My dad was an addict because I wasn’t the ideal daughter

Self blame. Confusion. Loss of self esteem. Those are the results of silence. This letter is from a friend of a friend who is about 20 years old. Young people do want to talk about mental illness, addiction and suicide. But they won’t if you don’t. 


My best friend growing up was Jaimie Smith.* I’ll consider her my sister always. So I see you on her page often and read your blog here and there because I know how much your son’s death affected her.

I just wanna reach out and thank you for posting what you do because most people don’t talk about suicide or addiction.

I grew up with a father who was a heroin addict. And the girl who was going to marry my brother who I loved, took her life a year and a half ago.

But no one talks about it. No one ever has.

I never understood why I had my mother’s last name but my dad tried killing himself and would go missing so often. I figured it was always something I did. I figured he never got clean because I wasn’t the ideal daughter he wanted.

My brother felt like he wasn’t good enough, because Tina* took her life without ever speaking about depression.

So I just wanted to thank you, because it makes me feel a little better reading something written by a friend of a friend. It’s more comforting than just reading something a random person wrote.

*names were changed for identity reasons

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked mental health speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational mental health keynotes, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, anxiety, coping strategies/resilience, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

One thought on “My dad was an addict because I wasn’t the ideal daughter”

  1. You are reaching so many people Anne Moss! You are using your grief to help others! It is amazing! And so are you!

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