Thursday, May 26, 2016

(2010) The Drug Overdose Rates per/100,000

Map: Drug overdose death rates by state per 100,000 people (2008)

(2010) The Amount of Prescription Pain Killers Sold

Map: Amount of prescription painkillers sold by state per 10,000 people (2010)

What Is The Real Problem?

As I set here typing and shaking my head I still cannot understand. We have a heroin epidemic here. We have so many more rising up out of the stigma of society now than ever before to say, "We Have Had Enough" and speaking out louder than ever before.

We are growing stronger by the numbers. We will not go away!

I myself this year rose out of the ashes of the societal stigma

Breaking Point: Heroin In America

Using Naloxone For An Overdose

If you've taken the class this is a very good video I found on refreshing what has been told and taught in the class.

(Documentary) Heroin: The Devil Drug

(Documentary) Anatomy Of An Overdose

(Documentary) Heroin: The Hardest Hit

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

For Parents of Young Kids and Teens: Know The Signs

Let's face it. The signs of abuse and addiction are there. Even if you know the signs and see the signs, what then? What do you do? Read the rest @



Law Enforcement and Naloxone

I believe that OTC Narcan aka Naloxone (which is the generic form) is coming to West Virginia over the counter and could be as early as June.

As I was reading some of the information and news stories I came across one in particular.

"But law enforcement officials across the state, like Chief Preston, are still apprehensive. Preston believes there is a risk of cardiac arrhythmia, so he wants to make sure his officers are taught to recognize the signs of a heart attack, as well as how to administer Naloxone." Full Story

Narcan and Naloxone is the drug given to save a persons life in an overdose. I am just wondering about their same concern and risk of cardia arrhythmia should they have to activate a taser against someone?

Do they stand and yell first, "do you have a known cardiac problem?
No they activate the taser as needed.

Tasers have been known to stop the heart. We are talking about the drug Narcan and Naloxone the drug given that could save a persons life and they always want a debate. I see no greater chances in cardiac arrhythmias than the taser.

So I wonder, what is the real problem?

The Needle And The Damage Done


Sung by Neil Young 1972

Breaking the Stigma of Heroin

The one thing we all need to remember is that HEROIN DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE. Heroin doesn't care about age, gender, race or religion. It doesn't care about rich or poor. It doesn't care if you live in a trailer park or a big house on a hill. Heroin doesn't care how your were raised. You can come from a bad home life or you can come from a great loving home. Heroin doesn't care about your job. You can be a laborer, work at a gas station, a lawyer, a doctor a nurse or be a CEO of a huge corporation- Heroin DOES NOT CARE!!!! We need to concentrate on removing all the stigma's that HEROIN places on those suffering with addiction.

These stigma's often follow them forever. When they are recovered what then?
With the stigma they have a hard time finding housing and jobs

If recovery is a second chance at life why then do we make it so hard on the recovering addict?

Monday, May 23, 2016

Heroin Facts

"Heroin is processed from morphine, a naturally occurring opiate extracted from the seedpod of certain varieties of poppy plants. The opium poppy has been cultivated for more than five thousand years for a variety of medicinal uses.
Heroin was first synthesized from morphine in 1874. From 1898 through to 1910, Bayer, the German pharmaceutical company, marketed it under the trademark name Heroin as a cough suppressant and as a non-addictive morphine substitute (until it was discovered that it rapidly metabolizes into morphine). One year after beginning sales, Bayer exported heroin to 23 countries." Continue Reading

There Are Angels Among Us

I know there are Angels walking with us. Some we can't see; other times they appear in many a form. They are there.  I don't know why this song is only played at Christmas. The words to the song are not even related to a holiday. Ain't it kind of funny when at the dark end of the road. Someone comes along and lights a single ray of hope....


A Letter To Our Son

Son,

As you can imagine we've had a lot of time to reflect back over the years. Time is a funny thing, son. Although time continues moving the clocks ahead there are many moments that our mind plays it all in rewind.

We realized many years ago that gone is the baby boy we held in our arms long ago. From bouncing on a knee to hear you laugh to

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Out Patient Methadone Clinics Sucess or Not?

Typically called, Medicated Assisted Treatment. These are outpatient treatment options. Yes, we have one of those here in Martinsburg. I assume that some of those against the in-house treatment program that our petition is calling for have told me, "but we already have one." They mention the Martinsburg Institute. Some call it The Methadone Clinic. This is a detox process using medically assisted treatment.

The methadone clinic and program we have here are for outpatient treatment. It is very costly and it didn't work for our son. We don't know why other than it is very easy for them to get what they need on any street in this town.

Now I'm not saying it doesn't work for everyone. It is likely needed for those who may have just left a thirty-day in-house program.
Our son went there. My sister paid for his first months of treatment there. This was done on the promise that he would be clean enough to find employment and be able to pay his own weekly payment of which I believe was $20.

None of those expectations happened.

For a time I was giving him $20 because I believed that is what the money was being used for. Uh No!!! He had stopped going there several months prior. He was able to obtain the suboxone and methadone on any street corner in this town.

Honestly, we never saw any progress. I guess maybe he really wasn't ready to give up the demons of heroin and opiates yet. We don't know.

The methadone clinic became his lie to hopefully convince us. It was used to keep us off his back. As long as we believed the lie everything was great.

Eventually, the lies make a full circle and we learned he never stopped chasing the dragon.

For our son, this is why I know he needs inpatient treatment for 30 days or longer. This time if we get the chance we are also pushing him to get out of the State of West Virginia.
Is this a guarantee? Nope, we know that. He has proven that he cannot stay here away from those old friends and vices. Of course, the ultimate decision will be up to him.

After taking our Naloxone class with Dr. John Aldis I have had the opportunity to read some information on Vivitrol.

Naltrexone For Heroin and Opiate Addiction

I wonder why this isn't being studied more and used as a treatment option here in Berkeley County?

I am not putting down medically assisted treatment. I'm just saying it didn't work for our son.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Recovery Resource Center


in Berkeley County by late June

City Councilman Keven Knowles and BC Community Recovery Services Coordinator announced his plans. If there are no set backs as we've seen in the past this is a giant step for Martinsburg and Berkeley County leading the way to more treatment center options available right here.

Why Do We Need This Treatment Center Here?

When someone is having a heart attack or a stroke they are taken to the hospital, they are treated in the emergency room by a great set of doctors. Once they are stable they are then admitted into the hospital often in the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital and treatment and tests are started. When you are sick or are having a medical emergency that is how it works right?

But...

If someone is addicted to heroin and they overdose first they are lucky if the treatment gets to them on time. There is still fight over the use of Narcan. Our local law enforcement who is often the first on the scene will not be carrying Narcan Let's say the ambulance gets there to save them because that is what often happens. Then, the addict is taken to the hospital. There they are observed and then discharged.

