Registered: 1379053579 Posts: 1
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It's 1:30 am and I find myself in tears and helpless... History: my now 19-year old son started drinking/abusing alcohol years ago, using THC and later just about any other type of drug he could get his hands on. Eventually, he got caught with THC/paraphernalia and then caught again before the first court date had even passed. He participated in an alcohol and other drug program (my ex and I paid for out of pocket) as part of an agreement with the court to avoid prison time. I thought it was an answer to my prayers because he is also subject to drug testing for one year. Finally, no more drugs! Wrong - he's found something else that is possibly worse than alcohol and many (not all) drugs. It will not be detected on his drug test...huffing. I initially became aware he was huffing aerosol while I had my elderly mother house/dog sit when I took my first real vacation in four years. She called me, not knowing what to do - she found my son unconscious on the sofa in my basement (he was living with me at the time). He had a can in his hand, had hit his head, he was partially exposed and was unresponsive. I was so confused, really. I didn't understand what was happening. Before I coud decide whether to have her call the ambulance...or what...he was 'back'. My poor mother was distraught and my vacation was ruined with worry! She talked with him about it and he & I also talked about the dangers of huffing when I got back. He assured me he was 'done with that'. Fast forward a month...I caught him with a can in his hand when I went in the basement to get something. Again, it was 'the last time' after we talked. Two months later; I received a call from a friend's mother - my son broke their 40" LCD TV and they want a new one ($900). I was able to reason with them and found an exact used replacement to restore them and keep him out of court. He told me that he tripped over their coffee table in the dark. She came to pick up the TV tonight and told me that he was actually huffing with her son and daughter there, passed out while standing up and hit his head on the TV when he fell. She also said that her daughter told her he had been huffing in the Walmart parking lot before driving, he had been huffing before driving from their house and she has observed this being done more than once at her house-including seeing him hunched over & unconscious. Her children (19 and 16) told her to never mind what's going on but she decided to tell me after meeting me. Oh my God! You really can never believe an addict. I've read many of the posts from very sad parents who have lost their children to huffing. I don't want to be one of those parents! I texted my son - the only way he communicates with me (seeing I'm blocked from his Facebook page) but he says he's busy. On top of this, his father and I recently paid for college tuition/books/wireless/rent and his roommate called to tell me that he's having sex/performing sexual acts to get money for gas (and, I suspect, huffing) because he doesn't have a job (it will be difficult for him to get one with the addiction problems). I can't believe this is really happening and I don't know what to do! The fact that it can kill you doesn't seem to phase him at all, begging that I love him and I would be devastated doesn't appear to be enough to help him stop either. I'm so worried. I have no pride left - I don't care what people think; I need & want help. I don't know what to do. Has anyone, anywhere had any success in getting through to their loved one about this destructive behavior? I don't feel like I can talk to my friends because they're in a different 'world' really and, I foresee the only thing coming out of it would be that they may treat him in a negative manner (thus, possibly making the problem worse). H E L P ? ! ? ! I would welcome some good advice on how to break this news to his father, and soon. We both love our son but with all the difficulties in the course of our divorce, I am at a loss on how to tell him. Our son hasn't seen him much in over a year and I'm worried that if I get the two of them together to address it, his initial reaction will not help the situation. I've called (no answer) and texted him to call me ASAP about our son - but I haven't heard from him yet. P.S. Mother loves him, father loves him, middle class/comfortable upbringing (although divorce 5 years ago), neither parents do drugs or abuse alcohol, brother is clean, family in the picture and all care about him...
Registered: 1378819909 Posts: 2
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Hi, my name is Christine and my daughter huffed computer duster for almost 2 years. This experience has changed me and I will never be the same again. Every single day I thought I was going to find my daughter dead or she was going to kill someone. I have two grandchildren who went through some of this, my mother took them out of the house and had them for 1 year. But, they are still effected by their experience. My daughter has not used in 3 years, but she suffers from brain damage and she is not the same daughter I had for 32 years. I am lucky because she is still here, most people never recover and die or end up in prison for killing someone under the influence. She totaled five vehicles, was in 6 rehabs (no rehabs are educated or able to treat huffing), and she was arrested numerous times. Most of the time the police returned the can of duster to her when she was released, because it is not illegal!!!! She was taken to the ER probably 10 times and the medical staff knew nothing about the effects of huffing computer duster. No one is educating the public on the effects and damage huffing can do to our children, only the people that are already affected by our loved ones use know the damage it causes and then it is too late. I don't know how or why my daughter stopped, it didn't happen from a rehab experience. She continued to use after each discharge. But, the only thing that saved me from dying from a all the stress was to disconnect from her (as soon as my grandchildren were safe). Your love is not going to save him and you are hurting yourself by staying in contact and hearing all the details of his use. Tell your husband everything and then stop enabling him by paying for all of his expenses. I know it is a hard thing to hear but he is killing himself and there is absolutely nothing you can do. But, save yourself and pass on your experience to others maybe your experience can save others. My daughter is registered on this message board and tells her story, she has also contacted other who are still using to tell them the lasting effects. Please read her posts and if you want ther to speak to your son I know she will. her id is angelamharrington and her last post is on page three. I will be praying for you and your son, miracles happen every minute of everyday. Good Luck and please take care of yourself.
