Friday, May 25, 2012

A New Way Of Life

Never in a million years did I think that we would be on of the families sitting at a Nar-anon meeting.  I thought those meetings were for the addicts only.  I had heard of Al-anon for families of alcoholics but never Nar-anon.  As we walked into our first meeting a week ago I was nervous and my stomach was turning.  We sat in the back row trying to hide like we always have with my brother's addiction.  We would hide it and be shameful of his addiction and lie to people when they asked how he was.  Then they had us move our chairs into a big circle.  I felt vulnerable and even more nervous.  For most of the meeting we sat and listened to the other families regarding their struggles with their addicts.  Until then it just came spewing out of me.  I began to shake as I spoke about my brother.  I told my mom that I felt like my body is releasing so much pain and sorrow it makes me quiver.  I feel like every muscle in my body is spasming.  I can't control it.  My body only reacts like this when I speak.  It is the only thing I can think of as a reason why this would happen. 

Last night was our second meeting where we had recovering addicts telling us their stories.  I felt like they were speaking to only me because it is everything my brother is and does.  At the end I began to share again and immediately began to shake as if the temperature dropped 30 degrees.  I let it all out and spoke about the things that occurred this past week.  I was good until I spoke the words that sometimes I feel as if it would be a relief if they did find him deceased.  I know he would be at peace then. I wouldn't wonder if he his alive or dead.  If he is hurt if he is hungry well you know the feelings that occur.  I broke out into sobs.  But they immediately made me feel like I wasn't alone in that thought.  Some said I feel the same way. 

After last nights meeting I feel more alive then ever.  I feel more supported than ever.  I know I have to heal. 

I decided after praying a lot that this is the beginning of my new way of life.  I am going to love hard, live free, and laugh loudly.  I know I am the best me I can be and that's all I can do.  I love my brother with all of my heart and I will take the advice of the guest speakers last night and love him from a distance and let him deal with his addiction and pray hard the right people are walking on his path. For when he meets that right person they will lead him to recovery when he wants it.  They said a very powerful thing "no human power or materialistic object will keep me clean and sober"  That is an amazing statement.  I know no matter what I say or do my brother will not get clean.  I can't buy his sobriety.  He will have to earn it like every other recovering addict.

Lots of Love and Healing,


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Walk A Mile In My Shoes... Then You Can Judge Me

Yesterday was not a good day.  As you may have read in an earlier post my brother was put into the hospital for emergency evaluation and walked out.  He and I had a lovely exchange of words on his FB page in which he told me to stay the "f" out of his life.  How could I help the cops find him? He always knew I never loved him blah blah blah which I presume these people read.I woke up to 36 messages on Facebook from people I don't even know asking me...

"where is he"
"do you know if he is OK"
"why do you not care what happens to him"
"I can't believe you helped the cops find him"
"what kind of sister are you"
"what kind of person does that"

I could go on but I think you get the picture.  I responded to the first couple of messages kind of rudely.  Well not kind of I was down right ignorant.  Then I spoke with a friend of mine and she said to me

Heidi why are you even responding? You don't know any of these people and you don't owe them any kind of explanation. When they walk a mile in your shoes and deal with the struggles your brother has put you and your family through then they can judge you until then Facebook has a delete and block feature USE IT!!!!!!!!!. 

I deleted and blocked around 40 people some friends some family some I don't even know including my brother.

I don't understand why or how people feel they have a right to tell me how to feel or how to deal with my brother.  Where were these people when we were sitting in court rooms, visiting rehabs, dealing with the DEA busting up in our home?  I think my friends are right these people are addicted to the drama and feel they need to be a part of it. THIS ISN'T DRAMA THIS IS MY LIFE.  This is what I live with everyday.  I know there are more people supporting me than that are hating on me but its still hard. 

