Mothers are the superheroes without capes, the fixers, the glue that holds the whole family together. We’re supposed to do it all and know it all, without much (or any!) help from anyone else. We’re told this is intuitive and natural, and most of the time that’s all true -- but sometimes we DO need some extra help. I don’t need to tell you that it’s not easy to know when to ask for support. It’s even harder to accept we need it, and close to impossible to find peace of mind in the fact that sometimes we simply can’t do it all on our own.
One of these examples -- the reason why you’re reading this -- is when your adult child is struggling with addiction. Your knee-jerk reaction is to take away the pain of this struggle by doing anything you can as a mom: You’ve always been there to give them money, shelter, a shoulder to cry on, a soft place to land. Of course, this is especially true when they’re an addict, but instead of them choosing recovery, they get deeper into their addiction and you get more desperate to find a way to help them.
You need to know when it’s time to ignore the MOM CODE
There’s a certain Mom Code -- that unspoken set of rules that dictates you’ll do anything for your child, and could stand in the way of truly knowing what to do when your child is addicted. Read on; if any of this resonates for you it’s time to try something different.
Stop doing what DOESN’T work
Do any of these points seem to reflect where you are in life? If so, you’ve likely tried a long list of approaches to help your child choose recovery. And you may have found that most of them don’t work for you.
- Spending hours researching and reading on the countless number of techniques suggested to help your addicted child. How much of your Google search history is devoted to this?
- Sacrificing your time and energy to support your child through their challenges while feeling that it’s not the right way to move forward.
- Agreeing to help them financially for things like rent, car payments or maintenance, or even daily expenses like groceries.
- Opening your home to your child and doing everything you can for him/her while they are there, so he/she knows he is loved.
- Trying to convince them to make better choices when they ask for your financial or emotional support, only to give in.
- Working with one (or many) therapists to help you and/or them.
- Going to group meetings with other parents in similar situations.
Start Doing What Does Work
I have been where you are right now. I have felt exhausted and stumped. I tried researching and giving in and giving up my time and money to try and “fix” my adult child struggling with addiction. After spending years in frustration and sadness, I figured out why.
And I discovered that what does work is to make sure that all the boundaries you set actually do support your priorities. This is very important because:
Experiment With This RIGHT NOW
You can’t set boundaries without first knowing your goals.
And it’s never easy as a mom to bring that focus back to our own lives. So let’s experiment with what is possible.
In this experiment, you will either W:Win (make forward progress) or L:Learn (learn something new). There is no such thing as failure in any of my experiments. Learning is the most important outcome of any experiment I ask you to try.
Try something else, something that could help you move forward from being stuck in the cycle of addiction that your family is trapped in.
Click below to get your own Self-Priority Guide NOW. It takes you step-by-step through this experiment.
Get your Self-Priority Guide NOW.
Did you learn that you need more help putting the pieces together?
I found it to be a real challenge to set priorities for myself when my son Eric was in active addiction, and doing so took an extreme pivot in my way of thinking. I go into more detail about this shift in my free, confidential workshop -- click below to find a time that works for you.
Click here to watch my workshop.