Why? They too are sick aren't they?
Why are they then discharged out of the hospital to go back to heroin and then take a risk of overdosing again and possibly dying?

The answer is a simple one...

Because there are no beds in the places where they need to go to get treated for the disease of addiction. There is a huge waiting list for those beds to the places they need to go to get treatment for the disease of addiction.

We desperately need those beds right here in Martinsburg/Berkeley County. We need the treatment right here in Martinsburg/Berkeley County to treat our own who are addicted to heroin and want to be free of addiction.

Things I've Learned From Loving An Addict: The Insanity Of Loving An Addict

It's been said that Insanity is...

Doing the same thing over and over  repetitively expecting a different result each time.

This is the insanity of loving an addict... The easiest way to describe all the feelings on the insanity of loving an addict is that it feels like you visited an amusement park you didn't want to go to in the first place and I'm on a rollercoaster ride of ups and downs and cannot and do not know how to get off of. 

We spend so much time denying a loved one has a problem with addiction and drugs. We deny the problem because deep down we are afraid of what we'll find out. Often deep down we know, our heart is telling us. We deny, cover up the problem and spend so much effort into trying to fix it.

Even when we know what it is and can call it what it is- a heroin addiction it is easy to still be in denial. Even when we deny we still accept their explanations.

We  lie and cover up for our loved one and their problem with addiction. We are afraid others will find out. What will others think? This is because likely due to the embarrassment that any addiction to drugs places on you and your family.

And well...

Who really wants others thinking bad things about our loved ones addicted to drugs? We want others to love them too for the person that is inside the addiction. Often when others discover they don't understand the mind of an addict and so they tell you things that can often send you into a whirlwind as well.

How hard do you think it is to admit that you are powerless over your loved ones addiction? Especially when you spend so much time concentrating on fixing something you had no control over in the first place.

We spend so much time trying to change them and fix them that it turns into an obsession.

How hard do you think it is to convince yourself that you had nothing to do with this? When all the times you confronted your loved one about their drug problem they blame you for it. So here you go in a mind spin thinking back to times that they were babies wondering if you really did do something in the way you raised them.

We love the addict and want to do everything in our power to help our addicted loved one- but we also don't trust them.

Although we find it hard to believe them and yet we still fall for their manipulation. We often will enable them to death or at least until we have no more money yourself.

We have enough qualifications to be a detective but we don't have a certificate.

We spend so many sleepless nights awake, fearful for our loved one.

We can go from praying for our loved one to get help and in the next prayer be praying for God to just take our loved one home so they don't have to suffer with this anymore.

We spend so much of our time and your energy concentrating on our loved one who is addicted to drugs. We try so hard to control it by fixing it when we are powerless to cure it.

We are so guilt ridden thinking this is something that we did this or we caused this that we concentrate so much on this it can often leave you feeling depressed.

The emotions alone make us hurt in places we don't realize we even had muscles there.

How hard do you think it is to accept that you cannot cure your loved ones addiction to heroin when all we want is for them to get better?

This is the insanity of loving an addict and then the day comes that I have to realize and admit that I am powerless over the power of heroin and addiction and the grip that it has on someone I love so much.

© 2016 Gossip Girl




We Need To Get Away From Here

We haven't had a vacation for many years. We need to get away... and soon!!! If nothing else just to visit somewhere new away from this town, away from the realities we face here and see new things. The reality is that I blew an entire savings on my sons addiction to heroin.

I guess our vacation this year will be sponsored by Calgon...

Do they sell this stuff in Campfire and Smores? What about some Ocean City Beach time?




Things I Learned From An Addict: Jail Rhymes With Bail

So with our son using and abusing heroin and opiates, he has committed crimes in order to get heroin or opiates. These are the times that you hate the most. It's hard convincing others that you didn't raise your child like that. It is the demon of the drug. This drug is so powerful that it clouds the mind of the consequences of committing crimes. Committing crimes to get the drug is dangerous

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Things I've Learned From An Addict: Confusing Intervention With Exorcism

To do an intervention or not. First you may be asking yourself what an intervention is. There are several TV Reality Shows of Intervention. Honestly, they aren't for everyone and they aren't as easy as they look on television either. After confronting him many times about his abusing Heroin I got online to read everything I could about Intervention.

Intervening With Intervention:

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

For The Co-Dependant

The word co-dependency often doesn't mean that you use drugs together. A co-dependent can be anyone who loves the person with the addiction. Sometimes even when you know what is going on in the others life you remain in denial and believe you can fix it.


Often you just have no choice but to walk away....

Addiction Explained....

It's often hard explaining to others about addiction. If it's never affected you or someone you love it's easy to say that someone can stop. It's not as easy as others believe...





What causes addiction? Easy, right? Drugs cause addiction. But maybe it is not that simple.

This video is adapted from Johann Hari's New York Times best-selling book 'Chasing The Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs.' For more information, and to take a quiz to see what you know about addiction, go to www.chasingthescream.com

The War On Pot

Remember my post should we end the war on pot? It was about West Virginia and where this state stands on legalizing marijuana either for medicinal use and/or decriminalizing it. This post is Part II of West Virginia's war on cannabis. Whether or not we believe or disbelieve that problem is marijuana. Martinsburg and Berkeley County's problem is not with cannabis. This county- heck the entire state- has bigger issues with a bigger drug problem- Heroin, opiate abuses, prescription medications, crack and after a trailer fire ruled a meth lab/meth cook house- just how big is the meth problem in this area?

Before you read on just as a note- It is okay to discuss these types of issues. You would not believe the people who don't like to discuss this issue due to fear they will get into trouble either for the way they feel about an issue or for just saying the words related to drugs. Please know that you cannot get into any trouble for discussing this. That is half of what is wrong with the drug problem in this county now. No one wants to talk about it, or they don't for fear of retribution. 

The entire state of WV has a bigger issue and it isn't pot, cannabis aka marijuana or any of the other names associated with pot. Martinsburg and Berkeley County's biggest problem slash war now is called prescription drug abuse, heroin addiction, crack and now methamphetamine thrown into the mix. 

I am just speculating here, but I think our problem here in Martinsburg/Berkeley County started a long time ago and no doubt dates back to the 70's or early 80's with The Hill and The Big Drug Bust. Remember that one? When all of the key players were rounded up and arrested in one big city/county sweep? 

If you've lived around here that long you probably do remember. After that they had their parades and celebrations with awards and medals the next day when the fanfare was over they all went to sleep. Why? Did they really think that they had drove the dealers out of Berkeley County?

I think either they had too much of a chip on their shoulders or maybe they thought that it wouldn't happen again. Maybe they only just patrolled that certain problem area forgetting the rest of this county. 

