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Frustrated

Thread: Frustrated

  1. #1
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    Frustrated

    Hello... I have been on this site for almost 5 years. I joined after losing my mom, who drank for 20 years after my dad passed away. I am no stranger to the effects of addiction. It's struck my family again, this time it's my nephew (William). He'll be 24 in July, and his girlfriend just gave birth to their baby boy almost 2 weeks ago. The day his baby turned a week old, my nephew took a full bottle of Seroquel and Depakote in an attempt to commit suicide. Not the first time he's overdosed, not the first time he's turned to drugs as relief from life. William lives with his grandmother (his dad's mom) on house arrest, and was just released from jail in November due to violating probation... all of his charges are drug-related. He had just checked himself into a halfway house the night this happened. He was unresponsive for around 6 hours, taken by ambulance to the local hospital and then to a larger hospital in order to give him another drug to counteract the first ones. He is alive, and he was discharged last night. No psych evaluation because, from what I was told, he was already putting a plan in place prior to his overdose. (I feel like the psych eval still should have been done, but I'm not a doctor.)

    William's mom (my sister) and dad are divorced. His dad is a former drug user (several years ago) and a dry drunk. He has been sober for over a year now, but he is a total enabler to my nephew. He's extremely over-attentive... it feels like he is compensating for what he didn't do when they were kids. He catches him BEFORE he falls. He tries to talk people (judges, prosecuting attorneys, exes) out of allowing William to experience his consequences. I just don't see how, if he had actually worked his program, he could possibly enable his child through the same, knowing what it takes to overcome addiction.

    His mother hasn't been OK with William's lifestyle for a while. She is upfront about her feelings, and William has withdrawn from her a lot over the past years. She is more angry about most of this than anything, she said in a text that she wants to fix him - SHE wants to do it herself... the mother instinct thing... but she doesn't know how. (I told her she CAN'T fix him, he needs more help than any of us could possibly offer, and gave her names of treatment centers.) She was on board and open to my input, and I felt confident that she would push the issue.

    Then last night I got a text from my sister that William was discharged, and his dad was on his way to pick him up, and that William would be staying with his dad until they figured out the next step. I texted my sister back and asked her to please push the issue of treatment, don't just let it go, work hard to get him in somewhere that can help him... because we're going to be doing this again very soon if not. She replied with, "He's an adult, what can I do?" which really made me feel like she's washing her hands of the situation. I tried to explain that I'm not blaming anyone and I'm not implying that anyone should take responsibility for William's actions, but that he's made it clear that he can't make good choices right now, and we all need to be proactive to keep this from happening again. Knowing that his dad is an enabler, and that's who he's staying with, I just foresee everyone going, "Oh, he's doing really good here... guess we don't need to worry about treatment!"

    My sister was grown and out of the house when my mom's addiction was in full force. I experienced it in a totally different way than she did. I'm having all the same feelings with this situation as I did with my mom... the only difference is I'm older and wiser now, and I'm able to separate how I feel from the situation. I KNOW what the outcome will be if we don't take a different approach than we did with Mom. My family has the mentality of "this problem will go away if we ignore it," and I know from experience how untrue that is. My sister told me how grateful she was for my input when he was in the hospital and unresponsive... now it's like her tune has changed. The scare is over, so back to life as usual.

    I do plan on contacting my nephew myself and voicing my concern and hopefully, helping him to come to the conclusion that he needs professional treatment on his own. But it is SO AGGRAVATING to see the people closest to him just going through the motions, not really helping him. I am not convinced that just me speaking up is going to do any real good. Anyone have any suggestions for me?
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

  2. #2

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    Erin,

    So sorry for everyone in this situation. I hear you separating yourself from the feelings but know it isn't really that easy...

    Some say a suicide attempt is a cry for help. Maybe this is how you could get your sister's attention. Yes, we're adults, but he clearly cried for help in the only way he knew how to do it. How can we just ignore that? Yes, he's quiet now, he doesn't know how to speak and ask, he already did. Can we really act like nothing has changed? Sis, you can't fix him, we can't fix him but we CAN help provide a situation where he can get the help he so desperately needs.

