I think we all share those feelings.... I tried so hard as a mom. I babysat kids at home so mine had playmates, I had income, and mine never had to go to daycare.
I worked in transcription from home, to afford private Christian education for them both. From kindergarten to high school graduation. Thatsalotta typing.
I drove for every play, every sport event against rival Christian schools, every after school activity, every evening football game. I had pajama parties, teeshirt painting parties, pool parties, after game parties.
I snooped. I found paraphernalia and assumed it was experimentation.
I saw her getting thinner and listened at the bathroom door after meals to rule out bulimia.
I home schooled the last two years of high school at her request, because the school we trusted was full of drugs.
What a surprise to find out years later, she was supplied by my pastor's son. He turned her on to marijuana and certain other items. She turned him on to speed. This all was before she was 18. (More about my pastor's son, later in another post.)
My point is that we do everything in our power. We try. These are our precious children. But they make mistakes.
They knew it was a snake when they picked it up (drugs) and it had the potential to bite (become addiction). With the naivety of the young, they assume it (addiction) will not happen to them.
One time. That's all it takes.
I'm understanding now, that it was not all about me. Or my job as a parent. That my kid took a hit of this, or a hit of that, thinking "yeah, yeah, say no to drugs, ha, ha"....
She'd heard it since the days of red ribbons on the playground - it was kind of like any other thing she heard from parents or authority figures - not really important, not really to be believed, yeah, yeah, whatever.
And when speed entered her body, ironically, her mania calmed and she felt more normal. For a little while.
But when heroin came along - the first time, the very first time, she turned to a friend and said "I am in trouble." She was "home". She felt so good, mellow, calm.... And she knew right then, she'd be back.
My husband still struggles with the fact that this happened "on his watch." This started while she was still a kid, and has continued for almost nine more years now, and he's been unable to "fix" it.
But not for lack of trying.
Anyway, for some reason I just felt like I had to mention this. We all think we should have somehow prevented this. But we couldn't. We are all pretty damn good parents. We have our faults, but we love our children and we want them happy and healthy, and we went into parenthood determined to do it "right".
I'm realizing, gradually, the choices she made are not our responsibility.... even if made "on our watch." She made a choice. A bad decision. She took a chance. And she got bitten.