Archive for Preventation

May
07

Addiction: It Is Laundry Time!!!

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Addiction: It Is Laundry Time!!!

Have you ever put off doing your laundry and allowed it to pile up and then you have this sense of overwhelm and you continue to make excuses until one day you finally decide that it is time to do the laundry. This describes what many parents and family members go through when dealing with an addict. Addiction has reached nearly pandemic levels in America and yet like the laundry piling  law makers and others continue to make excuses and let it continue to pile up. It is time that everyone affected by addiction stood up and said it is time to do the laundry. Now you may be asking with all the loads of laundry to do where do we start? The answer is put in the first load and do one load at a time. If we are to cleanse our country of addiction we must first look at the root cause of addiction and that is the reason drugs are so prevalent and readily available in our neighborhoods. One is because there is money to be made another is because so many people are looking for love and acceptance and turn to the drugs and the drug culture because of the lack of love and acceptance they perceive to be receiving.

 Another reason drug and alcohol use is increasing in our society is that those using have not developed the mental acuity to judge and see consequences.  A persons judgmental skills and critical thinking skills develops from the age of 12-22. During this period of time of the neurons of the brain do not connect with the frontal lobes due to drug and alcohol use and abuse the person gets stuck in that mental age for life. Imagine dealing with a an addict at age 25 who has the mental capacity of a 16 year old. This addict may not understand that it is time to do the laundry and to clean up their act as they are still acting out of impulse and not thinking of consequences. The only way to combat this is to do the laundry and make sure you are actively involved in your child’s life. Remember you are not here to be their friend you are here to guide them and develop them.

 When doing our laundry we have a regiment wash, dry, fold, put away. When dealing with an addict you must also have a regiment. Set boundaries, keep boundaries, be loving, take care of yourself first before taking care of the addict. The best thing would be if you never had an addicted child for all those that had influence over your child would have washed them of all their negativity that led to them using drugs.  The child would have been dried and their mindset would have been one of staying away from drugs. The child would have been folded into a group that lifted them and made them feel loved and accepted without the use of drugs. The child would have been put away clean every night and woke up every morning with a sense of purpose. Unfortunately this did not happen and you have an addict as a child so it is time to do the laundry. Read More→

Apr
16

Addiction: Taking Steps Of Hope!!!

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Addiction: Taking Steps Of Hope!!!!

 

 As I was sitting down to plan a special event to help mothers of addicted children, Steps Of Hope, I came across this song and thought yes it is time for us to do something. It is time for us to unite and come together to remove the stigma of having an addicted child. It is time for us to band together and show that addiction is affecting us all and that it can be overcome. It is time for us to take steps of hope.

On May 17, 2014 in my hometown of Davie, FL from 10 AM – 12:30 PM I will be hosting Steps of Hope and bringing people together to share without shame in hopes of positively impacting the lives of those affected by addiction.  Each day I take steps of hope by running The Addict’s Mom Facebook Group and overseeing www.addictsmom.com. Read More→

Addiction: Waiting For A Joyful Noise!!!

 

As I sat down this morning to read Rev. Dr. Dee Adio Moses book Heal Your Life With Daily Prayer and Affirmations, the passage for today spoke of singing praises to GOD and having good things happen for you.  The n I turned to Mary Manin Morrissey’s book The Miracle Minute and the entry for today was about bringing joy to others. I then wrote in my gratitude journal and one of the things I was grateful for was the joy that was being put into my life. I then began to think about the scene from the Movie, The Bucket List, where Jack Nicholson’s Character and Morgan Freeman’s Character are speaking about what happens when you die and Morgan Freeman’s Character says there are two questions you must answer did you live a life of joy and did your life bring joy to others for everything else is meaningless.

