EP92 Unlearning Shame: A Mom’s Path to Harm Reduction with Guest Kathleen Cochran

Living With Your Child's Addiction Podcast
Living With Your Child's Addiction Podcast
EP92 Unlearning Shame: A Mom's Path to Harm Reduction with Guest Kathleen Cochran
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Does this sound familiar? As a parent of a child struggling with addiction, you may have been told to use tough love and set strict rules to help them recover. However, this approach can often lead to feelings of guilt, frustration, and helplessness as you watch your child continue to struggle or get worse. It’s time to discover a more effective and compassionate approach to
supporting your child in their recovery journey.

Join us as we explore Kathleen Cochran’s journey of navigating her child’s addiction. Find out how her maternal instincts led her to embrace harm reduction principles. Kathleen’s story offers a unique perspective that resonates deeply with parents facing similar struggles. Listen in to uncover the powerful impact of Kathleen’s journey and discover how her newfound understanding can offer support and empathy to parents navigating similar paths.

In this episode, you will be able to:    

  •  Discover effective addiction recovery and support strategies for parents. 
  • Learn how to apply a harm-reduction approach to support your child.    
  • Explore the benefits of online support for parents in similar situations.
  • Learn how to guide your child through addiction
    with love.

Kathleen’s FB Group Moms for All Paths to Recovery https://www.facebook.com/groups/momsforallpaths

Kathleen’s blog https://momsforallpaths.substack.com/

Resources From Heather Ross Coaching

If you want answers and support to help you and your child Sign up for a 45-minute $17 Road to Recovery call with me using the link below

https://heatherrosscoachingcalendar.as.me/RoadtoRecovery⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

GROUP COACHING PROGRAM – Join the waitlist – New Group Starting in January! Be the first to get details. https://heatherrosscoaching.com/peace-of-mind-community/

Guide about enabling – If you’ve ever worried about enabling, this guide is for you! https://heatherrosscoaching.com/perspective-about-enabling/

Invitation to Change Learning/Support Group Use the link below to find out about the Invitation to Change support group Heather is hosting or sign up for the waitlist.

⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠Learn More & Sign Up For The Invitation To Change Group⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

Follow Heather on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/heatherrosscoaching

Follow Heather on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/heatherrosscoaching/  

⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠Join the free Facebook group for parents who are struggling with a child’s addiction⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/heather-ross9/message

Transcript

This transcript has not been formatted or edited.

00:00

So today’s guest is Kathleen Cochran, and she is the founder of Moms for All Pass to Recovery, which is a large Facebook group dedicated to education and evidence-based policy and practice in the field of addiction. She is a wife to her husband, Joe, of 34 years, the mother to three children, Ian, Molly, and Joey, and the proud grandmother to a three-year-old grandson, Luca.

00:28

Kathleen has been walking alongside her middle child, Molly, for 18 years of problematic drug and alcohol use. She and her daughter and grandson recently told a bit of their story in a documentary produced by the Partnership to End Addiction, an organization she also volunteers for as a peer coach to other families. The documentary, entitled Untreated and Unheard, can be viewed on Pluto, Peacock, or YouTube.

00:57

Kathleen strongly advocates for harm reduction and is passionate about helping other mothers. She is fully trained in the Invitation to Change approach through the Center for Motivation and Change by doctors Kerry Wilkins, Ken Carpenter, and Jeff Foote, the authors of the book Beyond Addiction. Kathleen and her family live on the central coast of California where she manages a dude ranch. So thank you so much for being here today, Kathleen. You’re welcome.

01:27

Thank you for inviting me. So let’s just start with you introducing yourself and sharing a few things about your story that are important to share. And then we’ll just go into some questions. OK, well, I’m a mom. I didn’t really realize this to be true, but there’s a quote that goes something like, every mother that has a child that

01:55

uses drugs or alcohol problematically is a harm reductionist just waiting for someone to train her. So I think I’ve always practiced harm reduction because that’s what mothers do. And harm reduction in every form from the minute that they were born, from putting them in car seats and having them wear helmets when they’re riding their bicycles. And I mean, I could go on and on.

