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footing the rehab bill without any assurances

(13 Posts)
chavguevara Sun 23-Sep-12 11:32:54

DP's Dbro has been a heroin addict all his adult life. There are possible reasons that go back to their childhood, a tragic event he has never dealt with and some very poor parenting. He has never been to the GP or had any professional treatment. He very regularly comes off the heroin, usually going back to his DM's to withdraw, lasts a short while (maybe a week or two, probably less - it's hard to know) then goes back on it.

There are lots of drugs where he lives. He has a council flat he would not want to give up and a casual manual job (he was very academic at school).

He has had a heart attack and various other mishaps and awful happenings and has recently admitted he feels he is heading downhill.

We all find it inevitable that this will eventually kill him. His mother has already lost a daughter. DP wants to pay for rehab and his DB is very keen. It will cost us thousands and we are already bringing up his sister's child after her death.

DP just says we have to try it although he agrees it seems hopeless without a plan for when he gets home. THe place we have in mind is a long flight away and I don't even think DP has considered how we are going to manage him on the flight if he hasn't gone through withdrawal before.

I just don't see the point unless we make him show his commitment first. We can technically afford it although it will have its impact.

squeezed Sun 23-Sep-12 11:42:42

Could you speak to GP and local drugs services first to see if he is suitable for rehab? It would also be worth having him assessed for different types of treatment. Residential rehab isn't for everyone and he may be better suited to community treatment especially if he has employment.

JethroTull Sun 23-Sep-12 11:45:16

Chav I didn't want your post to go unanswered. You & your husband sound like very supportive lovely people. I don't have any wise words I'm afraid. Someone wiser will be along soon I'm sure. I hope your BiL finds peace soon.

mellen Sun 23-Sep-12 11:45:55

I agree, if he has never seen his GP about this he has no idea about the services that are available locally to him. Even if he does eventually go to a residential rehab programme he would still most likely benefit from local support on return, so identifying in advance what that would be would be important. Just jumping on a plane may be an attractive idea in some respects, but I think it has significant potential pitfalls.

chavguevara Sun 23-Sep-12 12:31:42

He thinks if he goes to the GP he will just be offered methadone which he doesn't want. Also, he is very obstinate and would react very badly to being told what to do. I also worry because he is a very heavy drinker. If he manages to give up the smack, will he drink himself to death instead?

mellen Sun 23-Sep-12 12:37:08

He doesn't know what the GP will do. The most likely think is that the GP will refer him on to the local substance misuse service. Methadone is not the only approach, and it isn't uncommon for people to have problems with more than one substance.
Often people can self refer to substance misuse/drug problem and alcohol services.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 23-Sep-12 12:41:29

If he is "obstinate and would react very badly to being told what to do" then paying for rehab is throwing your money away. I know how your DP feels. In my own family, thousands were spent desperately trying to cure one member of their alcoholism. She went to treatment centres several times but, because it was always motivated by others (with good intentions) rather than her initiative, the effect was usually short-lived. She also returned from the centres back to a depressing tenement block where every other person was a heavy drinker so, even when the treatment was partly successful, she lapsed straight back into her old habits within a few weeks.

Maybe, if he's keen, there is somewhere that is not a long flight away that offers treatment and you could offer to pay for one course on the understanding being that it's very much last chance saloon and, if he blows it, there's no going back?

There is no point paying for rehab for someone who "doesnt want" this or that.

Fact is, there are free services in the UK to help him. You and your DH are already paying taxes towards these services. Why should you pay thousands more?

Also, if he wont give up his council flat then really its not worth it. For him to successfully become clean he will have to cut links with his previous life. Otherwise he is just going to fall back in to the old ways.

Please dont do this. He has to want help enough to fight for it a bit himself. Not just have it handed to him on a plate.

pausingforbreath Sun 23-Sep-12 12:52:30

Hiya Chav ,
Sorry to hear about this - a problem that I am all too aware of, also my brother.
Sadly , assurances are thin on the ground with heroin addiction and addiction but if he wants to get of it once and for all ( his circumstances sound shit enough) theres always hope.
I know my brother also did not want methadone treatment. It's self regulating, so easy to become 'more' addicted than to heroin :-(
I don't know if you have heard of ' Naltrexone implants' ? These my brother had sewn into his belly , they last 3 months each. They block the neuro transmitters for opiates, so even if they use heroin - they dont get any 'benefits' from the fix . I know most walk out from the clinic and give it a go to confirm it. :-0
If it has been his lifestyle for ages - its that it's hard to break , his friends all probably are in the 'scene' and his habits as well as his addiction are hard to stop. With the implants he can still be in that scene but not have the heroin - it gave my brother a 'window into the world' without being actively involved and he found he didn't like it. He also knew even if tempted - it wouldn't 'do it' for him.
My parents paid for his treatment , yes expensive not many clinics offer it.
He had been an addict for over 20 years , but now following his implant has not done heroin since .
He had rapid detox and implants at the
www.staplefordcentre.com
It may be worth having a read for you guys.
I wish you well , hard decisions to be made.

lowercase Sun 23-Sep-12 13:01:16

he needs to go to NA, nothing else works as far as ive seen.

NA is free, if you follow suggestion you will get well.

porridgelover Sun 23-Sep-12 13:24:36

I just don't see the point unless we make him show his commitment first

Chav, to me this is the most telling point you made.

I applaud your DP and your dedication to his brother and family. However, all addicts seem to require other family members to spend time trying to ''fix'' them.
That way madness lies.

Regardless of what service he uses, GP, NA, expensive clinic overseas....nothing will work unless he initiates and commits to change himself.

You cannot make him show commitment.
You cannot make the commitment for him.
You cannot save him from himself.

When/If ever DBro puts out his hand to ask for help, then you can pull him up.

No doubt you/DP feel guilty that he lives this way....but it is his choice. He may have undergone enormous trauma as a child and this is the only way that he found to handle it. But that was his choice.
In order to change his coping strategy, DBro has to choose that what he is doing is not fixing his feelings and he has to choose a better way.

chavguevara Sun 23-Sep-12 13:32:41

Thanks for all your posts. Pausing sorry you have experienced similar. I've sent the Stapleford Link to DP - I think it looks really interesting and much more like to succeed.

So much of my time and energy goes into repairing DP's family and really if much money is to be spent there is a younger generation that is also needs it.

chavguevara Sun 23-Sep-12 13:36:03

porridge thanks for your post. I do think he's reaching out to us. He did have a trauma in his twenties (with DP) and I also think he deliberately withdrew from life because he can't cope with any sort of failure (not quite as bright or sporty as DP). He was brought up to not do something if he didn't want to - an attitude I am fighting with DN who reacts terribly to any kind of challenge (same upbringing).

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