I know I need to go into rehab….

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As usual I don’t know where to start. How to describe this chaos that hard as I try not to, I get sucked into.

Once again I am on holiday cover at work. Another really stressful job,  made worse by the fact my boss “helps” because I’m sure she doesn’t have faith that I can do the job.  It involves allocating to accounts all payments that come in that day, BACS, cheque’s and cash, balancing and banking them. I’m not talking small amounts here either in quantity or entry’s. The lady I am covering has worked doing this job since forever.  It obviously takes me longer as I’m not used to doing it and there is s deadline when you have to get to the bank. Sorry to go into detail about this but just wanted to explain how it is genuinely stressful for me.

So I purposely leave my mobile in my handbag.  Fridays are particularly busy as staff can buy goods that day so the amount of cash being handled goes up. Even though I’m running behind I decide to take a very quick lunch break (salad is difficult to eat at your desk).

I make the mistake of checking my phone,  3 missed calls from Faith. I don’t call him.  Just as I finish my lunch he calls again. So get ready, here we go again……

“mum I’m really worried about Hope, she went out this morning and she’s not answering her phone, she’s been gone ages, she was only popping to the local shop, she was confused, I’m really really worried” All this in the slurred voice of a drunk, repeating himself and not making too much sense.

I tell him there is nothing I can do,  I have to get back to my desk, I suggest he calls the hospital to check she hasn’t been admitted “I have already I think I should call her mum and the police and report her as missing”  Now if you have read my earlier posts you will know this has happened before on two occasions, one being my birthday so I tell him not to call her parents or the police,  she will turn up.

Back to working, it’s full on as I am now under pressure to get this banking finished and balanced. My boss is ‘helpfully’ listing cheques for me, she is backwards and forwards to my desk.  My phone is on my desk and I ignore it’s ringing (it’s on silent but it vibrates)  I should have put it out of sight in my bag.  Hey guess what? The cheques don’t balance so now my boss is standing at my desk going through them with me,  time is ticking.  My phone rings again,  I see she notes it. I ignore it.  I noticed it was From Hopes mother. Cheques now balanced and another rush to get the cash balanced,  I’m winging it now, it doesn’t quite balance but I have no time to check it so finally,  phew, it’s all done and sent to the bank.  I take a deep breath, I still have lots to do but the time pressure is off now.  I call Faith,  he’s still extremely worried. She still hasn’t turned up,  he ignored my advice and called her parents and the police.  He’s still drunk, I tell him it’s not my problem there is nothing I can do, and I get the”oh great, it’s not your problem, thanks a lot” And it is not my problem, I have enough dealing with Faith,  I can’t take on responsibility for Hope aswell, I’m sorry but today they will have to deal with it even though they live a journey away.  I work late,  catching up and trying to prepare to do this job again on Monday.

It’s nearly 6 when I’m finally finished and I look at my phone again. There is an answerphone message from Hopes mum, I listen to it.

I can tell she is crying as she says she is sorry to bother me, Faith called them and said Hope has been missing since last night and her other daughter is picking her up so that they can come and search for her, they don’t know the area, do I have any idea where they should look?

I stop the message, What? Why did Faith tell them that? I know she was there this morning, Oh my god they must be worried sick. I call her realising they are probably already here, wishing I had looked at my phone earlier.

She is still sounding shaken when I speak to her. “Faith lied to us, she hasn’t been missing since last night, and the phone that he was calling was in his pocket all the time, she had been out trying to sort their benefits as they have no money, she is safe.

I try to make sense of it all, I tell her he is drunk and confused, he would not have purposely lied, I work out the confusion with the phone, he gave Hope his old phone,  he has just managed to get water in his phone, so he has gone back to using his old phone. I feel I am making excuses, I feel embarrassed he is my son. Then she tells me, her daughter in panic to get over here has put petrol in her diesel car, it’s been towed away, it will cost them a lot to get if fixed. I end up apologising for not taking her call, it’s OK she says she understands. Oh what total total chaos he has caused this time.

I was going food shopping after work, I can’t face it, I’m just totally exhausted.

When I get home I just collapse on the sofa, I try to find the strength to make this call I know I need to make. He will have been given the riot act by Hope, god only knows how they will deal with this, all fuelled by alcohol.

