An Honest Interview with the Mother of an Addict, Part 2

by | Feb 4, 2020 | who you can be | 4 comments

Today’s post is Part 2 of our interview with the mother of an addict. This is a continuation from last week’s blog on Jan. 27th. I believe there are many things she shared that will be of great value to you or to any parent in pain.

photo cred. unsplash

7. How did the experience of your son’s heroin addiction affect your marriage? What did you do?

My husband and I initially approached our son’s addiction and self-destructive life-style on the same page. But over time, we realized that I was a bigger push-over and my husband was a bigger “tough love” proponent.

This led to many disagreements and hurt our sense of oneness. In order to deal with this, we spent time (and still do) with other couples who have survived situations like this to receive their input.

We also attended a support group for families who had children in outpatient therapy. This helped us realign our focus, prioritize our marriage and family life, and once again become a united front in the battle that threatened to destroy us. Since early in the journey Hope for Hurting Parents was a tremendous resource.

8. How did this impact your other children?

All of them are in therapy, working through the effects this has had on them. Each one responded differently. Some struggled with anger and feelings of betrayal (lying and stealing from them). Initially, our youngest felt she let her brother down and struggled with feelings of not having been able to help him. But, they were all willing to forgive him when he asked (during rehab) and they’ve been willing to work on rebuilding their relationship.


photo cred. unsplash

 9. Were there any resources you found that you want to share?

Allison Bottke’s book, Setting Boundaries with Your Adult Children and Prayers for Prodigals by James Banks; attending the IOP (Intensive Out-Patient) group time for family members and family therapy sessions. The most helpful resource was Hope for Hurting Parents. I loved (and still love) reading their daily devotionals and the blog posts.

10. What role did faith play in how you coped?                           

My faith in God’s love, compassion, sovereignty, and power increased as I spent time pouring out my heart to him, spending time in His Word, not just looking up verses on my current situation (which I also did), but really delving into the Scriptures (online is an option) so that my faith would grow, regardless of the circumstances. I also learned about contemplative prayer and quieting my mind before the Lord. This was what He used (still uses) to grow my love, peace, and trust in Him.

11. What are some other things you did that helped?

My husband and I made sure we planned date nights to do things we enjoyed. During our recreational times together, we agreed not to discuss our son or his issues. We needed that break! We went to movies, football games, on hikes or for drives in the mountains. Something as simple as a trip to Home Depot (just the two of us) was a nice reprieve.

I worked in my garden and spent time decorating my house for holidays. Even during the worst part of our son’s addiction, we still had neighbors over for our annual chili night in the fall. We also spent time with friends who cared enough to ask how we were without judgement.

We tried to continue doing the things that brought us joy, despite the heaviness in our hearts.

12. What are some favorite Bible verses that helped you?

These are a few of the ones I’ve posted around my house (kitchen, bathroom, bedroom):

“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone: my hope comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation. He is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is a mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge” (Psalm 62:5-8).

“The Lord says, ‘I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you’ ” (Psalm 32:8).

“By waiting and calm you shall be saved, in quiet and trust lies your strength” (Isaiah 30:15).

photo cred. Farkul J.

Prayer: Lord, please speak to the heart of every parent who reads this interview. May they find encouragement and hope for their journey from this mom’s honest sharing.


  1. Angie

    I struggle every Monday morning. My 26 year old daughter has an alcohol addiction and it has been a struggle for the last couple of years. At this point she does seem better but her 6 year old daughter is now with her father. He has struggled with alcohol also. My daughter and grand daughter have lived with me for the first 6 years of my grand daughters life. For her safety we felt it was best to have her out of the house while trying to get my daughter straitened out. I do see her on most weekends but she crys when she has to go back to her dads house on Sunday. I have so much resentment and anger. I am trying so hard to over come. I struggle to have faith that god will overcome and i will find a way to be happy again.

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      We apologize for not responding sooner. At times Dena and I get our communication crossed and don’t know who has responded to someone. That is the case with your comments.
      How agonizing for you after each visit with your granddaughter! Relationships can be so complicated especially when addiction is involved. I can’t give you any guarantee about how your daughter and granddaughter will turn out. I will say I read something today that was very encouraging. I pass it on to you for you to do as you wish. This is a piece about Jim Daly, President of Focus on the Family.

      Daly’s personal journey from orphan to head of an international Christian organization dedicated to helping families thrive is a powerful story. Abandoned by his alcoholic father at age 5, he lost his mother to cancer four years later – a wound deepened when his grieving stepfather emptied the family home and left Daly, the youngest of five children, and his siblings to fend for themselves after their mother’s funeral. Several tough years followed, including time in foster care, before Daly became a Christian in high school and found meaning, purpose and a sense of belonging.

      “I am living proof,” he wrote in his 2007 autobiography, “Finding Home,” “that no matter how torn up the road has already been, or how pothole-infested it may look ahead, nothing – nothing – is impossible for God.” Daly was named president of Focus on the Family in 2005 after 16 years with the ministry.

      We wanted you to keep praying for your daughter and granddaughter and son in law. Who knows what God may be up to in their future.

      God bless,
      Tom and Dena

  2. Belinda

    I struggle with trusting God and caring for myself and fall into depression with my 28 yr. old son. David who is addicted to crystal meth. I’m praying and he’s seeing a doctor at CAMH because of also mental issues and I’m trying to understand him but I’m getting so weary and depressed . I need support and friends but can’t seem to leave house thinking what he will take or break ; It can seem to be too much for me .

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      Belinda, thank you for your message. It’s painfully difficult to trust God and take care of yourself when you’re the parent of someone who abuses substances, especially crystal meth. Understanding them is a monumental task. A counselor with experience in addiction can be helpful, and being in a support group can too. The journey can be long and takes a heavy toll on our emotions and bodies. A group you might like is Thrive Family Addiction Support I encourage you to check it out. We also have a secret FB page for venting, asking for advice, resources or prayer. It’s a safe, confidential group. You’ll find a lot of caring, compassion and support from other parents who are walking (or have walked) in your shoes. Just send me a FB friend request, then I can send you an invitation. It will show up in your notifications.
      God comfort and strengthen you today.
      Warmly in Christ, Dena.