What really happened is that the dealers just moved to other more rural areas in the county and laid low until the eyes were sound asleep. During that bust we learned some of the higher ups in our local government had their hands in the kitty. I won't rehash too much of the past or bash any of those names here but what happened after that first bust? 

Almost everyday we can pick up the local paper or look at certain websites and read about so and so arrested for marijuana on occasion a bust over marijuana- what about the bigger drugs?
The heroin? The crack? The meth? Why do they always seem to concentrate investigation on busting users and those addicted to opiates, crack and meth? These are the drugs causing devastation to this community- the burglaries, the robberies, the home invasions. 


A pot smoker won't strip your home of copper or rob you blind!

Not talking about the drug problems in this area has not made them go away. That is the problem now- no one wants to talk about it.
PLEASE NOTE: The intention of this post or any that should follow is not to bash the local law enforcement. The intent is to talk about the issues of drugs in Berkeley County and the real problem.
To be continued....(I am sure)

The Herald Mail Oct 2006 story Busting The Hill © 2014 Gossip Girl

Back In History: It Just Had To Be The Pot

It couldn't have been all the LSD and Acid!
This is a continuing discussion about Berkeley County's out of control drug problem. Weeks ago I posted one of several I have written on the subject of, Should Pot Be Legal?

I was born and raised here in Martinsburg. My parents took me to church every Sunday and also talked about why we should never use drugs. Maybe that should say they used scare tactics back then to explain it.
As a kid I was scared to death of drugs. Back in those days the majority of kids I went to school with was raised the same way we were.
Back in those days on Sundays you were in church. Everyone knew each other here in town. At the stores or when out you ran into people

Heavenly Father, Walk Through My House...


A Prayer For Direction


Things I Learned From An Addict: Confronting The Demon of Addiction

Today's post is about confronting your loved ones with your feelings about their addiction. Trust me when they aren't ready to admit they even have a problem these times are very confrontational aren't they?

Now I am assuming by this point you are not in denial anymore that your loved one has a problem with drugs. Heroin and opiate abuse shuts off the part of the brain that deals with sympathy and empathy. No one ever told me that

Whenever we confronted our adult son with words like, "we're afraid you are going to die" It pretty much played out like several scenes from the movie, The Exorcist and he felt pushed him into a corner.

Every time we had a confrontation with our son I wanted to say blessings in every room of the house, smudge and burn sage afterward. This is also a time when they will start blaming you, their childhood and their upbringing for their drug problem.

Confronting Them About The Problem:

Monday, May 16, 2016

An Old American Indian Parable


Taking the Baby Steps: Admitting We Are Powerless

So we have now been to five or six NarAnon Meetings now and I think we've finally gotten to the place where we can accept that we've crossed off  Step One 


When we started going to the Nar Anon meetings we were not in denial our son had a problem with heroin and opiates. We knew what it was and we called it that. Our son is an addict and actively abusing heroin.

I wasn't at the place yet where I could admit that I couldn't stop wanting to fix him and to help him get this under control.

On Sunday the steps were read at the meeting and for some reason when I left, the first step was stuck in my head. We talked about it all the way home and then here at home while we were grabbing a sandwich and getting ready for bed. There was no denying it...

We are powerless over heroin and our sons addiction to it. Our lives have become unmanageable.

I am concentrating so much time and energy on our sons addiction that I am not accomplishing the things that I need to get

Mr. James Boyd #staystopped: Thank You

This is for Mr. James Boyd who advocates locally for #staystopped

For the past month there are many times that I have felt so defeated and just ready to say I've had enough, I'm tired.  Every time I start feeling like that Mr. Boyd has sent me a scripture that reminds me why I started this and why I will not claim defeat... Mr. Boyd Thank you for those times!!!! Thank you for continually sticking with those of us on this side of this epidemic- never unwavering. You friend have great rewards awaiting you in Heaven!!!

Things I Learned From An Addict: Masters at Lying and Manipulating

My last post I spoke about enabling. This post sort of goes along with that one and a little more.

Today is about lying and manipulating and well using, lying and manipulating combined turned our son into a monster when he became an extortionist. He knew exactly what buttons to push with

Things I Learned From An Addict: Who or What Did I Raise Anyway?

Yep you will soon be wondering that!!! This is another part in the series of posts Things I Learned From an Addict. Today's post is about addiction and what happens when the enabling stops.

I know many are going through this today. It's a conflicting place to be isn't it? I mean you love the person with the disease of addiction and hate the disease of addiction and what it has turned the person you love into.

In his addiction I do not recognize him. I remember him as a child with so many dreams and

Sunday, May 15, 2016

WV Drug Report Card

West Virginia had the Highest Rate of Youth Drug Overdose Death Rates, Rate has Tripled in Just Over a Decade


You know we have a lot of work to do when kids are finding ways to chase a high by means of

  • Getting high by ingesting Morning Glory Seeds
  • Young girls putting drugs on tampons and inserting them to get a bigger high
  • Drinking Fizzy Which is putting poppy seeds in water, shaking them really hard to split the seeds and then drinking the water.
  • Smoking Alcohol
  • Eyeballing- Pouring vodka in their eyeball.
  • Drank- Jolly Ranchers, Cough Syrup and Sprite
  • Robo Tripping- Drinking cough syrup
  • Boozy Bears/Gummy Shots- Gummy Bears soaked in vodka
  • Purple Wave, Zoom, Vanilla Sky Cloud Nine- Bath Salts
  • Blaze, Bliss, Black Mamba, Bombay Blue, Pulse, Hush, Mystery, Earthquake, Serenity, Red X Dawn Stinger, Zohia, Summit, Genie - Names for Spice
  • They are smoking the kitchen spice Nutmeg
  • They inhale Mothballs
  • Beezin- Rubbing Burts Bee's lip balm on your eyelid
  • Cheese- Tylenol PM mixed with heroin. Costs $2
  • Smoking Catnip- Yep the stuff found in pet stores
  • Many more just like these
You may also want to study: The Teen Drug Slang Dictionary For Parents

Other Links:

Bath Salts

CLARIFICATION: On Our Petition

I awoke to an inbox telling me "WE WON"

We haven't won. For one the story


Is an old story from Sept 2015.

It is true. The council purchased the former Royce Hosiery building.

The story details the roadblocks to which this will become reality. Some things mentioned was a day center

A Day Center is needed but the day center is the second step in recovery. THE FIRST STEP IS TREATMENT and we need the treatment center right here in Martinsburg/ Berkeley County to help our own local people.

WHY WOULD THEY BYPASS THE FIRST STEP OF RECOVERY?

Now to further clarify:
On March 1, 2016 The Martinsburg City Council voted against the rehab stating a petition of 300 signatures.

