How long into a recovery can I finally relax? My son has been in program with Suboxone for a year…after five of back and forth relapses and jail. Now he is a manager at Subway, has girlfriend, apt and just got himself a car loan with no help from me, mom! I am so proud of him, but that nag stays in the back of my mind…wondering if it’s safe yet…
@C_Stoike congratulations for finding a treatment program for your son! I believe suboxone is one of the most effective treatments around, for the moment. My son also takes it and he has achieved more stability in his life.
As a mom, one of the hardest things is to know we cannot shield our children from bad things. Even my son without addiction is at risk of a freak accident, etc.
I hope you can appreciate the good moments and celebrations you have and release the worry, over time. It’s a great practice for self care and you can model this healthy behavior for your son.
This is precisely the area I am working on now in my own life - replacing worry with appreciation for all the good. This is my daily spiritual practice now, feeling gratitude and love instead of worry. I think religious and spiritual traditions are universal in saying that worry does not improve our quality of life and it doesn’t make our loved ones safer … even though it feels like the right thing for a parent to do! Who by worrying can add even a day to their lives? (For instance)
I’m so happy you and your son have found something that is working for him!
I have to say that for me, that after years of all consuming worrying and being in a constant state of ‘crisis / survival mode’ with my husband it was so surprising how quickly and easily I adapted to my husband’s healthy state. All of a sudden I wasn’t worrying anymore, life became less chaotic and crazy and the constant worry evaporated.
It definitely takes some time, but the evidence builds up and tips the scales in the other direction. I think we always need to be prepared for relapse, and we need to keep conversation as open and honest and inquisitive as possible - don’t let signs go unnoticed. But it definitely can get better <3
Even my husband’s recent relapse was just a blip on the radar - a vast difference to any relapse of the past.
I do want to mention that in the early days even though the worry left the forefront of my consciousness I was surprised when (and maybe it even still can happen a bit today) that something would trigger a past state of hysteria for me. For example - my husband’s drug of choice was cocaine and so he was always trying to stay out late and one night after a lovely dinner out he suggested we go somewhere for ‘one more’ - he meant some dessert - but it was a major trigger for me in the moment and I got irrationally upset and couldn’t describe it. It was because so many many nights he’d said the same thing and it meant something completely different. Something in me recognized it and reacted right away.
Being able to talk about these things, which by the way he might not even remember from his heavy using periods, has really helped us get even closer as a couple.
Great question @C_Stoike.
My dad has been out of his rehab program for 20 months now. The first year ish was great - almost too great - he was working out and eating well and socializing and living in entirely new, healthy ways from before when he was using. Honestly, I always felt like the other shoe was going to drop. It felt too good to be true, and realistically, it was.
In the past 6-7 months, he’s been having a really hard time. All the pain that he covered up with alcohol & pills, he replaced with “feel good” activities - unsustainably. What he needed/needs is to face his pain head-on. It’s really hard to watch him grapple with this reality, and it’s so healthy.
I think he’s relapsed in the past few months which is scary - but shouting at him about how I think he’s using & how I think he lied to me really didn’t get us anywhere. I’m doing my best now to (calmly ) check-in on his “emotional state” - the underlying “stuff” - to be able to support in that capacity - because the drug use was his coping mechanism, not the actual problem.
So, in short - I’m not sure when it’ll be safe to relax, and I’m right here with you celebrating wins and trying to care (without tipping into worry)!
Never spend time worrying. Enjoy every clean day he has and every day you have to the fullest