I call him. He is more sober, very subdued, apologetic, admits to everything, admits it’s all because of alcohol, admits he needs to stop, admits he needs to go to rehab…… woah, rewind, what was that? Admits he needs to go to rehab?

I ask him what he is going to do to start that process, it’s not easy to get into rehab, I know only too well. His answer is I don’t know. I tell him, like I have a hundred times before he needs to go to adactive, where there will be someone who can start guiding him through the process. He can’t go until Tuesday when they have an open door policy.

Do I hate him? Has he lost me, he asks?

I tell him I really am on the point of walking away, he has one chance to show me he is serious about not drinking, if he does not go on Tuesday that is it. I don’t want empty promises I want evidence that he is serious this time…..

Time will tell. My guess is he will be in hospital before Tuesday as he tries to stop drinking himself.

Dare I allow myself to hope this will be the time? Or am I setting myself up for more disappointment?

A continuation of the madness and chaos, but enough is enough

After my last post “exhausted with chaos” things have been calmer. It has been wonderful to talk to my sober son, it feels like I have him back again, but I know it’s only temporary as he is doing none of the things he needs to do to stay sober. The fact he has no access to cash after his girlfriend froze his card is probably the reason he has stayed sober this long.

Today he got his  bank card back, today the police decided to check he was OK.  Today everything went into total chaos again.

I had a dentist appointment, the short time I was in the chair I had a 2 missed calls. One from Faith, the other from number withheld. I call Faith when I’m out.

I wish I hadn’t. “Why have you called the police about me? Why have you told them about x (his girlfriends son who she is not seeing because of her drinking) and more accusations and swearing. I cut him off. I then listen to the answerphone message left by the unknown number, the police.

” I have just checked on Faith, he appears less under the influence of alcohol than he did last time I spoke to him, his girlfriend tells me he has seen the doctor so we have no concerns over him, I hope this puts your mind at rest”.

Well, I don’t know, obviously last time my point that “he may sound like he’s drunk but he’s not, he is sick and needs to be in hospital” just didn’t get through. And now your visit to him has just caused more chaos and confusion.

I call Faith again to reassure him that the police were only checking on him to see that he was safe. All I get is more abuse and accusations, apparently they “interrogated” his girlfriend. I decide there is no point carrying on the conversation and drive on to work.

Lunchtime I look at my phone , that was a mistake. This is something new I have not talked about on here, my brother is estranged from his son. I think that’s the right word to describe it. I have been the piggy in the middle between him and his x wife trying to sort contact. My brother is very difficult to deal with, and things have broken down. Today is the day he announces that he wants nothing to do with the negative people in his life which starts with me and “my parents”

Just breath just breath and return to the office and work. My elderly parents will be traumatised, he has done this so many times to them but they are getting so old and frail, my dad is 90 this year. This could kill my mum, because she is like me, a mum, no matter what, you love your kids.

When I leave work I call Faith. More accusations, his girlfriend Hope has been interrogated by the police about her son who doesn’t live with her. I try to say I never mentioned his girlfriend or her son, I was just concerned for his safety. Where has this all come from, just the police checking Faith was Ok? I finally tell Faith I cannot deal with this anymore,  I can’t speak to him again until he is sober, enough is enough, I need to protect myself from the global amnesia I suffered in the past  when my brain actually says “enough is enough”

But it doesn’t stop. I turn my phone off. They both call the landline, I ignore it. I decide to make it clearer to him. I message to say I want the money I lent him for rent back (another story) I send my bank details. I reject calls but listen to answerphone messages left by both of them. It appears Faith is going to get cash out to pay me back. That’s a disaster about to happen so I call him to tell him not to get cash, to transfer the money. But, yeah it’s too late. He’s just got money out and some woman spun him a story and disappeared with the cash. I believe him, I know how vulnerable he is. His girlfriend doesn’t, she goes to the shop to check, it’s true.

I have a real heart to heart with his girlfriend, I pull no punches, I tell her straight how it is, why these things keep happening to them, I cannot deal with it anymore, she makes excuses, I will have none of it, I tell her everything, including the fact, she cannot see her son is down to alcohol. She won’t listen.

Then her mother calls, they called her by mistake now she wants to know what’s going on, I tell her everything, I cry.

