Trusting Again
Posted: October 21, 2020, 8:15 PM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



Hello I'm glad to have found this site. I'm a mom of an addict,my 24 year old son. He has been an addict for about 5 years and has just finished a two month treatment I'm very relieved he has started on the road to recovery . I have delt with a lot during his addiction. Like reviving him from o d s . So I am realizing that this has all effected me so much more than I thought. I also have issues from my mother being an addict and her recovery . So I have dealt with this almost my whole life. Starting to realize I may have p s t d from some of this. I'm being proactive with my own mental health so far. So I'm very happy to have a place to talk and know people understand some of what I am going through. My son has come home and is with me. His dad works away from home so I deal with most of all this on my own. My son has embraced recovery and is trying to start fresh . What I'm really struggling with is the lack of trust I still have conserning him when he leaves the house to go to meeting ect. I have so much anxiety when he goes .the drugs that are out there right now are so so deadly and it terrifies me to think of him relapsing even once .. He has shown me positive behaviour but no matter what he does or says I find it so hard to trust him again. I'm hoping for some advice to help me cope with the anxiety and how to learn to trust a little bit again. I want to continue to encourage my son and show him my confidence in him . Thank you
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Posted: October 22, 2020, 12:20 AM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Welcome Wednesday. I understand your anxiety about your son and having PTSD. I think what may help you is to focus on your life and starting to live it again. His recovery belongs to him and you deserve a life too. So often, we can get so wrapped up in their life we forget or neglect our own life.

He know what he needs to do to stay healthy and be in recovery. Let him own it and if he happens to slip up its his responsibility to get back on track not yours.

I also think not putting our life on hold sends a healthy message and example to them. I wish you both happiness and good health!!
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Posted: October 22, 2020, 11:32 AM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



Thanks sallyanna , I am relieved to have people to talk to. Continuing to focus on myself will get me to a better place. Your correct in saying we have focused on my son for a long time. It's time for him to take the reins .
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Posted: October 23, 2020, 1:50 AM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Wednesday, I think him taking the reins is a big part of his recovery. He learns responsibility and self care which are important parts of maturity, addiction or no addiction. Its a part of life for each of us. It's a learning process.
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Posted: October 25, 2020, 12:36 AM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



So I have had it with feeling so much anxiety with my son freshly home from treatment. Every time he leaves or even when he is home I'm constantly second guessing my self . Can't trust my own judgment . I have decided to have an honest talk with him about this. I have decided to be very clear about what I need from him so I can at least be at some piece in my own mind and home. I am going to ask him to be very honest with me if he feels like he is going to relaps . If he wants to use drugs he can tell me and I will drive him to a safe injection site . That way he can be honest with me and not risk using alone. He also has all the reins in his own hands not mine. I feel like in some way this will be leaving the decision in his hands and in some way hopefully empowering him to make the right choices . But at least he will know that I am not judging just keeping my boundrys about no drugs in my house. Also keeping him safe from od .I cannot keep going crazy in my head with wondering if he will slip and come back with drugs. I hope this helps me cope a little better and at the same time I won't be second guessing my self. Because this is a very scary time for me .even though he is doing good so far. And from what I have learned relaps is a very real concern and part of recovery. I hope this helps cope a bit better. Worth a try anyways.
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Posted: October 25, 2020, 11:36 AM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Wednesday I understand your plan (been there). Just some food for thought....let him be. Let go of his choices good or bad. Separate yourself from his personal choices in life. They belong to him not you. The only person who can control your anxiety is you. Its not his job. Let him find his way. Mess ups are a part of all our lives. Your responsibility is your life and your happiness. He has his life to live and he lives with good choices and bad choices. See, I have learned we become too enmeshed in their life. It not only hurts us it hurts them. Its not your job to protect him 24/7. Its your job to be a separate person who knows what's right and wrong for your life. I'm not trying to be harsh just speaking from years and years of experience.

