Putting My Life Back Together Begins With My Children

 

I started using drugs when I was 13 years old and have been in and out of jail and treatment since the age of 19. My life was a mess, and my children suffered the consequences of my addiction, including placement in the foster care system. In 2005, after my abusive boyfriend broke my jaw, I ended up addicted to pills as well as the alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine I had been using for years. Concerned for my safety and for my kids, my mother called the abuse hotline and then arranged to obtain custody of my two young children. I thought this was the end for me, and I began a long, downward spiral that eventually ended up with time in prison.

 

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Shortly after I was released, I found that I was pregnant again. I was still using drugs. My mother refused to take this new child, so the child welfare system stepped in and took my baby. It was one thing for my mother to have custody of my children, but quite another for a stranger to raise my son! A month later, I lost my mother to cancer. That's when I knew that I needed help. Eleven days later I came to the Susan B. Anthony Recovery Center and committed to getting my life back and bringing my family back together.

Since arriving at the Susan B. Anthony Recovery Center in May 2013, I have regained my self-esteem, self-respect, and dignity, and I feel more in control of my destiny. Most importantly, I have obtained custody of all three of my children, and they are residing with me here at the center. Through the programs supported by the Children's Bureau Family Connection grant, my children and I receive therapy and parenting education, and I have an amazing support system in the Susan B. Anthony community.

Today, I am building a solid foundation so that I can live a normal life. I have gotten my driver's license, I am paying off major debt, I have a good job, and I am in a strong program of recovery. I attend NA and AA meetings regularly, and I know that this consistency will allow me and my children to have a bright future. I am very grateful and thankful that a place like this exists where I could get my family back and have the opportunity for a second chance.

anonymous-female

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