A true story of a mother's journey through her daughter's addiction.
For most of us, the word heroin evokes the idea of something evil, something with a life of its own, a hunter of souls bent on destroying lives. It has destroyed mine and my family’s. I believe that heroin hooks those who try it, dooming them to ruin and even death. Those who try heroin have no choice—they become addicted, junkies for life. Heroin use is a junkie’s profession.
not my daughter not only tells the heartbreaking personal story of a mother’s experiences with her daughter’s addiction, but it also exposes the consequences of a loved ones substance addiction and the way the disease works and its impact on families.
Iím watching her slowly die from heroin and she doesnít even appear to want to stay clean. I think in some deluded way she likes being a junkie. It frees her from herself and gives her an identity in life.
My daughter, Bonnie is addicted to heroin and I feel helpless in helping her because she doesnít care to want to help herself. Iíve often asked myself, how can you help someone who canít help themselves? I have never felt pain this deep and I hope that one day my family can be restored to some normalcy, with or without her. Itís so hard to have someone become dead while they are technically still living. If only she could understand how her family, the people who love her most feel.
Iíve often heard people say that God helps those who help themselves. Sometimes he feels awfully generous and helps those incapable of helping themselves. I donít think he is doing that now. God hadnít seemed too important to our family before she started doing drugs. Could God be punishing us now because he wasnít a part of our lives?
Like many mothers of drug addicts, I now fear IĎve made lots of mistakes in rearing my children. When Bonnie became a drug abuser, I punished myself. Itís pure misery facing the fact that my daughter has a drug habit. It is painful trying so hard to make my family look perfect so we can present to the world an image that isnít as bad as I fear it is.
Iíve always thought that I was a good mother. I thought I had raised my children the best I could. I was naÔve in thinking that good people could go around with bad ones without having some of the unacceptable behavior rub off on them. We talked about drugs and alcohol. I thought my children were educated and I felt sure when they were faced with that decision they would make the right choice. Was I wrong? Could I have done more? Could I have found some other way to get my children to understand the problems that drugs cause? Could I have tried to understand their problems and keep tragedy at bay? Itís crazy how things happen so fast you donít even realize its happening. Itís like the tide; it comes in and out at such a slow pace you donít even notice the shore getting smaller.
I truly believed that Bonnieís life had become hell and drugs were the DevilÖ but the crazy thing was drugs masquerade as an angel of lightÖ It all felt so good to her. Thatís how the Devil got her. He made Bonnie feel good. He promised her all the wonderfulness and beautifulness she always wanted. He tempted her with an apple so red and juicy she couldnít help but take a bite. WellÖ Bonnie took the apple. It was all the glorious things she had been promised. But after a while she got sick and had to have more and more. Before she knew what was happening, she had sold her soul to the Devil. Iíve tried millions of times to buy it back.
I wanted to share this story with all parents so they will know this could happen to anyone. Anyoneís child, no matter how much you love them or what kind of home they came from. They can stray and it could cost them their life. Millions of people are touched by the effects of addiction, both in themselves and in those that they love. It is a powerful and devastating force, both psychologically and physiologically, and the behaviors which it illicit are often puzzling and upsetting.
Drug addiction not only destroys the user, it also destroys the family. Addiction robs you of your money, it robs you of your spirit and finally, when you have nothing left to giveÖ it robs you of your soul. Heroin addiction is a disease, which ends in death for those who suffer from it. Heroin addiction is an illness of the mind, body, and soul. Heroin effects are not only physical but heroin effects are also of the emotional variety. Heroin effects are extremely harmful to the health of the person addicted to heroin. Death is a strong word but in the case of heroin effects, it is the final destination.
Addiction isnít prejudice. It doesnít matter who you areÖ it doesnít matter what color you areÖ how much money you haveÖ if youíre homelessÖ or if you have a family who loves you dearlyÖ it can happen to anyone.
Iíve heard some of the arguments as to why kids use drugs and while my generation started this shit; it certainly doesnít make it right. This world now has an epidemic called drug abuse that consumes 8% of the world economy. Just look around and see the human waste that this is causing.
I donít know what the answer is, but my daughterís continued use of illegal drugs will eventually drive a wedge between our relations that will harm us and greatly sadden me. Iíve finally recognized that it is not my fault. There is much that could have been done differently, but my daughterís drug use is indicative of a disease much like alcoholism is. Most of us can try illegal substances and walk away from it. However, some just canít stay away from it. It is a problem that they have to be mindful of for the rest of their life to avoid.
I come to realize that at this critical hour, my daughter still needs love, understanding and supportÖ not less despite the fact that she has hurt her family, sometimes by stealing, by being dishonest or spiteful. I will need to come to terms with my own attitudes while being sure to take care of myself.