Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Comments From The Anonymous Parent

What is an anonymous parent? Many comment on this blog as anonymous and that is great. Who are these anonymous parents? What is life like to be the person without a name?

I've thought about who that anonymous parent is and what they are going through. Maybe I'm right maybe I'm wrong but here is what I have come up with because I was once an anonymous parent.

The Anonymous Parent is that parent who is up at 2am but their child is not home.

The Anonymous Parent is searching and barely able to read a computer screen through the tears to learn more about this monster and what they can do to help their sick child.

The Anonymous Parent has piles of books and articles colored with highlighter marks in their bedroom.

The Anonymous Parent calls helpline and strangers looking for answers as to what to do and what comes next.

The Anonymous Parent has sat through way too many lectures and meetings trying to understand what is happening to their family.

The Anonymous Parent has emptied their savings and retirement accounts on rehabs and medical bills.

The Anonymous Parent has suffered the embarrassment of the flashing lights of police cars in their driveway at all hours, day and night.

The Anonymous Parent cries at night before going to sleep and feels a level of fear they never felt was possible.

The Anonymous Parent loves a person that by all accounts to everyone else is unlovable.

The Anonymous Parent makes a difference in one life. Sometimes that is all that is possible.

It doesn't matter how anonymous you are, you are not alone. Reach out and take the hand that is offered.


Sandy Baiocco said...

This brought tears to my eyes and brought back so many different feelings for me; feelings of sadness, despair, loneliness, fear and shame. Ronald, you captured the anonymous parent so perfectly, too perfectly in fact. Thank you for sharing this.

Becky V said...

Ron, another great blog that I'm certain touched a lot of hearts. Keep up your good work. You are truly one of a kind and I miss working with you on a regular basis. Hugs from Texas and thanks so much for all you do for others.

Tori said...

WOW! Everything you wrote is EVERYTHING we have gone through and still go through. It is hard to remember at times that we all experience the same thing.

Mamma P said...

Excellent post..And so true..As we journey down the healing path along with our children,It gives "us" A wee bit of control in protection of our kids...Still struggling in their Addiction..which we have come to learn, we cannot protect them from,Only love & support.I think when we ourselves also fully recover,
the masks will disappear and the Anonymous people will become no more..Till then
I am MammaP..xo

Liz said...

Sounds exactly like me.. Thankfullyl, I am better now, but that's only because of all of you.

Anonymous said...

All too true Ron, Thanks for your blogs, they are a reminder that we have been there and unfortunately done that but that because of those parents willing to speak out, we are not alone.
Thank you!

kel said...

Spot on as usual Ron, but my I also add:
~Stealthily stalking their Facebook, twitter and instagram accounts to find out the who, what, when and wheres of their activities.
~followed by busting at the seems to confront them of the knowledge you have gained from said stealth stalking, but knowing better as to not loose your source of info.
~Peoples misguided comments as to what you SHOULD have done to prevent your child's addiction.
~Not wanting to share your dirty little family secret.
~Explaining over and over again to anyone who will listen, that your child isn't a "Bad Child" he/she just makes Bad Decisions.

I can go on and on and on as I am sure so many of us can. Thanks Ron, for helping to chip away at the stigma of being the parent of an addict and encouraging more of us to step out of the darkness of anonymity...

Jill Armstrong Ramirez said...

Exactly! Love your post! People need to understand this. Thanks for writing this.

Anonymous said...

I have recently discovered this blog. Our son is 36 years old. In the past 6 months, he has lost his his marriage, his job, his access to his 18 month old son, and his home. He has been in rehab 5 times in that time. He has been in the E.R 3 times. He is now staying with someone he met in rehab. We have always been a close family, and just learned of his alcoholism 6 months ago. Now that the dam has broken, he is spiraling fast. Now it may be heroin, too (?) I am beside myself with grief. I have a therapist and attend al-anon meetings, and read as much as I can Thank you so much for this blog. ALL of my horrible fears and ALL of my feelings of despair are understood here. I pray for my son, for my self and family, and for all of you. I, too, never knew this kind of fear.

