A Story By A Grieving Mother Who Lost Her Son to Prescription Pain Medication Abuse
Until it hits home in your own family, headlines like these will not affect you. It will be somebody else’s child, not your own; it doesn’t affect you. You can put down people like that, thinking they may be the scum of the earth, not even realizing that some of those children started off like your own kids. Just living their life, going to school, thinking about college and their careers. Then the tragedy of addiction hits the family.
It may have been a legitimate pain issue, they may have had surgeries young and pain issues that seemed beyond control. You as a parent may have questioned the expensive upscale doctor, voicing aloud to him your concerns. “Why such high pain killers so soon? Aren’t morphine patches something given to hospice patients? Will my child still need these medications if they have surgery?”
He immediately tried to pacify you, “It isn’t addictive, and it is something they can take their whole life through if necessary.”
You weren’t convinced, yet who were you? Did you have as many degrees as this doctor? Isn’t he noted in the community for his work? Didn’t he say he’d do the same treatment for his own daughter or son if in your shoes? It wasn’t long before the teen that was in pain was of legal age to continue with the doctor without your consent. And sooner than later the things you were concerned with came about. That is why we have painkiller abuse in our society. I don’t have to name names; there are legions in our State and country that were writing prescriptions at that time, with no concern for the long-term outcome, which in most cases was addiction.
Prescription medicine addiction is a real dilemma in our society and it isn’t getting any easier to decide who is right and who is wrong. Of course, I can understand when someone is in dire need of medications that they shouldn’t be denied. I am not against doctors who truly must help those who suffer with chronic pain; I am all for good medical care. Yet the utmost scrutiny should be given to doctors that write painkiller prescriptions, too many, too soon. Look at the recent celebrity deaths and the doctors that were a part of each one! We have become such a drugged-up nation; sometimes I wonder if anyone knows real people anymore or are they just someone either doped up or a facade of that person you used to know and love?
Addiction itself has been described as cunning, baffling, and powerful by AA and Al-Anon groups. That means to me that the person becomes so cunning in taking care of their addiction that it is second nature to them to use any form of manipulation to get their source of relief. It baffles the ordinary person to find this such a powerful influence in our loved one. The person you once knew and loved seems to be gone from you forever and you can only hand the problem over to a loving God who alone can bring help for the true pain; the pain that painkillers will never cover.
Try not to judge harshly; statistics say addiction hits all families and social-economic groups before long. You wouldn’t want to walk a mile in the shoes or the grieving mother or father, rehash in your mind what you could’ve or should’ve done, or be in the body of the addict who became addicted following doctor’s orders. And then we have the issues of people being released from the hospital or mental health wards, who have been on high doses of medications that they are unable to continue on without several appointments at the psychiatrist’s office; their body may be jerking with tremors, but they can’t get in right away for medications. It’s all a sad dilemma.