Personal Stories

Get advice and perspective from families who have also been impacted by substance use or addiction.

Secrets for Surviving Thanksgiving with an Addicted Son

Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays or anything that was special to our family — our son who was using drugs found a way to bring heartache to the occasion. Here are my tips for dealing with it.

There Is Hope in Recovery from Addiction, and My Son Is Proof

I learned that addiction hijacks the brain's ability to make rational decisions — and that I didn't cause it, can't cure it and can't control it.

My Son Did Not Die in Vain: A Story of Addiction & Saving Lives

The detective said to me, “If we had a 911 Good Samaritan law or a Narcan law, your son might very well be alive.”

Refusing Prescription Opioids in Recovery

When your child is in recovery, they may need a medical or dental procedure where the standard pain treatment is opioids. Here's how to deal with it.

I Addressed My Own Drinking and It Was the Key to My Son’s Recovery

I am working on my own recovery, so I am properly able to support his.

7 Truths About My Son’s Addiction That Took 5 Years to Learn

We have come to accept these truths. Today it's much easier to deal with the heartache. We have become more effective at helping our son with his addiction.

My Son Is Caught in the Cycle of Patient Brokering

My son is a drug addict caught up in the vicious cycle of detox, treatment and relapsing perpetuated by the scheme of patient brokering. He's still in it.

Can You Grieve Someone While They’re Still Alive?

There is no other word but grief when your child is lost in the haze of drug addiction. But your child is still there. There are paths to hope.

If Love Alone Could Have Saved Me, It Would Have

Just because someone you love is struggling does not mean you did something wrong or you didn’t love them enough.

Everything My Parents Did To Get Me Addiction Treatment and Into Recovery

In my family, addiction was treated with the same love and affection as if I had suffered from any other potentially fatal illness.

Withdrawing from “Withdrawal”: The Language of Addiction Matters

We need to change language like junkie, addict, and alcoholic if we are to lessen the stigma and negativity that saturates the perception of drug addiction.

My Daughter Died From an Overdose. I’m Sharing Her Story to Help Others.

“Tell them my story.” My 20-year-old daughter Casey said these words to me not long before she died of an accidental heroin overdose on January 15, 2017.

Does Relapse Mean Failure?

For this father, it took time to learn that relapse can be a natural part of addiction recovery.

I See Myself in Every Young Person With Addiction. This Is What I Want Parents To Know.

Here are a few things I’d like parents to know so they can best help their child – and themselves – through treatment and recovery.

I Thought Addiction Was My Son’s Problem. But Addiction Is a Family Disease.

When my son became addicted, I embarked on a journey to learn about preventing and treating this disease. I wish I knew then what I know now.

To Parents Struggling with a Child’s Addiction: 3 Things I Want You to Know

Find out what Arianna Huffington, founder and CEO of Thrive Global, has learned from her daughter Christina's substance use disorder – including the importance of reaching out for help.

Where There Is Life, There Is Hope

At face value, they sound so simple. Just seven words strung together. But in taking a moment to step back and find perspective, they become so much more.

An Open Letter to My Son With Addiction

The path to recovery is difficult. But please know you are not walking alone in addiction– hands of help are reaching out to you with your every step.

My Story of Recovery From Stimulant Use

I am grateful for the responsibilities that life presents and, thanks to recovery, I am prepared to face them.

This Father’s Day, I Invite Dads to Help Fight the Heroin Epidemic

All of us — men and women alike, who contend with family members, especially children, suffering from substance use disorder, are haunted by loss.

Yankee Fan Reflects on Loss & Ending the Silence on Addiction

These were men that drank and played hard during a time when there was less discrimination over a swing and a swig. Men whose substance use were denied or protected, sometimes even by the sportswriters who sat at the bar with them.

Thanks For Never Giving Up On My Struggle With Addiction, Dad.

Dear Dad, I am grateful for all that you have done during my addiction and continue to do for me. I would not be alive and well today if it weren’t for you.

Collaboration Helps You, Your Partner and Your Child

When it comes to a child using drugs or alcohol, collaboration with your co-parent is key.

I Wish I Had Learned to Listen Sooner

What do I wish I had done differently?