Tag Archives: recovery

It’s times like these we can help make a difference


A route to help exists

Ashley Davisdon and yes it was his birthday, turning eleven which was three days ago so please do wish him a belated birthday--ok it's really me

Ashley Davisdon and yes it was his birthday, turning eleven which was three days ago so please do wish him a belated birthday–ok it’s really me

The workings behind the site;

Many important factors come into play as to why I am bringing you this spotlight. Namely, 1) a website humble and inviting called, My Route to Help and 2) a dude named Ashley Davidson.

As I have been a recovering addict for years, in and out of treatment, Ash has been the first person I ever heard offering to EDUCATE the surroundings of any addiction rather than promising to HELP.

Having said that, education helps so many in need and Ash is a wizard at being able to hone in on a topic or subject and kindly define it then validate it.

Education is our strongest weapon to give our children the tools to fight starting drugs!

Recently

promoting my book My life as a white, female drug dealer, A story of hope, I stumbled upon My Route to Help. I loved the sight instantly. It’s simplicity and to the point, no useless social networking, no videos or numerous photos, rather a simple and powerful site of people helping people.

My column Dear Addict for years was based on the same criteria. Through someone sharing a part of themselves or knowledge, they are reaching out to someone else.

Ash has done a brilliant job and I have been trying to write one or two articles/stories a week. Need to get this flu gone to continue.

We all have a mandate as writers and this is one I hope you feel strongly about as I do. Ash needs writers, anything pertaining to enrich our knowledge around addictions and alcohol, all of it. There are people struggling everywhere and no one has been untouched in retrospect to these disorders. HubPages is a writing site, I know a caring one, that is more than willing to write an article for MY ROUTE TO HELP.

At least check it out, you’ll enjoy publishing knowing you could be touching someone, in a big way.

MRTH site introduction;

Make no mistake, Ash has a clear vision on how to present information and compassion. Jus read this;

Hello,

Thank you for visiting My Route To Help, we hope you enjoy your stay and pass it on to others. I started this website in the summer 2011, I had the motivation from getting a role as a volunteer with CRI. I thought it would be a good thing to do in my spare time to hopefully help more people than what I would be as a volunteer and so far I have.

Within the first 6 months of the website been online it has been through a lot of changes, it first started off a blog type layout without any user integration however now you can make your own profile with an image and a bio which allows you to post your own articles on the website. This is a big hit with readers and our writers. We have 3 writers who regularly post on the website and they have all received very positive feedback on all articles submitted onto the website.

What we do?

We offer a very simple service to people who want self-help, a lot of people have a fear of seeking help, sometimes they just don’t this is what I want to limit, I want people to read up on the drugs they are taking in simple terms so they understand and to be able to read other people’s success stories to know that every goal is an achievable goal! We offer information on drugs like heroin,cocaine and amphetamine. We also offer advise on harm reduction for example how to stop abscesses and what is the hepatitis virus. And finally we offer some addiction help as well as people s real life success stories of addiction which can be used to help people get through their own struggles!

Communication is key

Recently we have just started a new message board which is on this link here. I have discovered that addiction forums are hard to come by on the internet. Majority of forums that are on the internet do not offer a lot of talking points about addiction and they mainly talk about the drugs themselves in a positive way and not a negative away which is more encouraging to people. So please take the time, if you’re a professional or looking for help do sign up and start talking to people.

Thank you for reading

Ash Davidson

REPEAT:

do not offer a lot of talking points about addiction and they mainly talk about the drugs themselves in a positive way and not a negative way which is more encouraging to people. So please take the time, if you’re a professional or looking for help do sign up and start talking to people.

 

**************My route to help website link

I was so pleased Ash agreed to share more more about himself, Thanks!

  • Ash, what is your favourite flavour of gum?

Spearmint

  • What do you want to tell us? (length is up to you)

I am pretty sure you will find out everything through this interview 😉
Beetles or Elvis?
Elvis, my nana is a big Elvis fan

  • What’s it like being Ash for one day? Take us through a typical day.

