Second Edition Available Now
** Includes 30 new chapters **
My son battled heroin and cocaine addiction for twenty-three years. He is polite, charming and handsome. He is kind and loving and generous. However, throughout his addiction he lied, stole, manipulated and used good people. He robbed banks. He had been in and out of detox facilities, recovery houses and programs. He had also been in treatment centers in both Canada and the USA. He has been in prison.
Addiction: A Mother’s Story (Second Edition) is the story of addiction through a Mother’s eyes. It is the story of the journey of addiction with my son whom I deeply, deeply love.
As parents we search for answers and go to what might be considered unbelievable lengths to try and help our drug addicted children whom we love so much. Over those twenty-three years I read well over 200 books and thousands of articles written primarily by doctors, psychiatrists and psychologist, addictions counselors and specialists in the field of addiction. I have read several stories written by addicts in recovery. Over the years what I perhaps needed most, was to read about addiction through the eyes of a parent. By a mother or father whose knowledge and awareness of addiction was also accompanied by a lifetime of love, of memories and emotions that only a parent can know.
I sincerely hope that Addiction: A Mother’s Story helps you help yourself, your addicted loved one and all your Family by acknowledging the love and the ties that bind us while we battle this disease with our loved one.
Addiction: A Mother’s Story shows the progression of Nathan’s addiction as the chapters unfold and how that addiction played out. How his addiction progressed to devastating and life altering circumstances, and how it affected Nathan, our family and myself.
Throughout Addiction: A Mother’s Story, you will read of the many things I tried to do to help my son battle the horrific disease of addiction. What helped, what didn’t. What I did, what I wished I had done differently. About effectively helping and about enabling. Tough love. Hitting bottom. Both Nathan’s and mine. You will undoubtedly recognize your own efforts as a parent as you travel this journey with me.
I know your heart is breaking. I hope Addiction: A Mother’s Story speaks to that heart. This is the story of my journey as the Mom of a hard-core addict, navigating the road of his addiction.
The following is the Table of Contents:
1. I Met The Devil—His Name Was Addiction
2. The Biggest Mistake Of My Life
3. Who Was To Know That Such A Gentle Soul Would
One Day Live In Such A Violent World?
4. Family Background
5. Drug Traffickers Are Like Pedophiles
6. Thugs And Cowards: An Acknowledgment Of The
7. Nathan Loved His Family, But He Loved Drugs More
8. Addiction And Fishing Are Not So Very Different*
9. Unless You Walk A Mile In Someone’s Shoes
10. Boy, Did I Get A Dose Of Humility
11. Gram Had Lou Gehrig’s Disease, And Nathan Was Unable
To Be Physically Or Emotionally Present
12. Just One Of Many Beatings
13. Little Brothers Only See What They Know
14. I Felt I Had Just Shaken The Hand Of The Devil Himself
15. Commit To Change—It’s Time To Regain Our Power
16. Another Dangerous And Horrible “Friendship”
17. Each Time I Thought He’d Reached Bottom, He Hadn’t
18. So Many Losses, So Many Deaths, and a Psychosis That
Would Last Days
19. We Cannot Control Our Addicted Loved One Any More Than
We Can Control The Weather
20. Addicts Are Not Disposable Commodities—They Are Our
Sons And Daughters, And They Are Deeply Loved**
21. From 205 Pounds To 110 Pounds And Seeing Snakes Everywhere
22. Thank You To All The People In The USA Who Stepped Up
And Gave Us Help**
23. The Day Things Changed
24. Holding Onto Our Power . . . And Letting Go
25. How Do All The Drugs Get Into North America?
26. Screwed Again
27. “Polite Robber Hits Bank”
28. “Fuck You”
29. I Loved Seeing My Son, But I Hated Being At The Prison
30. Letters To The Parole Board
31. On Parole And On The Lam
32. I Accepted That With Each Stumble, Nathan Was Learning
33. The Revolving Door
34. The Warmth In His Eyes Seemed Gone
35. Well, Call Me Stupid, But My Heart Was In The Right Place
36. Will The Violence Never End?
37. There Is Only Up From Where They’ve Been, And There Is
Only Up From Where Their Choices Have Taken Us*
38. Recovery Houses—The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly*
39. Slum Landlords*
40. “Please Look At These Photos—Have You Seen My Son?”*
41. A Relapse*
42. Relapse And Relapse Prevention
43. “You Can’t Understand Me, Mom—Just Love Me.”*
44. Hate The Disease—Love The Person*
45. The Kindest Thing You Can Do*
46. Doctors, Nurses, the Hospital System, and Drug Addicts*
47. “A Loved One”*
48. “Let’s Go Beat Up Some Homeless People Tonight.”*
49. Homelessness And Our Addicted Loved Ones*
50. “Where Would You Bury A Body?”*
51. Thanksgiving Day: What Does It Mean To Those Who Have
A Loved One Struggling With Addiction?*
52. What A Difference A Day Can Make*
53. Nathan Taught Me More About Myself Than I Ever Could
Have Learned On My Own
54. “Do You Know Who The Fuck I Am?”*
55. If I Had Only Known Then What I Know Now . . . But I Had To Experience It First**
56. Letter To A Drug Addict: “I Could Give A Rat’s Ass.”*
57. Time To Let The Guilt Go. You Didn’t Fail. You Aren’t
58. Never Give Up Hope, Even If It Takes Twenty-Three Years.
The Miracle You Are Waiting For May Be Just Around The Corner.*
59. “If You Have Nothing Good To Say . . .”*
60. Unscrupulous Pharmacies*
61. “For An Old Lady, You Sure Can Run Fast.”*
62. Protecting The Child Or Punishing The Addict?*
63. Abusive Police Officers*
64. Unconditional Love and Devotion*
65. The Gap In The System—And That Window Of Opportunity
Once Again Slams Shut*
66. Treatment or Punishment—Treatment or Incarceration?*
67. Narcan/Naloxone Saves Lives*
68. Disconnected Society*
69. Time To Let The Anger Go*
Appendix: Commonly Abused Drugs: Their Signs, Addictiveness and Consequences