Advice on brother

Last night, my brother was arrested at a road block for having a little bit of pot on him. I don’t need a lecture on how pot is bad. It’s not that kind of thread. My family has had several problems over the past couple of months and my disabled mother has been totally stressed. This was the straw that broke the camel’s back and her doctor has put her on anti-anxiety medication for the next 10 days.
My husband has offered to pay to bail him out of jail. I am thankful that my husband is so kind and generous, but I just don’t know. I don’t know if we should let him stay in and learn his lesson or what.
I’m worried that we may not see the money again. We bought him a ticket to go with us to a football game this season. We bought it in July and still haven’t received a dime of the money. I love my brother with all of my heart. This just breaks my heart. I’m so confused as to what to do. My grandmother thinks we may never see the money since we haven’t been paid for the football ticket yet. This thread makes it seem like he is a bad person, he really isn’t. He would give the shirt off his back if someone needed it. My mom had to get on to him the other day for buying people’s lunch just because they claim to have no money. These “friends” seem to never have any money. :rolleyes:

I am just lost. I keep going back and forth. One minute I want to bail him out, the next I feel like he should stay in. I am definitely in need for some good, honest advice. Thanks!

This is the first time he has ever been in serious trouble. If that helps.

If your brother has a credit card, he can bail himself out.

Do you think your brother will do a runner? Not show up for court?

I don’t see why else you’d be worried about not seeing your money again. But if he does a runner and becomes a fugitive over a small amount of pot, I think you have greater concerns than whatever money you stand to lose.

It sounds more like you think a little jail time will do him good…which may or may not be a reasonable conclusion.

No, I don’t think he will run. This is his first offense, ever. I don’t think he has ever gotten a ticket for a traffic violation. I just don’t want it to happen again. Our biological father had a drug problem and I don’t want him to end up down that road. I don’t want a phone call a year from now for the same thing. Ugh. This is hard. :frowning:

I think that if it were my brother, I’d probably do it. Once. But I would only do it if you can afford to lose the money if he doesn’t pay you back.

It sounds like he’s a generally good guy who did something stupid. Most of the time, I’m all for letting people deal with the consequences of their own choices. But it sounds like he’s already been in there for a day, and he’ll have more consequences down the road.

“I think that if it were my brother, I’d probably do it. Once. But I would only do it if you can afford to lose the money if he doesn’t pay you back.”

Yes. And without hurrying too much. Give him time to think.

Don’t advance him any money or tickets.

No, don’t bail him out. My family knows your pain well, and I will pray for you and your brother. I don’t believe he is a bad person, but you are not doing him any favors by purposely removing consequences for drug use.

I’ll say that again, and from experience: You are not doing him any favors by purposely removing consequences for drug use.

Sounds like this is a chronic problem, asking for money, not paying it back, needing to be bailed out by family again and again, this time, literally. I’d be tempted to let him experience the consequences of his actions this time. Otherwise, you might be enabling this kind of behavior to continue in the future.

A lot of times, we bail people out of their problems with additions, and it doesn’t allow them to ever experience the consequences of their own actions, allowing them to continue, unchecked.

It’s actually better, in the long run, to NOT enable.

If you were to talk to someone with more experience with addictions, like in Alanon, say, I think they’d advise you not to enable this any further. Yes, I realize Alanon is related to drinking, but the principle is the same.

A lot of times, what happens with people with addictions to turn them around is that they often NEED to hit rock bottom. That’s frequently the ONLY way to get them to change. In fact, the bottom can also be quite low for some people.

Without hitting bottom, many, if not most people with substance abuse problems won’t change.

I don’t doubt he’s nice, but if you want him to learn responsibility, let him start to experience the consequences of his actions.

Let him bail himself out on his own credit, unless he can’t do it and he has a job or some other opportunity he’s going to lose. You do not want him to lose a semester of school to “teach a lesson” to a guy who has never had so much as a traffic ticket.

Try to help him find a very good lawyer. The arrest is bad enough, the time in jail is bad enough, but the effects of one conviction instead of another or one sentence instead of another can be much worse.

Get him the book “Arrest-Proof Yourself” by Dale Carson and Wes Denham. If nothing else, the book will say about 4,000 times: LEAVE YOUR DRUGS AT HOME!!! and to never let anyone ride with you who might have drugs on them or might leave something illegal in your car. The book was written by a fellow who was a Dade Co. police officer, an FBI agent, and is now a defense attorney. It has lots of good information for young men about how to stay out of the wrong side of law enforcement.

No advice, just prayers for your brother, your family, and you.