This post has been edited by Sallyana on October 25, 2020, 11:44 AM
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Posted: October 25, 2020, 2:30 PM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



Sallyana I really appreciate your thoughts on this. You seem to have so much knowledge about this. Thank you for your thoughts and advice. I hear you about being responsible for me and not him anymore. It does make sense to me. I guess I'm finding it so hard to separate from him. My world has revolved around him for 24 years good or bad. I know that I need to do it ,I say I'm going to do it,I try for a while but end up back where I started. I'm sure him being home at my house is not helping me or him right now. He plans on moving in with a friend soon. When all this is not in my face everyday I do find it easier to cope when he is not here. How can it be so hard to become my own person again. Not the mom of a addict. Being in so deep and long into this world of addiction I find I have lost parts of myself. Getting those parts back and putting myself first is hard for me. But living in this constant state of anxiety is worse. So your right sallyana it's time for me to be as tough on myself as I am on my son. My life is more than just my addict son and I must learn to live in that world again. Making myself more of a priority . I did not think I would find this so hard . But talking about it with people that have actually been in the blackness of addiction is so very helpful. Thank you . I am here to listen and learn from everyone here. And finding hope in the strength of all who use this message board. It's very comforting to have found this community . Strength to everyone struggling ,you are not alone. 🐝
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Posted: October 26, 2020, 10:00 AM


Posts: 304
Joined: December 23, 2018



Hi Wednesday, this is a wonderful place to talk with other parents who are going thru the exact same thing. Congratulations on your son's recovery & Sallyanna has given you excellent advice. But you have to remember (AND REMIND YOURSELF) that his addiction & recovery is not your fault. It's all on him. Until he is ready to seek treatment, there is nothing you can do. If love our kids enough cured addiction none of our kids would be addicts.

It is OK to step back & let him handle it. It doesn't stop the concern & worry, but many time when we are checking up on them, offering this help, that help, arguing, "loaning" money we are enabling. We were able to pay for a sober living house for our son for several months but not everyone can do that.

Maybe talk to a therapist for yourself to help you get thru this pain & hurt. Yes, PTSD is very real when dealing with an addict. My son is in recovery but I still fear that one bad decision will mess everything up again. He had completed rehab & was doing well but was lonely & relapsed. This relapse last a couple of years, cost him his job, house, relationship, family & everything. It lasted a couple of years - my husband & I & his brothers, sister in laws even his nieces & nephew were receiving horrible, desperate, threatening, raging, sobbing phone calls constantly. My husband & I were on a 40th anniversary vacation to Alaska with limited cell service but he was still blowing up our phones constantly from jail & out of jail. Finally THAT crap is down. He is working, in a new healthy relationship & has started to rebuild relationship.

Hang in there & tell him your fears. But remember to remind yourself that "you didn't cause this, you can't control this & you can cure this". I think he does need to know how deeply he hurt you & how much you fear relapse because you never want to be in that position again. Please come back here when you need to vent, talk, update us. No one here will judge you or disrespect you. We will support you & give you first hand advice & encouragement from our own experiences!
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Posted: October 26, 2020, 7:13 PM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



Thank you for your message and advice mtnmom. You all have been a big help. And I for the first time feel that I'm not alone. I will keep coming back here for support. 🌸🐝
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Posted: October 26, 2020, 9:27 PM


Posts: 304
Joined: December 23, 2018



I know what you mean! My husband & I were truly alone when dealing with my son. Both his brothers & both sister in laws blocked his numbers & he had one cousin who offered help but he burned her in a quick minute & so she sent him on his way.... my son is not a kid, he's 46 years old! We had to block his number a few times because of the incessant phone calls SCREAMING, CURSING, THREATENING us. He's call screaming & sobbing & then hang up & turn his phone off. We spent more money than we ever should have but I wouldn't give it him.

