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Helping my teenage son through addiction

When Eileen, 66, from Southport discovered the extent of her teenage son’s addiction to party drugs she was devastated and didn’t know where to turn. But one phone call to Port of Call secured her family the local professional support that they needed.

A case study from Port of Call

Eileen’s story

Growing up, Mike was quiet, polite and loved school. He was a model pupil in fact and we were so proud when we found out that he’d got straight As in his GCSEs. But something changed when he started going to sixth form college. He drifted away from his lifelong school mates and fell in with a bad crowd.

Addiction help for children

He would leave the house on a Friday night and disappear for full weekends at a time. He wouldn’t tell me where he was going and it frightened the life out of me. I suspected that he’d started drinking and found cigarettes in his pocket but that was just the tip of the iceberg. I got a knock on the door one day from one of Mike’s old school mates, Dan. He was concerned about Mike’s new habits and told me that he’d seen him at a party bragging that he’d snorted cocaine and taken several ecstasy pills.

I was shattered when I heard this. Completely devastated. That night, I confronted Mike at dinner and was shocked at his reaction. He hit the roof; shouting, swearing and threatening me. It was so out of character. A year of the same horrible cycle went by, I confronted Mike, Mike reacted aggressively – I became afraid to confront him. I had already done plenty of research but one night I stayed up late into the night researching treatment options and I found Port of Call. Port of Call’s website was really clear and full of information about different treatment options available in the North West, so I called them the next day for some advice.

It was such a relief to speak to someone who understood what I was going through. The Port of Call adviser was very comforting and suggested we arrange an ‘intervention’, which meant addressing Mike’s addiction head on, with Port of Call’s assistance. Within 24 hours, myself, Mike, his dad and his sister were sat in the living room taking it in turns explaining to Mike how his addiction was affecting both himself and his family. Mike was completely in denial and refused to speak at first. But when we told him our fears about his behaviour and his future it seemed to get through to him.

He agreed to go into rehab, which we managed to arrange entirely through Port of Call. They found us a local treatment centre, which meant that we could visit Mike as often as possible. Just little things, like collecting his washing, and coming for lunch, gave him some stability. We even spoke to one of Port of Call’s counsellors ourselves because it was such a confusing time for the whole family. They found us a counsellor in the local area who was absolutely fantastic.

Mike passed his A-Levels and eventually got a place at Nottingham University to study Geography. It might have taken him a year extra to get there but in that time he made friends with a great group, who were more interested in passing exams than partying. Having that local support from Port of Call, who know the North West and its addiction services inside out, was the difference between getting our son back and potentially losing him to drugs forever.

Thank you Port of Call.

Disclaimer: Names and certain details have been changed to protect the identity of case study participants.

For more information about Port of Call’s comprehensive array of professional and discreet support services, such as alcohol rehab and drug treatment services please visit www.portofcall.com or call for free on 08000029010.

About the author: Alex Molyneux

Alex is our admissions team leader. Over the last 5 years he has spoken with more than 10,000 people via our helpline and has organised over 1,000 detox and rehabilitation placements.

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