Where there's life....


...there's hope.

Truths have been revealed and yes he did bad things. Took deadly drugs. Many bad things.

I believe his mind and body were taken over by something dark and craving and manipulative and lying.

People say I'm in denial. He's just a bad seed. I shouldn't waste my time and money on him. Cast him aside and let him figure things out on his own. He either will, or he won't.

He'll either live, or die.

But No. TO ME, that approach feels appalling. Abhorrent. Wrong.

He's my son, a sensitive young man who has a disease, the disease of addiction, and symptoms of that disease are doing those bad things. Symptoms of that disease are lying and denial. Symptoms of that disease are using in the face of losing everything. Just like red spots are symptoms of chicken pox, these symptoms prove he is sick.

Sure, I'm ok with him feeling the wreckage of his past. No, I'm not going to help him get his job back. Yes, he owes me lots of money. Lots of amends to be made.

I'm more than fine with his suffering the consequences of his actions. Bring 'em on, in fact.

But.

What I'm not doing:

Watching him suffer in a vacuum.

Throwing him to the curb after detox hoping for him to spiral around the drain long enough to find his bottom.

Telling him he has no home here. (I did that once before.)

Sending him to a boot camp to get broken down in order to get built up -- he is broken down enough.

What I am doing:

Making sure to tell him what I saw -- who his addiction caused him to become, the things he did and did not do that affected me, that broke my heart. The lies. The lies. The lies.

Sparing him no detail.

Speaking calmly, no yelling, no casting aspersions...

Recounting his past actions as they apply to me.

Asking him if this is what he wants for his life. If he believes he's moving forward towards his goals and dreams. If he thinks he's as close to his family as he once was. If he thinks things could be better.

Telling him to think about such things and tell me what he thinks should come next. Asking him if he were me what he would do.

Risky business, I know.

What happened:

He admits he has a problem with drugs. (For the first time ever.)

He tells me he wants to be sober. ("for a while.")

He says he needs help being sober.

He asks if he can get a sober companion, someone who can help him get his footing. Someone who can teach him new ways to live, in real time, every day.

Sure, he could be shoveling loads of stinky shit at me. Perhaps the piles are so high, they cover my eyes and ears. Yes, he could be manipulating me again, I know.

But I'm trying it this way, to see what happens. A couple of weeks of sober coaching.

What makes sense:

Listening (like now, when he's clean and sober)

Holding the hope for him when he can't hold his own.

Granting him the dignity of looking at his own life without my ranting or blaming or shaming.

Praying and meditating and writing and exercising and practicing self compassion.

Day 7 in the trenches. Now we wait and see.

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