Charles thought drugs were the solution to his pain

Richard on the left. Charles on the right.

The first time Charles did a drug, the thoughts of suicide, hopelessness, and worthlessness of his depression were replaced by pure elation. He was instantly transformed into a magnificent, handsome, smart, and amazing person. He was all of those things without the drugs but his mental illness didn’t let him see that.

I am sure he thought, “Why is this not the answer? I feel so good.”

I see most of this in his music lyrics that he left. I personally saw this side of him only twice. One day he burst onto the deck one early evening in the summer after my husband and I had finished dinner and were enjoying a late summer evening outside. Charles was with two of his friends.

He was preternaturally happy to the point it scared me. Grandiose even.

I know from reading his lyrics, he thought he had found a solution to his hurt and his pain. He thought he had found happiness.

He wouldn’t get addicted. He’d be really careful and use it sparingly. He’d be different. The desire to be that spectacular person again in contrast to the guy who wanted to kill himself was far too intoxicating to stop.

It was a case of a child who was suffering, and a culture where numbing pain is normalized, and the drugs to do it are easy to get.

His music shows his decline into addiction and the exacerbation of self hatred compounded by this new disease. In those lyrics I see an uncanny awareness of a solution that turned out to be a killer in disguise.


Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my youngest son, Charles to substance use disorder and suicide June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, 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. Professional Speaker Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

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