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Don't laugh but, last weekend my 18 year old son passed out in his fathers car in the drive-thru at McDonald's. He was awakened by a police officer who promptly had the car towed and took my son to jail.

The legal drinking age is 21. It scares me to death that he was driving like that.

With him out of danger now, it might seem a LITTLE funny, except for the fact that over the last several years he has been arrested at least seven times because when he drinks he cannot control his behavior.

My son and I met with his longtime GP. My son does not admit that he has a problem. I pointed out that every single time he gets in trouble, he has been drinking. He acknowledged that. At the doctor's suggestion, my son said that he will be more conscious about how much he is drinking.

Apparently, it has not worked.

I've had enough Al-anon to know that I can't change him. But, I think I have a responsibility to try SOMETHING before a disaster occurs.

Do interventions work at all? At what point do you have one? What is it like?

Very concerned,

Sunshine Outside

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I've had enough Al-anon to know that I can't change him. But, I think I have a responsibility to try SOMETHING before a disaster occurs.

Do interventions work at all? At what point do you have one? What is it like?

Very concerned,

Sunshine Outside

typically, no. I'm very sorry.

get some facts:

http://www.amazon.com/Under-Influence-Guid...2391&sr=8-1

this book is the best I've found on addiction. it is a multi-disciplinary approach to the problem. It explains "rock bottom" and when interventions should be attempted, and by whom.

Bottom line:

Interventions work best at turning points. your son having been arrested already, that is no longer a turning point. sadly his behavior may have to get to the point of harming someone other than himself for the reality to sink in; god forbid, vehicular homicide, etc.

sometimes even that does not work.

interventions are typically attempted by a trained pro (therapist) and the closest family and friends. An employer sometimes participates with the threat of job loss.

each participant writes a letter they read aloud.

Pt 1 is chapter and verse on what a valuable and lovable person the addict is.

Pt 2 is a matter of fact inventory of the harm the addict's BEHAVIOR has caused. it is important that the BEHAVIOR is blamed, not the addict.

Pt 3 is a message of hope and help. This is where you say that there is hope and you have the plane tickets ready to fly them to rehab. They must decide. They must be the ones who pack. It must be their choice.

Pt 4 are the consequences should they not accept your offer of help - ranging from avoiding contact with the addict to throwing them out of their home and turning them in to authorities. this depends on the situation.

This is MY UNDERSTANDING of interventions. I may have a lot wrong with my assessment.

PLEASE talk to a pro. don't attempt this on your own.

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I think that was really good advice. I will only add that I think this is something that your ex-husband needs to acknowledge and agree is a serious problem. He shouldn't be letting your son drive his car---a drunk driving arrest should ground him for MONTHS, if not for a year. Why hasn't his license been revoked?

But I'm getting off the subject. That book sounds good and I agree that an intervention needs to be carefully planned and carried out by someone who knows how to do it.

Hang in there, SO.

olga

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over the last several years he has been arrested at least seven times...

Y'know, when I hear the term "over the last several years" I think "five or six years"...

Really, how long has this been going on? I started drinking at 19, and damn if I didn't slide hard in about 3 years but never did get to the point of passing out in a drive-thru at McDonald's. Though I was drunk enopugh that I bumped into a lady in front of me...

Anyways. yeah. He absolutely should NOT be driving in a car he doesn't own, and IMO should never have been if he has these sorts of problems. At least take the car away and he'll have to find another way to kill someone while driving drunk.

Aside from that I can't add much, from my own personal, it takes a real personal tragedy to change one's life in any meaningful way. Hopefully your son can change before something like this has to happen--cuz my feeling is, if he has to change through some sort of tragedy, it's gonna invole a felony and prison time. No one wants that.

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;)

Thank you much for all of your experience/knowledge.

Man, it hit me right between the eyes.

I guess I've just been hoping that it is not as bad as it is. I'm terrified and sad.

But I know enough to know that there is not much I can do about it except set my own boundaries and not enable him in any way.

If this thing continues to progress, this is going to continue to be hard on everyone.

At least now, my former husband does agree with me that he has a problem. He says he is not going to let him drive the car anymore and doesn't care how he gets to work.

