Brother is just getting worse...

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-24-2003
Brother is just getting worse...
9
Thu, 06-12-2003 - 1:12pm
Hi Everyone,



There isn't really a problem to fix I just needed to vent. I don't know if any of you remember but a while ago I had written about my older brother.

Long story short:

He is 31 and a drug addict (cocaine, but really anything he can get his hands on). He manipulates my parents for money. My parents let themselves be manipulated. He has even smacked my mother over 20 dollars. When I tell my parents they need to cut him off and let him sink or swim on his own they say they can't do that. They say I don't understand because I don't have any children and that they just can't let him become homeless, a prisoner or just die.

He has also abandoned my niece and nephew. My ex-SIL just took off with them and he has not done one thing to find them. I have tried but she seems to have done a good job of hiding and since I am not a parent I have no rights to go to court of have them put on a missing children's list. He says they will come to look for him when they are older (nice right). Now he is in this crazy on again-off again relationship with this woman who has 5 children from 5 different men, #5 is my brothers. He actually gets my parents to give him money for this woman's children.

Anyway, the new development I just found out today is that my brother has been stealing my fathers blood pressure medicine (my dad has diabetes). My father doesn't take them every day and didn't realize the pills were missing. They didn't put two and two together until last night when my mother went to bring him dinner and she touched him. He was very cold and sweating. He had dropped his blood pressure so low he was cold as ice. When they looked in the bottle there was only 3 pills left. I don't know what they did but he has gone to ANOTHER de-tox program today. He is supposed to go to a rehab program after the seven day de-tox but that is if he even finishes the de-tox. He is always in and out of these. He never stays more than 7 days at the rehab centers and usually leaves with in the first 3 days. This is just horrible. It's not that I am shocked or anything it has just made me so sad today. I am sitting at my desk at work and I just want to cry. He is never going to get better. This thing has really got him and it will never let him go. I am just sad.

Thanks for listening.

Denise.

Avatar for cl_2and1more
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Thu, 06-12-2003 - 6:49pm
I'm sorry for all the grief that your brother has caused your family. Maybe this will be the time that he sees the light. But if not, keep loving him and hating the actions that he takes. That is really why a parent has so much trouble letting go and seeing their child sink. They love them with an unchanging love and even thougth the child is doing wrong they still love and want the best for them.

I hope that today, you will be comforted and know that you are doing all you can do. And remember, we are listening.

Melissa

Avatar for goldie15
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-05-2003
Thu, 06-12-2003 - 7:45pm
I can really appreciate the problem. This is something my family has lived thru, and we did survive. It was painful and I think proably took more "guts" on my family's part than I thought we had.


This is not something I tell or admit to many people, but if it will help you I will try to explain this.

My son was a drug addict. Let me rephrase that he IS a drug addict and proably will have to be careful the rest of his life. Started in high school and no, I did not realize it, recognize it and proably was not ready to accept it then.

My other kids told me, friends told me, relatives told my Dh and me, but until parents are ready to accept it, no one can you anything.

The breaking point (and the end to our ignorance) was when he left for college and started calling for money constantly. He was kicked out second semester. Came home with only the clothes on his back, he had sold everything else we had sent him with.

It was so bad that we could not leave our home because he would pawn anything we did not lock up, tie down or hide, and believe me we became inventive on places to hide things!!!! He even started stealing my medications! He did not take them to use, he was selling them to other dope heads or trading them for his drug of choice.

Finally, and it was along time coming, many rehabs centers, actually "baby sitting" him, screening all his phone calls, taking away his transportation....we tried everything! Finally, we had enough. He had lied, stolen, cheated and done more things than I will ever admit.

We threw him out!!! Gave him his options. Family or drugs. Either way, he had to do it himself. We were thru. We changed our phone number, would not allow him in the house, his siblings did the same thing. It took him a year to make his decision.

My son is now employed, finishing college and best of all....he has passed alll his drug test for 2 years! I am so proud of him!

It does not matter how old your brother is, no matter what his family does or does not do, he HAS to make the decision! eventually, your parents will learn what we learned.we were the "part" of the problem,as long as he could fall back on us, he would never find help for himself.

I hope and pray your family finds the strength to help themselves. Your brother will then find his!

Sorry this is so long, but it is something I have lived thru and I know how it can destroy a family

Avatar for cl_2and1more
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Fri, 06-13-2003 - 9:52am
Goldie,

Thanks for opening up and sharing a painful part of your life to help someone else that you don't even know. This is what these boards are all about.

