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Damned if I do, damned if I don’t. Drugs debt

(22 Posts)
Beckinhell Tue 22-May-18 13:51:56

Hi everyone. I’m in the most horrendous, heart wrenching situation as a parent of a 29 year old. This could be a very long story, but I’ll keep it as brief as I can!
My 29 yr old son has Asperger’s syndrome and adhd. He’s very high functioning but struggles with the neuro typical world. Anyway, he’s told me he started taking cocaine a few months ago (I suspect it’s been going on longer in hindsight) and he’s run up a £500 debt that is now overdue to his dealer. So the dealer has now doubled this to £1000. He has no means to pay this debt, he can’t manage his money for day to day living effectively as it is, so he’s come to me begging and pleading to pay it off for him. I’ve bailed him out twice previously, and he said it wouldn’t happen again, and I said I wouldn’t ever pay it again after the last time, so I’ve been sticking to my resolve and said I’ll help him in any other way I can, but not financially and definitely not paying off his drugs debts again.
He’s now saying he’s in hiding somewhere he doesn’t know with no money or food as he’s too scared to go home (I set him up in his own place near me in December).
He says something terrible will happen if he doesn’t pay it and he’s got no other options except me and to pay.
I’m pretty sure I’m doing the right thing not paying it this time, whilst continuing to offer him any other kind of support or help, but I have this doubt looming over me about them hurting, or worse, killing him. Obviously they’re not going to just go away, but if I pay it again this time then I’m going against my own resolve as well as just opening it up to happen again, and again, and again. But how do I live with this horrific fear of him being out there with nothing and the risk of him being hurt or worse if he comes back?
I honestly have no way of knowing how much of it is even true as he’s a master manipulator, he may even be just trying to get money out of me to buy more drugs for himself for all I know, but how can I risk it? Help please!

OP’s posts: |
PaddyF0dder Tue 22-May-18 13:53:50

It’s his fault.

He’s a grown man.

It’s his problem, not yours. He won’t learn if you keep solving this for him.

Melliegrantfirstlady Tue 22-May-18 13:55:34

Please call 101 and explain your predicament. They are the best people to advise you here.

You should let your son stay in hiding (if he actually is) as he deserves to live with the consequences of his actions.

Next time he will think twice.

Have you been to his home to ensure he really isn’t there?

Justmuddlingalong Tue 22-May-18 13:58:20

flowers You've bailed him out twice and set him up in a home. You will have a lifetime of this until you let him deal with it. I have experience in my extended family of this and it's been going on for @ 30 years.

Goldmonday Tue 22-May-18 14:04:58

Call the police?

Thisishell Tue 22-May-18 14:07:22

Thanks for the replies. You’re all confirming what I was thinking really. I did consider contacting the police, but really not sure if that could make things worse or be no help at all?
If he didn’t have the additional problems he’s got, the autism & adhd, I think I’d feel so much better about my decision, but this makes it all the more difficult!

Weezol Tue 22-May-18 14:08:26

Please give 101 or your Neighbourhood Policing Team a call today.

If you're worried about their attitude to him, or getting him in to trouble, it's highly unlikely that the police would charge him with anything, he's a vulnerable adult. They would treat him as such and view him as a victim of crime.

Sadly this is something the police deal with often. Vulnerable people are targeted by dealers. The dealet may be in the process of grooming him for 'cuckooing' - they take up residence in the victim's home until the debt is paid. Except the debt is never paid, often the victim ends up abandoning their home and furnishings just to escape.

A4710Rider Tue 22-May-18 14:09:28

My 29 yr old son has Asperger’s syndrome and adhd. He’s very high functioning but struggles with the neuro typical world. Anyway, he’s told me he started taking cocaine a few months ago

In now way does the former excuse the later.

He's 29 not 9.

Thisishell Tue 22-May-18 14:11:37

It’s a little more complicated than him being 29 not 9, unfortunately! Doesn’t quite work that way with Asperger and ADHD.

Thisishell Tue 22-May-18 14:12:49

I’m sure they’d be sympathetic but my worry is the dealers would find out and it’ll make things even worse! Very difficult deciding what’s best to do to even keep him safe.

notacooldad Tue 22-May-18 14:13:18

The problem is not going away anytime soon and I really feel upset for you.
It's ok people saying he's an adult but he is vulnerable with additional needs. The drug dealers won't care. I won't tell you any bad stories about the famlies we work with except they are relentless and will sometimes go after the family.
I would definitely go to the police and say it's an vulnerable adult involved.
Does he have social services involvement due to his needs?

