Teen recalls heroin addiction and road to recovery

Full story: Newsday

A DEADLY FORM OF HEROIN continues to destroy lives across Long Island , trampling across age groups and economic lines.

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#1
Jul 27, 2008
 

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It's pretty difficult to change one's personality, and almost impossible to talk oneself out of depression. But it sounds as if that is the type of help Amanda is being offered to "solve" her drug problem.

I suggest, instead, that Amanda see a competent neurologist/pyschiatrist for help in dealing with her lifelong anxieties and depression, and also find a pyschologist to help her learn and practice new behavioral responses. It will also help immensely for Amanda to change her lifestyle habits, meaning move away from drug-life friends and anyone else who triggers or encourages destructive behavior.

Let's face it. At 18, and never having had good social skills or self-esteem, Amanda is merely parroting back what her help-group has told her. She will still be on rocky ground for some years to come. She needs help gaining a completely new lifestyle, and, based on past performance, that won't happen through her family or being around other drug addicts.
hey youu

Port Jefferson Station, NY

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#2
Jul 27, 2008
 
get a life
Believe

Patchogue, NY

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#3
Jul 27, 2008
 

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Hey Amanda, I can identify with how you feel. There is much hope for you. Go to AA or NA when you leave the facility-you will meet people just like us who are willing to help and be good friends to you. Be Honest, Open Minded and Willing in your life and great things will happen for you. My best wishes to you.
GoGoJuice

Bronx, NY

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#4
Jul 27, 2008
 
Recovery can turn into a drama if you let it. Look at he first poster who recommends all kinds of looney treatments. It's the circus approach.

Plenty of people live without chemicals and thrive without making it a big deal. Think Straight Edge. You just let recovery become a way of life, using meetings to remind you of who you are, and you go on.
Hardcore Truths

Brooklyn, NY

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#5
Jul 27, 2008
 
Addiction is a life long thing. She needs to stay away from bad influences and direct all her energy into self improvement instead of self destruction.
Good Job

AOL

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#6
Jul 27, 2008
 
Good job of exposing the scourge of heroin on Long Island. I appreciate young people like Amanda who tell their story, and hope she will not end up feeling exploited as this is very early in the process of her recovery. Nevertheless, I hope that she will find recovery and peace in her life and that her spirit will find other avenues of expression. Meanwhile, what is metropolitan area law enforcement doing about this problem, and the feds for that matter? Is there a coordinated well thought out strategy? What have the various levels of government done to provide treatment beds to accomodate this growing local epidemic? And to guarantee access to the uninsured and under insured? Newday, you have raised the red flag; now be vigilant in holding those whose hands need to be held to the fire, to ensure that more young lives are not snuffed out. And finally those posters that I have read in past stories on this subject, particularly the self righteous among us to have all of the answers to perfect parenting to control your children and teens...it is not that simple...it can happen to what you would label as good families too. Show a little humility and compassion and get off your high horse...as one day you too will struggle and be searching for answers, if not with addiction with some other problem that will truly be out of your hands and control.
darker

Franklin Lakes, NJ

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#7
Jul 27, 2008
 

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Long Island is a mafia drug $$$$$$$$$$ paradise where a bored population of youngsters are lured into addiction, where drugs are sold behind every other restaurant and sundry shop.

That's Wrong Island. Our incompetent, lazy, over-paid and paid-off police departments do nothing while generations of youths' lives are ruined by the LONG ISLAND DRUG TRADE.

Until there is will or brawn to CHANGE, the chronic problem will continue.
Recovery on LI

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#10
Jul 27, 2008
 
What is sad is the fact that, in truth, heroin and other opiates, including many prescription meds, have had a grip on LI teenagers for years now. In 20 years, NA meetings on long island have gone from less than 20 meetings to almost 200. And for the past 10 years the people coming through the doors have gotten younger and younger. The drugs, both legal and illegal are readily availabale in every community on LI. Rich, poor, North Shore and South, Muttontown and Levittown. Everywhere. In middle class neighborhoods, where most neighbors barely know each other and things are kept hush, hush and never make the papers. In the Hamptons, where tourists and many of the locals have lots of expendable income, good lawyers and where it takes running people over to attract any coverage (remember Libby?). To lower class neighborhoods, which are the ones that typically only make the news for all the wrong reasons.
Drugs have been a part of growing up on Long Island for decades. Combine that with parents who are uninvolved,working 2 jobs just to get by here, totally absent, or would rather be their childs friend than their parent, or in denial of what their kids are doing and the results are horrific.
Because even as a parent, if you are present, available and involved, addiction can still get a grip on your child too. But if you are present, available, involved, you've all got a helluva better shot at surviving addiction and finding recovery.
My prayers are with all of you.
Recovery works and it is alive on LI.
The government isn't winning the war on drugs, but on LI, in the rooms of recovery, we sure as hell are.
DDd