__________________ Christine m Harrington
Registered: 1386759175 Posts: 7
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I really thought of him trying to pass myself and try to listen and accept help from people around her. most of the people involved in the inhaled smoke are not sober enough to listen to others
Registered: 1387515114 Posts: 9
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I am truly sorry you are going through this. My own family (especially my mom) had to deal with this same thing the past year, with me. I am ashamed of all I put her through. I want you to know, as someone who watched those she loved suffer, that you are doing everything you can do. Don't ever feel that you are not doing enough, or not expressing to your son enough that he is loved. He knows it, he's ashamed himself, but the addiction is just too important to him.
There is not a lot you can do for someone who is huffing, is an adult, and is refusing help for the addiction. Because it seems your son is even refusing to talk to you, my suggestions are limited. First, the other poster is right, cut off all help to your son in regards to money and anything that can be traded for money to buy duster. Even groceries can be taken back and that money used to buy duster (I did this myself). If he has a vehicle, it is only a matter of time before he loses it or the ability to maintain it. Whether it breaks down, he has an accident while influenced, or he can not get it out of impound after police confiscate it... he will eventually lose the car and a means to make a trip to get duster. DO NOT HELP HIM WITH TRANSPORTATION when it happens. No fixing the car, no bus passes, nothing. Having no way to get to the store is something that helped me first break the cycle. He will eventually go broke paying for the habit. If a store sells it nearby and he can walk there, it is only a matter of time before he will turn to stealing the cans of duster. He will either wipe out their supply stealing it, or get arrested trying. Pray he gets arrested, and quickly. And yes, a person can get arrested for just dusting also, if they are caught actually inhaling the dustoff. Also, wherever your son is living, keep an eye on the papers for his arrest for huffing. I did get arrested for it, and it is likely his addiction will lead him to huff in public at some point and get arrested as well. Often, for whatever reason, there will be a mention of an arrest for it in local papers. Watch for this. Maybe the first time it happens you will not have time to speak to the judge during his hearing (before they release him), but at the least, write to that judge and let him know about his addiction. This way, if he ever gets arrested again, the judge will be less likely to release him without putting him into a mandatory program. And if you do have the opportunity to talk to the judge in person, beg and plead for him to make it an inpatient program. Beg the judge not to release him. Become his worst nightmare, that is the best advice I can give. Use whatever means you can. If you manage to catch him in the act, don't stop him. Call the police, and let them watch him huffing. That way they can arrest him. If he calls you to bail him out of jail, don't do it, but show up at the court and tell the judge of his addiction. Do not help with money or transportation of any kind. Better to watch him lose his job, his car, college education, and his credit than his life. The only way your son even has a chance of beating this is to reach a place where he is forced to have no means or ability to find duster. It's not a magic solution in itself, not enough to keep him off it forever. But so long as he is doing it constantly, he will not have enough hope or desire within himself to seek more help. When your son reaches a place in his life where he can pick up the pieces, and I pray that he will, then point him to this place. To a forum for those who specifically huff. I won't say group programs are of no help, but I found it difficult myself to express my issues when no one understood or had experienced the same. And knowing/reading/talking to those with similar problems does make a difference. As for your husband, my advice is to just give him the truth, straight up. The huffing is an addiction, and a strong one. Considering the availability of the drug, I'd say it's an addiction even more daunting and dangerous than cocaine or heroin. Your son will have to deal with seeing his drug on every shelf of nearly every store for the rest of his life. Just grocery shopping will be a test of will power once he is clean. If you're going to help your son, it will take the both of you standing united to do so. Turning away a child is hard to do, but something you both have to do for the time being in order to keep him alive in the long run. When it comes to the rest of your family, use your judgement. If it's someone you think would be willing to help your son (not knowing he might be asking for the wrong reasons), let that family member know. You don't have to go into details if you think it will hurt him. Just let those family members close to him know that he has an addiction, that you don't want to hurt him by going into the details, but want to let them know that any help they give financially will likely be used on drugs. I wish you the best of luck. Don't give up hope or be discouraged. I did the stuff for over a year, heavily, and managed to survive it. Even as dangerous a place that he is in, there is always hope.
Registered: 1522136629 Posts: 49
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