I needed to cope with being abused
Lorna Hogan’s first boyfriend was her high school sweetheart. She was physically, mentally, and verbally abused by him for years. She endured the abuse by trying to anesthetize herself to it: “I needed something more to take away the pain. I needed more to cope with being abused…I used powder cocaine. I couldn’t get up in the morning without it. I would use it before going to work. Then it progressed to freebasing powder cocaine and then crack.”
Because of her addiction to crack, Lorna was arrested for possession of crack cocaine. She was arrested but never offered treatment. “The only people who get offered treatment are the ones with pre-trial lawyers.” Lorna was separated from her children and placed in prison. “I told the judge I needed help, I pleaded with him. I told him my children were taken away and that I needed a program. He told me they all tell me that, I’ve heard it all before is what he said to me.”
It was easier for Lorna to be incarcerated than to be placed into a treatment program. While Lorna served out her prison sentence, her children were put in foster care. After her release, Lorna tried to regain custody of them. As a condition for reuniting with her children, the court required Lorna to enter into treatment program. Finally, Lorna was referred to treatment, a four month residential family treatment program and then an outpatient family program. But treatment came after the costs of incarceration, the loss of her children, and continued years in active addiction.When Lorna did achieve access to family treatment she learned to address the initial cause of her addiction: domestic violence. Lorna learned how to heal from the years of psychological and emotional damage endured as a result of being abused. Lorna also learned improved parenting skills and how to repair the frayed bond between her and her children. She also, for the first time, was placed in a job training program and is now learning computer skills so that she may transition from welfare to economic self-sufficiency. She is well on her way.
Lorna has been clean for six years and six months. She is reunited with all of her children, she is a PTA parent, and her children are excelling in school. Lorna now looks forward to helping her children achieve their dreams.
So many years surrounded in darkness
Searching for the light at the end of the tunnel.
I finally have broken free
From the chains of addiction.
No longer bound by weakness
Power grows from within
Doors have been opened
I truly am living again.
I’ve begun a new beginning
Surrounded by my children’s laughter
That once I couldn’t hear.
Peace of mind.
The things I wanted.
My journey doesn’t stop here on Earth.
It goes on to my higher power
Who gave me this new birth.