Changing Lives is proud to partner with The Addict’s Mom
to bring our readers even more support, hope and friendship.
This question was asked of a member of Addict’s Mom, Teri Murgia. She is a recovering prescription drug addict and the mother of an addict who now dedicates her life to helping others who are suffering. It is a powerful lesson she shared about enabling, and how her mother’s decision to walk away changed her life.
When your Mother found the courage to stop the enabling process by walking out on you when you were facing uncertain death how did that make you feel in your heart?
~by Teri Murgia
The day my Mother found the courage to walk out of my hospital room was the day I had made another personal attempt to end my life. She just couldn’t do it anymore. My Mother had already lost two children by this time, her heart was broken into a million pieces and all she could do was fall to her knees and cry out to GOD!
My first thought when she walked out of the room that day confirmed what I was feeling “even my own Mother couldn’t love me”. Then all the feelings of anger, bitterness and sometimes even a bit of hatred flooded my thoughts. What kind of Mother could walk away from their only daughter? How could someone be so cold and unfeeling? Her last words to me that day were, “I AM NOT GOING TO SIT BACK AND WATCH YOU KILL YOURSELF ANYMORE; IF YOU WANT TO DIE THAT’S YOUR CHOICE BUT I WON’T BE HERE TO WATCH IT!!” And she left.
It was that day when my long and difficult journey toward recovery began. You see . . . my Mother made the ultimate choice that day; she chose her life. She knew her life was worth something and she was no longer going to allow my addiction to destroy it! She was no longer going to be a victim of my destructive behavior.
Today I live my life grateful that she had the courage to walk away–as it was the very thing I needed–to begin my recovery. Thank you MOM, I love you!
“The Addict’s Mom,” founded by Barbara Theodosiou is a group focusing on the mothers of addicted children. The relationship between the mother and addicted child is unique; that does not diminish the experiences of other family members. This group however, is dedicated to addressing the mother’s pain but more importantly, the commonalities of our experiences thus illustrating to the grieving mother that she is not alone nor is she unique in this respect. One line, one thought can help change her perspective for the better. (click here to explore the new Addict’s Mom membership site)
MORE from The Addict’s Mom:
-Overcoming difficulties living with an addict
-Expectations for our loved one’s recovery vs. reality
–Visit The Addict’s Mom Website
–Addiction. What if they just CAN’T quit?
–Addiction Recovery Resources for Families of Substance Abusers, Addicts and Alcoholics
Why Don’t They Just Quit? What families and friends need to know about addiction and recovery.
> Audio Book CD (Listen in your car)
> Audible Audio Download (LISTEN TO 4 MIN. SAMPLE)
–from The Addict’s Mom. ”She just couldn’t do it anymore”, to Blog Home
I have been reading blogs like this for quite sometime… looking for answers trying to figure out the best course of action. My daughter is coming home to me in about a week…I know drugs are/were? a big part of her life for probably 10 years.. I don’t know what kind, or to what degree exactly, just what she tells me… she is married, bankrupt…thankfully no children and currently living with a friend.. so I guess that would make her homeless too! She’s been arrested…only once but the charges have were dropped. Yes, I helped her get out of it! And now she wants to come home… She is clean (so she says) she is ready to get her life on track… She sounds real good and positive on the phone…she’s not leaving her husband… but leaving him behind for a month or so to continue with the job they both have been doing to continue to pay their bills while she searches for a job living with me. I believe in my daughter…but noone else does…she’s an addict… She’s my daughter and yes that makes me bias.. my heart tells me to give her a chance.. others tell me get her in rehab…I don’t have the money for that? and from what I read… the success rate not so great? set boundries..search her things when she gets here…accuse her before given a chance…Does she deserve a chance? I haven’t seen her in over a year..Is it right to assume the worst up front? My mind tells me yes…don’t be enabler… My heart tells me ..no..she needs something positive to move forward… I am confused, scared … I want everything to be ok…I want to believe “I’ve got this” does this make me a dreamer?
I feel so desperate for answers or feedback to my adult son’s addictions that I do not know where to turn anymore. Although many are sympathetic to this situation, no one knows how addiction destroys lives like others in the same boat.
I appreciate the testimonials of other moms and feel their pain. I am so scared my son will be found dead and I do not want to be the one to find him. He has been addicted to alcohol and RX pain killers for years, and has been in rehab and is now in a Life Recovery program at our local Christian mission (over 3 months now). He seemed to be doing so well, but recently he found “huffing” as a cheap and non-detectable source of a quick high. In the last 7 days, he was found unconscious twice and sent to the local ER. He has extreme anxiety issues along with his addictions, but has no job, no money. I want to be strong and not enable him. I have been seeing him once per week while at the mission, and maybe I should not be doing that. I told him he can not live with me again however, so if he gets kicked out of this program, he will have to find another way to live. Any suggestions?