The people who really know my brother and care about my brother have been supporting me.  I don't know why I let these select few make me feel like I was really nothing yesterday.  Today will be a better day.  I am willing it that way.  I know in my mind what I am doing is right.  But my heart needs time to heal and strengthen and these people beating me down did not help.  I broke down at dinner last night and just cried and cried.  I sat there questioning myself and my actions.  I always have prided myself on being a good person, sister, daughter, mother and wife and these haters made me question that.  Then I realized they don't know me at all and obviously they don't know my brother at all.  We have lived in silence about this disease I can't fault people for not know the real story.  I never told it I know for sure my brother never has told anyone the REAL story.  That is why every time someone brings it up he runs away.  Well now they can read our story and see that he may be the crack addict but we are just as affected by it.  I just wish I could remember what it was like before crack.  Its a fading memory.

Monday, May 21, 2012

The 2nd 3rd and Final Time of Stupidity

The 2nd time...... After the incident with the pool money we of course kicked my brother out.  I sometimes regret not pressing charges maybe if I did he would have gotten help.  Of course my husband wanted too but I begged him not too.  When November came around it was getting so cold out I couldn't stand the fact that he was going to be out in the cold.  So I offered our garage to him.  I know it wasn't much but at least it was heated and out of the elements of a MD winter.  Which I know it isn't bad but it still gets cold. LOL... We made our guidelines he was not to have drugs on our property and he could only be in our house if we were home and he had to stay in the same room as us except for the bathroom.  He was sticking to the rules for about 2 months.  One morning he knocked on the door at like 630am it was a Saturday and asked to use the bathroom.  I of course allowed him to come in.  I am not a morning person and let my guard down and went back to bed told him to lock the door when he went back outside.  I woke up at 8 with my kids and I have diagnosed severe TMJ in my jaw and sometimes its locks and I can't open my mouth.  So on days like that I have to squeeze a pain pill in my mouth and sip a drink threw a straw.  I always have a script of 10 pain pills just in case.  Well I must have known I was wrong by letting my guard down and had been clinching my jaw for the hour and a half I continued to sleep because when I woke up I couldn't open my mouth.  I went looking for my pills and they were gone.  SERIOUSLY I said to myself.  So I had to pry my mouth open with no pain meds.  So when my husband came home from working overnight and I was crying in pain he was furious.  I said to him there is no way you can be as furious as I am.  I didn't know who I was more mad at him for taking my pills when he knows what I need them for or me for letting my guard down and letting him in my house alone.  So of course we kicked him out again when he admitted he was taking my meds.  When we cleaned out the garage my husband found a crack pipe and other drug paraphenalia. 

The 3rd time...... Well I held strong for about a year and he did some time in the local county jail.  Of course I was stupid enough to let him back in.  DUH... We again made the rules and guidelines.  Job or school, no drugs, and no stealing.  Well it went well for about 6 months.  My oldest child has ADHD and take Adderall and I went got her script filled and she gets 30 pills a month and because they are a narcotic it is very harshly regulated.  We have to go see her pediatrician every month for a meds check and we get a script for that month.  Like I said I had gotten her script filled 1 day and within 3 days we only had 10 pills left.  So that means in 2 days 17 pills were taken from my child who needs this medicine to be able to function in school.  Well that was it he was out again.  Luckily we were at the end of the school year and she only takes the pills on school days so she had enough to make it the rest of the school year. 

And the 4th and Final time yes I really am that much of a co-dependent.....  He spent a year in big boy prison and was getting out.  We had a family meeting with everyone and decided that in order for him to have a fighting chance he would need a place to stay and somehow my house was chosen.  So he moved in got a job with a friend of mine and was doing great this past october we bought a new home and moved my parents in with us and things were going so well we offered him a place here.  He stayed in our old home until the last possible day he had to be out.  The first night he was here he decided to break into the cars of our new neighbors and all around our neighborhood.  Can you believe it???? Well the best part is.... When he was in and out and in and out of our house all night long and the cops are blaring by here he leaves his bookbag by a car he was breaking into with his wallet in it he isn't the best of theives.  So of course they new who was doing it.  But no charges.  He has a horseshoe up his butt I swear.  When we were all woken up by the craziness going on in our new neighborhood there on the nightstand was an uncashed paycheck.  I asked him why he was stealing when he had money on the table He said he couldn't sleep and he was bored.... WTH.  He was out the next day.  