02:24

we all could. And then suddenly at some point in this journey early on, I was told that, no, uh, you’re not a harm reductionist. You’re an enabler and you are horribly co-dependent and you are the problem. In fact, your actions are going to kill your daughter. And how are you going to feel about that? I was like, well, wait, what?

02:54

how could I have spent my whole life taking care of her? And suddenly I’m not allowed to do that. And so I bought into that for a while, just always going against what I really thought. And there is not one mother that can tell me any different. Now, my story is just my story and how I mother my child who is ill.

03:24

I should back up and say my daughter is doing great. I have a grandson. So I’m talking really about a lot about the past. But this kind of took me down this road of investigation. And where did all this information come from? And how old was this information? And was there any science behind it? And I just started to research and the kind of everything opened up to me. And now…

03:55

I believe your mother’s heart, your instincts, you mothers know what to do. I mean, they might need tools, which is why I’m a proponent of craft and the invitation to change. They need tools. We are not powerless. I don’t care what anyone has told you. We have a lot of power over our children if we have a great relationship with them, even when they’re sick, even when they’re sick. And

04:24

I also know being on this journey for so long, 18 years, that what works for one person doesn’t always work for the other. And there is no one way to do it. We are dealing with individuals, and we’re dealing with people with our children that need a healthcare approach. And that’s our job. I spent…

04:51

my daughter’s entire life telling her it was my job to keep her safe. I would say those words over and over again when she was little, when she was scared, when I had to tell her she couldn’t do something because it was dangerous. I told her it’s my job to keep you safe. And so that has been really my, my recent journey. Recent meaning probably the last seven years.

05:19

And really the reason why I decided to start my own Facebook group, which is not a support group, but an information group. Here’s all the information, evidence-based articles, doing lives, talking to professionals. I’m going to cue it all up to you and you take what works for you. And maybe you try one thing and that doesn’t work.

05:47

That doesn’t mean it doesn’t work for everybody. It just didn’t work for you and your child. So then you try something else. That’s what I did. And just like any mother, I went to extremes to help my daughter, including taking her to a foreign country. I mean, if your child had cancer or some other life-threatening disorder or disease, you would do whatever you could to find out

06:16

What’s the latest? What’s the greatest? What’s the right? And so that’s just been my approach. Yeah. Well, there is, I agree with so much of what you just said, but I love you started with I’m a mom. And I just thought those three words say a lot. And then you went into talking about what that really means. And I love that you shared about that because I think that

06:43

because of the way we’re called enablers and codependent and all of these other things, it becomes like a point of shame, that desire that we have to take care of our kids. And we’re going to talk about that more later. But I learned about your group from one of my clients actually. And she was telling me how she saw one of your lives. And that’s how she found out about craft. And that’s how she ended up finding me. So

07:11

I’ve been in your group for a while, but I didn’t really know your story until you started writing on Substack. And then that one email or came out in an email that you sent out in September really just touched my heart when you were talking about when your daughter was in Salt Lake City and you didn’t know where you found her by where she was on her phone and what your family did to help her. And I was like, I have to share this on the podcast because

07:42

People feel so guilty for everything they do. It feels like it’s wrong. And I’ve been told all of those things that you were told, that I’m gonna kill my daughter, all these other things, which is, I can’t imagine saying something more horrible to a parent. But they just deal with so much guilt and fear of, I don’t want my kid out on the street, but then there’s that.

08:05

Constant fear am I hurting them by letting them be at home because of all of the stigmas that we hear and so I think We need to hear more stories about people who are practicing harm reduction in their home. So When you first started on this journey, were you influenced by stigma? Was that something you had to overcome? No, I Mean, but I it’s very real. So I know it’s real. No, I I’m

08:33

pretty transparent and always have been. And so I’m not afraid to tell my story. I’ve always talked about my struggles. I’ve talked about it out loud. My personal Facebook group, I mean, I’ve never been one to hold back. And I do that because I know it helps others to not feel so alone. But certainly stigma, well stigma about a lot of things is killing our children. It’s not even the drugs.