If you decide to bail your brother out, do it without expecting the money back. Then you won’t have a problem if he doesn’t pay it back. There’s nothing wrong with letting him wait it out either. They aren’t going to put up with him for long over a little pot. When my brother got busted the last time, my parents were trying to figure out where to get the money and where to pick him up, when he came waltzing up the driveway. The cops decided to write him a citation and make him walk home. They needed the cell, apparently.

Thanks so much for the advice and prayers.

His job is a part time job as a cook at a restaurant. People have offered him better jobs, but he didn’t take up those offers because of drug testing. :rolleyes:
The consensus of the family seems to be to leave him in there until his court date. Since our father lost everything because of drugs and being bailed out of his problems, our family seems to think tough love from the start is the best way. This hurts me, he is my little brother and I’ve always had his back. Plus, I haven’t seen him in a year and a half and was looking forward to hanging out when I go home in TWO WEEKS. :frowning: Hopefully he will make better choices in the future. This just breaks my heart.

My poor brother would have to walk about 20 miles over a mountain to get home. lol. The county he was arrested in will pour out your beer if it is sitting on ice. lol Welcome to Alabama.

It will not hurt your brother to cool his heels in the pokey for a few days (or weeks). He may be a good guy, but it sounds like he is irresponsible and immature, and if you rush off to rescue him from his mistake then he will have no reason to learn from this. Some time away from family and friends will give him a chance to think about his life, where it is going now and where he really wants it to go. If he hasn’t paid you back for a football ticket, then you have no expectation that he will pay you back for bail money.

How far is it around the mountain?

Speaking as one who has to drive three hours to visit her brother in a rehab, I don’t find this attitude to be at all cute. The best way for young men to stay out of the wrong side of law enforcement is not to “leave their drugs at home”. The best way is to stay off of drugs comletely, have nothing to do with drugs, keep a healthy distance away from people who do drugs, stay in school and get good grades, and maybe join the army. You think bail money is hard to come by? This little stint in rehab is costing my brother 14 grand out-of-pocket, which he now has to figure out how to pay along with his legal fees. Addiction is expensive. Be a man and find appropriate ways to handle stress, other than illegal substances.

Enabling os helping him or making it easier for him to do *bad *things. Helping him is helping or making it easy for him to do *good *things.

Does he need to be bailed for being caught with drugs? That’s a bad thing, so don’t help.

Does he need a loan to buy a suit for his new job? If he has been reliable in the past about paying back, or if you can make it a gift, getting aa new job is a good thing, so it’s ok to help.

It was not meant to be cute, and I was not advocating self-medicating or entertaining oneself with drugs or anything else. The book does not, either. What it does is outline how easy it is for a young man to suffer life-long personal and professional consequences because he is ignorant of the legal ramifications of an arrest, let alone a drug-related conviction.

Why did I not simply say “tell him to stay off drugs?” Well, because the fellow is in jail, it seemed like the advice that applies is how to stay out of jail and how to not earn himself a real incarceration by failing to make his court date or failing to show the respect due to a court of law. That is what the book is about.

The truth is, he has an arrest record now, and that will cause him trouble enough. What he does not need is a conviction that does not befit his misdeeds. Just as an auto accident will follow you in the form of higher insurance rates long after your car is repaired, just so an arrest (let alone an incarceration) record will follow you long after you’ve “done your time” and cleaned up your act.

If he was an habitual scoff-law, I might agree with you, but this is not a fellow who has been in and out of jail because he keeps getting bailed out. This is a fellow who’s not had so much as a traffic ticket before this. He may be sloppy about paying back loans, but that won’t be helped if every job application he ever fills out has a “yes” on the question that asks “have you ever been convicted of a felony?” That can start a downward spiral.

Having said that, you are right that he ought to be given to know that he had one “get out of jail on a loan” card and will believed that the drug thing was a stupid isolated mistake once, not to ever be followed by “it was just one joint” or “I thought I was OK to drive” or “he was a friend of a friend, so I gave him a ride; how was I supposed to know he had _____ on him?” The book I suggested is about how to avoid shooting yourself in the foot by going through the legal system and then making the trip sideways and backwards. The intention is that he get enough education to make this his last “mistake”. There does get to be a point, though, where he’s on his own.

Oy, vey, he doesn’t want drug testing, and he was arrested in Alabama, albeit with a small amount. Get him a local lawyer who specializes in these cases (from what I gather, Alabama and certain of her citizens keep a lot of them in business on marijuana-related offenses), letting him know that it will be THIS ONCE, because if he gets a chance he may make good use of it. (Not everyone who fails to promptly pay back loans to relatives is completely foolish or unreliable in all respects.) Whether you bail him out or not depends on you. Still, if he has no legal record it is well worth helping him to avoid acquiring a more extensive record than is necessary, and particularly to avoid losing his driver’s license.

Do let him know that if there is a next round, “having his back” will mean helping him even less. “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”

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