WE... THE MAJORITY are here to say that we have a petition of 2,000 signatures FOR this treatment center right here in Martinsburg and Berkeley County

Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Transformation: From Chrysalis To Butterfly

I remember many years ago my oldest son did the Chrysalis walk at a youth group retreat sponsored by the church.

You may be wondering, what is a chrysalis?

A chrysalis is a stage in a butterflies life. The stage between the caterpillar, the emerging  and the transformation of the beautiful butterfly that lived inside of the cocoon.

Isn't this a nice way to describe someone who is in treatment for a drug problem and how they emerge and transform? The transformation from the life of abusing drugs to the wonderful, person inside of themselves.

Go ahead!!! Celebrate Recovery!!! Celebrate the Transformation. You are a new person!!!!








Things I Learned From An Addict: The Tangled Web of the Enabler

Today's post is about getting caught up and entangled in that black web as the enabler. Long before the signs of any drug abuse are out you are already there. You just don't realize it yet.  Even before you know you're there, you're trapped, your entangled.

That too isn't your fault. If you had known your child was using drugs would you have given money towards the abuse for your loved one to buy drugs?

Yes, you do- Sometimes. Even if after you know your child is using how hard is it for you to stop then? It is very hard to stop it after that. It's like a train running full speed towards a derailment.

I know as I type this that you are probably already there and don't really know how to get out of it. Neither did I.

Today's word for the day is

The Enabler:


That is me! Hello I AM I WAS the Enabler

I lived there for several years and I fell for it yet again.

You know just the word alone- ENABLER sounds so criminal, so suspect doesn't it?

Maybe that is because there was one time that I threatened to call the cops on my son because of something he stole from us and he told me,

"Go ahead call the cops because you're in as much trouble as I am."

Hmmm, how do you figure that?

"Well, who gave me the money to go buy it. You're my co-dependent and when I tell them you'll be arrested too. You are just as guilty because you have been funding me. Wait until I call the cops. Mommy, I thought you were smart. You are just so stupid."

Now all that seems pretty funny huh? It isn't when you're on my side of the table as the enabler. I believed it. I remembered what my mother told me about when you're helping someone break the law- you're just as guilty.

Now to be here in the shoes of not only the enabler, but he was now actually extorting money from me with this shit- because he convinced me that I would be arrested that is a horrible place to be. Trust me!!! And the worst is that I believed it.

If my husband has told you he is angry as he has in some settings. This is why he is. It is embarrassing so he may not give the full details about it but this is why. When I told the hubby the full details of the extortion he went through the roof- not literally.

We'll talk more about the Master Liar, Manipulator and Extortionist later on, but today is about enabling. Whatever you do don't fall for it!! But I know you are probably already there. If you are, get out of it now and you can!!!

If you don't know whether or not you are enabling -if you are giving them money for any reason- you are enabling especially if you know what that money is being used for.

If you are believing their lies I need $20 for gas.

I want to go look for a job
I have a job interview and need money to get to it.
I need some cigarettes
The baby needs diapers

If this is constant and daily and they are asking for $20, $40 or $60 then you've no doubt fallen into the pit of the enabler.

Before I realized that he was using heroin I was trapped. I think it was that I was first in denial. But was I really? What could I deny that I didn't know? I know it all sounds confusing. If you're on the side of loving an addict, it will make perfect sense. Their addiction alone is enough to drive you totally insane trying to figure everything out.

We who love them don't think the worst of those we love by thinking, I wonder if they are on drugs? Nope, our minds didn't even go there. What parent automatically assumes the worse? I know I didn't. Now a relapse. Trust me honey- you're there!!!

It was when the brick shit house crumbled that I had no other choices but to get out!

All of our savings= Wiped Out
A CD at the bank of a rolled over 401K from a previous job= Wiped Out

Then I was laid off from work= No extra money

By then I had no choice- either we could live about as destitute as our child- the heroin abuser

OR 
We Just Had To Say No... and mean it. And I did...
You are going to have to do this at some time so today should be the day. Someone once asked me, What would you do if you gave him money to go buy and that was the last time? What if he died from shooting up? What then? Knowing you gave him the money to shoot up that one last time?

The word No takes on new meaning now!!!

No more could I deny that he didn't have a problem. It was out there in flashing lights!

Just saying No sometimes isn't enough for some. You continue giving when there is nothing left to give. I know one lady who has been going without her meds because of going through this with her grandchild.

You Have To Say NO And No Means No


As the lady above living without her meds, I just told her family member this may fall under elder abuse because the lady is elderly.

My son is very lucky that I did not press charges of extortion on him. I should have when I learned differently.

He took me for a boat ride without the paddles and I fell for it. In the end, I called the police to turn myself in and they said that I had fallen into a dark pit of enabling my son's drug habits. That was not a crime.
I have to be careful with my child the user. My parents are up in their years and I have to make sure that he isn't dragging them into the pits because they live on a fixed income.

When he broke into their house- I was angry at him- so angry I wanted to beat his ass like he was ten years old- of course, the police tell me this would fall under domestic violence. I would never allow any of my kids to have that kind of power over me. I have to stay civil right now and at least for my son's two children.  They are very scared right now that their dad is doing the bad things that will get him into trouble. I'm stuck there- caring for someone I love addicted to heroin and opiates, someone who is sick in the head from addiction at the moment- and yet on the side of also wanting to protect my grandchildren who do not deserve any of this. It's so conflicting sometimes.

Part III: Dealing With the Master Liar, Manipulator and Extortionist.
© 2016 Gossip Girl

Update On Our Peititon

Update: So a few of us went to the Martinsburg, WV City Council Meeting on Thursday May 12th. I read our petition to them and at that time advised them that we did in fact have a petition for this treatment center.

I saw their expressions when I told them how many signatures we had acquired. They meet monthly so that gives us another month to get the extra signatures we need and more!!!!

Many thanks to you for signing, supporting and sharing the petition to get the extra signatures that we need!!

On Saturday May 14th

Rehab Facility Proposed For East Ridge
Third Facility Proposed For Drug Rehab

Thank you Dee Stotelmyer for sharing these stories!!!

Friday, May 13, 2016

Things I've Learned From An Addict: The Signs

Now, whether or not an addict is living in your home I think you can relate to some of this...

Our son has not lived with us for many years however here is some of the things I can tell you about dealing with an addict. We found it really doesn't matter if they live with you or not.

I have divided this into five or six posts because there are a lot of things I learned. Let's start with the signs.

The Earliest Signs Do Get Missed:

Trust me here. What we know now and what we didn't even know about heroin and opiates unless they have a sign flashing or they come right out and tell you. No, you will miss it whether they live in your home or not. Even if you see them a lot, you'll miss it. Why? Because I really don't think as parents we are looking for the signs in the first place. We can see a lot of odd behavior and in our minds, we somehow sweep it away to mean something else.

