Back in hospital

change

I knew as I had heard nothing for several days he must be back drinking heavily.

When he didn’t pick up my call twice I stopped calling. At least that has changed, before I would have been wondering is he still alive, do I need to go and check on him. Now he lives with his girlfriend I know someone is there to call the ambulance when eventually he gets to that point that he needs to be in hospital.

So I wasn’t surprised to get the call to say he was in hospital. I didn’t want to hear all the details, I had heard it all before I have no sympathy left.

I called him once in hospital. He didn’t reply. That was Monday.

Today he called me. no explanation, no telling me why he was in hospital , no, he was just concerned about the fact they had lost his keys, they were attached to his trousers, which were covered in blood, and now gone. Also his girlfiend had no charger for her phone as they shared one and he had it. Oh yes he also had no trousers.

So his girlfriend couldn’t contact him, if and when he was discharged he didn’t know if he could get in his flat, and he had no trousers, lol, for once I can almost laugh.

And, finally I do not feel compelled to help him. I won’t be rushing off with a charger to his girlfriend, then dropping trousers of for him and asking at lost property if they have his keys, and when I find out they haven’t go and get more keys cut.

No I won’t be doing any of that. I just said, oh Ok, my dinners cooked, might speak to you tomorrow.

I don’t know what has happened, final realisation that anything I do for him is a waste of time and also enabling him?

Nothing will change, he will be discharged, full of promises to make changes, empty promises.

Tomorrow is my birthday.

I would love to have him turn up on my door, happy and healthy with a card. I know this is another birthday when that will not happen.

Let me find my ending positive thought…

I have learnt, I have protected myself, I am growing in strength whether he continues to drink or not.

What will be will be

The futures not ours to see

 

 

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Day 4

Day 4 of not knowing how Faith is doing.

How I wish it was him counting. Day 4 of being sober.

I have sent a message today.  He promised to repay me money I lent him to pay his rent as he had problems with his benefits.  I hate to think he might be using that money to buy alcohol. Why do I say “might”?

Angry with myself that I paid his rent anyway,  I just couldn’t deal with the thought of him being homeless again.

And now angry with him for not paying me back as he promised.

I kept it simple.

“I see you have not transfered my money into my account”

That’s it,  nothing else.  I don’t even know if he will see it.

I hate you alcohol!!!!

I feel an overwhelming sadness

IMG_0803It’s day 2 of no contact.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t heard from Faith, it means I haven’t responded.

I am starting to feel a terrible sadness inside. Do I really have to stop contact for him to find his way? Will it help him? Is this what I must do?

There are no guides  –

If  A doesn’t work then resort to B. If all else fails switch off and re-boot.

It has given me some much needed peace. And I am important, I work bloody hard, full time, elderly parents that also need and deserve my time and attention.

He has called twice, first time I’m at work and it’s easy to ignore, still more accusations left on my answerphone. Then again when he knows I am home and he sounds more sober. This is the first one that starts I love you mum, I want us to have a relationship, please call me. That’s harder to ignore, but I have, and I will today.

Maybe tomorrow I will send him a message telling him I will only speak to him when he is sober. I will not answer his calls until I can hear in his voice he is.

I’m really not sure if this is protection for me, or as I have read, what I must do for him to be at that place where he wants recovery beyond all else.

I always thought having children was a learning curve that you learn as you go. I didn’t realise that it went on into their adulthood. One thing I have learnt and I am absolutely certain about is, there are no rules, ever! You do what you think is right at the time, maybe you will fuck up occasionally, but one message I would always pass on to my children is “go by your gut feeling, and if you are told that it is wrong, and you still feel your way is the right way then just do it” Don’t be afraid….

As I am tonight.

Thats why I am thinking tomorrow I will send a message to him.

“I will speak to you again, but only when you are sober”

I would love a few responses from you peeps that have found sobriety, how would you feel receiving this message? how did you feel?