    Good luck!

    Hugs,
    Carol

  3. #3
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    Thank you, Carol.
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

  4. #4
    Sober Female's Avatar
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    Erin,
    The meds you shared your nephew overdosed with are many times associated with bipolar disorder. I have a relative who is bipolar. This individual has turned to drugs as well as other behavior characteristic of bipolar disorder. The scariest being multiple suicide attempts.

    It is extremely hard to have a family member that is bipolar. It really does effect the whole family. IF, this is your nephew's case he may be self medicating because his medication is not right. Many times this takes years of trial and error to get right and the help of a good counselor. In this case, I'm not sure if alcohol or drugs is the prevailing issue. However, stopping both will be a must.

    Good Luck
    Last edited by Sober Female; 02-02-2016 at 02:29 PM.

  5. #5
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    Thank you, SF

    He was prescribed the meds because he was diagnosed as bipolar... but despite the suicide attempt (and my lack of a medical degree), I don't think his diagnosis is right. I know some people that have bipolar, and he doesn't exhibit the symptoms. Before he got hemmed up in drugs, he didn't have any erratic behavior... I'd say the only noticeable issue was a lack of attention span. Can't keep his attention on a book, but he could pull apart and put together a motor! I think that sometimes bipolar meds are prescribed because they're an easy way to level someone out. But maybe some people don't exhibit early signs. It's just my gut feeling, knowing him since birth, that it's something other than bipolar disorder. That said, he does have psychosis (thinks his newborn son is the Messiah, relating him and his father and grandfather to the Trinity, etc.) and I know that is associated with bipolar...

    I'm just shocked that they think anything BUT the hospital is where he needs to be right now.

    I would never say to him that I don't think his diagnosis was right... but I certainly hope they find someone that will really look at his issues and find the solution, even if it is that his meds need adjusted!
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

  6. #6
    Sober Female's Avatar
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    Erin, I should have also mentioned that Bipolar disorder isn't always easy to recognize in people, and many times people outside of the family would have no idea. It also ranges in degree from mild to severe. The great news is with treatment and proper medication, one can live a successful and positive life

  7. #7
    Sober Female's Avatar
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    Erin,
    Just wanted to wish you a good day . You're a such a kind and caring individual. Your family is lucky to have you.

    When I think of you, I think of someone who is always wanting the best for people and advocating and cheering them on. Hopefully, what you put out to this world you receive in kind.

  8. #8

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    Hello Erin... Sorry, I've only just seen your post. I really have no experience with bipolar...or drug addictions.... your brief description though sounds more like some attention deficit disorder?... Like i say though - I have no experience. Sometimes our obsession with having to categorise people and pigeon hole them is frightening - I do get that this Is often necessary for medication though.

    You know what I'd do? Write a letter to each of them? From the heart? Unlike emails or texts, you always have to finish reading a letter. And unlike a conversation - you remember what you want to remember...

    It sounds like you're right, he needs help. He needs treatment to get to the root of the issue and he needs to want the help and admit the problem to get him there. Hopefully, he is desperate enough to work with you? Your sister also needs to face up to the gravity of the situation... It's so difficult.

    Keep us posted hon, big hugs. Always here
    They're so lucky to have you
    Xoxoxox

  9. #9

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    If your nephew around peoples are not helping him to get rid of his addiction, I think you better being him in your place. To leave any addiction it's important to keep the addicted person to a nice place.

  10. #10
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    My nephew, 24 years old, was killed in a hit-and-run accident on Sunday night. We do not know what happened, and the driver and vehicle have not been identified. He leaves behind a girlfriend, a one-year-old son, and a son due in March... and a whole lot of grieving family members. Another loved one I really hoped would have a happy ending, but at the very least, now my sister can stop wondering where he is and what he's doing. If you could, please just send a prayer or positive vibes out for my family. Thanks... love to all...
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

  11. #11

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    Hi Erin

    I am so sorry to hear about yor nephew. I will pray for you and your family. Sending you lots of love and know that we are sharing your grief. Post as much as you need here.

