We recently sat down with one of our current clients, Jaclyn, on our podcast series Airing Addiction, to hear her story of addiction and recovery in honor of National Recovery Month. As is often the case, Jaclyn experienced trauma in her young life and she turned to substances as a means to cope. Read more about her journey below, or tune into the show to hear it firsthand.
How Her Addiction Started
Jaclyn was in high school when her addiction began. Her friends were not positive influences in her life, so when she lost her young brother to illness and best friend to addiction, her occasional use of OxyContin became serious. She began relying on drugs in order to function and mask the grief she was feeling. A few years passed and Jaclyn’s addiction took control of her life, so she and her husband began selling drugs out of their home to support it. Then, one day, her house was raided.
After that experience, Jaclyn became scared about where her life may be leading. She decided to seek recovery. “In April 2014, I was in a grocery store parking lot, sitting in my car, and an overwhelming sense of despair came over me. In that moment, I was sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.”
Jaclyn called Spectrum and decided to take control of her life. She connected with staff and began her road to recovery, enrolling in our medication-assisted treatment (MAT) program, which helps control cravings for harmful substances while allowing clients to focus on their recovery and lead a normal life.
How Her Recovery is Going
It’s been seven years since Jaclyn sought recovery with us, and she remains sober today. Her three children are her biggest motivators. She has also taken on a dual role as Peer Recovery Specialist and Parent Educator at 18 Degrees. While serving in these positions, Jaclyn says: “I found my calling. Although this line of work can be triggering, it is more so empowering. I do wish I did things differently in my past, but I’m so grateful it led me to where I am now.”
Trauma, like Jaclyn’s grief, and substance use disorders often go hand in hand. According to research conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, there is a greater possibility of an individual developing a substance use disorder if they have undergone a traumatic event. While Jaclyn’s experience with medication-assisted treatment (MAT) was a successful one, she stresses that MAT was just a small part of her journey to recovery. Her desire to engage in support groups and rely on professionals at Spectrum played the largest role. Jaclyn’s closing thoughts were: “I have to credit Spectrum for playing a huge part in my recovery. You have to work the program, attach to clinicians, and open up.”
For more episodes of Airing Addiction, make sure to follow Spectrum’s New England Recovery Center on Facebook!
If you or a loved one is struggling with drug addiction, call Spectrum Health Systems today at 1-877-MyRehab. If you are a caregiver, friend or family member of someone struggling with addiction, join our free virtual family support meeting series every Wednesday evening.