Get up. Go in the shower, and go for the occasional run. If I am at work I’ll be there normally from 5pm till 9pm if not either pushing My Route To Help or playing pool with friends.

  • What city and Country do you live in?

Carlisle, England (9 miles from Scotland)

  • What is your superpower?

Energy. Always have energy to do things no matter how tired I am.

  • Who would you say is a person you admire, and why? (dead or alive)

Steven Gerrard. Liverpool FC Captain. He is motivational, a leader and never gives up. I hope to develop similar traits when I am older in my own career

  • What are your current living arrangements and who may live there also?

Live in a small 2 bedroom house with my parents

  • What is your greatest passion and what is your favourite hobby?

Greatest passion is football (soccer) watch it all the time no matter who is playing. Big love for the game. Favourite hobby is either fitness or website building.

  • Favourite colour and author (you can use me LOL)

Favourite colour is orange, I don’t have a favourite author. I tend to read auto-biographies

  • What music do you like?

I am into heavy metal music there is a lot more talent that goes into a group of 5 than one person who can just sing the same old pop songs.

  • What age RANGE are you?

21-30? Early stages of being a man!

  • Do you have a career? What is it?

Not at the moment, working in retail which I have done for 5 years now. Aspirations to join the Police in the UK as I have finished my university course in Policing.

  • Do you consider yourself a workaholic? Or laid back?

Laid back but ambitious. I work hard and I am dedicated but I am a very laid back person!
How did you find the career I hope you like, or don’t like?

  • What are the details surrounding the creation of MRTH?

I created MRTH as a project to do over the summer of 2011. It was going to be a blog about my experiences volunteering within the drug and alcohol services in the UK, which was a part of my university course. However it evolved. I started getting people contacting me to share their own stories which I allowed then I started looking for contributors which made the website grow even more. Because I come from a non addiction background its better for me to write about drugs themselves in technical terms but I have no knowledge of addiction hence why the sharing of stories and contributing helps the website go the extra mile.

  • How old is MRTH?

It’s just over 13 months old now. Still in baby years for the website with over 82,000 page hits!
How many articles to date have been written from readers and members?
126 at present but this is growing and growing. 60 of them are by myself.

  • Do you have a newsletter?

No, I use Facebook/Twitter to contact fans and followers of the website.

  • Where do you see MRTH headed?

I hope to see it being the best place to share stories of addiction to inspire others. Along with having valuable knowledge from contributors with experience or work within the addiction field.

  • Are there any operative challenges right now, ie; admin, video, profile page with photo and befriend button? etc. or do you prefer to keep it simple?

Prefer to keep it simple.

  • Who conceptually started MRTH? Is MRTH reaching or offering help to everyone or rather anyone?

Not so much of helping people but to educatepeople. To understand the drugs they are taking. Understanding addiction and to gain motivation reading stories of peoples success stories.

  • Who runs MRTH and maintains it? Is there more than one person?

At the minute it is just me. More it grows I will be looking for people to help out when that time comes

  • What, and this could be anything, with a magic wand would you have this site do?

To make it the most hit drug addiction website in the world supplying knowledge to everyone.

  • Who are your primary readers and what age and geographic are?

At present its 18-30 year olds in the UK, USA and Canada mainly with 46% women and 54% male.

  • Are your readers loyal, are there many?

Very loyal, always come back to either submit more content or comment on new content by other people which is supportive. With over 415 likes on Facebook now and 1,500 followers on twitter is positive and hoping to grow in the future.

  • Ash, please feel free to leave your members and readers with a message

 

Thank you for the support over the past 13 months. It has grown because of your input, as small as sharing the website it is helping, which I am very grateful for.

Will you consider participating in the education surrounding addictions and families?

 

WRITERS NEEDED, WE ARE ABLE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE, so let’s…………………..


Henna is working for treatment with great success


I have said before scars are just tattoos with better stories. What do we do when these scars are from self harm and carry much shame and no interesting stories, just pain? There is a natural therapeutic form of help………………..

Henna Saves Lives-England’s Treatment Working

My mental illness is no secret at HubPages. I write a great deal about it. What we need to understand are the actions and reactions that stem from mental illness. To do so as a means of reaching out in hopes of helping another.

