Book Excerpt: A Parents Greatest Fear

Heroin – Living and Dying with An Addict You Love, How to Survive when Everyone Dies

When a Child’s Addiction Becomes a Parent’s Obsession

I was terrified that he would die and, despite everything I should have learned about my inability to control his behavior, I still was trying to intervene; to exert my will over his. He was lying to me, and that pissed me off more than anything. Further, he was putting my daughters in jeopardy.

As for the girls, my trying to protect them probably didn’t matter. They were living with a father suffering from PTSD, anxiety, and major depressive disorder—and obsession with his son’s eventual relapse. Their environment was probably quite caustic. Couple that with his mom’s public denial but private acceptance of his relapse, and I am sure the girls were confused and unhappy too.

One day while he was out, I searched his room. I went through some old shoeboxes at the bottom of his closet, and, sure enough, I found a few syringes—just like the one I threw away when I was cleaning up after his overdose. Instantly, the events of that day crashed into my consciousness. That had been the last time I saw a syringe—when I was cleaning up the bathroom, so his sisters wouldn’t see the tools of his addiction.

I crumpled to the floor, immobilized by deep levels of despair, regret, and fear. It’s one thing to know in your heart; visual proof has an impact. #heroin #overdose #livinganddying