Being responsible sucks. Adulting sucks if we are being completely honest, but being responsible is even a step above being an adult. I know some adults that aren’t responsible. I also know some kids or teens that are responsible but are not adults, so the two are not mutually exclusive. Responsibility and being responsible require maturity and a level of education surrounding a large pool of life’s issues. It means being able to make a decision based on fact not emotion, but weighting in the emotion that might be effected by it. Being responsible means doing what’s best because in life it is not about the difference between right and wrong, it’s the difference between what is right and what’s best. Being responsible is being able to ascertain the difference.

Lately responsible means going to work when I don’t want too, cooking meals when I don’t want too, and not spending money on things I would like too so we have money for events that are coming up. It means not offering to let my addict daughter move home because even though I want her too, I know it is not the best decision. I can recognize that it has not helped her in the past, and it has not helped anyone in the house have a better relationship with her. It means having to put up with secondary individuals because they are weaker than me, and they can’t understand how to be independent or responsible for themselves, even though I am really, really sick of it. Being responsible means recognizing that I can’t make any sudden moves or important decisions that will affect all of our futures because I am annoyed, and frustrated, and if I make a move while emotional it will likely be the wrong one.

Being responsible also means understanding how to be a participant, even when it isn’t the way you want too. So, I would love to find a way to rescue my daughter from addiction, but I cannot. I cannot do anything else. I know I have said this many times, but I can’t. Each time I say that something happens and I DO something. There is no something’s left. I can’t give her money, or a place to sleep, or a phone, or supplies to go to another detox or rehab she will run from. The welleth has runeth dryeth. But, feeling a little hopeless does not mean I am helpless. In fact, it’s the opposite. When I don’t feel like I can do anything for my daughter, I can try to do something bigger than her and me.  Which is why, I am participating in Light The Night Purple sponsored by Danvers Cares.  It’s a  walk and community gathering to help bring awareness to the community regarding substance abuse, including the opiate crisis. Everyone thinks it doesn’t hit their town but it does. My daughter became a heroin addict right in our home town. A wonderful community of people, with a good education system, great sports team, awesome local business, and a farmer’s market. She wasn’t raised by addicts, or suffered a terrible childhood trauma. She was an average kid, that got decent grades and had lots of friends. We have a hard time understanding that it can happen to anyone really means it can happen to anyone at any time because teenagers think they are invincible.  There are a great many that begin by using prescription drugs, but not all. My daughter didn’t. Sometimes good people make poor choices and those choices become life changing. Life altering and possibly life ending.  Don’t let that happen in your family.

Come out and learn about addiction. Learn about programs available, the way our community is trying stop addiction and help those already affected. Get informed so we can stop the stigma. Stopping the stigma helps addicts reach out without fear of being judged. I can tell you from personal experience how important that is. My family and I will be walking in purple to light up the night, tomorrow from 6:30-  8:30 at Peabody Institute Library in Danvers, I hope we see you there.

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