According to SAMHSA'S (Substance and Mental Health Services Administration) annual survey, an estimated 15.3% of twelve year old's have used an illicit drug within the last year, with 2.1 million teenage and adult related hospital visits. Cocaine was a factor in 20% of these visits.
Approximately 90% of the men and woman incarcerated are in prison for drug and alcohol related crimes. Drugs such as heroin, amphetamines and pharmaceuticals are on the rise. Every day our teenagers and adults are dying from overdose, and personally I have lost many friends to this sad reality. The result of drug use for our youth will be a prison cell or God forbid death. I do not want to see another precious child lose their life, or another family experience the pain.
I myself was a garbage pail for narcotics throughout my teenage years into young adulthood. At the age of thirteen I started using marijuana; by the time I was fifteen I was using cocaine, alcohol, pcp, acid, pills and much more. I had been arrested several times and found myself in insanity. My pain and the destruction I caused was not because of drugs, but due to the choices and decisions I was making, because of my thinking.
I have an extensive and successful track record of getting teenagers clean and sober, a way of using my personal experience to help them understand the pain involved. See, our youth start using because of peer pressure, because they see the use of drugs as fun, a right of passage with their peers, and of course for other reasons; self esteem issues, masking forms of abuse, only to end up as addicted adults with a life that goes down the drain.
Personally, I believe there needs to be a one on one intervention between myself and a youth abusing narcotics. The logical and sound reason of 'why' they have turned to drugs must be explored and discovered. The beginning of treatment is to locate, dissect, then heal the root of the problem. Once the root is discovered its time to plant a new seed. My personal life story of addiction is so powerful it has saved many lives.
I have remained clean and sober since 1999. I had refused to stay clean regardless of which judge sentenced me, which hospital I entered, which meetings I attended and what pain I encountered in my life. Nothing could make me refrain from using until my thinking was changed.
Bluntly put the reality is this; addicted youth won't listen to their parents , the judge, the police officer, their teacher, etc. But, I share something in common with them. They feel my aura, sense the 'street' in me, and I use this bond to shape their thinking in one on one encounters or when I'm on a stage in front of many.