Thisishell Tue 22-May-18 14:17:44

Thank you, yes he is a very vulnerable adult, despite his streetwise outward appearance!
No, there’s no involvement from any agencies, he just won’t engage. I think I might call the police in confidence and see if they can come round to give me some advice. I think he’ll go absolutely mad though if he finds out I’ve involved them

Melliegrantfirstlady Tue 22-May-18 14:29:28

Your son, if diagnosed with Aspergers has normal or above average intelligence.

You cannot save him from drug dealers. Only the police know how to deal with such people.

The police will be able to handle the situation delicately and they certainly won’t be allowed to put your son at risk.

Thisishell Tue 22-May-18 14:57:17

Thank you Melliegrantfirstlady. Yes he does have above average intelligence, unfortunately though he has little in terms of skills in dealing with the real world, and couple that with the impulsiveness and lack of common sense or awareness of danger from the ADHD and it’s a bit of a nightmare combo to deal with, not least for him.
I have a real feeling he’s playing me anyway. I’m in contact with him on whatsapp and said I think I’ll phone the police, to which I’ve had all sorts of reasons why that’s not a good idea and what a terrible mother I am. Just something making me think he’s trying to emotionally manipulate me into giving him this money & all is not what it seems.....

Justmuddlingalong Tue 22-May-18 14:58:41

That's a possibility too. Christ, what a conundrum.

mostdays Tue 22-May-18 15:01:10

There's a difference between being intelligent and having understanding, Melliegrantfirstlady.

The police will be able to handle the situation delicately and they certainly won’t be allowed to put your son at risk.
Forgive me for rolling my eyes very, very hard.

Starkstaring Tue 22-May-18 19:48:38

He does sound very vulnerable. He might also be being played by someone else (not necessarily a dealer) to get money out of you.
If it were me I would call the police or maybe social services- does he have a formal diagnosis of autism?

Or is there a drugs charity or helpline you can contact for advice?

Thisishell Tue 22-May-18 20:07:34

Thank you for posting! Yes he does have a formal diagnosis but there’s no help available here for anyone with aspergers or ADHD once they reach adulthood unfortunately. I’ve told him now that I’ll do anything else to help except pay this debt, so we’ll see. Not sure what else I can really do now. I’m reluctant to call the police after giving it some thought, due to the potential ramifications for him, but I will if I think it’s necessary. Thank you everyone for all your help and suggestions.

Melliegrantfirstlady Tue 22-May-18 20:09:09

Most days

You should look at the definition of intelligence. Understanding is key.

And the police put people at risk of harm do they? It might have happened but it’s not supposed to happen so it’s not really fair to come on here scaremongering

Op I do understand the aspect of your concerns in regards to social relationships etc

Either way please don’t give your son more money. Otherwise you would be enabling his behaviour. Be that for buying drugs or allowing him to carry on conning you.

mostdays Wed 23-May-18 09:55:39

Which definition, Melliegrantfirstlady? There are a number of theories and definitions.

Of course the police put people at risk of harm. That it's not supposed to happen in no way changes that it has, does and will do. It isn't scaremongering to be realistic. I am sure the police would prefer it to be another way- certainly the vast majority of officers I have come into contact with are very unhappy with the way the lack of resources and the systems they work in make it extremely difficult for them to ensure the safety of people in situations similar to that of the op's son who do report it to them.

Thisishell Wed 23-May-18 10:51:42

It’s a common misconception/misunderstanding with aspergers that as they’re intelligent then they understand. Made all the worse by the fact he outwardly appears very streetwise and smart. He’s hugely intelligent but he can’t get on a bus, butter bread, manage finances, fill in forms, talk to anyone in an official capacity on the phone (or very well face to face), organise himself, have any empathy, go to busy places, hold social conversations or attend anything social, make eye contact, watch tv, take exams, work/hold down a job, sleep, relax, go anywhere unfamiliar.... The list goes on (& on!)

Anyway, it’s more complex (much more!) than you read or hear, unless you’re living with it, it’s very difficult to understand. And I’ve got 2 of them! My daughter has aspergers but not adhd as well, so not as complex, plus girls tend to learn or mimic how they should behave in a neuro typical world and are less likely to self medicate.

FundayFriday Fri 12-Apr-19 08:53:01

How are things now OP?

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