09:03

the stigma that pushes them into the dark rooms. I mean, I think you gotta ask yourself like one thing, and it took me a while to figure this out. You have no power over stopping your child from using drugs. I went down the rabbit hole of thinking, of course I could. I could do that, because I’m really smart. I can rally the troops around this child.

09:32

and I can make her stop using drugs. And I wasted a lot of time on that. I really did. And because we are so close and have always been so close, my daughter went to 20 rehabs and she did it for me. And she always said, I’m not ready to stop using drugs, but I’ll go for you. And I only heard the second part. I didn’t hear the.

10:00

I’m not ready to stop using drugs. I could have saved myself a lot of time and money and her actually more trauma because she upped her game and learned about even worse drugs in rehabs. She learned to be a professional liar, thief, I mean, all from being in not good environments. So I did her, I actually did her more harm sending her there. So if you know that there is really nothing

10:29

that you can do to stop your child from using drugs. You can help them through the process, through motivational interviewing, through some learned skills. You can help them try to sort that out. I mean, people use drugs for a reason, right? And even just asking my daughter,

10:53

because she was a heroin user. I mean, she unfortunately is one of the people that was prescribed pain medication and took off in that area to street drugs when the pain medication dried up, but used heroin. She was using fentanyl too. This was probably 15 years ago. She was also using fentanyl. And then she got into meth.

11:23

Like, if we get rid of one, like, why are we doing it? What happened? And just started talking to her about like, okay, well, it’s like, how does it feel? I don’t know. And really drilling down with that and realizing that she had untreated ADHD. And so getting her onto a legal medication, I mean, I had to really convince her doctor that he needed to prescribe her more.

11:51

than the recommended dose, but I was able to do that with a lot of evidence and armed with information and that worked. So you throw your kid out and you think that’s going to force them into stopping using drugs. It’s just not. I mean, for sure it’s not. And if they go to the street, you’re going to have a hell of a time getting them back. My daughter said, and I wrote about in that blog.

12:20

when she walked out of her last rehab and told me, you know, mom, this is just ridiculous. This just, none of this is working. And you keep finding these places and spending money on me and it just doesn’t work. And I’m just gonna go be with my people. I just need to be around like-minded people. And I knew that she was gonna go to a park and…

12:49

where people that use drugs and alcohol lived in encampments or hung out, and she was gonna be really happy there. Like, I really got that. And that’s when I just executed my entire family and they all came running and we got her out of there. But I get that. I mean, here, your own family isn’t gonna love you if you’re using drugs. You can’t come back here. You can’t live in our home if you use drugs.

13:18

well, where am I going to live? You can’t get better on the streets. You can’t get better if you’re unsheltered. And I know there’s lots of reasons why people can’t have their kids living in their home. I mean, I completely understand that. And I would never judge another mother anyway, because I’ve been judged and shamed for so long. But I would sure try to encourage, okay, well, let’s just think outside of the box. What can we do? At one point,

13:47

when my daughter was using heavy duty into heroin and her younger brother was still at home, you know, I’m like, you just can’t be shooting up in the room next door to your brother. Like that’s unacceptable. And she was like, well, I’ll just, okay, fine, I’ll leave. And I was like, no. I went out and bought her a tent and I pitched her tent in the backyard of my house. And that’s where she came home to every night. And…

14:14

You know, there was a couple of issues where she brought someone home, someone with her, and we had to kind of go through reestablishing those boundaries, but that’s where she stayed for a while until she got more stabilized and until her brother went off to college and we would let her in to have dinner and take a shower and be engaged, but she had a safe place to come home to at night when it’s really dangerous.

