of my stories.
Please don't take this on yourself. You're son is an addict and needs help. There are a lot of support groups that can help. It's up to him to decide if he wants help & then to decide to do something about it. If and when he decides he could go to Narcotics anonymous meetings. You can look those up online for your area. He can also go to his md & get referred to the hospital. They have treatment programs there. Very good ones I might add.

I'm sorry I'm so late in responding/replying. Let me know how things are going please? Let me know if there's anything I can do. I can listen :) *hugs*

When you son tells you something dont react badly to what he says cuz he will never do it again...

You know, every addiction has a support group now, like Alcoholics Anonymous. See if you can find a group that deals with drug use. You can probably find out through a local health unit, or even by calling A.A. Sometimes being around other recovering addicts and hearing their stories helps someone recovering to not feel so isolated. It isn't a solution in itself, but it couldn't hurt for your son to try. Usually they have information at meetings to, about how to help your recovery. I hope that helps. I'm very sorry to hear this happened to your family.

Oh my word, I am so sorry you are going through this and what a terrible shock.<br />
Be gentle with yourself for a while untill this news actually sinks in. My best friends Son is also on Heroin and I have walked this walk with her and my heart aches for him and her.<br />
As it does for you and your prescious Son. I hope he will allow himself to get the help he needs. I also hope it will be something the two of you can overcome and work through. Get as much support and help as you possibly can.<br />
If you just need a friend I am here for you, I understand the heart ache from being in different circumstances with my friend. Hang in there and be strong as he needs you more than ever now. Hugs.

Thank you!...it's unbelievably stressful..

http://youtu.be/PYlS_kmxES0 <br />
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Nikki Sixx wrote this song while recovering from addiction,I too was an addict. One has to hit rock bottom or have a near death experience before making a descision to quit. I hope your son makes the right choice. Life is beautiful.

I read that book...

Hi prettyinpink. I am apparently close to your age. I am a recovering heroin addict. I still go to counseling at least twice a week. I can only imagine how u feel finding this out about your son. I am considering becoming a counselor, so let's see if maybe I can help u in some way. It appears that he admits he has a problem and he wants to get straight. If this is his honest intentions then he is already on a better path. As far as his wanting to detox on his own, some people can do it many can't. If he can't do it on his own then get him a medical detox ASAP. Don't let it drag on "his using". Regardless of how he detoxes , he still is going to need some counseling. There is a reason he started using to begin with! You all need to figure out what the underlying issues are. For many people a 12 step program works. In order for it to work he has to work it, and be completely dedicated to it. For me, I was not a fan of the 12 step. Talking to a counselor helps me more than anything. Also talking to other addicts in recovery. There is so much info I could give u, I could just go on and on. Did he get caught using or did he just go to his school counselor and tell her? I think the best thing u can do to help him is get him some counseling, and not just for a week or two. I am talking about a year or more. Like I said I can go on and on. If there is something specific u want to talk to me about just let me know! I will respond. I pray for your family! Wilthril,