Guest Author - Susan Hubenthal
Mentally, emotionally and/or physically ill young people often self medicate to relieve their anxiety and fear and numb their pain. They are targets for drug pushers because they are so easily manipulated; and they commonly make bad decisions and bad choices of companions and friends. They seem to trust the wrong sorts of people. Drug use is a social disease, because drug abusers like to do drugs with others. Often parents feel secure in the knowledge their child has no money to spend on drugs; therefore they wonít get involved with drug abuse. That is an illusion. The truth is drug users love Company and will share their drugs with others, even if they donít have any money. For some unknown reason, these kids will take drugs if it is offered to them, but, shun the medications that will help them live a more complete life.
My son, for instance, had his lower retainer cemented into his mouth when he was about 14, because he kept losing them. Kelly died 14 years later, with the retainer still cemented in his mouth because he was afraid of going to the dentist and having it removed. Afraid of the needle and the xylocaine that might be used to remove the retainer. Yet, either he or one of the drug addicted people in his home the night he died, injected heroin into his vein. How ironic!
Some kids die from a drug overdose because of an archaic law that is often still enforced. Many kids would be alive today, including my son, if the people who are with them knew could call for help or take an overdosed person to a hospital without the fear of arrest and/or incarceration. I know of one young man from Texas, who died about 10 years ago just before his 21st birthday. He overdosed in the backseat of his own car, while his frightened friends drove him around for hours trying to revive him. They drove by a hospital numerous times. But, they were scared kids afraid of police and of their parents, so they continued driving this boy around town, hoping he'd wake up. If they had had immunity from prosecution, that young man might very well be alive today. At that time, in Texas, there was no immunity.