Stephanie McLean Blog, People Facing Addiction

I was born into a life of addiction. Both of my parents suffered with addiction and my mother lost her mother to alcohol addiction when my mom was only 11.

My parents separated when my three sisters and I were young. My mom left us behind to start a new life with a new man in a new state. At the time I was young and I just assumed that she didn’t love me. I grew up always feeling so unwanted. It wasn’t until I got older that I understood that it was her alcohol addiction. My mother died on August 11, 2008. I was 16 and already a person with addiction to alcohol as well.

This is where I went off the deep end. I turned away from my family and turned to alcohol and drugs. I was heartbroken. I was angry. My life made no sense. I continued down this path for the next eight years of complete and total self-destruction. I had two children in active addiction to heroin and meth who were taken away from me. I lost my college education because of my addiction. I lost jobs, cars, and every dollar I ever made. And I destroyed every relationship with just about every person who loved me.

It wasn’t until I was ready that I was able to get help. Losing my boys wasn’t enough. Losing everything else wasn’t enough. Eventually it had just got so bad that I wanted to die. I tried to kill myself, I woke up in the ICU with my whole family there. Neither the doctors nor my family expected me to pull through. But I did and I was pregnant with my third child. She lived, as did I.

Fast forward two years and my life has changed greatly. I have people who love me and trust me and believe in me. I have come a long way, I have put in a lot of work. Most of all I am learning how to be the mom that my kids deserve and I have ended this sick cycle of addiction one day at a time. I have learned on this journey that my mother loved me. All of those years of hating myself, not understanding why I wasn’t good enough. Now I know that she was sick. She wanted better for me, she just couldn’t stop. I have forgiven my mom and that is a peaceful feeling I live with everyday.