Last evening we were able to hear the story of a person who lost her fiancé to a drug overdose a little over a year ago. Ashley K. graciously agreed to share with our Daybreak group the roller coaster ride of in and out of recovery/sobriety that is all too familiar to our families. In spite of all Ashley’s efforts at helping her fiancé get to treatment and then continuing to be supportive of his recovery, in the end, the disease of addiction was more powerful and sadly, the drugs took over one final time resulting in his death. As Ashley put it: “If loving someone was all it took to help someone stave off active addiction, then for sure we would have had our beautiful life together and forever.”
Another key takeaway was Ashley’s acknowledging that she kept most of their experience to herself. That was extremely difficult for her. She felt she had no place to go, no resources, and no support. As she put it, “I lost myself in my efforts to help him.” So, in terms of a “learning,” Ashley encouraged everyone to take advantage of the opportunity that Daybreak provides for people to share their experiences with others who have similar lived experience. There is safety in numbers.
We were grateful and honored that Ashley shared her story with us. It was terrifically brave and courageous. While Ashley’s story had a sad ending, it was an insight-filled evening. Thank you Ashley!