drug abuse

‘How could you do this?’ I look at your Facebook profile before I tell your mother you’re dead.’: First responder shares heartbreaking practice to humanize victims, ‘I owe it to you’

“You’re a nameless body. I know nothing about you. We’re trying desperately to save you but right now, all I am is mad at you. Maybe you were texting, or popped a Vicodin at the campus party and should’ve Ubered. In 5 minutes, I’m about to change your mom and dad’s lives. So, I pick up your faded driver’s license, flip to Facebook. I owe it to them to remind myself it is a person I’m talking about.”

‘I’m young. Doesn’t everyone drink?’ I chose to be homeless. On the streets, no one could hold me back.’ : Young woman gains back ‘self respect, dignity’ after overcoming alcoholism

“I traded a life of steady income and comfort for a life on the streets in order to support my addiction. I slept in homeless camps, under bridges, along railroad tracks, and in strangers’ houses. My sign, ‘Support my whiskey right for a frisky night,’ made more money than any other sign asking for help. I was living on the street, so no one cared. It came with the territory.”

‘You need help.’ I got her from preschool, pulled over ‘to rest,’ and woke with officers knocking on my window.’: Mom-of-4 finally gets sober after being institutionalized over 20 times, learns she is ‘not alone’

“This started long before ‘wine mom culture’. Earlier that morning, I was running errands alone. I pulled into a grocery store without thinking. That’s all it took. Horrified, my husband said, ‘You’ve got to stop. Emily, you need help.’ He breathalyzed me daily while taking away all access to money. I was greeted by judgmental preschool moms. These were the same women who cooked dinners every week for my husband and kids while I was gone.”

‘Are you okay?’ I was visibly a junkie. This man took me to his home where his girlfriend was waiting.’: Woman reminisces on stranger’s ‘beautiful act of kindness’ during active addiction

“I used to sleep under this bridge. One day, at a gas station, I was visibly bleeding from a fight. This woman gently dressed my wounds. They gave me clothes, a soda, and a sandwich. I was literally too hungry to play shy, so I scarfed it down and chugged until I hiccuped. In that moment of pure desperation, they breathed life back into me.”

‘My daughter fled 300 miles from her abuser, stopped at a gas station, and never came home.’: Mom loses daughter to domestic violence, ‘he was only charged for drugs, but we’re living a life sentence without our sweet girl’

“My daughter met her abuser in rehab. He was 41, 19 years older than her. Our first reaction to the abuse was to pack up her stuff and get her away from him. ‘Please give me time,’ she begged. She wanted out badly, but feared the repercussions. Reluctantly, we all agreed. Little did any of us know this would be our biggest regret. My poor baby was found with finger marks around her throat 2 weeks later.”

‘Yes, Lizzie. It’s true.’ I fell to the floor, grabbing at the carpet. ‘My brother is dead,’ I screamed through loud sobs.’: Woman loses little brother to Fentanyl-Laced Heroin on Christmas day, now uses grief to ‘create change’

“It was Christmas Day. A friend of mine randomly sent me this message: ‘I’m so sorry to hear about Randy. God Bless you guys.’ I had no clue what he was talking about. I quickly went to my brother’s Facebook page and saw ‘RIP’ and ‘Rest Easy’ over and over again. I found out my brother was dead from a Facebook message.”

‘To the girl in love with an addict, his failures are not your failures. His demons are not your demons.’: Mom comes to terms with husband’s addiction, advises addict spouses to ‘hang in there’

“To the girl in love with an addict, I saw you sit in your car alone at halftime and breakdown. I see you and your fake smile. Don’t worry, they all still believe you’re fine. You’ve gotten so good at crying hard, getting it all out fast, and getting back to your seat before anyone even realizes you’re gone. Please don’t let him make you think his addiction is your fault. This has nothing to do with you at all. You deserve better than this.”

‘In 2 weeks, you will meet the love of your life. And when you do, you will know it.’ But then came a warning. ‘You must do the right thing, or you will be cursed.’ He winked, and walked away.’

“That’s when our eyes met. It was like time stopped. It was like the music on the dance floor silenced, and all I could hear was my own heartbeat. I still remember what the room smelled like. I couldn’t look away. I was frozen. This was him. I knew it, and felt it, from my head to my feet.”

‘I love you, sweetie. I’ll call you Friday.’ Those words will forever haunt me. I received a call from my mom when school ended. ‘This is the hardest thing I’ll ever tell you.’ I fell to the floor.’

“My heart sank. I could tell by her voice I had to get home. I still hear the words as she fought back breaking down. ‘We have to go. We have to get there!’ I remember having thought, ‘He seems better. He seems more like himself.’ My dad was back. Boy, was I wrong.”

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