I am a mother who has three teenage children.
6 years ago I became addicted to narcotics prescribed to me for a back injury. I began abusing these drugs. My drug use escalated quickly, and my parenting skills deteriorated just as rapidly. I am hoping that by explaining my story that I may be able to help you avoid some of the heartache that I have experienced.
Although I swore to myself that I would never forsake my children for the drugs, I soon found myself doing just that. I stopped being the attentive, involved, loving, caring, responsible, content mother that I had been for many years. I was able to hide the drug use for awhile, saying I was just tired, etc, but just never feeling 100% “there” for the kids. Then it proressed to that I started sleeping late in the mornings, neglecting to get them up for school or to make their lunches. I was once actively involved in heading up every organization or team that they joined, and I quit doing all that because I was exhausting my body with the drug use. I had no energy to involve myself with their lives, and soon found myself losing touch with what they were interested in or what their lives outside were like. I became very selfish, irritable and emotional. I stopped trying to even appear interested in them or what they had to say. I made errors, lost things, forgot to cook dinners, left them home unattended for extended periods of time, or spent excessive periods of time sleeping off the effects of the drugs while they were home, leaving them there to amuse themselves. Eventually they would start looking after themselves as they couldn’t count on me. All these drugs did was make me tired and zombie-like, wanting to sleep. Not the picture of the mother I once was at all.
The end result has my life looking and feeling like a war-zone. My children were taken out of my custody by my ex-husband who by this time had filed for divorce. My eldest, a son, and I had so many heated and violent arguments and battles during the time of my drug abuse that he has completely cut me out of his life. I don’t blame him one bit. I have not spoken to him in 2 and a half years. Thankfully I still have my two younger children who are still present in my life, but of course treat me as I deserve: without trust and at arms length to some degree.
I have been in rehab now for 6 months and am working towards building these relationships back up. It has been the most difficult thing I have ever done and I have no idea how it will all turn out but I have hope and help from great people.
My children used to be the center of my world. Drugs took their place. Not anymore. I AM BACK and stronger than ever!!
I am hoping that by reading this you might see somewhere in there a little bit of anything that might resemble your life, and then see what could happen, once the drug use gets out of control. And believe me, it does get out of control. I managed to be the ‘weekend warrior’ drug user for a while, always thinking I could control it, but it doesn’t take long until drugs are running your life.