Tuesday, December 31, 2013

By the next week when his psychologist appointment rolled around again he was doing much better. I was not sure what to expect and was surprised when he seemed to only be set back a couple of days. We both had been doing a lot of reading about meth and its affect on the brain. We talked about the fact that after enough meth use this psychosis might never go away. I was angry at his friend who had offered him meth again. They all knew about his overdose and how close he had came to death. My brother reminded me that this boy was also using meth so his mental state was probably not much better than Jason's. He was right. I made myself forgive both of the boys and let go of the anger.

This time I did get a chance to talk to the psychologist. She asked me about our family's mental health history. Specifically she asked about depression and bipolar disorder. I am honest with her. There has been a lot of undiagnosed mental illnesses in my family. My diagnosis on my father is bipolar disorder. Drug and alcohol abuse has also been common in our family. She tells Jason that she will do everything she can to help him. She warns him that she cannot promise medication will simply take away the psychosis like he hopes. There is a chance that there is an underlying problem that led to the drug use.

My reading had led me to wonder the same thing. Jason had suffered from depression his senior year of high school. He refused to admit it. When I brought it up that day he brushed it off and said, "that was just me being a pussy." He had come out of it quickly. At the time I could not swear that it had been chemical rather than situational. During his second month at college he had started sleeping too much. He was having trouble staying awake and going to class. I broached the subject of depression. I suggested going to a doctor to have other causes looked at. Suddenly it was not a problem anymore. I did not know it at the time, but October was his first month of meth. He got a job, attended classes, he seemed to be adjusting to college life.

Now that I knew more about the problem I was doing endless research on different illnesses. Looking back over his childhood, every parent of an addict spends hours doing this, I could see what looked like early warning signs of bipolar disorder. Could this be what made doing drugs so attractive?  She did recommend an anti-psychotic to help with the psychosis. She told me to call my family doctor to ask him to prescribe it. I was disappointed because I had understood she would be talking with our family doctor, not using me as a go between.

The week before it had really upset Jason when the psychologist had called him an addict. He would not admit that he was at this point. Now in the car I realized how shook up he was at the thought of being 'crazy'. For him there was a real stigma associated with mental illness. He relapsed again that night.

He called me early in the morning to ask me to stay home for a few hours to try to get him into a rehab. He was ready to admit to being an addict. I couldn't stay home. We were short handed at work, there was no one to cover for me. I told him we could work on it when I came home. Fria Chica called in and stayed with him. He slept while she called around to try and get him in. It was not the work of one morning like they had expected.

 I tried calling our doctor. I had forgot he did not work on Fridays. The psych appointment had ended at 6 the night before, too late to call. It looked like we were waiting until Monday for a script.

I was angry that day. Rational or not I was angry that he would not just accept that there may be problems and try to deal with them. I was mad at Fria Chica for staying home. She was a single mother working at a new job. Being new she was still in the probationary period. What if she lost her job? I was mad that Jason had refused to admit he was an addict until there was a scarier proposition on the table. I was angry that he had left the house the night before knowing he was going to get high, yet expected us to all just rearrange our days to pick up the pieces. By going to rehab I felt he was running away from facing up to a possible mental illness.

After work I sat down with him. I promised to do whatever I could to help him. If he felt rehab was the best choice I would get him into one. However, I told him that he could do everything, rehab, medicine, therapy, but until he was going to commit to being sober none of it would work. I told him he needed to grow up and take responsibility for his recovery. My mom came into the house to pick something up. As she started for the door Jason said, "Don't leave me alone with her Grandma; she's scary."

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