Morris Plains, NJ

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#11
Jul 27, 2008
 
I know alot of people who have done heroin, and saw what it does to people, it takes control over your life and its sad, alot of my friends did heroin, and I come a nice middle class neighborhood, good school district, Im glad I never got involved with that bc its really sad and its a hard thing to overcome, and alot of times these addicts never kick it, and you have to stay away from the bad influences, get a hobby, and stay busy, I hope she stays clean, and anyone who is trying to kick it, to just stay strong and stay positive
Captain Neutron

New York, NY

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#12
Jul 27, 2008
 

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She needs to have her tubes tied, real quick.
Epidemic

AOL

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#13
Jul 27, 2008
 
Maybe is Bush stayed the course in Afghanistan instead of invading Iraq, none of this would be happening. We had heroin ALMOST stamped out in Afghanistan. Thanks to the decision to secure Iraqs oil instead of wiping out the Taliban and the poppy fields, we have an epidemic HERE on American soil.....Jan 20 2009 cant come soon enough

KABUL, Afghanistan - Afghanistan’s world-leading opium cultivation rose a “staggering” 60 percent this year, the U.N. anti-drugs chief announced Saturday in urging the government to crack down on big traffickers and remove corrupt officials and police.

The record crop yielded 6,100 tons of opium, or enough to make 610 tons of heroin — outstripping the demand of the world’s heroin users by a third, according to U.N. figures.
ryan

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#14
Jul 27, 2008
 
darker wrote:
Long Island is a mafia drug $$$$$$$$$$ paradise where a bored population of youngsters are lured into addiction, where drugs are sold behind every other restaurant and sundry shop.
That's Wrong Island. Our incompetent, lazy, over-paid and paid-off police departments do nothing while generations of youths' lives are ruined by the LONG ISLAND DRUG TRADE.
Until there is will or brawn to CHANGE, the chronic problem will continue.
ur retarded..cops cant be everywhere at all times. Addicts are going to get there drugs no matter what.

“Massapequa Mom”

Since: Jul 08

Massapequa, NY

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#15
Jul 27, 2008
 
Recovery on LI wrote:
What is sad is the fact that, in truth, heroin and other opiates, including many prescription meds, have had a grip on LI teenagers for years now. In 20 years, NA meetings on long island have gone from less than 20 meetings to almost 200. And for the past 10 years the people coming through the doors have gotten younger and younger. The drugs, both legal and illegal are readily availabale in every community on LI. Rich, poor, North Shore and South, Muttontown and Levittown. Everywhere. In middle class neighborhoods, where most neighbors barely know each other and things are kept hush, hush and never make the papers. In the Hamptons, where tourists and many of the locals have lots of expendable income, good lawyers and where it takes running people over to attract any coverage (remember Libby?). To lower class neighborhoods, which are the ones that typically only make the news for all the wrong reasons.
Drugs have been a part of growing up on Long Island for decades. Combine that with parents who are uninvolved,working 2 jobs just to get by here, totally absent, or would rather be their childs friend than their parent, or in denial of what their kids are doing and the results are horrific.
Because even as a parent, if you are present, available and involved, addiction can still get a grip on your child too. But if you are present, available, involved, you've all got a helluva better shot at surviving addiction and finding recovery.
My prayers are with all of you.
Recovery works and it is alive on LI.
The government isn't winning the war on drugs, but on LI, in the rooms of recovery, we sure as hell are.
Thank goodness is right. But we can do more. For those of you in the Massapequa area, the school board is meeting on August 7th. I believe the drug issue will be brought up and put up for discussion as an item on the agenda. If you feel strongly, please attend, or write Jane Ryan at boe@msd.k12.ny.us and state your views to her attention. I plan on attending.
You may also write Charles Fuschillo's office to lobby for the change in family laws so that parents can have more control of their 18-20 year old's health care at the following email address: fuschill@senate.state.ny.us
To report any illicit drug deals, please call your local precinct. If they are ineffective, please contact Lt. Detective Andrew Fal, Commanding Officer, Nassau County Narcotics and Vice, and ask for him directly. YOu may find the phone number on the NCPD website

“Massapequa Mom”

Since: Jul 08

Massapequa, NY

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#16
Jul 27, 2008
 
ryan wrote:
<quoted text>
ur retarded..cops cant be everywhere at all times. Addicts are going to get there drugs no matter what.
We can make it harder for them than it is now. Much harder....we need to follow the NYC model. Quality of life arrests (loitering, soliciting, vandalism, petty thefts) will grab a lot of these folks off the streets...and will doubtless catch many with outstanding warrants. Enforcing loitering laws will keep the dealers off the streets and out of parks and schools. And so on....
the truth

Pompano Beach, FL

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#17
Jul 27, 2008
 

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massapequa mom

instead of blaming the dealers long island parents should blame THEMSELVES for their own failure to raise their kid with SELF RESPECT, DIGNITY and goals. I can picture the school meeting now......how are we gonna get thesse dealers out of our long island towns???? Blah, blah, blah..... Raise your kids right and they will not want to do drugs.