Just wanted to thank you,

Melissa

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-24-2003
Fri, 06-13-2003 - 12:00pm
Thank you both for your encouraging words.

Goldie, I wish my parents would see the light. They don't get it. They don't see that as long as they make it easy for him to be on drugs he will stay that way.

I had another conversation about this w/ my mom at the beginning of the week. She got upset and told me to never tell her again to kick him out. Like I said she keeps saying I don't understand because I don't have children.

I told her that the one thing I learned growing up in our family (it was a really bumpy ride) is that respect and love goes both ways and blood is not really all that important. To me, it doesn't matter who you are, if you don't treat me in a respectful loving way I will not give you the same in return. I certainly will not let you abuse and take advantage of me because you are family. Never again will I let someone make me miserable, blood or not. And they just let him. They keep saying he is not normal, he is not like us we have to help him. I see no end to this co-dependency in sight. This has been going on for at least 15 yrs and they are still sticking to their guns.

Then sometimes I feel bad and think I should move back home (I am in a different state now) to at least be a support to my parents. But I know it will not change anything and I have kind of been fairly sane since I have left them. I am not sure I would want to give up what little sanity I have gained by moving away.

Anyway, thanks again for your support.

Denise.

Avatar for jendb714
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2003
Sat, 06-14-2003 - 5:07am
Wow, your post could have been mine if only few words were changed. Your brother sounds to be very much like my sister, and your parents, just like my mother. My sister, who is 15 years older than me, has been on drugs off and on since I can remember. At four years old, I saw her attempt suicide and she was carried out by the fire/rescue with our family not knowing if she would live or die. Her current drug of choice is Hydrocodone/Vicoden/Lortab, although she'll settle for anything that will make her high. she is a former crack addict. My mom has experienced drug dealers calling on her cell phone (my sister thought it brilliant to give them my mom's cell phone #) and threatening both my mother's life as well as my sister's. We are a normal upper middle class family and this addiction has simply torn us apart. I wish I had all the money that my mother has spent on rehab for the girl. It's just useless. She's lost custody of both of her children (one is now 22 and has absolutly no respect for her)and she's had countless abortions because she doesn't have a clue who the father of these babies is. Anytime we mention that we disagree with her behavior, she feels free to throw temper tantrums in which she accuses us all of not accepting her for who she is, and being judgemental, yada yada. She is hateful and mean. To make matters worse, she is 41 and lives with my mother. she pays no bills. She finally has a job for the first time in 2 years but spends most of her money on drugs and food and never offers a lick of financial help to my mother. She's stolen pills as well as gone to my grandmother's (who has alzheimer's) doctor and claimed she was getting the meds for grandma. She takes them and has them filled at the pharmacy using grandmas insurance and stolen money from mom's checking account. It's a nightmare and she gets away with all of it for the same reasons your brother does, NO ONE CALLS HER ON IT AND PUTS A STOP TO IT! I'm sorry this got so long but suffice to say that I absolutely know what you are going through but I have no answers!

Hugs,

Jennifer
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-19-2003
Mon, 06-16-2003 - 6:09pm
Wow! That's really sad and I just wanted to wish you luck and let you know you're really doing all that you can. I dated a guy with a drug problem for five long years. He didn't use drugs when we got together, but 1 1/2 years into our relationship he started. I was only in high school, (but the first year and a half we had a very strong, mature relationship) and just getting out of one emotionally abusive relationship and just as I was beginning to think things were really going to be okay all of that happened. I have never taken drugs, with the exception of an occaisional social drink, and the whole thing was new to me. Eventually things got really crazy and we'd fight all of the time, mostly over the drugs or the fact that I wouldn't sleep with him. His parents would start screaming at me that "thier son didn't have a problem and if I wasn't such a bitch he wouldn't have to do things to escape". His dad even threatened to kill me once. Funny thing was most times one of them would call me the next day asking what they could do to help him with his problem. When I'd tell them we all needed to back off or set him free they'd scream at me some more. My life was like a prison, and everytime I'd try to leave he'd promise to change, and everytime I had that shred of hope that I could believe him. He got really paranoid and wouldn't let me see my friends. Our mutual (drug free) friends that we had hung out with in the past wouldn't have anything to do with him, or me for being so stupid and I hated all of his new friends because it was easier to blame them than him. Any how we broke up 3 days after our 5 year anniversary and I finally got him out of my life. That was about three years ago. About 2 years ago his mom called me, telling me he was in the hospital because he had a heart attack (he was only 22) and I went to visit because I thought it was the right thing to do. I really thought that would sober him up, but I guess not. This is really sad, but his birth day was a couple of weeks ago and two days before it I got another call that he was in the hospital again with another heart attack and had to go for open heart surgery (the day before his 24th birthday). Again I did go visit, but what I saw just made me sick. His parents do nothing to help, let him live with them, jobless and rent free, supply him with a car and give him vast amounts of drug-money and let him grow weed in their house. One day he's going to die. I'm really sorry, I guess this isn't too encouraging, but it's been on my chest for a while, and I did want to let you know that I feel your pain. Best wishes and I hope you can get you parents to open thier eyes because nothing will change until he loses everything and has the desire to change for himself. Also, something that helped me was going to al-anon, or a support group for people with family/loved ones who have an addiction problem. If you like it suggest it to your mom and dad too. Sorry so long and good luck again.