The success of this treatment [self administered] became a healthy new coping mechanism and the inspiration share what not many have still heard of, I also had not heard of these treatments. This is one of the most accurate, and compassionate pieces I have written on this disorder.

Marriage Counseling?, Chemotherapy and baldness? Surgery? Self Mutilation? Tribal Rituals? Event Tattooing? Hair enhancer? Scarring Solutions? Hindu Weddings? Marker for Radiology? Body Art? Sex? Skin Graphing? Cooling treatments for sun effects? Celebrating new Births? And BODY ART. Henna now plays a role in all these.

How do I know this, specifically with self injury? I have a Borderline Personality Disorder, which comes with a lifetime of self cutting, self harm and mutilating and I also abused drugs via IV/ self administered needles. Very quickly for me, the needle became an addiction in that of itself.

Some words to describe this illness are; of self harm / cutting are; pain, sight, blood, scars, isolation, secrets, shame, no self worth, lack of self esteem, precision, relief, usually past abuse, mutilation, loneliness, addiction, control, then lastly and shockingly the release of pain. Mental and emotional pain. There is an answer and I am going to describe this brilliant treatment I learned of a few years ago

Control

I was still cutting and causing myself to bleed as my coping mechanism as well as use needles full or empty to create my own different pain. One I could control and one that would let me escape what issues I needed to for most of my life.

My boyfriend feeling helpless, started to research treatments, for this as you can imagine his concern and the need to want to help me.

Ill back up a bit. What is Henna? Henna, as used, is a natural dirt based paste once mixed with water. It is 100% natural and comes from a flowering plant and the sole species in a line of genus plants from the Lawsonia family of Lythraceae.

This means nothing, better described; I tell you it’s a thin mud that stains in an orange, light brown color for approximately 6 weeks.

This is why Henna tattooing is beautiful when done properly. My boyfriend however found a site in England that treated self injury by switching the obsession to Henna tattooing. By using it very similar the same way without any damage. But for me, came an incredible mess. Easy enough, have a Henna sheet you can work on.

I first was ecstatic and instead of hurting myself used a needle top bottle of henna and began to create. That first time I spent 15 hours and messed and stained myself everywhere. But I understood the concept. However it was a long 6 weeks.

The intricate designs and hours of body painting I couldn’t believe took my needle and knife cravings away. Then because it is mud once it dries you have to pick it off as though you were pulling and picking away pain. Once that was removed a stain of your design almost resembled blood by it’s color and imaginary markings.
I have since learned to Henna where my skin is not exposed and sometimes will do a tattoo bracelet or sandal foot design.

There are so many medical and physiological, beauty and ritual uses for Henna now having a developing for the past 9000 years. They have traced some of these Henna rituals back as far as 1550 BC in Egypt where it was used for medical purposes with prayer.

My prayer has been answered. I have not hurt myself in 2 years. I may not be a special artist in this area but I’ll settle for messy stains rather than messy scars.

Thank you Henna, I think we will be together a very long time.

If you are suffering from self injury, try this, I promise you it doesn’t make much sense on paper but it makes the world of sense on your body.


Rehab I say no no no


 

Whatever any of us feel we have to do to escape, seems great, until it becomes our reality and there is absolutely nothing else. ≈ kathy nation

I may have an opinion or two……..

Rehab. I may have visited a few, played at some, related with others, enjoyed a handful, seen many, spent much, discharged from a couple, liked a lot, yet mostly, consistently could guarantee I would enter yet still another.

Rehab. No No No, meant, here we Go Go Go.

I have been through 15 rehabs here in Canada and mostly throughout various states in the US. Why? I have the disease.

I am referring to the disease of drug and alcohol addiction, often married with a form of mental illness

What do I know? Well, with rehabilitation and treatment recovery, what I do know, I know a lot.

My recovery journey began, oddly enough, at the same time I started using. I was 14 when I entered my first, second and third rehab back to back. Juvenile lock up in three states and arrived back home just shy of 17 years of age. Too young for rehab and what I refer to as boot camp style treatment.

