Sam* went from being a social ice (crystal methamphetamine) user on weekends, to thinking that it was cool to be a drug addict. The absolute despair that this brought, and the story of his journey, may help others to make some wiser choices. These are Sam’s words.
‘I quickly lost control of my own life. A broken marriage, and not being able to see my two children, was hard to deal with. What was once fun and recreational turned into an expensive addiction. While using ice every day, I lost another relationship, quit my full time job, lost interest in sports (which I was very passionate about), and lost my confidence and understanding of who I was as a person.
All I was concerned about was where I could get more drugs.
I no longer had any friends. My family was running low on patience with me. I lived for the drug and only the drug. At rock bottom, I found myself owing thousands of dollars, and lying and stealing from my own family to cover my addiction.
My family rescued me (again) and I saw this time as the wake-up call I needed.
I contacted The Salvation Army and started counselling. After a few weeks of being clean, I attended an eight-week residential rehabilitation program at the Bridge Centre in Hobart. This gave me the strategies and strength that I needed to beat the addiction.
I began to remember the person I was before the drug took over my life.
I’m now 26 weeks clean, and I have all my family and friends back on my side, supporting me. I am playing sport and enjoying my life once again. The simple things, like going for a walk, or hanging out with my friends, are things I enjoy. I now sleep at night, and every day I wake up knowing it is a blessing. The road to recovery has not been easy, but certainly well worth the effort.
I have made contact with Legal Aid and have started the process towards having contact with my two children. I look forward to rebuilding my bonds with my children and to grow as a father. Last Christmas was the first time I had seen my children since my recovery started. To be able to give them gifts and to hug them both makes the journey worthwhile.’
*Sam is not this young man’s real name, but this account is of the real experiences of someone who has chosen to share his story, in the hope that others will choose recovery. This story was also published in RUSH Magazine (Autumn 2015).