Teens, Drugs, and Love

I got a call from one of my sisters (V) today. She said she wanted to update me on what is going on with my niece (J). You see, my niece hasn’t had the best life. Her dad left when she was small and was quick to give up his parental rights. Then my sister married a drunk and he attacked my niece one night because he thought she was my sister. That is just a little bit of what she has went through.

Anyway, J is 16 almost 17 now and has fell in love with a PoS boy (PoS) that has her hooked on drugs now. V told me that they put her into rehab when they found out J is now using heroin and shooting up. I told V that, unfortunately, there isn’t a whole lot that can be done if J doesn’t want be helped. This PoS is abusive (physically and mentally) and is probably using the drugs as a way to control her and maybe even prostitute her. *sigh*

Here is the thing though, get ready for this.

J was in a foster home. Actually she was in V’s ex husband’s brothers home (they foster kids). V TOLD THEM that the boy was PoS and that J shouldn’t have any contact with him. Well, they decided that they should meet PoS and when they did they thought he was a good kid (now this PoS is almost 20 YEARS OLD!!!). Anyway, so they decide PoS is a good kid and that J can go out…unsupervised…with PoS. Which is how J came to doing heroin.

I will say that again.

The foster parents let J date the PoS, after being warned, that got her addicted to drugs in and in trouble in the first place only to get J addicted to MORE drugs, namely heroin.

So, now J is in rehab. I want to write her a letter and have V send it to her…but what would I say? I mean, railing at her isn’t going to help. I could try to give her advice, but I am not even sure if that would work.

What I REALLY want to do is go shoot PoS and strangle J.


Makes me wonder why we wanted to have kids.



Filed under Abuse, Family, Mental Illness

5 responses to “Teens, Drugs, and Love

  1. You may be right, your sister may have to make those calls because they may need to come from someone local.

    In many ways, your hands are tied because you live so far away. Perhaps you can convince her mother to let her get mail from you though. You might be surprised how willing she will be to listen (and how many times your letter might actually be read) when she gets a much-wanted contact with the outside world.

    You and DH are right, you might get that call, and I’d be scared to death about it too. At the same time, you can only do so much, and it sounds like you have been trying to help for a long time.

  2. Sandy

    There is a lot more to this story…some background that I didn’t put into this post…and I may get more into later…

    But I have to mention that the biggest issue I have with doing anything is they live in TN and I live in PA. 800 miles away is a long way to try to help, even though I tried to get them to move up here with us when my sister first got divorced.

    I do not know if the police (or DHS is what it is down there) down there would take me seriously because I live so far away. However, I did tell my sister to keep calling the police on him for the very reason to make it a pain to stick around…that it would eventually just be too much trouble. She said she has called them…but…

    I will have to get my thoughts together on this and post more later…maybe some background and more insight into the thought processes of my sister as well so you can get a full picture.

    I am currently debating on if I can write to her (through my sister as she said she told the rehab place that J is not to accept any mail from anyone other than her)…and see if she is able to write to me…maybe I can at least be there for her in that way. V always said they respected me and listened to me…so if that is true maybe I can use that to her advantage?

    I don’t know what to do. I am at a loss and DH is as well. We spoke about it and we both are certain that one day we are going to get a call that she is dead bc of an overdose or intentional suicide.

    I don’t want to see her young life wasted…but I feel like my hands are tied.

  3. I’m really, really sorry to hear about this situation. I have both personal and professional experience dealing with teen drug addiction (for years I worked in criminal defense, so I ended up trying to clean up the teens’ lives after the inevitable crime started), so I really feel for you and your family. To say that you are in a terrible predicament is an understatement.