14:45

I’m people on the streets use drugs 24 seven because they need to stay up at night, particularly women and my daughter is, I mean, I think she’s a beautiful girl and could easily be taken advantage of and of course she was many times throughout this journey, but I didn’t need to add onto that. So, I mean, I’ve had my daughter living in my house while she’s actively using and

15:14

I mean, this is before a baby. I mean, this is before she really just decided that she didn’t wanna do any of that anymore. I mean, she kind of outgrew it, which a lot of people do. There are more people living in recovery than not, millions. And millions of them never went to a rehab ever once. They just grew out of it. I think that’s kind of what happened with my daughter. But when she was using, I mean,

15:44

We’re like, all right, let’s set up a place for you to use. I know when I say this and people are gonna be listening to me, they’re gonna be like, are you out of your mind? Was any of this easy for me? No. I mean, it’s the hardest thing, Heather, I’ve ever done. I mean, I had to watch my child in so much pain and watch her try to relieve her pain through something I knew eventually could kill her. And that, I mean, that was the hard…

16:14

I can’t think of anything I’ve ever done and her father has ever done that was harder than that. But there would be no chance for her to be a mother, to have a baby, to choose to be living a life in recovery if she was dead. And so I just decided that I was going to do and that changed. I think that’s the thing people don’t get like giving money.

16:42

Sometimes I gave money, sometimes I didn’t give money. I mean, it kind of depended on where I was at. And I just, I’ve just learned now to listen to my mommy heart, just to go in and be still. And remember, it’s my job to keep you safe, honey. It’s my job to keep you safe. And eventually she learned, I felt pretty comfortable with her being by herself using.

17:12

because she had all the tools, including calling a hotline to make sure that she wasn’t responding, that emergency services could be dispatched. I felt like, this sounds crazy, but like she was a really responsible drug user. And then we were able to have conversations about, because her use generally turned into being chaotic. And I would be able to say, yeah, you know, I mean, like you start off.

17:41

not using that much, you know, but you, I mean, it can’t seem to control it. Yeah, no, I can’t. Okay. So let’s brainstorm some ways that maybe you could reduce your use. And so we would have really good conversations. And she went from injecting to smoking. She changed up her routine, like how she got, there’s so much about the whole routine of what drug users do that feels

18:10

really comforting to them. So instead of doing this, let’s, why don’t you think about doing that? And then she would change it up a little bit. And we were able to have those kinds of real conversations about her health, her state of mind, but my love and her living with her family was not conditional on her being sober. Yeah, there’s so much good stuff in there that.

18:38

One thing I was thinking about was her being in a stable environment and the importance of that. And that’s when my daughter ended up wanting to get into recovery was because she had been in a stable environment for like six months, even though she was she was using drugs in this environment, but she was safe there and pretty well taken care of. And she couldn’t go back.

19:05

to living the way that she had been living before that. And so that stability actually gave her the desire to want to get into recovery, which is completely the opposite of what you hear. Like you were just talking about, like we hear that, that has to be really, really bad for them to want to get into recovery. And I love that you say that your daughter just grew out of it, but it took a lot of patience on your part. And I think that that’s,

19:34

that pain that maybe you could talk a little bit more about how you managed dealing with that pain of watching her struggle, because I think that’s what so many parents really struggle with and they want their kids at home. But there is such a struggle with inside of them about watching their kids and feeling wrong, even though they know it’s the right thing to do. There’s just that constant voice. You should be doing something different.

20:04

There’s a lot of symptoms that are super nasty and ugly and horrible that comes along with chaotic drug or alcohol use. Those come out of our child’s mouth where they say horrible, horrible, horrible, like the worst thing that anyone could ever say to you kind of stuff. They lie. They steal.

20:33

They manipulate. And when you’ve got that in your face the whole time, you immediately just, you know, how dare you speak to me this way. You know, you’re stealing everything. Get the hell out. I just always kept reminding myself that those were those are all just the symptoms. And oh, by the way, they’re the same symptoms for anyone in this situation. They all do the same thing. All of them. So how can I set myself up?