The people here would listen & because they were going thru the exact same thing, they helped me so much! My son called the other night just to talk. He started talking about last summer, in & out of jail, probation, violations of court orders, etc.& my husband told him "I don't want to talk about that, it is too terrifying". My son said he has to talk about it & keep it fresh in his mind so he can always remember where he was. This past year hasn't been all sunshine & butterflies. He did a couple of stupid things - went drinking one night, fishing where he shouldn't be fishing - whole entire mess, but got into an accident & left the scene.... he was laughing about it to his older brother & I could here him on the phone. I told him that I could hear him laughing & that is a huge concern to all of us, in fact his brother commented "sounds like the "brother" is back". He got quiet & called me the next day to apologize & say he realized how badly he screwed up. He is doing very well now, I'm very proud of what he is doing for himself.
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Posted: October 27, 2020, 2:47 PM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



I'm so glad your son is doing better mtnmom. Let's us be our selves again . I sometimes forget who I am. Being the mom of an addict is all I have lived for so long. Remembering and constantly reminding myself that I am more than that. I used to be so proud of the title " mom" now I wish I could take a long vacation from that title . Just be me. I'm so very tired. Even when days are great I find it hard to enjoy. My two younger daughters are not getting all of me and I hate that I don't seem to be able to get my strength back. I feel shut down a lot and fake the smiles and small talk with everyone. I have gone to counselling,it helped a bit . I think I will try a i person meeting with alanon. Thank goodness I have this safe place to be honest because every one around me thinks that I am so strong and will get through this but I wonder to myself if I will ever be that strong woman again. I hope you get a chance to build a new relationship with your son and he continues to take responsibility for his actions and give you the love and respect you deserve. They say God only gives us what we can handle . I have to believe that I will be able to handle all this because there is no other choice for me. Just take it day by day and remember to breath right? Enjoy your good days mtnmom and know if you have a bad day that I would like to be here for you. It makes me feel better about myself to help others . Reminding me that I do have strength and I may have enough to share. Thank you 💗🐝
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Posted: October 29, 2020, 10:39 AM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



Well my son used last night. I'm not going crazy ( that's what I thought and he let me think I was just crazy) I had a suspicion the other day and now I know for sure. Found him sleeping with it all in his hand. I took it away before I woke him. I'm so devastated.he didn't last more than two weeks. My hubby is gone at the moment and I am on my own with this .havent slept all night. I'm going to ask him if this is a slip or if he has decided to go back to it again. We live in a small town and he can't go anywhere without seeing triggers.so I kinda expected this. If he will not contact his support system people and be honest with them and ask for more help I will ask him to leave my house. I have to protect my two younger daughters from some of this. I grew up with a addicted mom and she got help and did well but I still have issues from my childhood.so I want to prioritize my girls over him. Setting up counselling for the girls and my self. I have to say I'm not nearly as upset and devastated as I have in the past. Saw it coming I guess. And I think it has to do with the posts I have read here . I know I'm doing what I can and I can't do anymore for him. Seems I have gotten to a different point in my ability to cope with this all. Maybe I'm just more shut down,maybe I've seen this so many times it doesn't effect me the way it used to .i don't know but something in me has changed a bit. If I have to let him fall I will. If I lose him to death then I do. Nothing I can do will change anything for him and I now see it more clearly. All I know is him being in my house is driving me crazy. So he can go get help or go to the drugs.its up to him but either way he has to go. I cannot tolerate having drugs in my home. The thought literally makes me physically sick. I have hated these evil drugs since I was 8 years old and I can't seem to get away from them. I hate this so much. Destroying my family,destroying me. I wish I never had this evil touch my life. My hubby gets home in a week. I need to stay strong until my backup gets home.if anyone has suggestions or advice I would love to hear it. I'm here for the support and I think it is working for me. Thanks for listening ☹ I guess I will never be able to trust him again.