Our son didn't live with us and one day I happened to notice that I had three spoons left from my dollar store bought set. It's only me, the hubby and the dog here. I accused the hubby of throwing out the spoons to the trash. Why would you throw away our good set of china?

A tote of shoes in the closet of the spare room- every pair was missing the strings- weird...

Every time we wanted to throw something on the grill we had to go buy a new box of aluminum foil...WTH do we have aluminum foil bandits living in the laundry room?

Now for some reason and I don't know why if I get agitated or mad I start cleaning. I'm talking about chucking the furniture around like I'm the incredible hulk style of cleaning. I was angry at something that happened at work and came home and literally just started cleaning and pulled the cushions of the couch to vacuum and found a bent spoon with a burned black mark on the bottom.

I picked it up and wiped the black mark and HOLY COW... that was the moment I finally figured out what those black smudges were in my bathroom These marks weren't there all the time, I only found them when our son stopped by. I knew what they are now.

From there the puzzle in my mind started and I started connecting all of the dots. Who? What? When? That sort of stuff.

It hit me whenever my son visited he came in and said, I've gotta go to the bathroom. When he went to the bathroom he was in there for what seemed hours. What are you doing? When will it be time for the next group to go? Did you fall in or something? Hello... Hello...

The next time he came here I wouldn't even let him in the door. Oh no, you got to go, leave, get out of here!! You don't have to leave but ya gotta get the heck off my porch.

He was just visiting. We told him that He was not allowed to visit or be around us when he was using. He needed to respect us that we didn't like him using, we didn't want it anywhere near our home and just how much we hated drugs of any kind.

Now, this is a Bill Engvall Here's Your Sign... moment. The sign was flashing many colors but there it was!!!

Even then we didn't know it was heroin. I looked online at drugs and spoons and all sorts of drugs came up- crack and others.

It would be several months later before we learned it was indeed called heroin. This is nothing you can smell.

Of course by this time they've been using for some time. This wasn't a fluke. It wasn't like this was the first time. Don't deny it. You'll feel much better in the end- trust me.

Don't blame yourself for not knowing!! I know you will. I'm just telling you DON'T!!! It wasn't you. You had nothing to do with it.
Why blame yourself when you didn't know. We all want to believe that none of our kids would ever use drugs so no... stop blaming yourself. Unless the umbilical cord is still attached to them which it is not you really didn't know.

How would you know if you didn't know what to look for?

And well how many of us parents even think their kids would be using drugs? None of us!

Some personal signs I noticed from my son:

  • If your loved one suddenly cannot keep a job
  • If you find that they are sleeping all of the time
  • No attention span when talking to them. They appear they are nodding out which is what it is called.
  • Uncontrollable eyes- especially when they are under the influence of heroin. Their eyes appear all over the place. I even commented What is up with your crazy eyes?
  • They cannot hold a conversation without dropping off to sleep.
  • Under the influence, their speech is slurred but you cannot smell alcohol.
  • It's 120 outside and they are wearing hoodies and sweat pants.


This is the Heroin/Opiate abuse: The Classic Textbook Signs of what they tell us are the signs of heroin/opiate abuse.


Part II: The Enabler

© 2016 Gossip Girl

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Holding My Chin Up and Pressing Forward

Tuesday, May 10th was primary voting night here in the great Mountain State of West Virginia. For weeks now I've been telling my close friends, sending emails, talking on the phone- here is the list of those candidates who stand with us in the fight against this heroin epidemic here in Martinsburg and Berkeley County.

I was able to convince many friends to stand on our side and vote for those candidates who are standing with us to say, Yes... We Need Change Here! What can I do to help?

Tuesday night I went to bed with a sense of relief. Although this

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

WV Opioid Law: Jessie's Law

Many of you may not be aware of what is called Jessie's Law here in West Virginia. I wasn't aware either. I accidentally stumbled on it when I entered something in the key word of Google.

In October or Sometime late last year President Obama visited Charleston, WV and met with Governor Earl Ray Tomblin about the heroin and opiate problem we have here in West Virginia.

The Governor is in the process of signing initiatives on our opioid and heroin problem here in the State and in the meantime I found Jessie's Law. This isn't getting a lot of press coverage in this area at least none I have heard about or read about.

I started it with what I found on it. This is the story and the major founding of this new law Jessie's Law here in West Virginia.

This is Jessica Grubbs story...

When The Stigma of Addiction Grips Us...Consider the Lilies

I know and understand that not everyone is dealing with this heroin epidemic here- having a loved one addicted or to those who do have an addiction to heroin What I do know is that it is these times like this that we reach out and often we need some sort of spirituality

Who Is On Our Side In This Fight Against the Heroin Epidemic?

Today is the primary election day here in West Virginia. Locally we have many running who have stepped forward to say they are on our side where this heroin epidemic is concerned here in Martinsburg and Berkeley County

Monday, May 9, 2016

(Documentary) Chasing the Dragon

Not far from us in the DC Suburbs, Northern Virginia and into the areas close to DC and Baltimore we constantly hear the stories of young students overdosing and dying from heroin and opiate abuse. If you believe this isn't in your child's school, then you may want to rethink that! I am very surprised in our own heroin pandemic here in Martinsburg and Berkeley County we do not hear more of these kinds of stories. IT IS in the schools here. Honestly I am so surprised that we here in Martinsburg haven't had more young people under the age of 18 and in high school dying from overdose as does happen with our neighbors in Virginia and Maryland. It is only just a matter of time...




In an effort to combat the growing epidemic of prescription drug and heroin abuse, the FBI and DEA have released "Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opiate Addict," a documentary aimed at educating students and young adults about the dangers of addiction. More at www.fbi.gov/ChasingTheDragon

To those on my Facebook who are parents of kids or a grandparent this is a very good documentary you should watch relating to kids and this heroin epidemic we have here.
If you believe that it is not in your child's school you should rethink that.
Now our own son didn't use in high school. He was an adult when he became addicted. So we know that you can raise your kids right and still have them become an addict.
Back then we didn't have Internet or youtube to watch videos about this.
Those of us who don't use can never understand the power of heroin and opiates.
Parents of children- heroin on the streets today here in Martinsburg costs about $10. Most kids today get that as allowance.
I have no magic answers to give you other than you should get all the information that you can. Know what the signs are but even then it is often too late. I don't mean to scare anyone, but if I have to be honest it should scare anyone who has children and grandchildren. The power that the drug alone has on the mind- know that they will never get that first high they got when they used that first time. They will continue to always after that be... Chasing The Dragon

youtube video

(Documentary) Hooked On Heroin

I know it says shocking heroin documentary. Honestly we've been going through this for the past eleven years. I don't think nothing about what I am learning after having a loved one addicted to this drug shocks me anymore. I found this documentary Hooked On Heroin. When I watched it and as I listened I realized that although our voices sound so different, our words all resonate the same...


