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Punishment Surely Works

I knew the minute I saw the “Inmate has been discharged” on the prison message system that we were in deep do-do. Or More do-do…..

As I posted in this blog, I knew that 47 days in jail with 21 of them in solitary confinement, hadn’t brought my son to a place of clarity about treatment or a forward motion on fixing his life. I also realized that getting out on a Saturday afternoon without a home or car or even a job; was not going to be in his best interest. But to a jail with 100’s of inmates, one less to deal with, probably sounded good to them.

I mean I can understand the courts not knowing what to do with him but after 2 years of delays due to covid; to let him out thinking he was somehow cured and suddenly responsibly, is ridiculous.

What I didn’t anticipate, is that he would spend almost a month in Vegas with ‘professional gamblers” yet scavenging around for a room and food too.

So, now, after a few weeks of my horrible dreams of mafia leaving him in the desert, with a surprising(?) new addiction of gambling; here I am- no solution in sight and only envisioning more problems for him.

Meanwhile, I do still agree with Gabor Mate, that the “correctional” system doesn’t correct anything:

This is a great interview by ‘The Clearing Maia Szalavitz” that I may have shared before. The transcript is pretty long, so if you don’t have time to read it here are my favorite takeaways:

"We've been using punishment to try to treat a condition that is defined by its resistance to punishment."

"Treatment that is punitive, shaming, and humiliating is not good for addiction … All those tactics are aimed at making you hit bottom and experiencing consequences and all this stuff like this, because clearly the problem is that you just haven't suffered enough yet.

If you're willing to persist despite negative consequences to get your drugs and you lose your house and your car and your friends and everything else like that, why is another punishment going to help?
It is not."

https://www.theclearingnw.com/blog/tough-love-and-addiction-interview-with-maia-szalavitz

I know my son is suffering. I also know what his coping skills for ANY EMOTION are. Yesterday when I tried to talk to him about his friend being buried, he deflected to: “The good news is, ****( the ICU guy) was given 3 days to live, and he’s s driving around in a truck today”.

“Yes, yes son that’s amazing”.

I’m tired.

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