This post has been edited by Wednesday on October 29, 2020, 10:40 AM
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Posted: October 29, 2020, 2:23 PM


Posts: 1718
Joined: June 27, 2016



Hello Wednesday, sorry about your son’s situation. It is heartbreaking. You have been thru a lot. My son is 30 yrs old. The oldest of 3. My youngest daughter is 25. She has been an innocent bystander for the past 8 yrs. it is complicated. I think it has affected her more in the last 5 yrs bc her brother is 6 yrs older but 5 yrs younger as far as maturity. She is tired of being a cheer leader, tired of the disappointment, tired of us talking about it, she has moved to another state. A work opportunity came up a few yrs ago and she took it. Therapy is good. She has gone to a counselor on her own a few times.

It is tough feeling like a single parent. My husband used to work a lot. Another thing I don’t like is that I would be stuck in the middle holding secrets. Which then made me make choices I didn’t want to make.

It is almost impossible to heal your self when your son is still in an addiction cycle and living at home. With my son not living at home for the past year and a half, it has taken a solid year to get my life back. Yet, emotionally it all comes flooding back with each relapse.

This website did help me become stronger, therapy helped, watching you tube videos, internet searches. Helped me organize my thoughts, set up boundaries and detach.

I am slowly coming to terms with the fact that my son is not capable of staying sober. He has been living in shelters for the past year and has benefited from social services. I am confident that I can not do anything to help without getting back into the night mare. He has to help himself. He has all of the tools.

The only thing I can recommend for your son is sober living home where he will have support and be accountable for his action to someone other than you. Someone who knows how to handle addiction. Look at the links at the top of the page and look for government programs that might be near by. Ask at hospitals to recommend places that might be free or takes Medicaid. Or state insurance. Our sone was appointed to a place after being in jail and we said he could not come home to live.

It is best to figure out how to get yourself out of the loop. And that is the fastest was to see if he will sink or swim. Eventually he needs to be independent. Sooner is better for everyone.

I feel like I talked for 5 years to my son, always thinking recovery was around the corner. We are still waiting.



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Posted: October 29, 2020, 11:03 PM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Yes I agree I cannot live with my daughter. She has been homeless for a while now and pretty much lives with other addicts and is always in crisis or some type of drama. Its very, very sad. She has her mind (irrational mind) set on methadone however never follows through. I suggest options however none seem to appeal to her.

I keep in touch with her on a regular basis 2-3 times per week. I stay pretty much emotionally detached sometimes I get involved in her current crisis and it usually ends up costing me at least $500 or more. She's pretty savvy at roping me in on occassion. If I had the money I think I would do an intervention because she is so deep into addiction and now all the lifestyle and behaviors too. It breaks my heart because she's a very sweet girl. Never in a million years would I ever think her life would be like this. I hate addiction.
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Posted: October 30, 2020, 1:10 PM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



Thanks you for your feed back everyone. Yesterday was a crap day. I was smacked down by my sons addictive behaviour again. Being happy he completed his treatment and seemed so happy and proud to be clean and then a slip only two weeks after he came home. But I realized that I have hit a different point with myself. Something has changed. I did not freak out like I usually do. I did not even talk to him about it. I was a little shut down about it but I also felt like everyone one here has said. It's not my fight its his. And that has not happened before. It was always " we will all get through this together " but now it's starting to sink in with me that it is not my road. It's his road and hard as it is to let your kids go down their own road. Leave the nest and fly. Even if they fall to the ground.Let them find their own way. I do believe I have done what I can and that's all I can do. So I thought to myself ok here we go . He will leave and be back at square one. But he surprised me. I did not say a word about his slip other than he can never bring drugs to my house and I don't want him to use alone. I left it at that. But he did not leave to get more drugs he stayed home and helped around the house and then went on his own and did a zoom meeting with his treatment friends that night. I was pleased but I know how he is. He felt guilty and maybe just trying to make up for his slip. I don't know what tomorrow will bring but today is better than yesterday. Although I'm so tired of riding the rollercoaster I will take a good day and be happy in it . I hope everyone one here gets to enjoy a good day even if it's only for a day. 🐝
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Posted: October 31, 2020, 6:50 AM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Awareness is the first step to change. I just don't think my daughter is too aware right now. She used to be. She used to put herself in detox knowing how bad she was getting. Now, she's all over the place and is lying and can't see the forest through the trees. She's totally caught up in it all. Logic is met with no or irrational responses.