Must-See-Documentary about heroin addiction and drug addiction. Follows heroin addicts, police officers trying to crack down on drug dealers, and the community leaders trying to help the people getting hooked on heroin and opiate pain pills.

(Personal Share) On Fire For This Rehab and Treatment Facility

I was born and raised in Martinsburg, WV went to schools here and graduated from high school. I was born in the 1960's and grew up in the 60's and 70's. I don't know how many of you reading this can

(Video) Addicted At Birth

"The number of babies born addicted to drugs in the United States has quadrupled in the last decade, new figures reveal. Every half an hour a baby is born craving the drug its mother was addicted to, according to a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The rise is being blamed on a growing epidemic of painkiller and heroin use currently gripping America. In this special result, Sky's Nick Martin gains access to a clinic specializing in treating babies born addicted to narcotics."



Without proper treatment and the ability right here in Martinsburg and Berkeley County to provide adequate treatment for these heroin addicted mothers these numbers will continue to sky rocket.

No One Can Deny.... The Numbers Do Not Lie
Video found @ youtube

Who Hurts The Most? The Children

Often the families of the addicted hurt the most. The children of the addicted are what matters the most.

Two of our grandchildren ages nine and eleven have been affected by heroin and their parents addiction for their entire lives. I'm going out on a limb here to say that I believe in my heart both of these children were born addicted to heroin. You can call it what you like. I am calling it what it is.

Recently while we took them to the park to visit us they told us how this has hurt them.

Their dad- who is currently using and addicted after a relapse

(Our Story) The Smallest Of Those Gets Hurt The Most...

I don't know if I have shared this but my heroin addicted son has two sons- ages nine and eleven.

Both of those boys parents are heroin addicts. Heroin has impacted those two boys their entire lives. If I have to be honest here I believe both of my grandsons were born addicted.

Why do I think that?

Should The War on Pot End?

Now first off before you read this I want to tell you I am advocating Nothing. I am not advocating for marijuana or whether or not it should be legalized or remain on the illegal narcotic list.

In January 2014 WV Legislature introduced HB 4264 a bill that would allow for medical marijuana use in West Virginia. In a poll conducted 56% of West Virginia was in favor of a bill while those opposing were at 34% after a study conducted in 2013.


By the end of January it was not even given a hearing, to go through

Sunday, May 8, 2016

The Statistics...

In West Virginia... Heroin overdose deaths jumped from 22 in 2007 to 67 in 2012, according to the latest available figures from the West Virginia Health Statistics Center according to the WV Gazette

More statistics can be found by reading the Berkeley County Treatment Assessment

In The United States....

The Effects Of Heroin on the Human Body

Heroin and opiate abuse causes a lot of internal damage especially when used and abused over a long period of time...

Signs of Heroin Use

Some of you may wonder just what are the signs?...

Inspiration In Song: The Feeling We Will Have...

I think this song resonates how each and everyone of us will feel when this treatment facility here in Martinsburg becomes a reality...


Saturday, May 7, 2016

Not My Child...

Oh I have been there in those shoes before. It was many years ago 2005 to be exact. Oh no not my child....

It took me awhile. My heart was telling me something wasn't right but I of course didn't listen to those gut feelings. I listened to others when I asked...
Friends and Siblings who knew but didn't want to hurt our feelings
The Spouse who told us no, but later learning she was an addict herself.

I was pulled into the tangled web of the enabler.

After blowing through a savings account and cashing out a CD Account when there wasn't anything left to give... it was they resorted to stealing our possessions.

Jewelry with sentimental value, and a Christmas present taken right out of the program the Grinch Who Stole Christmas- let me tell ya.
A Sony PlayStation left under the Christmas tree just one day vanished. Poof... it's location unknown.

CD's, DVD's, tools, and three vehicles. Yep

A truck that didn't run and needed some work. We were told I need to fix it up so I can get out and find a job and then get to work. We have no clue whatever happened to it.

An SUV- That vehicle was running and was for sale. It was parked at a family members house. He called and said he had a buyer for it. The so called buyer picked it up. Our son told us he had left the money with the family member. Oh No. Boy what a scam that was. We had the title to it and refused to give the title up. We could never locate the vehicle so we also do not ever know what happened to it.

A Car- This car I used for work. It blew a head gasket and was towed back to my driveway. My son called me at work and asked me for it. I told him I hadn't had a chance to clean it out and that I needed to talk to his dad first. When I got home from work, it was gone out of the driveway. I am clueless

Well I was clueless back then. Since I've learned from another the car went to salvage and the truck and SUV were exchanged for drugs.

Just how the F do you do an exchange for drugs- the truck yep the hubby had given him the title but the SUV- we still have the title to it.

It took awhile. There were several years of some really tough love, a lot of interventions that went out the window... I honestly don't think they work.

Finally we had to admit it, our son was a heroin addict.

This time we are already there and calling it what it is... Our son is a heroin addict. We learned a lot of lessons on our first ride through heroinville.


Each time however after the sky falls down and the bottom drops out... here we are once again left with the shell of a son that honestly we don't recognize him anymore.

Pray For Peace

I think this song is fitting for the families dealing with a loved ones addiction.





Pray for peace
Please pray for peace (pray for peace)

There's power in the number of us praying here on earth
We're asking for a miracle

Heroin: From Mexico To Martinsburg

Does anyone remember when Aljazeera Magazine came here to Martinsburg to feature a story relating to our heroin epidemic here?

"Berkeley county, which is home to Martinsburg, reported 36 deaths from heroin overdoses between 2007 and 2012, the highest for the whole state. We met several people in Martinsburg who knew people who had died from heroin overdoses, many more who've overdosed repeatedly and been lucky enough so far to survive. The day before we arrived a man died shooting up in a Wendy’s fast food restaurant bathroom"....
Read the story @ Heroin A Deadly Industry

Story Here was from Aljazeera Magazine

We Have To Call It What It Is...

This is an awesome piece written by our own local reporter for The Journal Jenni Vincent,
For We Heart West Virginia...


Great job Jenni for your work on this piece!!!!

The link here: WeHeartWV

I Didn't Think It Was Even Possible...

Just due to the fact that we can't help our love one. He has got to want to help himself to break free of his addiction. I never realized before heroin that it was possible to grieve for a loved one who isn't dead until our son chose heroin....


Serenity Prayer

Friday, May 6, 2016

The First Step Is Admitting There Is a Problem

Our Adult Child Is Addicted To Heroin/Opiates In the words of Mr. James Boyd We have to call it what it is. The first step to a problem is admitting the problem exists. It does and it is very real. The first time I denied this problem in the beginning. I refuse to this time. So I will get that out right now.

