This mother shares a raw and painful account of the horrors her loved one – and family – endured. She shines a light of hope for all of us, having her daughter back, sober and part of the family again. Thanks to CRAFT.

*This post originally appeared on our Member Site blog, where experts respond to members’ questions and concerns. To take advantage of our current special offer and get full access to the Allies in Recovery eLearning program for families, click here.

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Our daughter’s story

“My daughter has been struggling with Heroin addiction for some time. She first went to treatment when she was 16 and she has been to treatment probably another 20 times since then. We went through all the phases of coming to terms with her disease and felt we had been to hell and back. But with every rehab we learned a bit more and adjusted our approach. We held our boundaries and applied the tough love approach.

About two years ago she was in detox and didn’t receive proper care. She ended up throwing up in her sleep and aspirated vomit into her lungs and was too overly medicated to wake up. She ended up in the ICU for 10 weeks and almost died several times. It was the most stressful time for our family. When she came through, we felt maybe this was god’s way of helping her stop the drugs. She eventually regained her strength, learned how to walk again and went to rehab. She returned home and got a job and really started to rebuild her life.

Then we started using CRAFT

After 8 months of sobriety, she relapsed and this time we didn’t feel we would get her back. For four months she was hitting it hard. She was homeless and very sick and living 6 hours from us. This is when we started using CRAFT. We kept in contact instead of blocking her number. We looked for times we felt she was open to hearing about rehab again. And kept the lines of communication open as much as you can with someone who is homeless.

Late one night she called crying to say she had been gang raped and could I get her a room because she had nowhere to sleep. I got the room for her and made plans to drive to see her. When I got there she still wasn’t ready to get help so I left her alone and told her to think about it. That night she was raped again and I went to pick her up and take her to hospital. She still didn’t want help. So, I took her to my hotel and told her I would be leaving in the morning and if she wanted help I would get her help.

I was not very hopeful but in the morning she said yes. I took her to detox and that started her journey back to the living. She went to rehab again and slowly rebuilt her life. She has 5 months sober now and has a good job and is even planning for her future. Looking at college and becoming a nurse.

On guard but hopeful

We really have done and seen it all, but CRAFT was the first time we were able to bridge the gap between tough love and keeping in contact. My daughter says I saved her life and she seems really grateful and is in a good place. She is buying our old car from us and making payments. She is helpful around the house and just really has a good outlook on things. I hope this is a start for a better life but we will always be on guard for relapses in the future.”

CRAFT really works

It is heartbreaking that your daughter and your family had to endure this trauma before finding a path out. But you found a path. Your story – with all of the painful twists and turns it contains – is a gift. CRAFT works. A family member can learn to intervene and get a loved one into treatment.

You have given us a tremendous lesson. It is an amazing account, of the horrors of addiction, the juggernaut addiction causes in the family… and of hope, plain and simple. Thank you. We will be affected by what you have written for a long time.

Yes, the family DOES have a role to play. Your stance, behavior, and choices DO make a difference. At Allies in Recovery we are absolutely convinced of this. “Tough love” is not a successful technique. Our learning platform is set up to help family members learn the techniques that will reduce conflict, build that bridge of communication, and be effective in guiding your loved one into treatment. Together we will move your loved one towards recovery. Learn more here.

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