Impromptu Recovery Speech for JHW Foundation

I went to a donor reception for JHW Foundation and heard from three success stories. I am sorry I didn’t get the young ladies on video. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house as they told their stories about how JHW Foundation provided the resources that saved their lives. Their pictures are below.

I caught Chris’ impromptu speech here

IMG_1823 IMG_1827 IMG_1831 IMG_1840.

 

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Addiction: What is rock bottom?

Everyone tells you that tough love is the way to go with those with substance abuse disorder (aka addiction).  What no one tells you is when to help your addict.

Rock

No one defines “rock bottom” or when it might be time to actually help your addict.

Everyone’s bottom is different. But everyone concentrates so much on the boundaries, which you need to do, few consider when they might reach in and help their addict get into recovery.

What might that cry for help sound like?

What would make a cry for help different than the multiple calls you’ve gotten before? How do … Read more...

Grief, suicide, addiction, depression: Top 10 Posts

David Letterman did it, why can’t I?to 10 taboo posts
I was just curious regarding which posts were the most popular. So I thought I’d share the results. These were chosen by you guys, by the number of visitors to the page.

I am not surprised by what ranked #1.

1. Why did he kill himself? Answering the why

2. The long arm of the law reaches down Charles’ pants

3. Did Charles show warning signs for teen suicide?

4. What did Charles say prior to suicide to indicate his intentions?

5. Please do not avoid the subject of my son who died

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Addiction and Recovery: A fateful friendship

aaI am at an AA/NA meeting at The Healing Place in Richmond, VA. One eloquent speaker says, “By the grace of God, those of us here are not wearing toe tags.” Just hearing him talk is worth my time.

I start to cry because my son was one of those that did not make it. His addiction and depression having moved him to suicide.

The young man sitting next to me looks at me. I see his tears, too. He feels the loss and the pain. He and Charles’ paths have been so similar.

He was with Charles those … Read more...

The #imnotashamed how to

Starting Thursday, April 7, 2016, support mental health with the hashtag #imnotashamed. You can post a picture or post a message and a quote you found. But say WHY you are not ashamed. It doesn’t work if you just post the hashtag and don’t say why.

The purpose is to say something. The purpose is to talk so we can get rid of stigma. And that has to start with all of us. Examples below.

Share it!

Share it with @BeaconTreeFoundation on Facebook or @Beacon_Tree on Twitter, beacontreeorg on Pinterest. Or share with whatever organization you want to … Read more...

To those still struggling with a child’s mental illness

This is probably a familiar scenario. You are with a group of friends who know you’ve been struggling with a child’s mental illness or drug abuse–and absolutely no one asks about your child.

You’ve been through hell and back. You are emotionally spent and wrung out trying to maintain some level of functioning.

You hope someone will ask. But they don’t

asking-for-help-is-the-human-thing-to-doIt hurts. It hurts so much, you want to cry. You want to break down. You feel so isolated and alone like no one in the world cares.

Then you feel very very small all of a sudden. It’s … Read more...

Looking at the other side of addiction

demons-addiction

I sit in this warm room surrounded by the bravest, most passionate people I have ever seen. I am now a familiar face and certain gentlemen greet me and ask me questions which I welcome.

Just a short time ago the man speaking had been sleeping under a bridge. Hard to imagine. He is articulate and emotional. This guy could be a motivational speaker.

He’s about 45 and moved to tears he’s so thankful to be alive.

He expresses how grateful he is to the other brothers in the room, fellow addicts, for taking him in once he made that … Read more...

The lollipop land of shiny faces and perfect families is a dangerous facade

perfect-family

We have created a fake world presenting only the best side of our families and friends and rarely sharing pain or struggle.

We created it in social media, in person and at social events.

I’m not proposing we go all newspaperish by being negative and presenting only bad news. But it’s time to strike a balance.

We are a society obsessed with accomplishments

We are quick to pass judgement on those whose children are not currently succeeding by our standards. And our current fast-paced society breeds anxiety, depression and dysfunction.

We are a sharing society. Only we choose to share only that which is … Read more...

Young people, you are not alone. Here’s what you have been sending me

feedbackHere is what I am hearing from young people 17-25 about what I am writing and you are sharing from Emotionally Naked.

The fact is these young people have suffered through a system so broken and in a society so unaccepting of their struggles, is heartbreaking. And reading these brings tears to my eyes.

It’s utterly amazing they have done as well as they have. So proud of all of you. One day you will get support and acceptance. Help me work on that by sharing these posts.

I am honored you wrote me and I thought you’d be … Read more...

Is your child or spouse using? Signs of drug use

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Thank you Stas Novitsky from VCAM and McShin Academy for much of the information on this page. I wish I had this back in 2010. 

Keep in mind that it’s a combination of many of these signs that illustrate a drug habit.

This is not a complete list as substances to abuse are all over the place and around your house.

We could use the help of those in recovery to add to this. Use the comment box. You can use another name and only admin can see your email–no one else. Your privacy is respected.

Download the Signs of
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