Lots of love and Healing,


Here We Go Again.....

Its Heidi,

I guess they found our brother this morning at the public library on facebook.  The detectives called me said he was put into the hospital for eval.  I guess he is out because he just messaged me on facebook it says  "why don't you and mom just stay the hell out of my life"  I replied, the cops were at my house at 10pm, 12:30am, and again this morning because you told someone in a park last night that you were going to hang yourself when all the people left.  We had nothing to do with it.  I just told them where I thought you would be.  You cause and uproar and then want to blame people for caring. 

He is on FB this morning and I received 14 messages from people I don't even know begging me to help my brother because he is going to hang himself.  I replied back to every single one and said the sheriffs office found him the the library on FB having a laugh at all of you crying and begging him to get help. 

Someone wrote back and told me I was an uncaring sister and for my sake hopefully he doesn't do anything to himself. 

I had to laugh.  I have heard he was going to kill himself everyday since so far back I can't remember.  I want to take these people and shake them.  They are feeding into his deception and attention seeking ways. 

I know this may sound harsh and unkind but I am so over the threats and I don't believe them.  I would be the last person to call the cops if he said that.  If I did all I would do is call the police.  I am glad people have the heart to want to help my brother but HE DOES NOT WANT IT.  Its a waste of time.  And when people do help as you can see I get blamed by him and told to stay the hell out of his life.  He has openly admitted on FB he only says that to get the attention.

My feeling I have known people who have taken their own lives several actually and none of them were blasting it on facebook before hand.  

I also know if he does he needed way more help than I could ever give him and he will not manipulate me back into his addiction. 

Lots of Love and Healing,


Memories from the past making worries for the future

Heidi and I have each mentioned how our brother has stolen from us.  Having it happen time and time again makes us worry whenever he comes around.  2 years ago today, I graduated from college.  I was the first person in my family to accomplish this, so we threw a huge party and invited a lot of people (I think my wedding invite list might be smaller, and it's still huge).  In planning, mom, Heidi, and I sat down to figure out something that no one should ever have to worry about: what are we going to do about the box for the cards.  We knew a lot of people were putting cash or checks in the cards for me and we made a card box for them.  We were trying to figure out how to go about placing security around the box without letting anyone know we were doing it.  At this point, we hid my brother's problem.  Actually, until last week we hid my brother's problem.  People knew my brother was up to no good, but didn't know what he did or to what extent his problem was and we were too ashamed and embarrassed to talk about it.  He ended up not showing to my party, which was a relief, but it still caused worry.  This party was only about 10 months after he stole all of the money Heidi had saved for groceries, to pay the electrician, and buy things to put up her pool.

He hasn't quit stealing (except during the 6 months or so he was locked up), and I have another problem.  I'm getting married May 4, 2013.  This is normally a happy thing for most people (and don't get me wrong, I'm very happy with my future husband), but in the back of my mind, I'm terrified.  Do I invite my brother?  Do I have to figure out security for my wedding gifts?  Would it just be easier to elope so I don't have to worry about him?  He goes to court in a couple of weeks.  Will he be in jail on my wedding day?  Would it be easier if he was in jail?  When Heidi got married, it was before things got really bad.  We didn't have to worry about whether or not he was going to steal.  I had almost completely stopped talking to him prior to the intervention because I didn't want to lose anything else.  My fiance and I are trying to start our lives together.  We both have car payments, I have student loans, I can't afford to replace anything if it gets stolen.

I don't know what to do or what to think.


Nothing Like a Midnight Visit From the Sheriffs Department

Its Heidi....

So here we are a week from our "intervention" stating we will no longer allow him in our lives if he refuses to get the help he needs and actually work a program.  Obviously, he chose not to get help and we have not seen or heard from him in a week. 

Last night around 10pm the town cops showed up here looking for him because they got a phone call he was threatening suicide.  They asked if he was here and I said no we haven't seen him in a week.  I told them where I knew that he would hang out.  About 20 mins later a friend of mine who lives in our old home calls and says I don't want to be the one who tells you this but the cops are here looking in the woods for your brother.  I said yeah they were here too I am really sorry they showed up at your place. 

