Happy and excited to finally have a job, she prepares for her first day of work. “This time will be different,” she thinks. With just a small sip, she heads out to start her day. The first day went great and that day turned into four, and one sip turned into several.
By day five, a few sips wouldn’t do. She downed the bottle and someone drove her to work.
With the smell of alcohol on her breath and her obvious intoxication, she was sent home only an hour after arriving. Standing on the sidewalk she cries, having failed again. Years of addiction had followed her. From years of cocaine, to alcohol every waking hour.
Her three children stayed at home, the oldest taking care of the younger two. They played together, happy about the new start that their family had been given, and excited to see what their future would now hold.
After only one week of work, she was sent home with alcohol on her breath and tears in her eyes. Her children were depending on her. What would she tell them? What would she do now?
She knew that the addiction had taken over her life, but the fear of withdrawal kept her from quitting. She couldn’t quit. She had to keep drinking. There were no other options. “I would die if I quit,” she said. “There’s no way out of this. It’s hopeless.” Ashamed and defeated, tears roll down her cheeks as she gazed at the ground.
She was so broken. We hugged, she cried. A stranger on the sidewalk, now a friend.
Sadly, her story is just one of many.
” In 2012, 17.7 million Americans (6.8 percent of the population) were dependent on alcohol or had problems related to their use of alcohol (abuse).”
Alcohol and drug addiction is not limited by age, race, background, or financial status. It can effect anyone, anywhere.
“In 2012, an estimated 23.9 million Americans aged 12 or older—or 9.2 percent of the population—had used an illicit drug or abused a psychotherapeutic medication (such as a pain reliever, stimulant, or tranquilizer) in the past month.” ~ Drugabuse.gov
“Drug use is highest among people in their late teens and twenties. In 2012, 23.9 percent of 18- to 20-year-olds reported using an illicit drug in the past month. [and] Drug use is increasing among people in their fifties.”
Drugs and alcohol may wash away the pain, but its effects are only temporary. That temporary feeling is not worth a lifetime of consequences. It’s not worth the misery, and it’s certainly not worth dying for.
There is hope. Withdrawal symptoms may last a short time, but in return you will get your life back. A life you can enjoy and one that you will remember.
It’s not too late for a new beginning.
For information on hotlines, counseling services, or treatment options in your state, call the National Drug and Alcohol Treatment Service at 1–800–662–HELP (4357) or visit www.findtreatment.samhsa.gov.