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Friday, July 16, 2010


How did I get it? I think I just got tired of dealing with all the crap over the last 11 years.

The process was slow and continuing.

First, you try to save your child.
Then, you try to HELP your child.
Then, you try to rehab your child.
Next, you try to show them how they COULD live if only they would choose to.

After about 7 years on the yoyo of rehab, relapse, rehab, jail, relapse,...

You just simply stop investing emotionally in their recovery, or lack thereof.

Then, finally, you reach a point where you allow them back in your lives, but only on YOUR terms, and you don't even bother to let them know what the terms are. They just ARE, in your mind. When they are violated, you simply say "it's time for you to leave.:

when they show up stoned, you say "you are high" and close the door.

you take their calls and if you hear "it" in their voice, you hang up.

Pretty soon, it just stops bothering you. It is what it is. They are still your child, but you no longer like them or want to be around them.

you let go of the guilt.

You call them or text them on their birthdays and say Happy Birthday, We love you. and let it go at that. When they whine and say "NONE of my siblings called me" you allow a very pregnant silence on your end and change the subject.

You stop trying to explain anyone's behavior, including your own reactions or behavior to the addict.

Mostly, you just get tired of dealing with it and decide to go on with YOUR lives and let the addict do whatever, because you realize in all you have done, you have not affected the addiction, or the child one damn bit.


  1. I'm getting there....ever soooo slowly!! I think we are just like our addicts in the sense that we have to hit our own bottom in dealing with their addiction. We have to endure a certain amount of pain before we are finally able to say that's enough. Thanks for the got me to thinking....again!!

  2. I am about at 7-8 years into it, and I am ever so close to being right there. I am doing it on my terms already, so maybe I am more there than I think! Awesome post Dawn, you always tell it like it is.

  3. Thanks for the concrete examples. My poor brain can only handle concrete examples.

  4. Yep. But you still love them and it still hurts if you scrape ever so lightly underneath the surface.

  5. Annette: I just stay away from sharp objects so that I NEVER scrape under the surface. I think it helps that I am so busy with the raiding of ther children that I dont' have time to dwell on my daughter anymore.

  6. This is an awesome post - the true way to freedom. I think the hard part is where we have to accept that this is true and just do it. Oddly enough I realized/knew this early on... kinda like when I was young and KNEW cocaine could kill me but did it anyway...
    Your comments and blog have been a huge help to me. Thank you.
    God bless.

  7. I bookmarked this and the next one. I am so early on in this process but thanks to you sharing so openly, I hope to bypass a few years of riding the roller coaster and just get to the acceptance part. I know in my gut that you are right about all this even though I don't want you to be. I know it because you have lived it, are living it. Sometimes I think its especially hard for parents with just one child.