Our school district sends out what they call a “Friday Folder” it contains pertinent information about up coming events, school policy, standardize testing dates and any other information they deem important. This Friday , when I opened my 3rd grader’s folder there was a parent opinion survey on Random Drug Testing. UNBELIEVABLY my first gut reaction was: “Oh hell no, not my child”. It was a very raw gut immediate reaction. I was so confused by my reaction, I got a little emotional. I am the parent of a recovering heroin addict. What exactly is it I am confused about?
This is off the subject but I really need to type this, I am hoping if I do, I can…good lord I don’t even know what I am trying to say. I guess I don’t want to give the word heroin power anymore. I still have a hard time typing the word heroin, hell to this day I am not sure I have actually said that word out loud. I usually say opiates ” My son is addicted opiates…” because it sounds more tame and more forgivable. The outside world hears heroine and they gasp out loud. The imagery is immediate, vivid and ugly. Pictures of syringes, tracked up arms and hollow empty eyes flash in most people’s minds.
Heroin=no hope. I know this to be true because I am a person who believed that. I had a brother who was a living visual example of all those things and now he is dead. Opiates are more forgivable, after all any one can get carried away with taking to many pills. In fact that is probably the doctors fault for not monitoring his patients more carefully. Sick right? I know but I am just putting it all out there and hope I feel better about it. So far, not so much.
I have an extended family member, that is addicted to opiates. Only for her it is legal. She had and has chronic back pain and has been treated with a cocktail of opiates for many, many years. If doctors decided she could no longer be treated with pills, I have no doubt that she would look for an alternative drug maybe even heroin? This same person looks at my son and me with pity. I would have kept J’s addiction a secret from both my husband’s family and mine if I could have. I don’t need pity. I am angry to this day that my husband shared this information with out ever discussing it with me.
This post started out about one thing and very quickly turned into something different. I am going to continue my reaction and thoughts on random drug testing another day. I am very bothered by the above paragraphs and just want to stew on that for a bit. My need for secrecy is seriously effecting the quality of my life. I have always been hyper sensitive about being gossiped about. I am sure this stems from growing up with an addict in the family and the unspoken rule of NEVER TELL.
Forgive me for painting such an ugly picture of a heroin addict…I know now that a person is so much more than their addiction but I also know that most of the world doesn’t know that or care enough to even look.