 

As I began to reflect on the reading and the scene in the film I began to ask how many of the parents that will read this today are waiting to hear a joyful noise? How many moms and dads will take care of the challenge they are facing of having an addicted child?  As I visited www.addictsmom.com, a FREE Membership Site dedicated to helping mothers of addicted children by giving them a place to share without shame, find resources, and see that they are not alone, I began to read the messages an many had a common thread of wishing that the addiction would go away? Many commented that they had heard the joyful noise they were waiting for as their addicted child was now clean and doing well. The greatest joyful noise that a parent of an addict can hear from their child is I am getting help and I am working the program. When the addict decides that they no longer want to use and they make an effort to work a program and they make progress they begin to heal and thus make the healing process for the parent a bit easier thus creating the joyful noise that everyone is seeking. Read More→

Addiction: Staying Calm Cool and Collected!!!

  Today I have a lesson learned from my dealing with Verizon Wireless that will translate very nicely for parents dealing with addicted children and how to face the challenges of having an addicted child head on. It all started the other day when my battery for my Droid Razr swelled and began creating issues. As many of us have experienced our lives today often revolve around the cell phone as it has become the main source of connection for us. I went to a Verizon Store only to find out  that it was a third-party dealer for Verizon and they couldn’t help me. I was told go to the service center which I did only t find out it wasn’t a service center but a Verizon Corporate Store. Upon entering I explained the situation and was told well you need to buy a new phone as your phone is no longer in warranty and the fact that I didn’t have insurance on the phone I would have to buy a new phone at the retail price. Upon hearing this I stated calmly there must be something you could do to which the reply was no I can’t call customer service. I called customer service explained the situation and by the end of the phone call I had a new phone at no charge. All I had to do is pay the upgrade fee. The phone is being shipped to me later this week. Now you might ask what does this have to do with dealing with our addicted children. The answers are this when dealing with your addicted child be patient, remain, calm, cool, and collected and you will achieve the desired outcome that you want.  In some cases when seeking treatment you may be told people can not help you and there is nothing they can do. Instead of getting angry take a breath and calmly ask them to search out other alternatives. This may take time however in the long run you can find the assistance you seek to help face the challenges of having an addicted child.

 In dealing with Verizon I thought of the 12 steps and many applied as I accepted there was a problem, the phone had to be fixed. With addiction the person must be fixed. I forgave the man who said he couldn’t assist me, I prayed to GOD to help me keep calm to resolve the problem, I then thanked GOD for resolving the problem. The 12 steps can apply to every aspect of your life as you move forward in a positive direction of reclaiming your power and stepping into your greatness.  It took much self-control to not get angry today at the Verizon Sales Person, however getting angry would not have reached a pleasant solution. Getting angry never serves us and only accelerates the negative aspects of the situation. When dealing with your addict you have the opportunity to step back and breathe and come from a calm, cool, and collected point of view. The addict may be upset when they contact you, they may point fingers, play the blame game, and try to manipulate you however if you step into your power in a calm manner you may deflect the challenge that this contact has created. A hard  thing to do is to say from day one,  when the issue of drug and alcohol use rears its ugly head is to set boundaries like if you don’t stop using you don’t receive the privileges that I have afforded to you. If the problem gets worse and your addict becomes an adult upon them turning 18 you set boundaries that if not followed consequences are enforced. Read More→

Addiction: Substitution Good Or Bad?

  It seems as in America the trend amongst doctors dealing with addiction is to subscribe to the philosophy of better living through chemistry. It appears that there is a supposed miracle pill for every ailment including addiction. The latest buzz in the addiction treatment field is Suboxone, generically known as buprenorphine and naloxone. It has become so popular that pharmacies are offering coupons for Suboxone.  Many argue that Suboxone is just substituting one drug for another and isn’t an effective treatment as it never truly gets to the root of the addiction. Others argue that it is very effective and that they have had great results.

 Dr. James Schaller is a proponent of using Suboxone and has written his findings in this book.

Many others on the other side point to the side effects and suggest alternative treatments. Read More→

Jul
24

Addiction: Moving Right Along!!!!

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Addiction: Moving Right Along!!!!