Sending out love

 

 

 

A quiet day, no madness, it nearly feels normal

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When I woke, I called Faith. Yes I know, I know I said I was stepping back, and I am. But he called me in the early hours, I didn’t answer but he left a message which I listened to this morning.

It was more accusations. “Why had I called the police, now I had messed everything up. I am so angry with you” I didn’t listen to all of it, there was no point.

I wanted to call him in the morning when he was sober tell him one last time –

I called the police last week when you were confused and sat by a busy road because I was frightened for your safety.

I did not mention Hope, your girlfriend or her son.

I did not call Hopes mother, she called me.

If you do not want me to react when I am concerned about you I cannot know what is happening in your life.

So I am stepping out of it .

Of course he was still drunk and groggy, he didn’t take it in. But I had said it. I needed to, to make it real for me.

I have had two calls today when I was at work. Both times I didn’t answer. When I listened to the messages he left, there were more accusations, I was glad I didn’t answer. It made me more determined.

Tonight I have been out for my excercise class and I feel more relaxed. The worry is still there but I feel calmer.

How long can I keep this up? I know I must for both of us.

 

 

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.

 

Did I say “double trouble”

You wouldn’t be who you are without all the difficult times, be thankful, even through the trials.

Faith was admitted to hospital on the Wednesday before Easter. His girlfriend called me when she was on her way back from the hospital to update me. He was OK, all was good, they were looking after him. The scans for a broken back came back fine.

Tomorrow she will go back and see him, she will take anything he needs with her. OK so tonight I can sleep knowing he is safe.

It’s Thursday today, last day at work before 4 days off. I’m needing that break badly, even though we will be decorating, just some time to breath. I call Faiths girlfriend at lunchtime. No reply. I call her when I leave work. No reply. I call her when I get home, no reply. I am getting concerned, I call a confused Faith, he is not sure but no he hasn’t seen her today.

So, I’m just ready to kick off my shoes and relax, but I can’t, something is wrong I know. Do I spend the night worrying or go now and check on her? I have a key for the flat, I don’t want to worry her parents who live a couple of hours drive away, so I reluctantly get back in the car and drive the 10 miles to their flat. I call again before I let myself in, I’m worried what I might find when I walk in, I know she fits when she doesn’t drink. Still no reply. I walk into the empty flat, no-one, but Faiths rucksack is packed ready with everything he needs in hospital on the bed. Now I am really getting concerned. I have to call her mother. I call to be told she has called her several times today but she hasn’t answered. Now we are both extremely concerned. I call the hospital to see if she has been admitted. No. I know she was going to the launderette, so I check there. No sign of her. I call her mum and say I am going to the hospital to see if they have seen her or heard from her. I’m starting to think she will have to be reported as missing. When oh when will this madness end.

Another drive in busy traffic to the hospital. My restful evening is rapidly disappearing. I go to see Faith, none of the hospital staff have seen or heard from his girlfriend.. I use Faiths phone to call her thinking she might answer to him. Nothing. I try to get some sense out of Faith about where she could be, but now his brain is reacting to having no alcohol and he has no idea what I’m trying to ask him.

I call his girlfriends mother to break the news. She tells me she has tracked her down, she had a fit and was admitted to hospital. She has been there all day. She is actually in the same ward as Faith. So now I am relieved she’s safe, but at the same time angry my precious time has been taken again by these two. I go to see her briefly, she doesn’t look well. By the time I get home it’s 8.30. I’m just exhausted by all this.

It looks like my worst fears are coming true, I’m now involved in the chaotic life of another alcoholic. I can hear all you al-anons out there shouting at me “step back and let go” I try so hard, but when they get so ill, when there is a real possibility of death, it’s so hard.

I know I’m preparing myself for Faiths death, I don’t ever want to think “what if”?

To follow…… security guards and dementia.

And my positive thought for today  All the strength you need is right there, inside you”

 

Stepping back, enabling, how to know when or when not?