  12. #12
    SonshinesMumma's Avatar
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    Oh Erin I am SO very sorry for you and your family's loss ((hugs))
    I also will pray for healing for you and your family.
    I will be keeping William and all of you in my prayers.

    My heart is so heavy for you all.

    I'm so sorry.

  13. #13
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    Erin -

    I'm so sorry for your loss. Big hugs to you and your family. I was so hoping for that happy ending you talked about.
    Sally

  14. #14
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    Thank you, ladies, for your support! Still no leads on who ran him over or the vehicle, but he was staying at the Salvation Army and snuck out after curfew and the bike he was riding has not been recovered... so I'm guessing that he was going out to get high and got jumped or somehow ran into the wrong people. It is just heartbreaking no matter how you look at it.

    Currently trying to gather enough money to bring him home and put him to rest... as this was obviously unexpected and happened about 4 hours away from home. I am ok... I have my moments, and I know I will break down at the funeral, but mostly, just trying to make sure I am available for anyone else that needs me. Been talking a lot to his girlfriend, she's taking it pretty hard... today I was floored to learn that she never got to know him when he was sober! This girl has been trying to make things work with him for a few years now, wanting to save him... fix him... help him... (I've been there before) all because she wanted to get to know the William that everyone told her he was before he became an addict. I feel like that was about the most heartbreaking part of it all for me. She was trying to get someone back that she never even got to meet! What a woman.

    Anyway... I really appreciate that you all took a moment out of your day to read my post and comment!

    Love to you all!!
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

  15. #15

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    Erin, sorry for your loss. I have several close family members whose stories could easily end in a similar tragedy. FWIW, you seem to be handling it in the most spiritually healthy way...thinking of others.

  16. #16
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    Thank you, MI! I appreciate the words of encouragement. A detective on the case has contacted the family and informed William's dad and girlfriend that surveillance from a nearby convenience store was recovered, and it appears that he jumped out on purpose. No report yet on the toxicology report or autopsy, but that he was hurting so much that he would rather jump in front of a speeding truck... that kind of hurts the heart. I tried and tried to contact him, and he would read my messages and not reply. I wish he would have replied... I don't know what I could have done for him, probably nothing, because so many tried and he just was not willing to do the work. He wanted "saved," and no one could do that for him.

    But anyway, this is the third suicide in my family, and of course the addiction also runs rampant. This just solidifies my decision to make sure my daughter is aware when she's old enough. There's a good chance she'll be susceptible, too.

    The services will be on Sunday. Please just send out some positive vibes for all involved. Thank you!
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

  17. #17

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    Erin, I'm so sorry for your loss and it breaks my heart to hear how he passed. You always have that hope even for those who are in a very bad place as it seems he was and you wish there's something you can do but maybe there isn't? Suicidal thoughts and addiction run in my family as well. When we are so down and out and deep in our addiction, it's very hard to pull up from that or to accept and even try to get help. I can relate to wanting to end my life but it's not something I think I could ever do. Please take some comfort in knowing that he is no longer suffering. My heart goes out to you and your family. You do sound very strong right now considering. Take care of yourself and your daughter.

  18. #18
    _Erin_'s Avatar
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    Thank you, Steffi. I have my moments. When I start to feel weak, I ask others how they're doing... it's my therapy. Sunday was the service... it was hard. It was an open casket... he looked surprisingly better than I expected. I do repeat to myself often, "At least he's found his peace now," and I see good things that come of it, like an entire community coming together to support a grieving family, or personally, my younger brother texting me about how he's feeling (which never happens) and saying, "At least I've learned that ignoring it and hoping the problem will go away isn't the best way to deal with things," and he's going to learn more about depression and addiction so he can possibly better serve the kids in his youth group. It's surprising to me how a family with so many addicts has so little idea how to deal with or help them. But I suppose education has to start somewhere. I wish it didn't have to come at the cost of my nephew's life, but I suppose we don't get to choose.

    I haven't leaned on this site in a good amount of years, but I'm sure glad you're all here.
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    As you sow, so shall you reap.

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