Anonymous said...

It's been an emotionally rough week. I have beat myself up a bit more than usual.

Friday was my son's birthday. He was born on Mother's Day in 1982. And here we are on the brink of another Mother's Day.

Someone that I don't know well asked me if I was a parent. I said yes, and she continued to ask questions. “A boy or a girl? “How old?” “Where does he live?” “Do you have any grand children yet?”

She had no idea how painful those questions were.

I am not sure if it is politically correct to say “my son is an addict and because of years of emotional and financial torment, I had to let him go to do whatever he was going to do”.

Probably not.

Every day, I think about him. I wonder about where his “bottom” is and why it just doesn't come so he can find some happiness.

I am thankful for some of the peace I have found. But I realize it is still a very long journey.

Anonymous said...

This is my first time reading your blog and through the tears you have captured exactly what is in my heart. My son goes for an outpatient rehab eval on Wednesday and I sit here and wonder how we ever ended up here.Just looking for some light of hope.

Mitchell Family said...

I came upon your blog today. I really needed this. I have been fighting interacting with others for a few years about my AS, who is so lost right now.

He is currently in Jail for the 2nd time for breaking probation and a new string of charges.He has been to 4 rehabs (the last one was the most successful one 3 months in Florida) but had to come back for court and was not allowed back to Florida. Then reverted back to bad habits after begging his PO to send him back.

Now he is sitting awaiting to see if he can do drug court.

I fear for him, he has said so many times that he doesn't want to do drugs. He tells me all the time don't blame yourself mom, its not your fault. He admits he has no excuse, but he is trapped and can't figure out how to stop the cycle.

And I know I am his mom saying this...I refuse to turn my back on him, he IS a good person with a good heart, smart, intelligent and so gifted and talented. Family and friends just see what is on the media and dismiss him as a smartass who wants to defy the law.

I just want to get him to the right place for the right help. I know he could do it, he was doing it at the last rehab.

And at the same time, I am not kidding myself that he still could relapse. I know my kid. He needs structure and counseling and routine. Without that he will not succeed.

So I have joined your blog with the HOPE that I will learn more and understand more. And hopefully, will be able to have some positive discoveries that will make my recovery with my AD work this time.

Thank you for sharing your blog.

Anonymous said...

I watched an aunt battle ten years of cocaine and then crack addiction. My great-grandmother died of a morphine overdose. I would never even consider doing something I could become addicted to. My children were the same way, until she met him. She was 16 and he was 17, in his third stint in drug treatment. The protective momma bear in me wanted to stop the relationship, but those around me supported it. A year in, she had a car accident and needed surgery. She was prescribed painkillers for only a few weeks, and got one refill for a few weeks. When she was recovered, she went to live with her boyfriend. She was acting strangely, so I insisted they do a brain scan. She had a tumor which had to be removed a few months later. She was again prescribed painkillers for a few weeks, but they didn't give her any refills. She went back to her boyfriend's parents' house. I trusted they were keeping an eye on them.

Six months later, I learn of her addiction. I feel sad for her, and embarrassed, and angry...but it's not the end of the world. I love her fiercely, buy her fruit and vegetables when I'm in town, and welcome her in our home. She has stolen from me, but I don't leave her unsupervised around my things anymore. I have certainly had to use money I didn't have to care for her physical body, but I can't afford to put her in rehab. Only a few days ago, she mentioned rehab. Finally. And I don't know how to help her! I am starting to research that, so your 2am theory might be pretty accurate for me, too!

Everyone loves her. She's kind, she's sweet, she's friendly, and she is always helping people. His family loved that she was helping him get off drugs. They hate her for joining him. Her brothers and sister love her when she's here, and hate it that she won't just come home. I, too, hate it that she just won't come home. And then she did, and the withdrawals...I don't know if I can handle days, or weeks, of that. And I'm more ashamed of that fact than I could ever be over my beautiful, messed-up, drug addicted daughter.