I have to write this now.  Yesterday I was talking about encouraging Faiths girlfriends family to speak out and stop enabling.  Also, how I could step back and not worry because I knew there was someone who could step in and call the emergency services if necessary.

I’ve read lots about stepping back and letting go.  I have done this in the past and it pushed Faith to dark place’s,  which I was told was what would need to happen for Faith to get to a place where he wanted recovery enough to make it happen.

He has slept on the streets, been homeless, he has been abused because he was not sober enough to realise what was happening, he has been arrested, he has been so weak through malnutrition that he could not stand, he could have bled to death as he had such a low count of blood clotting cells, he has broken ribs, collar bones fingers and toes, been covered and I don’t exaggerate in bruises, and he has lost his mind. and still he continues to drink. I can’t see a place that’s worse than this other than death.

I read with interest how other mothers have been strong and refused to give money and have stepped back with the wonderful results that their child no longer drinks and how wonderful that is, how hard it was for their mothers to do this.

What about me? I’ve done this, so why do I still have to watch him destroy himself? Did I not do it well enough? Do I have to do more?

When I read back through my old blogs I see I was  enabling, I was learning also, but without a teacher. But I learnt, and I have disowned him, threw him out, didn’t contact him, refused to have him back in my home. What else can I do?

So really what I’m saying is, yeah I get enabling, but there comes a point when you are so scared for their life you have no choice but to step in. I am positive there have been two occasions where, had I not checked on him because I was concerned for him and called an ambulance he would be dead. That final place.

Which leaves me with thoughts of why do some people win this fight with alcohol, while others are taken by it? It can’t just be that the ones that died were enabled to do so? It must come from within that person, how strong they are, how much they want to live?

My worry is Faith is not that strong.

So please don’t judge me and say I am enabling.

While I write this Faith is in hospital, I will write more about this and “wet brain” next time.

I nearly forgot my positive note, I’m really struggling with this one today, I guess it has to be

Through my sons struggles, I have found how how strong I am.

I have just been looking through the many drafts that I have never published and found this, I would have written it in 2015 around the time I have finally accepted that Faith was an alcoholic. It links very well with what I have written above, this was my early days of learning about…….

 

Letting go

Letting go, something that was talked about a lot at the al-anon classes I went to.

It took me a long time to get it.

This is my story of my journey to the place where I let go of my son and his alcoholism and handed him over to his own higher power.

Faith had lost his very lovely girlfriend to the alcohol. She went. she’d had enough of his lies and secret drinking and just his drunkenness. She had tried very hard, but the addiction won every time.

I had become involved in the arguments and I would shout and scream,”Why can’t you just stop drinking, why are you doing this, why are you like this?” So many nights of arguments, telling him he needed help,not knowing where to go to get him the help.

He lived with me, he had come back after he split with his previous girlfriend, I thought because she had a drink problem, I can laugh at that now.

And then his job went, it was suggested he handed in his notice before he was sacked, alcohol had been smelt on him too many times and too many days of calling in sick.

I thought he could not afford to live somewhere on his own, I have always worked, never claimed benefits, I didn’t know how the system worked or anyone that could tell me. So I had no choice other than to let him live with me.

The drinking escalated, I didn’t know I was enabling him, I didn’t know he was piling up huge debts on his credit cards to pay for the alcohol.

He finally admitted he needed help, the months went on, he sometimes managed to get himself to meeting that he was supposed to go to, sometimes not.

He hated himself, he cut himself, how many times I was called into his bedroom in the night because he had cut himself. “if only you would stop drinking, everything would get better” more shouting, screaming and crying. I didn’t understand that he could not stop.

Then what I thought was our salvation, He was given 2 weeks rehabilitation.

I remember taking him, He could only be admitted if his alcohol limit was below a certain level, He sat with a bucket between his legs, being sick and shaking. I cried when I left him, but the relief of not having to worry about what state he would be in when I came home from work, not being woken in the night by him hitting the walls because he hated himself, not having to listen to his crying or being sick, was immense.

