|Cameron 18 years old|
I've been quiet for a week because I was in shock and trying to process what happened. Why??? Well ....
Last week Cameron left our house with a person we had been asked to trust and we believed we could trust. When Cameron arrived home his clothes stunk and I immediately questioned what this odd smell was. It was overpowering and I had to change all his clothes immediately.
I admit I have lived a sheltered life, yes I drink wine but didn't try alcohol until I was in my twenty's and I've never smoked and have never taken drugs either.
I know what cigarettes smell like and what cigars and pipes smell like and this smell was nothing like them. It was different and my mind kept searching for an explanation.
Finally after discussions with several people I realized that Cameron had been in an environment where people had been smoking marijuana. Even as I typed that my brain went numb. How did this happen? This can't be true.
We don't know if the person he was with was using or took Cameron into an environment where others were using. We don't know if they offered Cameron an opportunity to try it too or if they forced him to try it. Cameron is so young of mind, he would have had no idea that where he was was wrong or that what was happening was wrong. He wouldn't have known what to do or how to remove himself from the situation. He would have stood there like an innocent child.
Meanwhile we know he breathed in the smoke and was potentially put at risk as the person he was with drove him home.
My biggest fear of letting Cameron out into the big wide world without us is that he can not speak and tell us what he has been doing. He can't tell us if someone does something to him or that he felt uncomfortable or something was wrong. He can't protect himself by himself and can't remove himself from dangerous or scary situations. He is mentally a toddler and toddlers need protection and others to care for them and speak for them.
The person Cameron was with took advantage of the fact Cameron couldn't come home and tell us what he had done that day or where he went. He took advantage of the fact he couldn't tell us what the other people were doing or what the person he was with did. He used the fact Cameron couldn't speak to take advantage of the situation and completely abused his position of trust.
This situation has been my biggest nightmare and now it has happened and it's shaken me up. I want Cameron to go out into the world but I want him to be safe and I want the people who are with him to care as much about him as us. That may seem an unrealistic desire but I don't think so.
We've been criticised for years for not putting Cameron into respite care or paying strangers to care for him and this very situation is why we didn't. Cameron has no voice and we feared people would take advantage of that and clearly our fear was not unfounded.
It is awful that Cameron was exposed to drugs but I can get over that, what I can't get over is that Cameron's lack of communication was taken advantage of so the person he was with could do something that was wrong and potentially dangerous.
I hasten to add that this person was not a family member or friend, thank goodness because if that happened I don't think I could ever trust again.