Pain medication leads to an endless cycle of family pain

by Cathy Jo Harper

Jason Brooks Harper

When Jason was 16 years old, he had a car wreck. Six weeks of physical therapy was followed with a new wonder drug for pain, Vicodin…..and a lifetime addiction to opioids.

Through relapses, college, rehab, counseling, the Marines, my life was filled with anxiety over how to help, anger at the situation, and fear; I was losing my son, my firstborn. How would I survive? How would his siblings survive without their big brother, their confidante, and at times their enemy?

Addiction and/or mental illness soon becomes a game the whole family gets … Read more...

My son relapsed after ten years

by Cathy

When we think of drug addiction we often think of people who have thrown their lives away; they may be homeless, hopeless, made poor decisions have no support system, or they may be like my son. He was an altar boy, a boy scout, played sports, won academic awards, and has an extended family who loves him and continues to want the best for him.

It could be, and is for many, a dual diagnosis; mental illness and addiction or a legitimate introduction to opioids after a diagnosis of a chronic illness or an accident. Many times the … Read more...