24 years of using, came with 24 years in and out of various facilities and forms of treatment attempting to get clean, and stay clean.

An snapshot of these facilities include;

multiple hospital admissions, repeated detox centers, 15 rehab facilities all in different nature, addiction counselors, juvenile lock up long term treatment 6 months +, combination total of approx 3 years in psychiatric wards, sober living houses, brain scans for answers, emergency room visits for overdosing and other organs shutting down, 5 year methadone for heroin maintenance program, sober retreats, interviews, psychiatrists and therapists, safe houses, shelters, harm reduction cocaine program, needle exchange and counseling, community centers, addiction centre courses, treatment out patient aftercare, long-term rehab, multiple, thousands of AA, CA, NA meeting in 3 countries and hundreds of cities, scared straight in correctional Institutions programs. Program Recovery

Ok, lets go……

This has personally been difficult to write. Mostly due to the fact it is challenging to explain to you what I know about rehab without the reasons why attended so many institutions.

I will leave you with this. I attended so many places for help because I needed to. Some of us just take longer to get it than others.

My addiction history and drug education hubs are listed at the bottom should there be any interest. I’ll leave it there.

I will tell you this with absolute certainty. This is the most important element of rehab or treatment you can learn today.

If you are not there for yourself, and only yourself, it won’t work, you will not stay clean. Don’t even try. I respectfully tell those who aren’t ready to get back out there and hit it until they’ve had enough and want to get better for themselves. For now, leave the beds for those who are ready. And that bed for you will be here waiting.

There are those that argue, whatever it takes to get you into rehab, who cares, as long as you just get there.

My experience repeatedly knows this makes no difference, once your there, you will not be open to a new way of thinking if not ready. So why waste your time until you are?

Hence why rehab is voluntary. Forced rehab does not exist and for this reason I also have lived through and disagree strongly to Interventions.

As addicts and alcoholics, we must want it so bad, we are prepared to do anything to change our ways. Our ways and best thinking continually kept us stoned or drunk. We must be willing to surrender and admit we are powerless over this disease.

So, you’ve researched which rehab your comfortable with. Talk to them, ask them every question you have, and keep calling until you feel sure. Second key factor in going to rehab is feeling safe. It’s scary enough entering a new establishment, knowing no one and being straight. You must feel safe enough that it is a place you can begin to heal. Not to mention live for the next 30, 60, or 90 days.

What are they offering? What is their approach to treatment i.e.; 12 step program, religious approach, therapy driven meetings, how many patients / clients are there? How many staff? What’s their success rate? When can you be admitted? What pre-admission requirements are there? Do they have aftercare? Long term options? Is it co-Ed? Are psychiatric medications allowed? How are they administered? What is offered for fitness and recreation?

You may ask them for a copy of their weekly itinerary and group subjects to understand the program a bit better. Truth is you have to be there to make an opinion. Try not to make an opinion until you’ve been there a while.

Before we head off to never ever land, there’s the primary deciding factor=cash. See up here in Canada we don’t have to pay, but we often have to wait. Out of the 15 rehabs I have attended 10 were throughout the US regardless. Cash talks. Same day admittance just needed a flight.

 

The price of your rehab I will not say determines the quality of care you get, but most often does effect, the environment you will be living.

I have had attended $3,000/day rehabs in paradise to a Canadian equivalence in total of about $5,000. There are so many kinds of rehabs, be rest-assured there is one for you too.

In a nutshell, the US, we can confidently break treatment and rehab in three categories most will stress as recovery priorities. I have been to many in all three sectors.

Eastern US will focus on the 12 step program and the importance of service, or getting involved with your sober community.

The entire south will focus entirely on the importance of a higher power, or God as we may understand him. From those roots the spiritual path begins the 12 step Journey.

West Coast unites in the importance of health as a main factor in recovery. Body, Mind and Soul. Eating healthy, exercising, importance of meditation and therapy, yoga and acupuncture are guaranteed to be part of the curriculum here, and often.

Then what happens?