Let me explain why we are so nonchalant about this threat.  My crack addicted brother has said he will kill himself every other day for 10 years.  That is not an embellished.  We have tried everything to get him help.  He will stay for a day or 2 in a facility then leave.  He is 31 we can't force him to get help.  I wish we could.  The psych ward at our hospital is his 2nd home.  He usually threatens suicide when he does something he knows he will get arrested for or when the family tries to take a stand against his addiction. 

We were getting ready to go to bed last night and I went to shut and lock the door and who do I see walking up our driveway is the County Sheriff's Department.  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

The deputy asks to come in and we sit down and at first I thought he was here to tell me they found him dead so my heart sank as we sat down and he told me tonight you brother checked himself out of the psych ward and met up with a person he knew from the psych ward and told them when everyone leaves the park he was going to hang himself from the tree.  We have been unable to find him so we want to do a missing persons report.  At that time I took a breath and said hang himself from a tree that is typical threat.  He always tells me I will find him hanging from a tree.  We went on and did this report which asked everything from name to what his teeth looked like.  The worst was when they asked if needed could we get dental records. 

OMG as I am typing this the Sheriff's Dept knocked on the door to talk again about this. 

UGH gotta go,

Lots of Love and Healing,


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Facebook Sucks

Good Evening well morning I guess its midnight its Heidi again.... As you have read our family has taken a stance against my brothers crack addiction.  Well he doesn't like the fact we all told him to get his life straight then we would welcome him back with open arms.  I saw on facebook today that he is telling everyone how we cut him off and boohoooo we don't want to talk to him and how messed up it is that we have been going to Nar-anon meetings.  Damn right we don't want to talk to him.  He is a "junkie" those are his own words not mine.  So of course I reply to his message and say "um stop telling lies to all your so called friends we did not cut you off we told you until you get your stuff well I didn't say stuff together we don't want to see you and as far as us going to meetings yes we are so we can learn how to help you and we will never stop loving you we just stopped enabling you"  Well he didn't like that at all and I am sure used it as an excuse to go get high. 

My mother had the pleasure of seeing him today while taking her friends daughter to meet him to get stolen jewelry back.  I am sure that was the highlight of her day. She asked him to please turn himself in and he basically said "f" you.  She said he looks like death and I am not surprised. 

So Facebook is my friend and my enemy..... its a love hate relationship.  I dread looking at his page but I can't help it I feel like I have too just to make sure he is alive.  I have hid his status updates from my timeline so I can chose the times I look at them.  Its just so hard to be blamed for his issues and be made to look like we are awful human beings and a bad family.  I feel like I have to defend us on the other hand I walk on eggshells worried if what I say will be the one thing that makes him take those pills or smoke that pipe for the last time and we will get that phone call.  I don't want to delete him totally because I am afraid it is the only way I will be able to tell my mom he is still alive he is on FB. 

Ugh Facebook sucks....

Lots of Love and Healing,


Saturday, May 19, 2012

He Is A Thief :(

The day we found out Crack had my brother was the day my husband started realizing some of our electronics, games, and worst of all the CD collection my husband had of his late brothers were missing.  It was horrible.  A lot of the things that were taken from us were my late brother in law's belongings we received from the in laws after his death and my husband cherished them.  I felt horrible I let him in my house so he wasn't on the street and this is how treats us.  I was so heartbroken.  He would steal my kids change.  I mean whatever he could get his hands on he would take them and pawn them and sell them or even trade them for drugs.  It disgust me more than anyone will ever know. 

3 summers ago we decided to install a pool.  Well that costs an arm and a leg.  We had taken the money out of the bank and put it in my husbands gun safe.  I used it to pay the electrician and to buy all the things we needed for the pool.  I had taken some money out to go to the landscapers and pay them for the sand and went to the pool store to get the chemicals and pool toys for the kids.  At this time my brother was riding with me and saw the money I had.  I never thought in a million years he would take my money when he knew I needed it. 