21:03

living with my child where I can manage the symptoms. Like as an example, I had everything locked up. I had locks on all of my doors to my bedroom. And I remember my sister once saying to me, how can you live like this? And I go, well, I mean, I go think about it this way. If your child was in a wheelchair, wouldn’t you put ramps in your home?

21:31

I mean, wouldn’t you redesign your kitchen and your bathroom so they could get around with their wheelchair? I mean, that’s kind of how I looked at it. And the ugly talk with some boundaries around that eventually went away. I just didn’t engage. It sounds like you’re really not in a good space right now because there’s hateful things coming out of your mouth, honey. And you know.

21:58

I love you and I’m not gonna listen to it. And I would just leave. I would walk away, hang up, end the conversation. And I did that enough and consistently enough that it stopped, right? And before it stopped, Molly was able to always come back. I’m sorry, mom, I shouldn’t have said that. I just am so mad. I’m mad at myself. What are you mad at yourself about? I feel so much shame. Like what’s wrong with… And then we would just be able to have these really beautiful conversations.

22:28

about her pain and her trauma and trying to work through that and getting her to realize, oh, this is why I’m using a substance because this is popping up and this hurts and I don’t like it and it hurts so much I can’t deal with it and this is the only thing that makes me feel better or I think this is the only thing that makes me feel better. So I just figured a way around it. I just

22:58

And for some people, they just can’t. They can’t handle it, and I completely get that too. But there’s other things. There’s family. There’s, I mean, there’s even cars. Like, have your kids sleep in a car before having them sleep on the street. There’s like a million other things that you can try to do if you can’t keep them in your home. But if you are in a position…

23:24

I mean, I just look at it like if my kid had some just terrible disease that that may kill them, I’m going to not have them in my house. Why? I mean, how is it any different? It’s harder to deal with because the symptoms are super ugly. I think stigma too though, right? Because there’s all of the thoughts about putting up with the symptoms that we shouldn’t have to that we shouldn’t put up with it.

23:52

And I think that that makes it that much harder for parents. Right. Like because there’s like I’ve had, my sister was doing like hospice for a friend and I watched this guy die of cancer and it was horrible. Right. The, the mental wear and tear on watching this happen and the things that were going on and his loss of control, you know what I mean? All of that stuff, it was horrible, but I didn’t.

24:21

But that’s what you do, right? You help the person through those things and you put yourself through the pain of that to help that person get through their last days. There’s no stigma about doing that. And I think like there’s all this stigma around the things that we have to put ourselves through when we wanna do a harm reduction in our home.

24:46

Yeah, I mean, it’s all self-inflicted. It has to do with values and moral then. And so if you think basically at you have to check your own bias, right? I call it the great unlearning. And I have forced myself to read and check my bias. And I’m like, Oh, wow. And that’s I’ve been hanging around with that thought for a long while at the very

25:16

very bottom of it, addiction, people don’t think that those people are worthy, including us. I mean, we’re not even conscious about it. No, I’m not going to have that in my house. That’s not acceptable. Well, why? Why is that not acceptable? It’s our own bias. Sometimes we don’t even realize that’s been carried down by generation, started with our parents and those people over there and those…

25:45

We’re just talking about sick people. That’s all we’re talking about. How could they be any different? If addiction is a disease, why is something like relapse punished? If you had cancer and it went into remission and then it came back, would you punish that person? This is a medical healthcare issue, right? I mean, that’s just how I see it. And so…

26:15

reminding myself of that all the time. And also giving myself grace, because it’s a lot to deal with. And I would say to Molly, when I just wanted to scream, because it’s really my fear, my fear of her dying, and my pain of her pain, right? This is my child. I could…

26:43

You know how you can feel your own kid’s pain. I was in it with her. I was sitting next to her in the dark feeling her pain and I would need to have a break and I would say to her, I have to bubble up. That was our little code word. Okay, mom. And then she would just like say, we’re in the same house, right? And I would just go bubble up. And for me, that looked like…

27:08

isolating myself in my bedroom, maybe on my back patio, maybe doing some gardening, doing some reading. I’m a huge meditator, meditating more. And she would just send me little texts. How are you doing? Are you feeling any better? I would just go in and be still and like cuddle and hug myself and just reassure myself that I was doing the right things.