My son had been saved. He could do this I knew it. When I went to see him for the first time I was sat down and asked if I had any questions. I had lots, and then I asked “What are the chances of him drinking again” Oh I was so naïve, and when I got the answer I was devastated, it was very rare for this to work first time, most patients needed many admissions. Oh but my son was different.

I picked him up the same day that I took his sister to the airport to go off on her travels. I cried twice that day, once because I felt I was loosing my daughter, if only for a while, and again because I had got my lovely sober son back.

I can’t remember how long it lasted, but it wasn’t long and we were back to the same chaotic distressing unhappy lives.

It was then that I decided that I needed help and eventually found Al Anon. But of course I went looking for help for my son.

I remember that first meeting, a few people spoke about their recovered alcoholic. Ah so there was a cure, I was desperate to find out how they had done it…..

 

As things are now…

IMG_0568Well my last blog was a pretty basic update on how things have been for the last two years.  I have so many other events to share.  I call them events because I can’t call them stories,  they are just things that happen because Faith is an alcoholic. Things that happen in his life and consequently affect mine.

But first I need to explain how things are now.

Faiths girlfriend has now moved in with him. She lived with her parents and, after a drunken episode, things came to a head,  as they do,  and she walked out.

In a way I blame myself. Here parents were in the trap of pretending. Pretending she wasn’t drinking so much. Afraid of her reaction if they dared to face her with the truth. Afraid themselves of speaking the truth.  I knew, as I had been there. I knew the consequences of trying to make them face their alcoholism, and you as a parent feeling you let them down in some way. How did this happen to that little child you held in your arms and protected from the world? But I also knew to help her they had to do it.  No more hiding it and talking behind her back about it.  No more hiding it from the family.  I knew the shame of telling family members your child was an alcoholic.

I also knew that this was enabling. So I encouraged them to speak more openly with her and other close family members about it.  Force her to face it. And they did.  It was no longer a secret. But I guess she couldn’t cope with that and the consequences of family knowing,  wasn’t ready herself.

So she did exactly what Faith did.  She ran from the truth.  Didn’t want to hear it,  so forced a situation that gave herself the right to run away. Put more hurt on her loving family,  because to stay with them meant she had to face her own self loathing and be truthful. So just like Faith she chose to run,  and she had the perfect (not what you or I would call perfect) place to run to.  Somewhere she could drink and not be judged for drinking.

So now they live together,  not because they love each other (although I think they do in their own way)  but because now they can both drink and not be judged.  But of course,  two alcoholics living together brings its own dose of madness.

Faith is back drinking daily, unable to moderate his drinking.

Over time I have learnt to step back when he is, there is no point trying to talk to him, I just wait for the next crisis to happen as I know it will.

This time I have been able to step right back. He has someone with him now who will call an ambulance if necessary, encourage him to eat and see the doctor. So I can relax and let go, actually try to forget for a while. I know she brings new problems, but at the moment I am able to let go, but not worry, too much.

So my positive today is……

“I really can let go and relax, sleep at night without worrying, nearly be normal”

That was until the call I got an hour ago 😦

Time to step back again and let go.

I feel the time coming again, when I must step back and let go.change

I cannot continue to deal with this chaos in my life every day.
I was asked to become more involved in Faiths life by the professionals whose care he was under.
Now it looks like they might be stepping back, they did promise me they wouldn’t give up on him.

He was told by his buddy on Friday that she didn’t think her help was working.

But this was after challenging his sexuality again, telling him there was someone else he could talk to about it if he would be happier doing so. They are looking for a reason for his drinking. Panic attacks and a lack of confidence are the reason he started, addiction is the reason he drinks now. I know they are just barking up the wrong tree,
Once again he felt he was being attacked.