The next morning came the electrician was at the house to finish up his work and I he asked for the rest of his money and my husband went to the safe and the money was gone.  I said well look in my purse maybe I forgot to put it away.  I had 300 dollars in my purse the day before.  It was gone.  I started to shake I was so mad how was I going to pay for this.  I told my hubs to go and get the checkbook.  knowing I didn't have the money I wrote the check.  My parents were standing there and my mom was crying and my dad was red.  Luckily my dad gave me the money to cover the check.  I called my brother who by the way was in my car supposedly on a job interview but really he was out smoking up my money.  My hubs parents live out west and also wired money in our account because that not only was the pool money but grocery money for the week. 

This was only the first time he stole from me.  I will share many more.

Lots of love and healing,


My Brother The Addict My Husband The Police Officer

Its Heidi.....

As you all know my brother is an addict my husband however is a police officer.  Until I decided to get help for my addiction to my brother's addiction I was always siding with my brother.  Just a little side note.... My husband is not a police officer in our town he has no jurisdiction here.  However, we know all of the police in the community.  So my husband was always getting calls from them looking for my brother.  He and I would fight all the time and I would say if it were your family you would want to protect them also.  He would of course say Heidi he is breaking the law.  I knew that but I didn't want to see him in jail.  So needless to say there have been many arguments about that. 

I have since realized my brother is a grown man and knows the consequences of his actions and if he doesn't care if he ends up in jail why the hell should I?????

Friday, May 18, 2012

I love him, but I don't like him.

It's Ashley.  I am the MUCH younger sister.  When I was born, Heidi was 11, and Donnie was 8.  If you've done the math, I was in kindergarten or first grade when my brother started messing around with drugs.  Growing up, I was never shielded from what was going on.  I got to see first hand how badly drugs could mess you up.  All of his arrests and all of his problems with money, jobs, him dropping out of high school, I got to see it all when I was still in elementary school and middle school.  While he didn't start messing with crack until I was in college, I saw our house get raided, and everyone in the house put into handcuffs while our whole lives were turned upside down all because one of his druggie friends got arrested and decided to name everyone he'd ever smoked pot with.

Because of this, I have a more "no-tolerance" policy when it comes to drugs.  I refuse to associate with anyone who does drugs, which led to me having almost no friends left when it came time to leave for college.  Not all of my friends in high school experimented, but many did and the ones who didn't stuck up for them by saying it wasn't harming me.  But I knew how it affected the families and I couldn't stand by and watch it happen to anyone else.

Even before he hit the "hard drugs," I noticed things missing.  I got a Playstation (the original, the PS2 hadn't been released) for Christmas one year.  Where did this go?  I'll never know.  All I know is, he borrowed it and I never saw it again.  That was 12 years ago.  In the years since, things have disappeared from me.  I've had money, electronics, video games, movies, and cds "disappear."  They weren't lost, they just ceased existing and no one knew where they went.  In more recent years, it's not just the occasional thing disappearing here or there, it's to the point where you can't leave him alone in a room.

I love my brother, but my brother is NOT the person who has stolen hundreds of dollars worth of money and possessions from my sister, parents, myself, neighbors, and random strangers.  The drugs have him and I don't like the person he has become.

Back in February, I bought a newspaper at the grocery store.  I needed to change the newspaper in my bird cage.  I opened up the first page and saw my brother's mugshot next to an article about a string of robberies in a neighboring town.  He had been getting into cars and removing GPS units, cell phones, ipods, cameras, whatever he found.  This was not the first time, and I know it was also not the last.  Our last name is not common. My mother told me someone asked her at work if it was her son.  I googled his name.  I fear he will never get another job again because of what I found.  8 out of the first 10 results were about him robbing cars.

Our mother's mother passed away on May 13th 1993.  It's been 19 years, but mom still has difficulty with this date.  It was complicated this year by the fact that May 13th was also Mother's Day.  On Mother's Day, of all days, the friend of my mother's who let my brother stay with her out of the kindness of her heart came down to talk to mom.  She said that my brother stole from her and would no longer be allowed to live at her house.  This is the LAST person who will let him live with them, and he was there because she begged her friend to let him stay so he wouldn't have to live in a tent in the woods.  Our mother, on one of the hardest days of the year for her personally, which just happened to me mother's day, had to tell her only son that he needed to get out of her life.  He was not to come over or call or contact in any way.  I hope she stays strong with this because it's the only way he's going to get better.  I love my brother, but I can't stand the phone calls from my mom where she is crying her eyeballs out asking me where she messed up.  Heidi and I turned out fine.