Tonight I have taken to my bed. I can deal with no more. Tonight my other family has suffered, I haven’t cooked, my younger son quietly does household jobs to help me, I know he’s concerned about me. I cry, I can’t eat, tonight their alcoholism has consumed me. I know I need to step back, for my sanity I have too.

Tonight I have no pretty pictures to add, no spell check, tonight I just had to get my thoughts out, try and soothe my brain.

Thats it. My day, my evening, once again taken over by this addiction and its consequences.

Tomorrow I will go to work and smile, no-one will know, it’s not something to talk about.

 

Exhausted with the chaos

My posts might be a bit mixed up and sporadic.  I write when I have time and when I feel I must.

I actually don’t know how to write about today.  It started last night. Faith had come out of hospital that day and he was sober.  I cannot explain how good it feels to talk to someone who is sober after days or weeks of rubbish conversations.  Well they are not conversations, just me listening.

He called about 10pm to complain about his also alcoholic girlfriend. She had gone up to the shop with his bank card to buy them a pizza.  In her muddled alcohol soaked brain she had put in her pin not his and the cash machine ate his bank card.  Now I need to mention he has no photo ID as he has lost both his passport and driving licence at different drunken times. So the still in detox without supporting medication alcoholic is dealing with another alcoholics chaotic life.  I calm him,  tomorrow it will be sorted.  30 minutes later,  11pm ish,  another call,  she has tidied up while he has been in hospital,  and now can’t remember where she put all his bank papers.  A lot of expletions……

I calm him a little and try to sleep.

6.30 next morning he is on the phone.

I think I have to give his girlfriend a name now…. lets call her “Hope” how fitting, Faith and Hope.

He has walked out of his flat because Hope thinks it’s only 6am in the morning, it is in fact 6.30 am, she wants to sleep, Faith thinks it’s about 11am, he has had enough, all she does is sleep, and these other guys in the room “are they twins?” I am thinking woah,  what’s going on here, it doesn’t take long, the withdrawal symptoms of confusion are here, out in the real world.

I call 111, I know he needs to be back in hospital.  “If your not with him,  there is nothing we can do,  call the police”.  Oh I’ve been here before,  mental health,  the support is zero.

I call Faith. He is sat on a wall by a busy road. He’s not sure where.  I get some details of what he is wearing.

So I call the police,  not 999 just the none emergency number. It rings for 10 minutes before someone answers,  I’m watching the clock as I need to get into work.  They take all the details but say if he doesn’t want to go to hospital they can’t make him.  I tell them I realise that but when he is in hospital and sick like this they take away his rights to leave.  Still the same answer but they will check on him.

I call Faith again. He has gone back to his flat and he and his girlfriend are in the middle of a big argument. It’s impossible to talk to Faith as he is too busy shouting at Hope.  I ask to talk to her,  ask her to be quiet for a moment so I can talk to Faith,  it doesn’t work,  I put down the phone.

I’m late for work, I rush to get ready.  Faith calls again,  he’s left the flat, he’s not going back.  As I’m driving to work I call the police again.  Yes as I am driving I call the police!  All the time I am driving I am looking for the next place I can pull over safely to talk when they answer.  I’m actually just walking into work when they answer.  I try to explain that Faith may appear drunk but he’s not,  I think it’s important they know that.  She interrupts me to say she has an update on the case.

“We called him on his phone and spoke to him, he is fine, we have no cause for concern ”

I try to explain that he might say he is but he is not.  She is very dismissive. I’m just a neurotic mother,  she has more pressing problems. I can tell that’s what she’s thinking.

As I walk through the doors of my work place, late, I struggle to keep back the tears,  she might be busy soon dealing with a road traffic accident, unidentified male has walked out into busy traffic…….

So there we have it,  it’s 8.45 and I feel like I have run a marathon but have a full day at work ahead of me.

I try to forget,  I work.  At lunchtime I call him again.  He is sat in Macdonalds eating a burger Hope bought him.  Yeah he’s fine,  has no recollection of anything that happened earlier that day, “Why was I concerned?”

I can tell he’s better than he was and certainly less agitated, it’s good he’s eating. That always seems to help with the healing of his brain.

When I get home from work I feel total exhaustion.  I can’t explain it. This is the impact the alcoholic has on my life. This is why al-anon tell me to step back and let go,  for my sanity.

How in God’s name do I do that?