Down here in Boac Raton the drug rehabs are filled with upper middle class spoiled little pathetic kids that BLAME everyone else for their problems, BLAME the dealers for giving them their drugs and refuse to accept the FACT that THEY were the pathetic ones that had NO GOALS or self respect and CHOSE to use drugs like dirt bag losers.

Take responsibility LONG ISLAND parents, these kids are LOSERS and need to go spend time in JAIL!!!!!.
Farmingdale Mom

AOL

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#18
Jul 27, 2008
 
I have been living with the heartbreak of a drug/alcohol addicted child for the past 8 years. I am and was an involved parent. My daughter has been in multiple rehabs, from out patient to inpatient. She has seen some of the most competant psychiatrists, neurologists and medical doctors. This is a terrible scourge on society. It is everywhere. No family is untouched. If you think that it can never happen to you, you are so wrong. I live with the knowledge that my daughter is probably going to end up dead or in jail. Sobriety does not last. Less than 5% of all heroin addicted people will still be clean in 5 years. It is a whole lifestyle, with relapses and broken promises. It changes everyone in a family. You learn not to trust them, and pray that they change. I can not begin to describe what happens to a talented, pretty young woman when she experiments with drugs and then gets hooked. there is a loss of boundaries between what belongs to you and them. They only live for their next high and will do anything to get it.They will steal from you and use you to get what they need. You never stop loving your child, but you learn not to trust them anymore. You cannot listen to their promises of how things will change. When the phone rings in the middle of the night, you know it about them. Have they been arrested? Were they in an accident? Are they dead? Eventually they will be living in the streets. Do you take them back in and risk the lives of everyone else in your house? or do you leave them in the streets to ??what, I don't even know. And then you pray that they will land in a rehab, to maybe see how they can turn their life around. All I can say is that now that my daughter is in a treatment facility I know that I am not getting THAT phone call tonite. No matter what, I will never be ready for THAT phone call. Don't judge until you have lived with an addict. It is so easy to think that you have all of the answers, but I promise yu, if there were better answers no family, no child would ever live through the hell of heroin addiction.
Recovery on LI

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#19
Jul 27, 2008
 
the truth wrote:
massapequa mom
instead of blaming the dealers long island parents should blame THEMSELVES for their own failure to raise their kid with SELF RESPECT, DIGNITY and goals. I can picture the school meeting now......how are we gonna get thesse dealers out of our long island towns???? Blah, blah, blah..... Raise your kids right and they will not want to do drugs.
Down here in Boac Raton the drug rehabs are filled with upper middle class spoiled little pathetic kids that BLAME everyone else for their problems, BLAME the dealers for giving them their drugs and refuse to accept the FACT that THEY were the pathetic ones that had NO GOALS or self respect and CHOSE to use drugs like dirt bag losers.
Take responsibility LONG ISLAND parents, these kids are LOSERS and need to go spend time in JAIL!!!!!.
Unfortunately this is exactly the narrowminded view of addiction which forces the rooms of NA/AA to remain forever anonymous.
First, regardless of age or income, the "victim mentality" is sadly common to all substance abusers, regardless of substance. Alcohol, meth, crack, etc.
Second, most addicts are the most talented, creative, intelligent, caring people you could ever meet. WHEN THEY GET CLEAN AND RECOVER.
Wouldn't the world be a great place if all you had to do was set a goal for yourself and you would never have to worry about being addicted.
That must be the reason why goal oriented, intelligent, well raised people like doctors, and scientists, and military personnel, and athletes, and clergy, and performers and politicians and all those successful people never become addicted....
You're right on one and only one point..Parents everywhere need to take a greater role in their childrens lives... perhaps if yours had you wouldn't be such a bitter, narrowminded, uncaring, ignorant jerk.
LIMOM2

