Quote of the Week

"If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way" ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Walking the Tightrope ~ by Brigette
Posted by:Sally--Monday, August 15, 2011

"I'm up on the tight wire, one side's ice and one is fire..." - Leon Russell

We got home from the PSST meeting yesterday and, lo and behold, I looked in the mirror and saw a 5 of diamonds. Damn, I thought for sure it was an Ace of Spades two days ago. (Lloyd's excellent post: Indian Poker Anyone?)

Francois and I were walking a very thin tightrope with Pierre, afraid of the other D word (depression). Having had a brother who committed suicide from depression, another brother who spent most of his adult life behind bars because of struggles with schizophrenia and alcoholism, and depression running in both families, I have an intense fear of missing something with Pierre. To the point, that I didn't want to cause more stress in his life.

So, Pierre was home for two days and we overlooked him missing two NA meetings. We didn't react right away when he took the car for a drive at 11:00 at night.

I know-- it sounds crazy to me as I'm writing this.

After all our PSST training, we knew better. Somehow, we thought Pierre's story would be different. After all, he did so well at the YES program, right? He must have all the tools and motivation to make the right choices, so why add more stress to his life?

I am glad that no one (Lloyd) sugar-coated the truth at yesterday's meeting. We were on our way to enabling Pierre quicker than you can say Indian Poker. It took someone compassionate, yet bold, to state the truth clearly.

So, we went home from the meeting and took the car from Pierre. After Pierre blew off some steam and returned to the discussion, Francois went over the contract with him again and reiterated our expectations.

We will continue to address his mental health needs, but as one wise shaman said (you know who you are) "The depression will still be there, the accountability is another issue."

We are going to have weak moments and moments of doubt and fear. We are asking each of you in PSST to continue to hold us accountable as we need to hold Pierre accountable.

We will not agree with everything that is suggested, but we will listen and continue to evaluate our behaviors and actions. Thank you!!!

Brigitte and Francois



Cheryl, Jim, Andy + 3 Stooges said...

Be strong Brigitte & Francois...only 48 hrs home & already struggling with rules, behavior & contract. You never got the honeymoon stage with your recently re-hab released teen that most of us parents of addicts have enjoyed & were able to brag about--temporarily. Your instincts are on target & that is why you came to the PSST mtg. for more encouragement & help.
We are all standing beside you as you all take this ONE DAY AT A TIME.
Cheryl & Jim

Lloyd Woodward said...

Thanks for the kind words. I admire your courage to reach out and ask for feedback. Your scenario helped all of us learn. You may have noticed that I changed the title of that post from Da Nile to Indian Poker Anyone?

Lloyd Woodward said...

Oh and your post made me laugh. Thanks for that too :-)

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much Cheryl and Jim! Yes, we were very glad we went. It offered the clarity and support we needed.

Thanks, Lloyd. I wrote this yesterday before you changed it! Maybe our editor can change my copy to fit your headline.


Max said...

Brigitte and Francois,
I want to make sure you realize that each and every one of us has made the same "mistakes" - letting our kid go out, have the car, "one more time", "5 minutes more" and the like. I am the person who asked at the begining of my son's adventure "should I tell my son's PO that he came in drunk last night?" Now it seems comical and obvious. But when you are filled with anxiety, exhausted, and not wanting to rock the boat with your kid, unsure of how best to proceed, it is difficult to see the big picture. So glad you came to PSST for help. You were great sports. This is a very tough time, and I salute all your efforts. Hang in there - we are all here for you!

Wilma said...

Brigitte and Francois,
I am sorry to hear of your troubles already with Pierre. I have missed the last couple of meetings so am a little out of touch with the group.
You are so strong I know you will tackle these issues with Pierre with strength and love. And I know you are not afraid to keep secrets so whatever Pierre decides to do you and Francois will get whatever help and reinforcements you need to handle the problems.

As you know Bam Bam doesn't have a contract or probation so we do not have the extra leverage we need with him. We do have his next ACT 53 hearing in September and my hope is the judge will keep his case open for a bit. He has not attended NA meetings and he is hanging out with all of his old friends (and some new ones).

I wish you all my best.


Lloyd Woodward said...

Willma, we miss seeing you and hearing your story. You have accomplished a great deal without the help of a PO and with minimal support from home. You single-handedly used the system to expose Bam Bam to inpatient treatment. You got the seeds of recovery planted in Bam Bam and you are a hero to us at PSST.

Tommorow Kathie and I are meeting with Bam Bam's inpatient people. They have asked us to give them feedback on how to improve their program especially with their approach to families. A lot of what we have to tell them we learned from listening to you and from reading your story on the blog. To help prepare for the meeting I'm re-reading all of your posts.

Because of you, another parent may have a better experience when their teenager is in same inpatient program.

You have been an inspiration to us at PSST. You make a difference. You are a mover and shaker in this world and sooner or later you're going to have a strong positive impact on Bam Bam too. That's a hunch of course, but still...I think it's a good one. :-)

Wilma said...

Thanks for the encouraging words. Hope you and Kathie had a good meeting at the facility. I'm confident you both will have a positive impact on the program



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