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My Brother's Drug Addiction and How Its Affected Our Family

by M,
(Ottawa)

I don't remember when precisely my brother started using drugs, I'm guessing he was around 16. Although I can't remember much of that time since I was only 7 - soon enough I started noticing what was going on.


I grew up to screams and fights and finding my brother overdosed on the floor. Twice I woke up to the sound of an ambulance picking him up from my house, I went through his car accidents that almost took away his life, and through the neglect from my parents who only had time for his problems.

To this date almost 13 years after he began his addiction he still uses. They say addiction is a disease, that's what they teach you in school, in books and in any addiction recovery programs.

I've realized it's not only a disease but it's a contagious one, not because everyone around the addict starts using as well but because everyone becomes affected in a certain way that they would of never been before being related to an addict.

My addicted brother has made my oldest brother psychologically unstable - he know suffers from ocd and slight schizophrenia, my parents are both co-dependent to my brothers problem, and I have crazy anger rages and cannot commit to friendships , or relationships.

It's hard not to resent an addict and it's hard to forgive, even harder is to continue living with one after so many years. I feel lonely because there's not many people to share my story with, it extends a lot more then just this paragraph as I can imagine everyone who has written in this forum. God bless you all and give strength to us who keep fighting for a loved one.

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Dec 13, 2012
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Drug/Alcohol Addicted Brother
by: Anonymous

I feel you, we have been dealing with my brothers alcoholic/drug abuse for 20 years, and it has changed my family for the worse. I feel hopeless and just pissed off all the time because my brothers behavior and addiction is on my mind all day long, and hes also legally blind which makes this even worse, I mean hes so high and drunk he just starts swinging in the air to hit us and grabs a hold of anything he can to throw at us. His drug/alcohol addiction has turned him into such an evil person, we have supported him in numerous times that he has gone to rehab but he always relapses, so really I just gave up on him. I don't know what to do anymore.

Dec 05, 2012
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my story
by: Jacqui

It's a little bit of the chicken or the egg. I am going through something quite similar. My brother is a dick. Sure he has a mental illness which has turned him into a dick. but I am almost 100% sure its because he's had a drug problem since the age of 13 (as far as I know, maybe longer). He's now 28. You know, when you're a kid you think he's gonna fix himself and maybe I wont say anything to mom cause it could create more trouble. I wish I had mentioned it to my mom. That being said, I dont think my mom wanted to believe we had any problems in the first place.
I feel like I have no future because I'm not strong enough to cut them out of my life completely and always bend when I feel sorry for them. These people will never see the good I do for them and all my efforts are wasted. The more I fix their problems the more they expect me to, and blame me when I cant.
I havnt given up yet, but I am starting to think there is nothing wrong with giving up. I have to protect my own mental health too.

Mar 07, 2012
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Never give up.
by: Anonymous

I have a very similar story and I feel your pain. The only thing I can tell you is that you are doing the right thing. Talking about it does actually help. I know you feel helpless, but it doesn't mean that you have to stop trying to help your brother. If you give up it will only create more feelings of blame and regret. God bless you and good luck with your family.

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