Exactly. Now what are you suppose to do?

You’ve just completed 30, 60 or 90 days in rehab and suddenly do not have the support of other newly recovering addicts, counselors, nor the protection of being in a facility you know there are no drugs or temptations and lived free from a life you needed to flee from.

You no longer have the structure of support groups and professionals helping you gather information.

You know no one else in recovery and are terrified you will use.

So what you do is actually simple as much as it is difficult.

YOU DON’T PICK UP NO MATTER WHAT! Put a sign somewhere you are often at in your home that reads; UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES WILL I USE TODAY.

Stay in today. Like the t-shirt One day at a time. Yesterday you cannot change, tomorrow is unpredictable. Find serenity in knowing you only have to worry about today.

Start finding a support group immediately. This means attending 12 step meetings, appropriate to your addiction, raising your hand stating you just got out of rehab and need phone numbers for support. You will receive probably everyone. Use these numbers even to touch base with one other addict in recovery each day.

Do not be alone. If you need your place swept for drugs and paraphernalia, use one of the numbers to ask for help doing this. It can take you right back out if you do it alone because of this.

You may have 30 days under your belt, but you are now in the real world, and addictions are more powerful than ourselves and will take over should we let them. This is not about willpower or making the decision to stop.

If you have the disease of alcoholism and addiction, know it is progressive even when you are not using.

This is why so many heroin addicts die when they relapse due to the fact they use, right away the same quantity they use to, and overdose because the body shuts down.

Recap-don’t be alone as much as possible, under no circumstances pick up, speak to a temporary or full time sponsor everyday.

It is often suggested you attend 90 meetings in 90 days once you have left rehab. In my opinion I think this is smart and leads to my next point by getting involved in a 12 step program, and building relationships with those in recovery, with people in those rooms.

Use the relapse prevention tools learned in rehab. Set goals and immediately ask someone of the same sex to be a temporary sponsor until you can decide on who you want as a full time sponsor.

don’t pick up >>>>>>>>talk to another sober person daily>>>>>>>>>go to meetings daily for 90 days>>>>>>>>>>>as strange as everything feels, and I do understand, it does get better. Just do these few things everyday, many include prayer and meditation, and before you know it you will have a support system and have made friends all by talking to other addicts in recovery, and BAM you receive;

freedom from self.

Mental cravings begin to decrease, physically your feeling better and growing some faith that you might just be able to do this.

Rehab was your means to gain some tools and stop using. Now one day at a time you learn, grow, begin to live sober and start to feel real emotions only to discover you can cope, through anything, drug free. Spiritually you will be gifted with a greater understanding that there is a power greater than yourself and you will find true gratitude and humility.

Ultimately, guess what, you will discover happiness, serenity and amazingly, freedom.

Rehab? I say Yes Yes Yes 🙂 Good Luck it’s a trip at best. Besides you have a better solution? What do you have to loose? Nothing.

 

Comments for
Rehab I said no no no

Click here to add your own comments

  Well Done! 
by: Debbie Wicker

What a great summary of Rehab, thanks for all of your information and insight. I’m sure many will be helped by your story and explanation of all of the different types of Rehab and therapy.

So glad to hear that after all of those rehabs and different therapies the combination finally worked for you.

We are all unique and what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for someone else. I also agree with you that if a person keeps trying they will discover what therapy will work for them.

You are so right what does the addict have to loose, nothing!


book Chapter two-sneak peak-My life as a white, female drug dealer


book cover

chapter two

They say everything happens for a reason
Not today in this rainy season
At some point I had to be leaving

He freed me from my apparatus and my limbs fell limp.

I had been demoralized beyond recognition, stripped of my virginity by force, lost my strength through blood and beatings, lost all faith as I was sure to die, and threatened by pure experience. I tried to think and absolutely nothing became of it. Absolutely, catatonic, nothing was there. It was impossible to feel free of John.

When I could muster strength to focus through my swollen eyes, I saw him. He stood over me smug and very proud of his accomplishment. He lifted me from my armpits and stood me up. I buckled from shame and pain. He lifted me again, and I stood. From behind me he gave me his last kick between my shoulder blades.