Thanks for your comment Cathie! It just goes to show that we should never give up hope! There is something you might like to know about—which is the topic of our radio show yesterday. We interviewed the director of the Betty Ford Children’s Program, along with an 11-year-old boy and his Mom who went through the program. It is a wonderful program and they will not turn anyone away because of lack of funds.
Here is the link for the show (minus commercials, traffic and news):
And here is a link for our blog post about the show, called Children of Addicts: The Innocent Victims: https://drug-addiction-help-now.org/2012/01/children-of-addicts-the-innocent-victims/
I too am a grandmother caring for my grandson of almost five, there is hope…I lost it at one time but today after so many false starts, my grandsons mother is taking the first step of her “journey” back to being the mother, daughter and young woman God had meant for her to be. Never ask why….. never ask when… or how come this has happened that those we love fell into hell…just keep on working your own steps, keep loving them, praying for them reaching out to others in the same situation and God just may give you a miracle. Like they say..hate the addiction, not the one who has it. Many times it seems like you want to scream, right? Well, scream, get it out…and keep going.
I am glad that I found this site! I have been a big enabler of my daughter who got involved with drug use at the age of 19. Now 5 years later, 1 grand daughter and a grandson on the way, she takes her days, day to day. She has been sober for close to a year, yet just recently got into some trouble and of course as the mom, im worried sick..Yet i know that choices cause consequences. I feel like I am constantly in prayer mode and hoping that it all works out. I am currently raising my soon to be 4yr old grand daughter, I have had her since birth. I worry myself sick over the what the conclusion to all this could be, especially with a newborn. Reading these posts though gives me the courage to move forward and know that there is still hope out there.
I am so sorry for all that you are going through. I can’t imagine the emotional pain you must be going through right now. Please know you are not alone, there are thousands of Mother’s out there who are going through this painful journey just as you are. My letter is a message of HOPE! I know that as the daughter who almost broke the very spirit that lived within my mother, I needed her to stop “fixing” my life so I could learn how to do it for myself! It was very painful YES, and it felt like rejection, but I needed her to show me what it looked like to value one’s self. She modeled selfworth to me the day she chose her life, and made me be responsibile for mine! Your daughter needs you to choose you now, so she can know what self worth looks like..I am praying for you and your daughter….Please know there is ALWAYS hope!!
I found Codependence Anonymous very helpful in giving me a support system to stay strong and not enable my son. It is a very hard thing to do. I think the group The Addict’s Mom is such a wonderful group so that parents can find the strength to do the only thing that one can really do…Take care of yourself so you can be there for others. Gramma Shirah Penn
My husband and son passed away frm medical issues. Today my daughter is in a hospital and I am two states away. She is currently using heroin and anything else under the sun minnd you twenty years old. I am remarried and today I am with my husband to give him support. His mom just passed away.
So i am feeling really lonely and torn because my daughter is in a hospital due to medical issues and complicated by her drug addiction. Today i will think of me and iwant to thank terri for what she wrote because i do feel so alone and i don’t want to lose my daughter to addiction and watch her fade away
this posting broke my heart but also gave me hope. thanks for sharing it.
Thank you so much for responding. Addiction is killing our families everywhere. It is so important to keep the message of hope out there. May God Bless you and keep you safe….
I had to do the same thing with my son.It is so hard to walk away but self destruction is a hard thing to watch.It destroys everyone around you too.He cut hisself with a broken light bulb in a jail cell.16 long cuts down his arm.He got saved by the jail staff but when he found himself going back to prison for drugs again ,he called.Told me he couldnt do prison again and was going to attemptit again,I told him I loved him but I wasnt going to go through that again.I TOLD HIM IF THATS WHAT HE WAS GOING TO DO GO AHEAD BUT DONT EVER THINK I WOULD BE THERE TO WATCH HIM DO IT AGAIN.Not to call me cause I had had enough and couldnt take it anymore.I never got a call like that again.He grew up and decide I wasnt playing games anymore with him or his 2 brothers.I have 3 addict sons and cant watch them do it anymore.They may think I dont love them cause I walked away.But it is because I DO LOVE THEM that I cant enable them anymore.
Thank you, Teri. What a powerful impact statement. I plan to share this with my own mother, father and siblings engaged in the efforts to help one of our siblings find the road to recovery. Be blessed today and everyday!