(Vancouver, BC, Canada)
Hi, I guess I’m writing to get some support for what lies ahead.
I’m 24 years old and although I’ve never used drugs, I have been affected by them greatly.
Here is my story…
I have always been a daddy’s girl. It’s never been a secret that the relationship I have with my father is stronger than the one I have with my mom.
My dad is a drug addict. In the past I could have named his drug of choice (Heroin) but today I can’t tell you. He has used them all, heroin, crack cocaine, crystal meth, and speed just to name a few.
His addiction started when I was a child, he played sports and was introduced to the drug by a fellow athlete. Although I know this person didn’t force him to accept I will never forgive him for the hell he has put me and my family through by introducing drugs into my father’s life.
His addiction started with recreational use, he would use the drugs when he played sports. I remember my mom begging and pleading to family members to help her with my dad because he was on the “wrong path”. No one ever helped. Months went by and his recreational use turned into an addiction.
When I was 5 my dad left home to live on the streets. He was a full fledged addict. Two years he lived on the streets only coming home when it got to cold to face the elements. He would sneak in at night (my mom left a key under the mat) and leave before we woke.
I didn’t know who he was or what he looked like. I remember constantly lying when asked about him. Hey, where is your dad? Why didn’t he come to parent teacher interviews? Oh he’s on a business trip; he won’t be home for a couple of months.
My mom knew that my dad was an important part of our lives so after work what little time she had between jobs she would go downtown and look for him. Only to ask if he would come home and visit with his kids who missed him dearly. She never found him.
Soon she decided to move us to a smaller town. Before she moved us she made one last effort to get in touch with my dad. I remember her calling people for hours just hoping someone would tell her something that would bring him home. Then finally one of his friends, decided to help her out. He told her that he would bring my dad home.
I remember the first day I saw my dad after his “extended vacation” I came home from school and he was lying there on the couch. I couldn’t even recognize him. I shyly asked my mom who the strange man lying on the couch was only for her to answer that it was my dad.
He laid on that couch for three days while various people came and to meet him.
The next two months were hard. My parents moved in with family to help him kick his addiction. Every day before my mom would go to work she would visit.
After two long months my parents came home and my father was sober. He hung out with us like any normal parent would. We truly thought the addiction was behind him. But as they say old habits die hard.
One of his friends gave him the drugs with which he relapsed. For the past six years now he has been using drugs. He has used his drug of choice (heroin) and when he didn’t have money he has sunk as low as using speed laced with household cleaners.
Two months ago he got a bad fix of crack cocaine. I woke up to my father screaming that he didn’t want to die. I woke up after hearing the scream and ran to the living room. My younger sister not far behind.
He was on the floor screaming and hitting himself and yelling at my grandfather (whom passed away 2 years prior) not to take him. I immediately threw myself on the couch and grabbed his arms from behind to prevent him from further hitting himself. My sister threw herself on his legs to prevent him from kicking. We stayed like that for what seemed to be an eternity praying out loud and asking god to help us save him.
My dad settled down when the drugs wore off and we tucked him into bed. We checked on him periodically to ensure he was still breathing.
I remember sitting on the couch with my mom and sister thinking is this really our life? We didn’t sleep that night and went to school and work exhausted. My mom staying behind to watch him. My arms and legs were covered with bruises much like my sisters.
Since then we moved my dad to Calgary to be live with my brother, he was there for three weeks and did well. He stayed on his methadone (a prescription drug used to help heroin addicts) and was sober (only because he didn’t have a dealer). He complained and complained and came home on Wednesday November 15, 2010.
Since his arrival he has been higher than a kite. All he cares about is his high and I don’t think we can live like this anymore. My sister comes home from school in three weeks, and we have agreed to have an intervention.
We have set out our boundaries if he chooses to decline treatment. My younger sister has decided to eliminate him from her life completely. She will consider him dead. I have been advised to do the same.
If he doesn’t choose to get better, he will not be invited to my upcoming wedding and I too will not speak to him again. My mother will move to Calgary and live with my brother.
I’m scared he is going to choose the drug over us. And when he does I’ll have to stick to the boundaries I set up. I don’t want him to be all alone. I don’t want him to die and not have family there. I don’t know what to do. I can’t lose my father but I can’t continue aiding his addiction.
All I can say is HELP what’s right and what’s wrong? Is there even a right and wrong?