Addiction does not discriminate.  It doesn't see color, status, gender, religion, country, political affiliation, age, etc.  It affects the whole family's ability to function.  I'm just learning this.

With Love,

My Little Brother And Me Against The World

Hey everyone its Heidi.  I love my brother to the moon and back.  I have will never have another brother.  He and I have well had a very close bond.  We are both from our mothers first marriage.  Our father died when I was 11 and he was 8.  He was a devastating car accident that left him a vegetative state from the time I was 5 until his passing 6 years later. 

Our mom remarried and we relocated from Pittsburgh to Baltimore when I was 8 and he was 5.  It was gut wrenching to be torn away from every person we loved and knew to be moved so far away.  Well its really only a 4 hour ride but at 8 it was a million miles away.  Our step dad really wasn't the nicest person to us.  I mean he gave us the world however, he was a douche as far as discipline.  Never abusive by the standards of those days. 

But me being the oldest I always fought his battles and stood up to our step dad for him and was the one who took the blame for a lot of things to protect my brother.  I find myself still doing that.  I don't necessarily take the blame but I do take the guilt of when he steals from someone we know or when my mom is crying because she doesn't know where he is.  I feel that pain he should feel.  Its very difficult to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas without him knowing that crack is way more important than us.  Its hard to look around my house and take a mental inventory before and after he shows up asking for money or food.  Which refuse to give him money but I will always feed him. 

I don't know what happened to my brother I just know I love him and I miss him terribly and I do not want to bury him. 

I know I can't save him or fight this fight for him this time.  I need to let him go and let him deal with the consequences of his addiction its just so hard not knowing and your heart dropping every time the phone rings just waiting for that call. 

I know there is a wonderful person under that addiction. I just don't know what will be left of him if he ever decides to get into recovery. 

Lots of love and healing,


Let Us Introduce Ourselves

We are the oldest and youngest sister of a drug addict.  I am Heidi (the oldest) and also writing on here is Ashley(the youngest).  Our brother is the middle child and a drug addict.  In this post I am going to give you a little background of our brother in post to come I will be sharing the struggles our family have gone through while my brother slowly dies of this disease called addiction. 

When our brother was 13 or 14 he started dabbling with marijuana. Where we grew up outside of Baltimore this was prevalent.  However, as time when on and he got older his addiction got worse.  I should mention that he is been diagnosed bi-polar we have been told his addiction was a way to self medicate.  He was not diagnosed until his first stint in rehab.  As they say and is oh so true marijuana is the gateway drug.  As that drug was not good enough any longer he began using whatever he could to get a high.  I am not even sure to what extent his addiction was for about 10 years. 

And of course this disease has caused him to be front page news in our community paper wanted for theft and drug charges.  Which of course our last name is very uncommon and everyone knew that's our brother.  We were mortified.  But as expected nothing ever came of those charges just a slap on the wrist. 

As he became addicted not only to the drugs but to the lifestyle.  I am not sure what is so exciting about not having a place to sleep or not knowing where you next meal is coming from let alone steal. 

We were all able to handle this pretty well until about 5 or 6 years ago (maybe longer its all a blur to me) a drug came into his life and turn our lives upside down and into a downward spiral... CRACK that's right our brother is a crackhead in the worst way. 

Last night our family decided to take our lives back quit living in silence and learn to live again and let him go be with his addiction.  We can no longer live it for him.  These posts will be our raw and full of emotion I encourage you to share these with your friends and family to maybe help them.  We started going to a support group and there was never a relief like I felt when I realized we weren't the only ones feeling the way we felt.  YOU ARE NOT ALONE. 

Please feel to email us anytime

Lots of love and healing,