Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Haley, We Miss You

The finished copy. A few months ago I ask you all to support a group of students at a charter school in New Mexico. They lost a fellow student, Haley Paternoster to a heroin overdose. In memory of Haley and in an effort to help other teens understand the dangers of drugs they wrote a song and produced a video.

Today I got an e-mail from Blake Minnerly, the teacher helping these students informing me the project is finished. I immediately went to youtube to watch. I was "view 591". This video is worthy of praise and is impressive.

Please check it out: Haley, We Miss You

Share this with as many people as you can. I'd love to go back in a week and see a million views.

Great work students!!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Another Mom

Sherri , another mom of an opiate addict has just began blogging. Please stop by and visit. Her son has just entered rehab.

For Love, Not Reward

Why do we parents of addicts do what we do? I have had some time to reflect on my actions during the bad times. My reactive behaviors helped no one, but it took a long time and much reflection to understand my motives and outcomes. That's not to say if the situation was presented again I would have the wisdom not to fall into the same trap but I would do it with knowledge this time and my consequences would belong to me without an excuse.

During Alex's active addiction Darlene and I did so much that we felt was right even though other people and experts advice was contrary. I see now that we did much of the enabling and aberrant behavior associated to parents of addicts from a feeling of love but with the expectation of a reward, our son being clear and sober. I also see that many times we did things in an effort to make ourselves feel better at he expense of our son. Of course, at the time we weren't selfishly trying to help ourselves, we were doing it for our son, at least that is what we believed at the time. However, I do recognize that we can only do what we are capable of doing at the time. It's impossible to give something you haven't got.

When dealing with a child in active addiction parental ego is a dangerous thing. It's hard to get over the fact that with some things there is no experience base in which to learn so we revert to what we "know" is best without the benefit of requisite knowledge.

Expectations that our addicted children to get better because we do this or we do that will lead to nothing but frustration and heartache. The only successful strategy for a parent of an addict is to do what you do because of love, not reward. The reward belongs to your child, when they choose to earn it through the work of recovery.

We made many mistakes. I think every parent of an addicted child will make mistakes. No one needs to go to the woodshed over mistakes of good intention as long as we ask the simple question, "What did I learn?" Do what you do out of love. Do the hardest thing out of love and when you suffer or feel bad and lonely know that the reward you so much want does not belong to you, it belongs to your child.

The real reward you seek is acceptance that you can be healthy and once again happy. Acceptance can not be predicated upon your child's recovery. Acceptance and happiness truly can happen even in the midst of the drama and turmoil.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Another Father Writing

Here is a link to another writing a blog about addiction. He is focusing on himself and the struggles of being the parent of an addict. Sounds familiar to me, please give him a shout.


Here is a link to another blog written by two sisters of a drug addicted brother. Both are worth reading and showing our support.

Sisters of a Drug Addict

One more mother that is writing. It is sometimes so hard to see this go on and on and on and on...........another mom and dad. SSDD is hard.


Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Transitions are difficult. At times even changing planes in an airport is difficult so what should we expect when faced with a life transition.

I've gone through many transitions in my life, dealing with the death of loved ones, job changes of my accord and not of my accord. Transitions from single to married, husband to father and all of the missteps in between. So one would think I would be prepared and understand this transition from parent of an actively using addict to that of father of a son in recovery. But, each day I think and reassess what exactly is my role and am I fulfilling that role as a father. Plus, despite all of the wonderful things of life today with my son in recovery there is always that small dark corner in my mind that is impossible to escape or ignore.

The subconscious feeling and doubt of a relapse is not an ever present fear as it was for a long time. Maybe it is fools confidence but I just see no evidence to live at that place today.

My struggle today is what I call, make up time. It feels like we missed so much as father and son for so long. I keep reminding myself that time is not a commodity that can be saved, banked or replaced. We all have to move forward with what we have today and right now. Wonderful concept but it is at times harder to live than to say.

Onward with my personal reflection and struggle. This may seem insignificant to those of you still struggling with children in active addiction. I can completely understand and relate. But you have to remember that one day just as I did we all hoped to be in this position. I thought at the time if we only got here all the problems and issues would disappear. Nothing ever ends until it is too late. Life goes on and what we make of it is up to us.

(just more of my thoughts after a while deliberating. you long time readers probably wish I would stop that.  lol)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Have you read all the comments from my last post? If not then you should. I figured there might be a couple people put something up but look at all those words. Almost speechless, but those of you that know me would never never say I have experienced a speechless moment in my life.

Last week I lost my cousin who was my age. He was my best man in my wedding. He suffered for many years from mental illness. He choked at lunch and could not be revived by any of the nurses or doctors at his side. Darlene's explanation was that he saw peace on the other side and stayed there.

Bath crashers is going well. We didn't get it completely done in two days but it is functional. Only things left are sanding some sheet rock, trim and paint. Mom is using it now and she is VERY happy. When we get all the way done I will post pictures. For those that can't wait there are pictures of  "in process" on my Facebook page.

A friend of mine has a daughter graduating from Embry-Riddle University this week with her aeronautical engineering degree. She really will be a ROCKET SCIENTIST. He is happy and proud. He deserves it. She is the first with a college degree. I know his feeling because our own daughter was a "first" too.

It is spring, the sun is shining and I NEED a road trip on the bike. I thinking about riding to Kentucky and doing the "Bourbon Run" All down around Louisville and Lexington. Anyone have a different suggestion? Or, anyone in that area that want to meet up for coffee? (or, I can call for bail money?  lol)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Describe Your Loved One

Let's play a little word game.

Use five words to describe your loved one that is addicted, using, in recovery, living life on there terms, any anything else or these can be the words for yourself. You can identify the person or not, maybe just son, daughter spouse or just put down five words.

These words are what you want the WORLD to know. No need for explanation or justification. These words belong to you.