I fell and lay face down, now less fearful. Anything he could do now wouldn’t come close or be worse than what he already did. He picked me up, my Raggedy Anne dead weight was able to barely stand again.

I climbed the mountain of stairs, opened the front door at a broken snail’s speed, walked out into the rain and didn’t look back, got a block away and could still hear his music blasting.

School was just getting out and I limped towards a detour route to the only place I had to go; which was home. I was too traumatized to think of what my mother would ask, what students that did spot me would say, or how I could explain to anyone the physical damages so detailed and exposed.

All I could do was keep taking breaks by standing and feeling so grateful for such a heavy rainfall as it was washing the blood remnants away, all the while stinging my cuts and fresh bruises.

When I reached my mother’s apartment door, I stood there for an eternity in fear. I was sure to be in trouble, having to lie and being rebellious for so long that nothing I said she would have believed. I had no keys and finally knocked. The expression on her face when she saw me was one of shock and caused her to cry, pleading with me to tell her what happened. I convincingly swore I fought with a girl at school over another boy. She told me to go to my room.

Soaking wet I climbed under my bed covers and pretended I was asleep when anyone entered. I did not move for three days. Nor did I sleep. That third day was a shock I never thought I would see. It was the only thing that stopped my mental obsession from needing that numbing cocaine, and how would I get it. Where could I find a drug dealer, as I lay there also wondering what could I sell to get some money?

The knock at our door was my grandiose father I had not seen for six months. My mother had not seen him in two years. He in the entire time since leaving, helped none of us financially or cared either way. For me that day, I would learn, without knowing it, he would free me from the fear of the unknown as to what was going to happen next.

My mother and father called me into the living room where they sat at the dining room table in the same room. There was an empty chair, reserved for me. Still badly bruised and swollen, my father began to cry as he nodded to my mother, who told me to sit down.

My alcoholic father proceeded to tell me he got sober and that my behavior and attitude indicated I had a problem with drugs. He flew into town to help me get sober too. There was a rehab, one of the best in Minnesota, and I could be there in two days for a 30-day treatment to detoxify.

Like a lifeboat I was just handed a means to get out of my city, my school and mostly, away from John. Manipulating both my parents I lied and confessed I was injecting cocaine for some time, and needed help desperately. They were proud of me for wanting help and the next thing I knew I was in an admitting room, knowing no one, in drug rehab. In my mind I was never going home again, I just had to figure out how.

The counselors, while compassionate, had very strict rules. Which I liked, given it was a co-ed facility. I don’t know how I convinced these professionals I was a junkie or maybe they knew I wasn’t and kept me there sensing I needed to be safe. Either way I had to participate in all groups: for drug education, relapse prevention, sharing and learning how to live a sober life. At turning just 15, I was becoming an expert about drugs I had never used and now, learning how to use them.

The clients, rather young adults, stayed hard-core and laughed at stories that were definitely not true. Mine included. Within a week I was promoted from the new bruised kid at the Centre to one of the family. Rebellious still, I had my fair share of punishment.

This, my first of many rehabs to follow, taught me the basis of being a drug addict and the means on how drugs were bought and sold. It also taught me that my attitude was indeed one of an addict. This became crystal clear when I was discharged on my 28th day out of 30. Discharged for breaking rules and not working the treatment program as outlined for me.

So there I was, locked in a waiting room with two chairs, waiting my eight hour estimated time until I had to face my, sure to be, livid father. No clue what was to happen next, I knew I couldn’t go back home. Not under any circumstances. As I waited in that quiet room alone, I glorified the day I could start using drugs and feel numb like the cocaine made me once feel. I had learnt so much. I was actually prepared, in my limited understanding to embrace the possibilities that I would be sick, with illicit drug addictions.

The key seemed to have jammed in the lock as they were opening the door to my holding space. Then, when it opened, my father entered first. Afraid he was going to hit me I stepped back but stood tall. He can’t hurt me here, I remember thinking.