I don’t want to put too much information on here but when he was in the depths of alcoholism, when I had thrown him out, when he had no friends no-where to stay, he was offered what he thought was a safe drinking place and a friend.
And now he has just been reminded of it again. It does make me angry when so-called professionals don’t actually understand what depths an alcoholic will go to, to get their fix.
They understood this man was a threat to Faith and suggested he removed his number from his phone, which he did. They couldn’t tell him to erase the memory of his address.
So this chat happened on Thursday. Thursday Faith was sober. Until he had this conversation with his buddy.
What does an alcoholic do when put in a situation they can’t deal with? Fight or flight? He’s never been a fighter, so he ran, straight to the nearest supermarket.
Friday he called me. Told me he had his meeting and it hadn’t been great, also told me he’d had a drink but had stopped now.
Like I believed that!
So Saturday morning my parents were visiting, I called Faith and suggested he might want to pop round and see them. “Oh Yeah, of course” he said.
In a way I knew it was a bit of a test, if he turned up he was sober, if he didn’t he was drinking.
He didn’t, he called me instead.
Mum I’m drinking and I need to tell you something.
So he then told me the full facts about the meeting, he was very upset. “Why don’t they understand all I want is s normal life with a wife and children, I am not gay, I was just very lonely and stupid, and I am still very lonely. I lost my beautiful girlfriend through drinking, I still miss her everyday. Why don’t they get it, why do they keep talking about my sexuality”
And I believe him, totally,

So I need to go shopping. I had planned parents in the morning, shopping in the afternoon. I need shoes and jacket for a wedding on Thursday. So I have to go. I need that me time, I know I will be angry if I don’t. I also know Faith desperately needs to talk, but this is where he must find someone else to talk to, It can’t be me all the time.
I tell him I have to go.
Right decision for me.
Wrong decision was taking my mobile.
So he calls, I’m in the middle of trying on shoes, he’s pretty incomprehensible, angry, upset, drunk. I say I thought we had talked about this and after you had shared with me you were going to let it go?
I’m trying to talk to the shop assistant selling me shoes at the same time. I tell him i cant talk right now. “OK I will go and cut my wrists then”
The phone goes dead.
I’ve heard the threat many times, he has done it in the past, but never meaning to actually kill himself. Every time I hear it though I hope it wont be the one time he does.
And the shoes don’t fit either.
Time for some refreshment, I have just sat down in the café when my phone rings again.
I reluctantly answer.
This time I’m aware straight away that something is really wrong, he’s breathless and very upset. “He’s called the police, he made an advance on me so I hit him, he pulled his emergency cord and said he needed the police, I’ve run mum, he fell, they will arrest me, where are you? I’m running, they are going to arrest me”
I try to talk to him, tell him he needs to go back and explain what happened, it will be Ok but you must go back and talk to the police. He’s panicking, wont listen. I tell him “You have phoned asking for my help, this is what I suggest you do, you are in this situation because of your drinking, you have made the problem, you have to deal with it, it is not my problem, take my advice or leave it”
Then of course I get “I’m running, I’m going to kill myself” The phone goes dead.

Something in his drunken mixed up head has made him go back to this place, and in his drunken mixed up head he thinks this is the way he can show people that they are wrong in what they are thinking.

I am exhausted. The joy of the shopping trip gone. I just want to cry. I look around at the other people in the café, happy chatting, think they have no idea of this phone call I have just had, this life I live. Then sensibility kicks in, i don’t know what their lives are like either, who knows what pain they are feeling right now.
Back to the first shop I went to.
And two pairs of shoes so I can decide at home, I really don’t care much now.
Faith calls later, can you talk to (?) But I haven’t got much signal, we are cut off. I don’t return the call.
Food shopping and home. Drained. A takeaway tonight I think.
About 8 he calls, I am in hospital, I ask why, because the doctor told me I needed to be here
“mum I can’t drink much without getting ill”
“Wrong Faith, one drink and you are sick again. You can’t have one drink”
“I know mum, I know”
I finish by telling him I am glad he’s in hospital, and I am, because he is safe there.

So this is all impacting so much on my life again, I know I must step back, I’m sorry, I have to look after me.
But I will just drop an email to the place where he went for rehab before I do.
You never know x