I hope that I feel that way now and not wait until I almost hate him and he almost hates me from the ways that he will want to be enabled and I refuse.

I'm going to keep hoping and praying but I'm also going to get ready for the effects of an addiction.

Thank so much.

Sadly,

Sunshine Outside

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;)

CNS.

Thanks for writing.

He started drinking in the ninth grade....fourteen, I think. One of the youngest in his grade.

It was also about the time that the onset of Bipolar II Disorder rendered me non-functionable. I was unable to properly supervise the boys.

I sent the boys to live with their dad at fifteen years old and they stayed with him until they graduated and moved out on their own about a year ago.

The problems with the law and drinking began at about 16. I overestimated. He has had 4 arrests, all involving alcohol.

Dad still supports Son in intent to lie on assessment test. Says it may affect a charge that Son received in a far state that is pending.

I don't agree. As former husband and I have to do sometimes, we agreed to disagree.

Dad is making a trip to the Highway Department to see if son's license has been suspended at any point.

To me, they are still so young. They are still teenagers. They are still developing. Anyway....

Maybe things will turn out better that we imagine sometimes.

Thank you for your real help. Everyone.

Worried,

Sunshine Outside

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He started drinking in the ninth grade....fourteen, I think. One of the youngest in his grade.

Remember that I'm in Montana. Back when, at this Junior Acheivement (business prep type of thing) state conference that happened to be hosted in our town, my room mates raided the hospitality suite for the advisors..we were all freshman. I was the only one who didn't drink. They got caught and lectured. Everyone knew I didn't drink (then!) so I was OK. But at 19 I was a WAY late bloomer for this area. Note that after that, they didn't have any more hospitality suites, at least with any alcohol laying around... Even stone cold sober it seems I was a bad influence...

At any rate drinking young is not necessarily abnormal, it is however a bad sign. I wish for all your sakes it could have been nipped in the bud. now is the time for hard love and ass kicking. A good whupping (not physical, but legal/spiritual, whatever...OK physical too) is what he needs. At his age I was kinda starting out on my life of crime...at 21 I got hit with a felony charge. Took that to finally get me set on a straighter path. I really hope it doesn't go that far with him, but young crazy people seem to have heads of cement.

Anyways. having been there, and done that...my advice? If he truly fucks up? help him, but only to the extent that he will help himself...and only ONE time. The impetus is really on him now. He's in the "old enough to know better" bracket, but still in the "young enough to screw up" area...

Dunno. Anyways last time I was locked up I was ready to bail myself out, but my parents came through (hitting the bank at 4:30 on Friday even!) but that event was due to sheer bp craziness. And now I live my life to try to prove that they weren't mistaken to always be there for me. i just hope your son can realize what a support network he has, and not throw everything away.

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hi SO:

did the gp suggest any of the anti-alcohol meds? like antabuse, or some of the others? (note: im not sure on the technical "classification" term for these types of meds).

as for driving someone else's car while drunk!! OH MY. the driver gets in a ton of shit, and depending on the issue and/or state - the owner gets in trouble. if son drives someone else's car while drunk and hits someone or kills someone - thats some serious liability on everyone. and possibly a complete ruination of relationships to & between everyone.

if you ex-h wants son to lie??? thats totally on ex-h's head (if i was the judge). and since son is legal at "18" this could be serious implications on ex-h & son.

i know this is a scary situation for you. i think you are doing everything you can do. maybe do a little copy & paste then print this thread and give to son. and say "these people care about me. they care about you...."

i hope for you much peace,

db

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hi, sunshine

I am truly sorry to hear about the stuff you are going thru with your son.

I do know that where we (as in you & I in the same state) that they are

very tough on DUI's these days. Did the last one happen here?

Thru my addictions and with my sister's ongoing addiction, I, unfortunately

have learned that unless you CAN admit you have a problem - you're not

going to be able to do anything about it.

I am going thru the DUI stuff with my other half right now & I am honestly

scared to death. Even tho there is the age difference - it affects you more when

it's someone you love so much & care for tremendously.

I hope everything works out, ok

Thinking of you,

wakko

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