Shirley, NY

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#20
Jul 27, 2008
 
May God Bless you, and give you the strength to get through this. I have a daughter as well; I am off to go hug her even tighter than normal after hearing your story. You should get that message out to more people than the few on this board.(Many of whom could never appreciate your sincerity, and strength.)I hope you find some contentment in your life. You sound like a wonderful mother. Best of luck to you, and of course your daughter who is going through her own horrific battle. Oh, and hey, try to stay positive; I know statistics s**k, but hopefully your daughter WILL overcome this!! Keep believing!
Farmingdale Mom wrote:
I have been living with the heartbreak of a drug/alcohol addicted child for the past 8 years. I am and was an involved parent. My daughter has been in multiple rehabs, from out patient to inpatient. She has seen some of the most competant psychiatrists, neurologists and medical doctors. This is a terrible scourge on society. It is everywhere. No family is untouched. If you think that it can never happen to you, you are so wrong. I live with the knowledge that my daughter is probably going to end up dead or in jail. Sobriety does not last. Less than 5% of all heroin addicted people will still be clean in 5 years. It is a whole lifestyle, with relapses and broken promises. It changes everyone in a family. You learn not to trust them, and pray that they change. I can not begin to describe what happens to a talented, pretty young woman when she experiments with drugs and then gets hooked. there is a loss of boundaries between what belongs to you and them. They only live for their next high and will do anything to get it.They will steal from you and use you to get what they need. You never stop loving your child, but you learn not to trust them anymore. You cannot listen to their promises of how things will change. When the phone rings in the middle of the night, you know it about them. Have they been arrested? Were they in an accident? Are they dead? Eventually they will be living in the streets. Do you take them back in and risk the lives of everyone else in your house? or do you leave them in the streets to ??what, I don't even know. And then you pray that they will land in a rehab, to maybe see how they can turn their life around. All I can say is that now that my daughter is in a treatment facility I know that I am not getting THAT phone call tonite. No matter what, I will never be ready for THAT phone call. Don't judge until you have lived with an addict. It is so easy to think that you have all of the answers, but I promise yu, if there were better answers no family, no child would ever live through the hell of heroin addiction.

“Massapequa Mom”

Since: Jul 08

Massapequa, NY

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#21
Jul 27, 2008
 
the truth wrote:
massapequa mom
instead of blaming the dealers long island parents should blame THEMSELVES for their own failure to raise their kid with SELF RESPECT, DIGNITY and goals. I can picture the school meeting now......how are we gonna get thesse dealers out of our long island towns???? Blah, blah, blah..... Raise your kids right and they will not want to do drugs.
Down here in Boac Raton the drug rehabs are filled with upper middle class spoiled little pathetic kids that BLAME everyone else for their problems, BLAME the dealers for giving them their drugs and refuse to accept the FACT that THEY were the pathetic ones that had NO GOALS or self respect and CHOSE to use drugs like dirt bag losers.
Take responsibility LONG ISLAND parents, these kids are LOSERS and need to go spend time in JAIL!!!!!.
I guess by now you've gotten a bit of an education..the trouble is that these kids come from all over. Even parents who are involved with them. Once the drug gets them, they are changed forever. You deal with it your way, I will deal with it mine. One way I would like to see the kids benefit is to be given more, and not less, responsibility, maybe through mandatory community service. Another way is to make sure the smart ones are challenged in school. And still another way is to keep the scum away from them. Your kids will do drugs if they feel there is nothing better for them to do. and at $7 a hit, it is cheaper than going to the movies. You still think that's ok and should be a parent's and not society's problem? I don't. I want to see law enforcement enforce, and schools actually deciding they will take a stand instead of ignoring the problem as if it did not exist. It is society that is left holding the bag. Let's proactively do something for a change!

“Massapequa Mom”

Since: Jul 08

Massapequa, NY

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#22
Jul 27, 2008
 
Farmingdale Mom wrote:
I have been living with the heartbreak of a drug/alcohol addicted child for the past 8 years. I am and was an involved parent. My daughter has been in multiple rehabs, from out patient to inpatient. She has seen some of the most competant psychiatrists, neurologists and medical doctors. This is a terrible scourge on society. It is everywhere. No family is untouched. If you think that it can never happen to you, you are so wrong. I live with the knowledge that my daughter is probably going to end up dead or in jail. Sobriety does not last. Less than 5% of all heroin addicted people will still be clean in 5 years. It is a whole lifestyle, with relapses and broken promises. It changes everyone in a family. You learn not to trust them, and pray that they change. I can not begin to describe what happens to a talented, pretty young woman when she experiments with drugs and then gets hooked. there is a loss of boundaries between what belongs to you and them. They only live for their next high and will do anything to get it.They will steal from you and use you to get what they need. You never stop loving your child, but you learn not to trust them anymore. You cannot listen to their promises of how things will change. When the phone rings in the middle of the night, you know it about them. Have they been arrested? Were they in an accident? Are they dead? Eventually they will be living in the streets. Do you take them back in and risk the lives of everyone else in your house? or do you leave them in the streets to ??what, I don't even know. And then you pray that they will land in a rehab, to maybe see how they can turn their life around. All I can say is that now that my daughter is in a treatment facility I know that I am not getting THAT phone call tonite. No matter what, I will never be ready for THAT phone call. Don't judge until you have lived with an addict. It is so easy to think that you have all of the answers, but I promise yu, if there were better answers no family, no child would ever live through the hell of heroin addiction.
You and your daughter are in my thoughts and prayers tonight. May both of you find the peace you seek.

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