I’ve been reading a lot of responses to the death of Whitney Houston that begin something like this: “She did it to herself. She was on drugs. She didn’t value life.”
I get these statements because I would have made them years ago. Now, however, after having known an addict, I feel otherwise.
The thing about addicts that people who haven’t loved an addict don’t get is that at the core of their being is a broken spirit.
At the core of their spirit is a hopelessness, for which they use drugs to try to fill.
These people, these addicts, aren’t bad people, but they do bad things to themselves because they are not really sane.
These people, these addicts, hurt the people they love with their actions, but they can’t get that because they are so hurt themselves.
These people, these addicts, are broken.
These people, these addicts, may not deserve your sympathy, but they do deserve your willingness to see past their actions and see them for who they really are- broken, unhappy, insane, irrational, on drugs.
Having known an addict, I know what it’s like to cry for an addict, to want them to change, to care about themselves and about the people that they are hurting.
Having lost an addict, I know what it’s like to lose them…forever.
And it hurts.
I don’t have a question today, just a hope that loved ones of addicts know that they are not alone, that their grief is not in vain.