I think the same can happen to us in this process. We can become so focused and entangled in what they are doing or not doing......our life starts passing us by. Boundaries get blurred....and the next thing you know years have passed by.

I've read where 1 person with an addiction can affect up to 25 people. It especially affects close family members. My opinion is don t let addiction take another life (because it will). Keep aware and keep perspective and keep well defined boundaries. Its important to verbally state what these boundaries are. A boundary is where I end and and you begin. Know what you will and won't tolerate. Have strong convictions and live your life as best as you can. If not, addiction will steal it away. I love my daughter I hate her addiction.

This post has been edited by Sallyana on October 31, 2020, 7:29 AM
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Posted: October 31, 2020, 4:15 PM


Posts: 30
Joined: October 21, 2020



I finally feel like I may be able to separate myself a bit from my son . I have confirmed that he has gone into a full relaps. He lied and said he was with someone else( in recovery) but he was really with his ex who is still using. I have hit a point where I will not put his needs before my own anymore . I asked him not to come back to my house.that was a big thing for me usually my husband would end up doing that with me worrying more with him gone. I know he is lying to me and himself. He has made his choice and I have clearly reinforced my boundrys and that I will not do anything else for him. My husband gets home in a few days .thankful for that. It has been a crazy few weeks for me. But strangely I feel some relief. He was driving me crazy . Felt like he had a control over me but no more. I feel strongly that I am taking myself back .the advice I have received here has helped me a lot. Thanks for that sallyana ,mtnmom,nytoflorida.Feeling your not alone is very empowering. 🐝
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Posted: November 1, 2020, 2:07 AM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Hang in there Wednesday. We help each other so much and you help us too. Wishing you continued strength and peace!!
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Posted: November 1, 2020, 5:06 PM


Posts: 304
Joined: December 23, 2018



Wednesday, this was posted a few years ago in this chat: Posted: February 4, 2012, 11:54 AM

Recently someone asked me what I had done to help my daughter. The only thing I could think of was that I had finally stepped out of her way and let her help herself...allowed her to own her pain, and subsequently her joy. I found it was easier to think of those things I had done that had NOT helped her.

Here's my list (and it's a looong one) for what it's worth:

Things that DON’T ‘help’…

1) Anything we do for them that they CAN and SHOULD do for themselves.

Examples:
-Running interference with schools or employers
-Making excuses for them (He’ sick, she’s depressed, she had a hard childhood, he has chronic pain, he really wants to be clean, he needs me, she’s so young…fill it in with your favorite)
-Paying debts to ANYONE…loans, dealers, bills
-Giving them money
-Calling hospitals, detoxes, rehabs, doctors
-Holding or doling out medications, especially risk-reduction meds like suboxone or methadone.

Being a whirlwind of activity helps us, not them…it makes us feel like we are doing something when in actuality we are spinning our wheels. It relieves of us of some guilt we may be feeling about how this could happen in our family, because really, this is all about us (NOT).

2) Pretending that what we do is for them when it is really for us. This is a hard one to get past because in the beginning we are absolutely convinced that our motives are pure and unselfish…we want to help…we MUST help. Upon closer examination however, we will discover that much of what we have done has been for us, to satisfy ourselves that we have done everything possible to stop this train, and to maintain the illusion that what we are doing is “helpful”

3) Watching.

The kind of vigilance some of us exercised in the beginning (and some still do) is painful to recall. Watching moods, checking phone bills and cell phones, counting pills, sitting with them watching movies or playing games to take their minds off things (as if!), asking 'polite' questions about their day or their feelings.

