Speaking at Virginia Center for Addiction Medicine Family Program

Families, community members, professionals that are educated about addiction have the best outcomes. It’s as simple as that. I hope to see you at this VCAM event.


Addiction: It’s not Personal- They behave the way they do because they are not well


  • It’s not your fault
  • Perpetuation of shame and how it figures into recovery
  • The importance of connection
  • Signs of suicide and what to do
  • The importance of finding support
  • It’s not just their recovery, it’s ours, too

My time slot: 12:30-1:30pm
Audience: Families who have a loved one with SUD, community members and professionals.


It’s not personal

When my son started using drugs and even when I couldn’t get him to stop, it was not personal. I took it personally. It felt personal. He saw me take it personally.

At first, I was addicted to fixing my son until I finally sought help for my own addiction to making it all right. Quite possibly what I was doing made things worse. Charles was ashamed of his drug use and my reaction merely fueled that shame which drove more drug use. After all, his substance misuse was his coping strategy for depression and thoughts of suicide.

Punitive measures …