Friday, January 11, 2013

Guest Post: Suzie

Below is a post from Clint's mother. She is a long time friend and her son died last Sunday from a heroin overdose.

Good Friday morning to everyone here. I am Clint's Mom and Darlene's childhood friend who not only lived in the same neighborhood, but worshiped at the same church. We both got married after high school and then had children. We both tried to raise our children to be smart and successful members of society. 

As Ron pointed out, I suffered and endured this pain alone for many years and lost touch with many friends in trying desperately to hide the dance with the monster. A few years ago, we had dinner with Darlene and Ron and they shared their story with my husband and I. I finally admitted to them for the first time that Clint was in trouble. 

It is a deep dark secret that you don't want to share with casual friends and acquaintances. You don't want anyone to know that you are struggling. You want to appear normal, happy and be proud of you children. It begins to eat away at your emotional and physical health. Each trip to the emergency room, each trip to rehab, each trip to prison for visitation. You hold on to hope by your fingernails while locking you emotions away from the public. 

I lost contact with my son just before Christmas. I called him on Christmas Day to invite him to the family gathering. He told me he didn't feel very Christmassy. I assumed he didn't have money to buy gifts and decided to sit out the celebration. I let it go and forgave him. The following weekend I called to ask him if he wanted to get together, but he declined and said he was tired. I knew he was working two jobs so I forgave him and let it go. Last weekend I was in front of his apartment and called to ask if he wanted company, but he said no he wasn't feeling well. I let it go and forgave him. 

The very next day two detectives came to my door, asked to come in, and asked me to sit down and told me my son passed away. 

I am so used to locking my emotions away I didn't even cry because I knew I had to contact family and arrange a funeral. I knew things had to get done. It was only when I heard my own voice telling people I love that my son passed away that it really hit me. I couldn't speak. I was hanging on to sanity with my fingernails while being swallowed in a deep pain in my heart and soul that almost took away any hope I had left. 

I put that aside and began to contact the funeral home, apartment manager, cleaned out the apartment, stayed busy until the funeral was over. And now all I feel is silence, numbness, and the pain in my heart and soul for my only son that I can never hug and kiss again and his birthday is tomorrow. 

I am fortunate to have a job and people who love me. I am thankful that I can go back to work on Monday and once again lock away the emotions that are tormenting me. Staying busy is the only way I know how to survive. Stay busy and don't think about it. 

I want to thank God for Darlene and Ron, for being there for me. I want to wish anyone who reads this to know that you are not alone. You don't have to be alone. We can get through this together. Inch by inch anything is a cinch. Mile by mile it takes awhile. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other and keep moving forward.


Anonymous said...

Suzie, I am so profoundly sorry for your loss! I wish I could offer some comforting word but words completely escape me. I'm just so sorry. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

God bless you, Suzie.


Val Paulson said...


My thoughts and prayers to your family. I am so sorry for your loss. It truly tears your world apart when you are dealing with an addict. Both of our son's did not want this lifestyle for themselves. As parents we are so frustrated because we see the little boy beneath the addict.
It is so incredibly hard because you would move Heaven and Earth to help them. My heart is heavy for you.

blessings to your family

V Paulson

Anonymous said...

dear suzie,
this is heartbreaking; so heartbreaking.

this is the ultimate fear us parents have.
i have prepared myself for the day/night when i get that phone call/or knock on the door/
i have the plot bought and there will be no funeral.
no one including any extended family members know anything about his addicition.

you and your family are in my prayers.

Lisa said...


I cannot imagine your heartache. I am truly sorry for the loss of your beloved son. May God hold you in his arms and comfort your broken heart.

Tori said...


I am so, so sorry for the loss of your son.

I can't think of anything to even write.

You and your family will be in my prayers.

I am so sorry,

Annette said...

Ron thank you for having these guest writers. I am really appreciating their perspective.

Suzie, I am so sorry for the loss of your son. You are living out all of our worst fears. I am just so sorry. Such a waste and a tragedy. Bless your hurting heart and thank you for sharing your story with all of us.

Meth Addiction-A Mothers Perspective said...

Thanks for sharing this, Ron.

Suzie, there are no words other than I'm sorry for your loss and the deep pain that you are feeling right now. You're right, none of us are alone in this unless we choose to be. I hope that somehow it helps to know so many people care and wish they could take away your pain. I will be praying that God wraps His arms around you, comforts you, and give you strength.

Lizzie C said...

Suzie, Thank you for sharing and may God bless you. For the last few years I've feared/expected that phone call regarding my heroin addict son.

♥●• İzdihër •●♥ said...

May God give you strength to bear this.

Syd said...

Suzie, it's so sad to hear that your beloved son is dead. I don't have children but think that what you have experienced must be the most painful grief. I hope that as time goes on your grief will be less painful and your happy memories of him will replace the sorrow.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry.

Sarie Lotta said...

I am so sorry for your loss. But I am also sorry for your hiding. I have hid for two years. My husband and I went to work everyday and said nothing. You live a double life. I don't know if its the shame of what they are doing or that people will think your bad parents for letting something like this happen.
I got tired of hiding so I got educated. I have sat in a room with addicts in recovery asking them how they felt. Did they know what they are doing to their families? Do they care? I had a BBQ in the summer with addicts and their families and I learned that none of us our special. We all understand your numbness. We know the fear of the telephone ringing. I haven't answered a phone in 3 years without asking "is everything ok". I finally admitted to my friends and a few close friends at work what we were going through and I found out how many people lost their family members to alcohol and drugs and who was still dealing with it.
We are not alone and either are our kids. I think AA and NA meeting need to start changing. Young kids don't want to go into dark meetings with 50 year old people and hide. Anonymous we are not. Alone we are not!
Your blog is helping me understand how we need to change our approach. There were 21 funerals last year of my kids friends 20 overdoses and 1 boy who fought in Iraq. One of the deaths was my nephew. These babies never saw 23 years old. Each one of them were alone when they died. It wasn't at a party were there was bad stuff having a good time. They were alone because of their addiction and believing they were alone. That is us! Hiding.
What if we don't hide our shame and took all of that numbness and screamed instead. Do you think it could help somebody anybody!

Dannys Mom said...

May God bring you peace. I lost my son to alcohol as he took his own life in a blackout. He was only 23 years old. Prior to we had put him through rehab for cocaine addiction. I shall never forget the days and nights worrying and now the ever present grief. Here is a hug. From one grieving mom to another