Here is where we are at this very minute with our son who is addicted to heroin. Here is what we do know as well as some of his past history with abusing heroin/opiates.

He was clean for a few years and relapsed what I now know is about one and a half to two years ago.
He's pretty good at hiding those early signs from us from his past use and abusing heroin and opiates.
We do know this time that heroin is much cheaper than street bought prescription opiates. This problem is supply and demand. We know now that if he's begging for $40 or $60 he is seeking street bought prescription opiates. If he's begging for $20 then he's likely seeking heroin.
He also doesn't live with us. It is much harder when they don't live with you or you don't see them anymore or as in our case, we have no clue where he is living or staying.

Our son is an addict
Although he will deny it. He at least hasn't gotten to that place yet where he has contacted me to say, "Mommy I need help"
We, however, do admit his problem and we do call it what it is, he is an addict and abuser of heroin/opiates
His drug of choice is heroin and often street bought prescription opiates
He uses and abuses heroin and opiates. We've been told by those who do see and talk to him that it is both
He has a history of IV drug use
He has abused heroin/opiates in all the various ways. Shooting it up by means of a needle.
He has tattoos so spotting his track marks is like looking for a needle in a haystack.
He also has snorted it and often he smokes it.
He is a liar
He told us in January that he was in a treatment facility out in Huntington, West Virginia and was home on leave for the weekend. He asked me for $20 to give to his ride to take him back. Then he asked that we take him to give the $20 to the ride. Now let me tell ya. What a fool I am. When we got back there over the mountain oh I knew immediately. I threw down the cards and called bullshit. We got into an argument over it all the way back and I saw him one other time in January. We haven't seen him since.
He is stealing and committing crimes due to his addiction and abuse of heroin and opiates
We know of at least two warrants currently out for him. We don't understand the process of the police allowing the warrants to pile up when they know where he is even though I don't.
He has prior use of heroin/opiates and is also known for crimes he committed in the past due to his heroin addiction.
He also broke into my parent's house, but only made it onto their enclosed porch. My parents came home before he had actually gotten into their home by means of climbing through their window.
We do know that he will likely detox at the ERJ.
Intervention
We know from his prior use that intervention only works on him when he is drug sick.
We don't even know where he is but we know from his past history that if he is committing crimes to support his addiction he has been drug sick.

Outward Physical Signs
I just recently saw him on a surveillance video breaking into a home. I can see from the video that he has lost a lot of weight.
On the video, we can see that he has huge dark circles around his eyes.
He hides track marks in his tattoos
His History of Abusing Heroin and Opiates and Medical Standpoint:
He gets depressed especially when he is drug sick. Due to this he has contemplated and once attempted suicide years ago.
In the past when he has tried to detox on his own he had seizures from detoxing without medical supervision.
We do believe from his prior use that he does have hepatitis. Last year when he was going to the Martinsburg Institute for methadone I asked him about it and he acted like I pulled that out of the sky.
Before he stopped going to the methadone clinic he told me that they had discovered something wrong with his kidney's. I know he has had no further follow up with a physician about that health concern.
I am I used to be the Enabler
His first time abusing heroin and opiates I was his biggest enabler. I too learned a lot of lessons that first time. This time I refused to be caught up in that tangled web. His last time the minute I stopped enabling him he started stealing from us (and others). I went through a savings account and depleted a CD account back then before I even realized I was pulled into this as the enabler.
This time there is absolutely nothing to enable him with. I am currently laid off from my job and we had to purchase a new vehicle and now have a car payment on top of our own household needs.  I refuse to be destitute over his addiction. I do know that this time we know he has taken items from us- you know- their real subtle about that. It's often several months before you even realize something is missing.
Things We Do Know:
He is thirty-one years old and has had a problem with addiction for the last eleven years.
He hasn't lived with us in our home since 2004. At this time we do not even know where he is staying or where he is at.
He hasn't worked since he was laid off from his job two years ago although for a time he was doing some side work.
His girlfriend of several years broke up with him due to his abusing heroin and because of the lying and the stealing.
We learned recently that he has had a secret type of relationship with his ex-wife who is also a heroin addict and has a past of dependency on him for her own drug needs.
When we have confronted him about his addiction he has a history of becoming aggressive, but only with us- his parents. He has pushed and shoved me, called me all sorts of names, told a police officer once that I was the drug user and used drugs his entire life. For some reason, he has on two occasions tried to butt heads with his dad to where they were nose to nose screaming at each other.
Other:
We know this is desperate time in his addiction
We know that he can overdose from his using.
We know and are constantly afraid he will get ahold of something mixed with poisons which will take his life
From seeing him on a video I believe that he is having some very dire medical problems at this time associated with his addiction.
We know he could break into a home and be injured or killed
Now, you would think that since he has a prior use of heroin/opiates that we would be pros at this. Oh No!!! We aren't which is why I often reach out to others.
We know the first time we made some mistakes in keeping track of his recovery as well as making sure he had outside support to help ensure his continued recovery.
Our first rodeo with this was way different. We were alone. We did not know what to do because we never had to face something like this before. We didn't and still don't know what it is we need to do in these some of the most critical of times.
The stigma of loving someone addicted to heroin/opiates is enough to make someone want to hide.
Our first time dealing with this when we tried reaching out to officials we were told more than once that our son was a piece of trash. That alone was enough to make us want to hide in a cave.
As already mentioned we know that our son will likely detox in jail. Although his first time they had a history of releasing him on a PR type bond. As sad as it sounds, it doesn't help when they do that. It allows for more crimes as well as puts his life in more danger.
I have some postings about that so will not repeat.


And...this is why I am writing all of this... because maybe someone will find this blog and be right here at this very minute and hopefully I can help or have some answers to help someone else

Where do we go from here? Really this is the end of the road for us. The rest is up to our son. He has to admit that he has a problem and has to want to reach out himself.
© 2016 Gossip Girl

Can We Just Laugh For a Minute?

I think there needs to be groups for those people like me and maybe others too who have survived loving a heroin addict and didn't need bail money.

I try to be sensitive but on some days that is very hard to tolerate!

I have days where I think after this is all over I'm gonna need some

Thursday, May 5, 2016

The Numbers Of This Heroin Epidemic Do Not Lie

You may have heard that a group of us are fighting for the treatment center to be right here in Martinsburg Berkeley County. There are many reasons why. Most importantly are these reasons:
  • No one can deny the numbers.
  • The growing overdoses from heroin and opiates per day.
  • The number of crimes related to heroin opiate addiction
  • The number of deaths related to heroin and opiate abuse.
  • The growing numbers of addicts and those who may try heroin and opiates for the first time today.
  • The number of children of those addicted to heroin and opiate abuse
  • The growing number of babies being born into this epidemic.