27:38

that my daughter was alive. And then also, I think many people that were in my situation, you know, are now, are advocates are doing like what you’re doing or what I’m doing in Facebook. And that is just keeping busy, right? And doing, and I’m passionate about getting people to think differently. They don’t have to think like me, but at least read some stuff for crying out loud, right? At least educate yourself. You can do that.

28:06

right? And you can check your biases at the door. At least do that. And that’s how I’ve managed. Now, I mean, I have had so many imperfect moments. Like, I’ve even told my daughter, I hated her. I mean, like, that’s how crazy I got at one point. But just like her and her trying, I was able to correct that. No, I hate you in this minute, but you know I love you.

28:35

And because hate and love are in the same power source, but I should have never said that to you. So can we start over? And she’s done the same thing to me. So it’s been, you know, it’s hard. People that have little kids that die of cancer. I mean, how do you deal with, I mean, there’s all these things, right? And so we do the best we can with what we have and what works for me may not work for somebody else. But I don’t ever turn away from it, Heather. I don’t ever.

29:04

turn away from it. I go right through it. I just head right, I’m like that train going right into that tunnel. I’m just like lean in. And that’s what’s for me. The specific examples you shared, because I think those will really help people apply what you’re talking about in their own lives and take those things into consideration. And even like the example of

29:33

saying, I hate you, but then how you repair that, right? And the honesty, I think that that was part of the reason that you were able to work through things and to stay in that situation was because you were able to be honest. And that was okay, you weren’t trying to deny how hard it was or your struggles, but you had also a way to deal with that as well. And

30:00

I think when you brought up relapse, I was thinking about, it’s a problem because we assume they did something wrong. You know, you could do everything right and still have a relapse. And it’s the same thing like when you were with cancer, like we just assume it’s not the person’s fault, right? We never question if they did something that caused their cancer to come back. But when it comes to a relapse, we do that. Yeah, and they’re both that are…

30:29

diseases. Same with diabetes, right? We don’t punish people for type two diabetes, which is generally caused by what you’re eating, putting in your body. We don’t shame them and throw them out. Like we’re like, okay, let’s put our arms around you. And then if they go off the deep end and eat a huge bag of chocolates and make themselves sick, we don’t make them wait at the hospital.

30:57

We don’t have people searching them for drugs or being afraid to prescribe a drug because we think they’re drug seeking. I mean, it’s just so sad and maddening, really maddening. I think also we were talking about the honesty piece and I mean, our kids are going to lie to us because they don’t want to disappoint us and lying and get someone killed.

31:25

I mean, there are so many people that overdose right in their parents’ home, right down the hall from them because their parents don’t know that they’re using. And so, I mean, having a relationship, regardless of whether your kid lives with you or not, and not judging that, and being able to say, look, I absolutely do not want you to use drugs, illicit drugs. I’m scared they are going to kill you.

31:55

I do not want you to use them. But if you’re gonna use them, and I know I can’t stop you, only you can stop you. And that’s what I hope for one day, that you will make that choice. You need to use them safely. And here are the tools. Here’s what I’ve learned. Here’s some handouts. Here’s some equipment. Here’s phone numbers. And opening up that line of communication, it could save your kid’s life. For sure.

32:23

When my daughter was actively using, I was circling, right? I was circling. I would check in at night. I was tending to her when I knew she was in a chaotic stage and that she could just go to sleep and never wake up. So I was circling. But even if you’re not, you can still, without saying that you approve of this, you can clearly say, I absolutely do not.

