Mother cries out for help with her drug-addict son

A mother’s desperate plea for help as she fears son may lose his life because of drugs. ARMAND HOUGH African News Agency (ANA)

A mother’s desperate plea for help as she fears son may lose his life because of drugs. ARMAND HOUGH African News Agency (ANA)

Published Oct 9, 2021


Cape Town - A Mitchells Plain mother is crying out for help with her 21-year-old son, who is addicted to drugs and terrorising the family.

Marlene van Willingh said: “Something happened to him when he was 10. He then turned and became a different person. He started with marijuana, and now it is tik. I suspected that he was on drugs for a while. It was not so bad before, but over the last two or three years, it has become worse.”

She took to social media with a desperate plea to get her son the help he needs. Van Willingh opened up cases against him and also had him arrested hoping that this would deter him and that social workers would step in.

“This might seems strange or wrong to a lot of people. after reading, a few might even judge me. I have a son turning 21 next month on the of October 10 that’s on drugs for quite a few years. He’s been smashing things in my house then blaming me for his deeds. For no reason, he would get angry and just start attacking people in the house.

“As a mother, it’s hard to let go because he is my son. Besides his aggression and anger towards me, I still manage to love him unconditionally. Just last night, he got into a fight with some neighbourhood kids. In the end, it came back to me and he started smashing things in the house. There’s something he wanted me to give him, but I wasn’t willing to because it’s against the law.

“I need help, help for my son before he ends up losing his life. I need him to be drug-free and the boy I know he can be. He is a very nice, loving kid, but his drugs and aggression are not allowing him to be the person he is. I even, at some point, filed a case against him just so that he can get help, but the authority has failed me. I ended up looking or appeared to be the victim. This can’t go on. This is breaking my heart, and it’s hurting the rest of his siblings ...18 and 11-years-old. I’m pleading to anyone who can help me please this is too much right now,” she posted.

Van Wilingh said her 11-year-old is always traumatised by the things her older son does.

“It breaks my heart. He accuses me of not loving him and caring for him. I do, but when I buy him clothes and things, he takes them and sells it. So I had to stop doing it. He argues with his father a lot and always asks for money. I have spoken to him. He said to me he wants help,” she said.

Spokesperson for the MEC of Social Development, Joshua Chigome said with the support of its NPO partners, the provincial DSD provides a wide array of Substance Use Disorders (SUD) programmes, ranging from prevention, early intervention, community-based and inpatient rehabilitation and after-care services.

Services offered by the DSD and its NPO partners are awareness, primary prevention, early intervention, aftercare services, specialised services for victims of gender-based violence and residential or inpatient treatment centres and non-residential outpatient (also known as community-based) treatment centres.

“If you or someone you care about has a SUD or feel that you can’t cope with the symptoms of substance abuse in your home or place of work, getting help is the first step. The treatment of a SUD is a process, and ongoing support is provided throughout the programme,” said Chigome.

Director of Cape Town Drug Counselling Centre Ashley Potts took it upon himself, after speaking to the Weekend Argus, to personally conduct a home visit.

“Sadly, cases like this are not rare. Parents need to make contact for help so that these issues can be discussed with the minister and sustainable solutions can be reached,” said Potts.

Weekend Argus