The ruthless truth slapped me in the face once again.
This time, it was a series of blows that left me wondering if I have any reason to hope.
My son read a letter to Michael and me at a "fish bowl" family activity within a group-therapy setting at his extended rehab clinic. For him, it was a chance to come clean and own up to everything he has done to manipulate, lie, steal in support of his habit (summary: history of his use, how he used and abused us to fund his habit and keep us thinking that all was well so we would continue supporting him). For us, it was a brutal session of discovering that Daniel has traveled deeper into the darkness of addiction that we ever realized..
When he was done, I was so angry. He stood up and wrapped his arms around to hug me (thinking I would surely appreciate that he has finally been honest). It was all I could do to not push him away from me. I believe the only reason I didn't is that we were in the company of others and I didn't want to humiliate him. The last thing I wanted was a hug from the one who just admitted to deceiving me over the past 10 years (not 5 as I had been previously led to believe). It was the last thing I wanted to receive and the last thing I wanted to give. I just stood there, awkardly, as the attempt at affection traveled only one way.
Ten years of use and abuse (6 years under my roof) and I did not see it. Apparently, my home was also a marketplace, as users knocked on our front door during the hours I was at work, my son proudly supplying the neighborhood and his classmates with all kinds of pills and pot hidden secretly in our garage.
And I was enlighted as to the real nature of this "methadone detox". He had led us to believe that for the past two years, he was detoxing off methadone and working a recovery program. The facts: as the methadone got uncomfortably low, he started injecting it, buying additional supply off the street, and supplementing it with benzos. There we were, cheering him on and celebrating his progress, all the while he is living a lie.
Additional confessions of stealing money and prescription meds from our home, robbing others, extensive dealing, exerting violence that landed his dealer in the hospital, and dodging drug enforcement officers.
I walked away with two conclusions:
- My son is most certainly a drug addict, and any remaining denial has been put to death.
- I need to start focusing on myself and get my life back.
God, help me.