32:53

And here’s why, you know, here’s what’s true for me. But I know I can’t stop you. Only you can make that decision and I’m gonna be with you all the way. And you know what? Sometimes, I mean, I have friends, these kids, they probably would ever stop doing drugs. And so then, I mean, this is on the extreme. How do you start into that radical acceptance? How do you make it not about

33:22

I’m not going to be happy until my kid stops using drugs, right? I’m going to be miserable and unhappy and telling you, I can’t do this anymore. Making myself physically ill, doing substances myself. I can’t be happy until, yeah, until you, until you stop. How do we not attach that? Yes, that’s what we would like. Of course they’re a kid, but how do I not attach?

33:52

how do I not attach my happiness factor to your sobriety? Yeah, and the pressure that they’re already struggling and to manage their own experience. And now they’re putting the pressure on them to manage our experience on top of that. And one of the best things that we can do is figure out how to cultivate our own quality of life and happiness, no matter what’s going on with them.

34:21

that just the relief that I hear like that my my daughter felt when I did that for myself and how happy it made her to see me working on myself and changing and all of those things and I hear that from other kids too. Yeah I mean I think that that you could be the best chance for your child to recover just by being a good role model. I believe. I want them to do. I mean

34:49

not what you want them to do, but being willing to look at your own past, look at the contribution, any negative contributions you may have unintentionally made in the relationship, finding your own purpose and being honest and sharing that journey and the good, the bad, and the ugly, all those parts. I think that’s really a key. Now, I mean, sometimes I read things and…

35:19

and Facebook groups, I’m done, I’m going, I’ve given up and I’m gonna go and just enjoy my life. Well, okay, okay, mom, you just tell me how, how you’re gonna completely detach from your child. You can say that, but we all know that’s impossible. Yeah, and it got more pain. Oh, for sure. But how can you find a balance? How can you have grief?

35:48

and happiness coexist in the same moment. You can do that. Yeah, I call it 3D emotion. What’s that? Well, that’s just what I, the name I made up for it when I started feeling it that like, oh, I can’t just experience sadness or grief. I can also experience joy at the same time. Like my daughter’s always gonna have this piece of my heart.

36:14

But there’s other things happening in the present moment where I can experience joy with the people that I’m with. Right, yeah, I like that. I just named that, yeah, that’s the multiple dimensions of emotions that we’re feeling at all times. It doesn’t have to be that one thing. Right, I like that. Yeah. Well, thank you so much for everything that you’ve shared today. I think that you gave so many great

36:39

examples and stories and ways of thinking that will help anybody who listens think those through and apply them to their own life. How can somebody who wants to know more about you or your journey get in touch with you? Well I’m on Facebook so anybody can private message me. My Facebook group is Moms for All Paths to Recovery and if you’re not a member you should be a member.

37:08

I don’t say so myself. It is not a support group. It’s an educational group, but if things come up, questions come up, you’re struggling with this harm reduction approach. In my group, it’s pretty big, but I have a lot of addiction professionals, psychiatrists, psychologists, nurse practitioners. I have clinic owners. I have probably all the top harm reduction organizations as part of my group.

37:38

And I have people that use drugs in my group. I got the whole gamut, very lovely with their time. And a lot of them will say things too, if a mom makes a post, a lot of them will say, gosh, I wish my mom was trying, like tried to educate herself. And so they’ll spend time saying, okay, you think this is going on with your son, but here’s really what might be going on. It’s very valuable. So you can follow me and talk to me there. And then…

38:08

I also facilitate a Monday night support group meeting called Harm Reduction Works, and it’s for parents. And I post the link to that meeting in my group. So if people do need support, you can join like-minded, mostly moms, I wish there were more dads, but a lot of moms, you can join every Monday night.

38:37

to have a voice where you don’t feel stigmatized. Yeah, that’s great. And I’ll put the links to the Facebook group and your sub stack and that video that I mentioned in the beginning, all that’ll be in the show notes. So thank you so much for your time today. Thanks for bringing Brave Enough to talk to me and to bring this subject up because I know it’s very controversial

39:07

As the name of my group says, there is no one path and nobody should be judging anyone. Nobody should be giving any kind of advice other than this is what I did and it worked. And so let’s just get back to being moms and taking care of our kids. Absolutely. Thank you.