~*the antisocial*~
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-24-2003
Thu, 06-19-2003 - 11:43am
Thank you and Jennifer for posting. It is good to know I am not alone.

The new chapter in this drama is that now my brother has been arrested. He was arrested last Friday for possession and selling. Although, according to him he was not selling. He says he was lighting the cigarette of another user and they were both arrested on the street. He apparently had more than the regular possession amount and $32.00. Since the other girl also had drugs they charged him with selling.

This is all not really shocking this is the kicker.

My parents spoke to their lawyer the night this happened. The lawyer insisted that they get him out right away to show that he has family (this apparently helps the judge to see he is not some horrible person). Well it was Friday night so they did not have that type of cash on them. Knowing that my aunt and grandmother do keep that type of money around they go to them and tell them that my car broke down and that I absolutely needed a new car by Monday morning so I could attend school (I live in another state). They told them that a friend of mine happened to be flying the next day to where I was on vacation and they wanted to send the money with her so they wouldn't have to pay an expensive Western Union fee.

I just couldn't believe they involved me in this ridiculous lie. As far as I was concerned they should have let him stay in there until they could bail him out.

At the same time though I understand the urgency. I thought I wanted him to go to jail before but now that it is actually very possible I wished I would have never thought it. If he does go to jail he will probably stay for a very long time or die in there. He will be in and out of fights because that is just the way it is in there. The prison he would go to (and has been to before) is notoriously known for how dangerous it is. Not that all jails aren't dangerous but you actually hear about this jail in rap songs so I am very serious when I say dangerous. Unless your Mike Tyson or as large as the guy from the Green Mile trouble will find you and you have to do what you can to defend your self. He will have to join a gang to keep people from messing with him. It will not be easy and not something that I would want anyone to go through especially not my brother.



I have kind of gotten over the lie but it is just really ridiculous how they jump through hoops for him.

Avatar for cl_2and1more
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 06-23-2003 - 10:53am
I had missed this update until today.

How are things now? Do you know anything else? I know what you mean when you say that you wished something and then really don't want to see it happen. I hope that he is able to "see the light" and the judge will give him another chance. But if not, you will just have to deal day by day with what is happening.

About the lie - I would write or call those that gave money for your car. Tell them that you heard that they were told you needed money for a car but that is not true. You did not need help because your car was not broken down and you did not receive any of the money given. And that you are sorry that they were lied to. Don't tell them anything else. If they ask what happen to the money then just direct them to your parents. Let them answer for themselves. It will halp your parents see what a terrible the thing they did about lying for the money. And you will not be held responsible for the missing money. I would hate to see this come down to your grandmother upset with you because you never thanked them or paid them back. Make sure they know the truth about you and let your parents deal with them.

Let us know what is happening next.

Melissa

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-24-2003
Mon, 06-23-2003 - 3:07pm
As it goes with my brothers freedom, he is waiting for trial next month. He is pleading not guilty to the selling charge. Right now he is in a rehabilitation center. He has said he knows he has to stay there because he can't control himself and knows he could be arrested again before his trial.

As for the lie, I appreciate your suggestion but I could never do that. My parents would never forgive me. Even though they drive me insane at times I am not sure I could live with being disowned. At least not over this. They repaid the money they borrowed that night as soon as they could get to the bank so I don't have to worry about being held responsible for the money.

I guess it is just another example of how my brother is more important than I am because I don't have all the problems he has.

I really do appreciate your concern and I will keep you posted.

Thanks again ;)