 

 Today’s post was inspired by The Muppet Movie and the song Moving Right Along as it speaks of the adversity that Kermit and Fozzy Bear faced on their travels but they just kept moving right along. This lead me to reflect on all the posts I read at www.addictsmom.com and in The Addict’s Mom groups on Facebook and I discovered that everyone has a similar challenge when it comes to addiction and that is dealing with the addict and the addicts behavior. As you face the challenge of having an addicted child you must understand that you did not create the problem, you can not control the problem, and you will not cure the problem and thus you should commit to moving right along. Now the question is how do you keep moving right along? The answer is accept there is a problem, face the problem, do the best you can with the resources you have, and understand that until the addict gets that rude awakening that their choices are not serving them in a positive manner they are not going to change. Once you begin to come to grips with the fact that your child is an addict and there isn’t really much you can do you will begin to have the ability to move right along. A recent study shows that 1 in 3 (33%) of families are dealing with addiction. Unfortunately because of the stigma associated with having an addicted child not many parents come forward to share and when they do many times they are ostracized from the community.  In an ideal situation a parent would recognize that their child was using drugs and/or alcohol and would be able to sit down and have a rational conversation about where the use of drugs and alcohol often lead and the child would have the where with all to understand that the parent is doing what is in the best interest of the child. The reality is that it doesn’t work that way because the parent is so concerned about being right and the child feels like they are being picked on that communication breaks down. Then there is the parental factor that you want your kids to like you so you give and give until you can’t give anymore thus putting stress on the parent-child relationship. Understand that most children lack the capacity to fully comprehend what is happening as the brain is developing and their judgment is flawed as the critical thinking elements of the brain have not been fully developed.  Think back to when you were a child and some of the things you did without thinking then you can relate to what your child is doing. Children tend to be impulsive and just do and this makes parenting very challenging especially when the child is not respectful and does things that are morally contradictory to the values of the family. The question is what to do and how to move right along? Read More→

Addiction: The 3 Rs – Reflect, Relax, Rejuvenate!!!

 This Michael Jackson song, Man In The Mirror, is the first song I think of when I think about reflection as it all starts with ourselves. It is when we take a deep look at who we truly are and discover our authentic self and embrace this that we can be of assistance to the addict. In order to be of assistance to the addict the addict must be open to receive. If you want to change the situation you must take steps to reflect and then commit to change.  It is through reflection that we can find the root cause of the situation and then begin to plant new seeds and create a harvest of joy and abundance. This is not an easy thing to do as it takes courage to recognize your own faults and to work on being a better person when dealing with the fact that you have an addicted child.

 It is through reflection that you can move forward to improve the situation that having an addicted child has created. In many cases it is when we stop blaming ourselves and forgive ourselves that we are able to detach with love from the addict and realize that when they are ready to heal themselves they will. Hopefully the decision to get help will come in time so they can turn things around and have a productive life. The fact of the matter is that when you reflect and realize that you did the best you could with the tools you had you will be able to move forward and help yourself and your other family members.  As you do your reflection exercises be it through meditation, keeping a journal, saying prayers, writing forgiveness letters, attending support group meetings, or sharing at www.addictsmom.com, you may want to suggest to the addict that they do the same. Keep in mind the addict will only do the reflection exercises when they are ready and see the value of doing the reflection exercises. Read More→

Addiction: What About The Grand Children?

     Thank you to Carmen Janet Sanchez of The Addict’s Mom LinkedIn Group for asking me to write a piece about protecting the grand children in dealing with the challenges of addiction. Today more and more grandparents are facing the challenges of raising children because of this epidemic that has come to be known as addiction. The addict has a child but is incapable of raising the child and turn the responsibility over to grandma and grandpa. The challenge for grandma and grandpa is that they know must be the buffer between the child and the addict. The question is how do they protect the child from being hurt or becoming an addict themselves?  This is a difficult task as the child feels abandoned and unloved by his mom or dad. This insecurity brings on a challenge to grandma and grandpa because they do their best to explain the situation but the child still wants that bond with mom or dad. The thing to remember is that children like everyone else are looking for two things love and acceptance. The child may not be able to process the fact that mom and dad love them but aren’t able to care for them at this time so grandma and grandpa will be taking care of them. This dynamic is difficult because grandma and grandpa may be frail and limited to what they can do for the child. The child doesn’t process this and becomes angry and resentful. The child is fragile and needs love and acceptance and to protect them grandma and grandpa must be aware of their feelings and communicate in a loving way.