None of these numbers lie.

Due to the heroin epidemic this is quickly escalating to a public health concern alone due to the diseases associated with IV drug use.

If we continue to stand by and wait for others to make this decision

If You Are Reading This Blog...

If you are reading this blog for the first time please read the About This Blog. I am the mother of an adult son addicted to heroin. My posts here are often candid, and as I've been told brutal. I cannot really share my stories though without sharing the pain all of the ups and downs and rollercoaster feelings. I sometimes feel as if I've been run over by a rodeo clown in this. I share it all. Writing is my outlet to just let it all loose and get it all out where my sons heroin addiction is concerned.

Anyone who is going through this knows there are many feelings and emotions dealing with someone we love who is addicted to heroin.

I cannot sugar coat any of my own feelings or emotions and often it shows in my postings.

I want others to know

You Are Not Alone!

Another reason for this blog is that I want to help others just like

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

This Is Our Son.On Heroin....

I know most of my personal stories about our sons heroin addiction are painful and often brutal. To be honest if everyone thought this was a glorious road to walk with a loved one we wouldn't have to fight so hard for a treatment center.

This is our son when he is clean and free of heroin's grip:

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Why Do I Keep Beating Myself Up Over This?

I posted the Addiction and Recovery Roller coaster Poster because I am just trying to figure some things out for my son. I also really know that addicts are not the only one who ride the addiction and recovery roller coaster. Those of us who love them very much also get on this roller coaster and can't get off of it. That is where I am at today

Years ago our son detoxed at the ERJ. Now, he was not there on a drug charge. He was there on a charge
because his heroin addiction had led him to crime- a breaking and entering into a shed or a garage.

We know if he doesn't get clean soon, he will be back there because of what he does to feed his addiction. And he should be. You do the crime, you do the time! We just know from experience ERJ for rehab has a tremendous failure rate!

Years ago, I remember being so thankful the day I heard that he had been picked up off the streets. I know that is going to sound horrible but hey it is what it is. I was overcome with a feeling of relief. At least I knew he wasn't out on the street anymore. He would have a bed- even if that bed wasn't a comfortable one to sleep on. He would have meals- even if those meals weren't like mama's home cooked meals.

I don't know it is a feeling hard to describe. A few days later one of my other kids told me, "You know he's going to detox at the jail, right?"

Yeah so he will detox that is good, isn't it?

I'm learning now how very hard it is to detox in the jail system.

Often you aren't given medical assistance which is why some have died detoxing there.
This scares me to death because he has the past of trying to detox on his own and going into seizures detoxing. Without medical assistance, this scares me to death.

They basically do not care anything for you.
To them, you are nothing but a drugged up fiend. Okay now, that stings a little. Our son is worth it!

I started to read up a little while he was in jail.

I knew he would leave there free and clean of heroin.
Or so I thought anyway. I hear now that you can still get it even when incarcerated.

He would have to make some lifestyle changes.
He would have to stay away from those old so-called friends of his.

Okay, so we could help him with that. He first went to stay with a family member and after a month or so he met a woman and for at least three years- he was living a clean and sober life. We know that!

I can't help thinking I let my guard down.
Maybe I found myself too comfortable in that comfort zone? I don't know. Just when we thought we were through those years his relapse has reminded us differently.
Back then though we saw he was leading a clean and sober life. He was getting his life back on track. He had found a job- one that hired felons.
He was using the talent of his hands hanging drywall, painting homes and doing home improvement jobs. That man has a talent. He remodeled his girlfriend's house.

That man also has a talent for drawing and art. In fact, his sister gave him a tattoo kit because he was interested in learning to tattoo. He has done some really, really good work. We encouraged him to continue using those talents that God had given him.

All of my kids have talents. I wish they used them!

What I don't understand is when people continue to tell me that relapse is a healthy normal process in recovery.

I just can't grasp that reasoning. Just how is relapse the normal, healthy part of recovery anyway?

I know I shouldn't but I can't help myself going back there to those early days.

What should we have done to make his recovery a success?

He did his time for his crime and was released with his little envelope of possessions he had with him upon arrest with a wave and a see you again! Yeah, I swear that is what the officers at the jail tell them when they are released.

He left the ERJ with absolutely no means or resources of, how am I to get back on my feet? In those early days, his brother helped him out in that area.

Like I said I myself keep going back there wondering if I should have done something more aggressive?

For instance, should I have forced him to leave this area?
If he cleans up this time I am forcing him to leave this state. Get the hell outta Dodge dude!

I keep hearing others say how important it is for recovering addicts to do their 90 meetings in 90 days. I didn't know that. I know he didn't go to any support help settings. If he cleans up this time I will know this. He will be in a support group type recovery program.

I often told him- You Don't Live There Anymore...

I remember in those early years after his release sometimes he tried talking to us about his prior use and heroin addiction. I stopped him because I was terrified it would remind him of those old ways and days. Remembering those days would be reminders make him want to go back. I was told things like, it will be a daily struggle for him. Those addicted to heroin struggle every day with that.

I didn't want him remembering his old ways but now I'm wondering instead of telling him You don't live there anymore should I have listened to him by letting him get all of that out?

In telling him we were only looking at the future for him I feel maybe we somehow hurt him too because he wanted to talk to us about it.

I struggle every day with the coulda, shoulda and the woulda. I can't help myself. I struggle every day with blaming myself that I didn't have the information and didn't know how to help him continue to live a clean and sober life.

I have people telling me that if he wanted to stay clean he would have. I understand that when the brain is involved and damaged the disease of addiction. Trying to tell others about this sickness has been the hardest. I understand that this is a mental health issue.

I keep thinking to when we do this again... although my biggest greatest fear is an overdose. And that someone will give him something mixed with poison and he will die from that.

I know how important it is for this treatment center to be right here. We know there are just not enough beds to treat those dealing with heroin addiction who really want to be clean and free. I know the opposition doesn't see it because they have never had to deal with it.

I know the biggest response I have gotten from people is when I tell them I have planned my son's funeral. They really don't understand the unknown of this addiction. My son has a high probability that he could overdose and die. Just from the crimes associated to get his fix, we know he could be harmed or killed. We know that sometimes in order to get a fix that they do something to make the dealer mad and then the dealer goes after them. That is a been there, done that.
I thought we were doing everything possible. Apparently we weren't because he relapsed.
© 2016 Gossip Girl

Medicine In This Country: Some Fun Facts About Medicine


Medicine has advanced in this country over the years. If we were to become the great country we are today, yes our medicine had to.

In the early years before doctors had use of many medicines, they did a procedure known as bloodletting, which was a common procedure back then of cutting into the body to remove what was thought