    I agree with Judith, you should report PoS to the police, and explain to them what happened and that it involves a young girl. If nothing else, they’ll be interested in the fact that he’s shooting heroin; since that’s such a deadly and highly addictive drug, most police departments take it very seriously, and would be only too happy to bust him every time he turns around. A lot of cops also have teenage daughters, and they don’t want the PoS getting their daughters addicted so that’s additional reason for them to bust him every time they get a chance. It’s possible that they will file charges against him for what he has done to J, but don’t be surprised if they say they can’t or won’t do that without J’s cooperation, which she may not be willing to give at this point.

    The only way to keep PoS away from J is to make it too much of a hassle for him to be around her (and hopefully too much of a hassle for him to continue living in that area, since “PoS” is an understatement in describing anyone who would get a girl that age addicted to heroin). You may very well be right, he may be grooming her to turn tricks to support their habit, if he hasn’t already done that to her.

    The only way to keep J away from PoS is to break her “love” addiction to him. Unfortunately, due to her early experiences, she identifies loving relationships with men in terms of pain.

    You are absolutely right when you say that no one can help J until she wants to be helped. But at 15 and already shooting heroin, she’s playing a “big boy sport”, as many addicts call it. She is at very high risk of overdose, since the quality of street heroin varies greatly, and at very high risk of disease due to sharing needles, or using dirty needles. I fear at her age, she is not going to insist upon health precautions – even if she is aware of them, which she may not be – when she is doing intravenous drugs with someone that much older.

    So while I do agree with you on the wisdom of rehab for someone who doesn’t want to quit, I also think she was correctly forced into rehab, if for no other reason than to get her away from PoS for a while. That relationship must be severed if J is to be saved, as I’m sure you are very well aware.

    The foster parents who allowed this to happen should absolutely be decertified. Perhaps you should also make a call to Child Protective Services.

    Unfortunately, given J’s background, she has a long and arduous road ahead of her. Teens do drugs to that extent because they are unable to deal with abuse they have suffered. As they say in the song “Hurt”, which was written by a heroin addict about heroin addiction:

    I hurt myself today, to see if I still feel
    I focus on the pain, the only thing that’s real
    The needle tears a hole, the old familiar sting
    Try to kill it all away, but I remember everything

    J will probably not be able to stop using drugs, unless she is able to come to terms with the abuse she suffered, and understands how her addiction and her current lifestyle is a result of the abuse; i.e., that by hurting herself with drugs and PoS boyfriends who are only using her, she allows her abuser to continue abusing her, even when he is not there. For that reason, individual therapy is an absolute must, in addition to drug therapy.

    The way I would approach that with her (based upon my many years of self-reflection, in understanding and coming to terms with my own longterm childhood physical, emotional, psychological, and sexual abuse) would be to say (with regard to her stepfather), “Do you really want him to win? Because that’s what he’s doing. Every time you hurt yourself, he wins. He didn’t want you to be happy. He wanted you to hurt. And now since he isn’t here to hurt you anymore, you’re continuing to do his dirty work for him, because that’s what he falsely led you to believe you deserved. However, you don’t deserve to hurt, because you didn’t do anything wrong. You were just a kid, and he took advantage of that. However, no one can stop him from continuing to hurt you, but you, and the only way you can stop him is to prove that you can overcome the effect he has had on you, and live a happy and healthy life despite the terrible things he did to you.”

    I hope some of that is at least somewhat helpful. I will keep you and J in my thoughts. Please let us know how she is doing.

  4. Report his ass. She’s not 16 yet, and it’s against the law- especially when she’s obviously incompetent to make sound decisions. PoS is right.

  5. tracya

    i’m so sorry to hear that, drug/alcohol addiction is such a huge problem here in england and i sit here so smug like it never happens in the states, but i know it does.
    we have had a number of really sad patients lately…a 26 year girl, heroin addict, insulin dependent diabetic…a 30 year old alcoholic who is at deaths door with liver failure…
    i also know it on a personal level….

    just wishing YOU much strength, you can care about someone much more than they care about themselves. take care of you and your family, it’s the best investment you can make.
    {{{BIG HUGS}}}