In some cases it is only grandma or grandpa raising the child. This dynamic is difficult because of the limitations that they may have and this further hurts the child as they begin to feel let down and disappointed. How do you protect them from this disappointment or feeling of being let down? You begin by being honest and up front with them. You monitor their activities and who they hang out with. You take an active role in their life keeping the lines of communication open. The best way to protect the child is to not make excuses for the addict and the addict’s behavior. Explain to the child the situation and what you will be doing to make it better.

 In helping your grandchildren who are now in your care to grow you must get to know who they are, what their passions are, how they feel about their addicted mother or father, what concerns they have. The best way to help them grow and to protect them is to communicate. Read More→

May
22

Addiction: Changing Your Attitude!!!!

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Addiction: Changing Your Attitude!!!

 Today’s blog post was inspired by Whitney Houston’s song, The Greatest Love Of All, as it helped me to shift my attitude and move forward in a positive direction. Whitney Houston was called home to GOD as a result of an overdose. Her beautiful messages delivered in song were a mask for the pain she was suffering. This led me to ask a question what pain are you masking as a result of having an addicted child? I then began to ask what challenges are being heightened because of the attitude you are showing toward the addict?
  Think about all the interactions you have with your addicted and the attitude you displayed when dealing with your child? Did you come from a position of love or a position of anger? Did you come from a position of hope or a position of fear?  When the phone rings and it is your addicted child do you cringe and say now what or do you take a deep breath and say I will be loving and supportive? When you see their name in an email do you say oh no delete or do you read and respond in a caring and loving way? The energy and attitude that you display will be the energy that you get back.  I know it is hard to do what Beverly Buncher suggests and Be a Loving Mirror. In past blog entries we touched on forgiveness, which generally leads to having a better attitude when dealing with the addict. Read More→

Addiction: Love Is Thicker Than Water!!!

 

 This song was written and performed by Andy Gibb, who died of what appeared to be a heart attack on March 10, 1988. It was believed that his abuse of cocaine led to his heart failing. Andy Gibb was 30 years old. This got me to thinking when are we as a nation really going to take on the issue of drug abuse? When are we going to stop glorifying celebrities like Lindsey Lohan and those who continue to make poor choices?  When  are we going to begin to focus on prevention? If your child never started using the problem of his or her addiction would not be interfering with your life and having a negative effect on your other family members.

 Andy Gibb wrote about love however as you read interviews that he conducted you would see that he didn’t love himself and felt his accomplishments were minor. This could explain his turning to cocaine for like most addicts they turn to drugs because of their lack of self-worth. They do not believe they are deserving of the best and thus they get into a self-destruction  mode and one day they are gone. May parents reading this blog know to well the feeling of loss as they have experienced it first hand and when they hear these songs they bring memories of better times.  Tracking the life of an addict that is still deep into their addiction  brings many answers but also leaves many questions?

 Parents who are dealing with an addict know this cycle all too well and do their best to break the cycle. The question is how did this start? The answer is that your child was lacking a sense of belonging and turning to drugs gave him or her what they were seeking. The next question is why did it continue? It continued because they didn’t feel a need to stop and did not realize the problems their drug use was creating. In some cases what a parent thought was loving became enabling and thus never forced the child to fend for themselves. In some cases it was just the simple fact that it was easier to blame everyone else instead of being accountable for their actions. The question remains how do you break the cycle? The answer is you do not break the cycle the addict must break the cycle. When the addict is serious about recovery then and only then is progress made. You can not guilt your child into getting better, you can not continue to through money at the problem because that doesn’t help, you can’s make excuses as that worsens the problem. The best thing you as a parent can do is to set boundaries and keep to the boundaries. The worst case scenario is that you get that knock on the door saying your child is dead can you identify the body. This happens everyday in America and it is sad because in many cases the loss could have been prevented. The best case scenario is that the addict decides that his poor choices as a result of using no longer serve him or her and they make an effort to stop and get sober and remain sober. Read More→

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