4) Monitoring meeting attendance…this one is a form of ‘watching’ and is big: Did you get to a meeting today? You said you were going to a meeting. Do you need a ride to your meeting? Isn’t this your meeting night? What step are you on? Do you have a sponsor? Here, I bought you a Big Book. How was your meeting? Did you like tonight’s meeting? Arrrrggggh!!!!

Even worse is going to meetings with them. If you need a meeting, get yourself to AlAnon. Going to NA/AA meetings ‘with’ them is a form of voyeurism and an invasion of privacy. The last word in the name of ANY 12 step program is “Anonymous”. The same is true of finding an online recovery community and ‘sharing’ that with them…icky.

5) Keeping score.

Scorekeeping is part of watching. You said you were going do X or Y but you haven’t. I thought you were supposed to A or B, have you? I have done A,B, and C, but you have not done X,Y, or Z. Score keeping can also mean counting sober time.

6)Talking.

Try listening instead. Saying it louder, or saying it differently, or saying it more is all the same…eventually no one hears you. You will know when you are talked out because you will be as sick of the sound of your own voice as they are. Talking includes asking questions, lots and lots of questions.

7) Controlling.

You can’t. Stop trying.

“Control is central to the "MO" of the codependent person. They control their self-esteem by catering to others' needs. They control by their over-responsible performance, picking up where others leave off.” (Dr. Irene Matiatos) This gets back to doing for them what they should do for themselves. See #1.

8) Guilting.

This is just one more way to make it about us. How could you do this? What are you thinking? (Believe me, you don’t want to know.) What’s so hard about your life? Don’t you care about ____? Watching you do this is killing me. You wouldn’t if you loved me. (I can’t really love you because I don’t love myself.)

9) Picking up the pieces.

Allowing one to learn from one’s mistakes is one of the greatest dignities we can offer. Viewing “the wreckage of the past” is necessary and vital to growth. Every time we indulge in #1, of which #9 is a part, we tell them that we do not believe in them, that we do not see them as capable, that we have no faith in their ability to do the right thing,that they cannot take care of themselves. We send a message of incompetence and powerlessness, and chances are good they already feel this way, so all we do is reinforce a lousy self-image.

10) “Shrinking” or “Sponsoring”

You are not your loved one’s doctor, therapist, or sponsor. All of your so-called understanding is annoying and makes it about you again. Stop trying to get into her head...it is not someplace you should be. Everything you are learning about addiction is powerful if you use it to help YOU, but once you use to be disgustingly ‘understanding’ or to try to 12-step your loved one, it becomes the tool of the devil. Instead ask yourself why you are so addicted to your addicted loved one...why it is so hard to tell where she begins and you end.

11) Having expectations.

Expectations are disappointments waiting to happen. On the other hand, having low expectations leads to excuse-making (see #1).

12) NOT working on ourselves.

It sure is easy to look at the addict and believe that all would be right in our worlds (and more importantly in our interior lives) if only….

Instead, try looking at what you contribute to the dynamic. What is it in us that makes us need to project-manage them and their disease? What is the sickness in me that I feel that all positive outcomes hinge on what I do or say? Once again, it's all about me.

13) Seeing your situation as ‘special’ or ‘different’.

This has a name in 12 step settings: terminal uniqueness. We are all terminally unique. In codependents this most often takes the form of “She’s so wonderful, sweet, funny…when she’s not using.” Yep, they are all terrific, sensitive souls when the drugs have not robbed them of that. Your addicted loved one is no more or less special, spiritual, kind, creative, loving...(fill in the blank) than any other addict, including those junkies you see outside meetings or in line at the clinic.. Everyone is someone’s father, wife, child, friend. Your family member may just more fortunate in education, economics, community support, or family structure. None of us are more special than another. There but for the grace of God...

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Posted: November 2, 2020, 8:20 PM


Posts: 199
Joined: November 10, 2019



Thank you mtnmom for your post
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