He hugged me, crying, explaining this was all part of the process of recovery and he was taking me home to Texas where we could find more treatment. For some reason that was just as scary as returning home. As lost as I felt, boarding that 747 headed south, I, at the time, had no idea what to expect. No idea that I had just completed my first semester in drug usage, habits and behaviors of drug dealers and lastly how drugs destroy your life. That part fell on deaf ears, I just wanted to get high. In retrospect having really done cocaine only once was enough to trigger a chemical reaction in my body that would stir in me my entire life.

The flight was only three hours, but long enough for me to find trouble. I went to the washroom only to find a bachelor party gathered at the rear of the plane, using the bathroom to snort their coke. I had to be dreaming.

I was offered a line with no payment or dues, and gladly accepted. I railed it on that steel counter with my door locked and occupied. They had given me a fifty-dollar bill, which I learned to roll up really tight for a straw. I snorted my left nostril then my right. Put some drops of water in the tip of my nose and inhaled until I felt my throat numb from the coke dripping down.

Both hands on the vanity I stared directly into the mirror. I realized I was barely showing signs of my beating or rape, and was looking healthy again. I smiled at myself a long time and uttered out loud “You’re home Sky”.

Without a care in the world, happy and eager to continue treatment I plopped back down in my seat and buckled up. So naïve. It took my father 30 seconds to notice my mood change, behavioral shift and physical symptoms of using cocaine. He, after all, had spent the better half of 20 years snorting and drinking daily.

He was beyond furious. Preaching he was devoting everything to helping me, and this is the way I participated in wanting to recover? He told me I had to want it myself; no one can do this for me. His voice didn’t faze me, or his militant tone. He couldn’t hurt me anymore and I was going to play this man like he once did me. I’d be his perfect daughter with no meaning, love him, with zero truth, obey him, like I cared, and respect him, with spit in my mouth.

I cried with the crocodile tears I inherited from him. Swore I was struggling staying clean, this was not a drug I had, and someone on the plane did. “Daddy please, I won’t mess up again, I’m so sorry. Are you going to send me home?” He said no as his breathing softened back down to a normal rhythm. “Your mother is to blame for all this. But listen, I have been where you are and I have a back up plan. You really didn’t think you were just going to shop, play golf and swim, did you?”

Sky, we are going directly to a facility in Texas that the rehab centre recommends. They believe you are struggling with a mental illness and this is a secluded, lock down psychiatric ward: small, with professional help. A four-month admission on a form, meaning the police will arrest you if you get out. You are not allowed visitors, but we will write. You will be safe and can continue to recover.

What could I say? I said nothing.

In my mind I was wondering if life was really going to be okay for me. I went from years of doubt, and then I was tattooed, with horror. Now here I was, miles away from my mother, whom I had still not spoken to since I left and a father who was dropping me off at a facility where no one could hurt me. Starting with him.

It was scary, as one would imagine. There were nine other patients, all men. The closest to my age was 31 and a severe alcoholic. One supervised cigarette an hour was allowed, outside by the exit doors. No groups or meetings, no art therapy or individual counseling, just a psychiatrist and continual trial cocktail of medications. That equates to a lot of down time over the span of four months. We slept in our own rooms with locked doors and intermittent fifteen-minute flashlight nurse checks every night. Daytime we were allowed one crayon and a piece of paper. I felt crazy. Maybe I was. One thing for sure, crazy or not, I was nowhere near John or my Father.

Four months finished, and I an even more defiant teenager, was released from the crazy house. My diagnosis was Rapid Cycling, Bi-Polar illness, and severe Attention Deficit Disorder. I did not know what that really meant, only that a cocktail of prescribed pills kept me calmer.

I should have guessed my father was not available to pick me up when I was released. I called my mother for help. She explained she could not tolerate a drug addict and was not secure having me return home until I completed a treatment program. I hung up and turned around to find myself being introduced to two men that were going to escort me to a Juvenile Detention Centre and Rehab. Back in Minnesota, this time Minneapolis. I was being escorted and tagged as a drug addict who was underage and diagnosed as a potential harm to myself…………………………………………..


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