“I got involved with drugs when I was in my 20’s. I became a functioning addict. I had a good job for a long time, I was able to live a double life – earning a good wage but a good chunk of it went on drugs. I went from jobs to treatment, clean time, back using – huge vicious circle for 17 years. I did stuff I’d rather not and had trouble with the police. The drug debts were mounting up. My career was deteriorating – my family was sickened, I’d hurt them so much. Everything was a complete mess. I made a decision that I was going into treatment and this had to be it. I stayed longer this time and without even looking for love it came and hit me with a bang. Stephen is the best thing that ever happened to me. Everybody told us we wouldn’t last. Oh, but we proved them wrong! We made a beautiful home and a beautiful baby and we were clean and so happy. A few years later we had two amazing sons, good jobs and loving home. I’d never met someone like Stephen. Our families were proud and back in our lives. – but within a couple of years, drugs slowly crept back into our lives. We were trying to justify it by saying, everyone drinks a glass of wine on a Friday night, we just use cocaine because we don’t drink anymore. We were rationalizing it and minimalizing it and it went on for months… Stephen would always say how much we needed to stop or one of us was going to die. One day he said: ‘If you die, Lisa, I won’t be able to carry on but, if I died I know you’d get your shit together.’ I said, ‘don’t be silly, nobody is going to die, love!”
“On the 2nd of March 2010, Stephen died in my arms from drug overdose. I’ve been carrying the guilt ever since. Every day is a struggle, even now. Often I wake to my phone alarm going and I say out loud ‘Stephen the phone!’ Then I remember… Many times I didn’t think I’d make it. I ended up homeless and my sister looked after my boys. Devastated – I wanted to be with Stephen, but I wouldn’t let my boys lose two parents so I struggled and I came out the other side. I would not be where I am today without the help of CrossCare and Dublin Simon. I carry lots of guilt but I am coping and learning to know real happiness again. I haven’t touched drugs in five years. I have my own home with the help and support of Dublin Simon and last year I graduated from college after completing a Higher Diploma in Criminology and Criminal Psychology and another one in Human Behaviour Detection. I am currently back in College having progressed to CSI and Forensic Science. I miss Stephen every day but I have my boys and that’s all I need and want.”
This post was highlighted by @DublinSimonCommunity with the help of Spectrum.Life The Dublin Simon Community is closing doors on homelessness for over 50 years now!
In 2018, Dublin Simon supported 7,684 adults and families, a 22% increase over the previous year.
Sure Steps counseling service provided 2,438 hours of one to one counseling to Dublin Simon clients last year.