Meth support group designed for family, friends
Shirley Simpson blamed herself for her daughter’s methamphetamine addiction.
“After all, it is your child,” she said.
Simpson said it took a lot of work and therapy before she realized that her daughter’s decisions didn’t make her a bad parent.
And she thinks there are others out there who have the same concerns.
“I know how hard this is to deal with,” she said. “Sometimes, it helps to have people who are going though the same thing to talk to.”
Simpson serves on the board of the community-driven Members of Communities Overcoming Methamphetamine Abuse (COMA). She wasn’t alone in seeking a support group for those who have a friend or a family member who is addicted to meth.
“What we’re finding more and more at our meetings is that people are coming who just need someone to talk to,” COMA board member Annette Gianinetti said. “Whenever we have a booth somewhere, people share their stories and think they’re alone. They don’t know there are others in the same boat.”
COMA will host a meeting at 6 p.m. today at Shadow Mountain Clubhouse to launch a support group for parents and friends of meth users.
Gianinetti said COMA members will talk about issues surrounding methamphetamine abuse and provide those in attendance with resources.
“We’re just hosting this to get a group started,” she said. “The group will decide what to do down the road.”
Topics aren’t limited. Gian–inetti said she has talked to grandparents who are raising their grandchildren because of a son or daughter’s drug addiction. She has talked to parents who don’t know whether tough love is the solution or whether continuing financial support helps.
“Meth addiction can be horrific for families,” Gianinetti said.
The meeting is open to anyone who wants a place to speak freely and find support, Simpson said, participants can remain anonymous.
“In the year since COMA was established, we’re finding more and more there are so many people out there who don’t know where to go or what to do,” she said. “They’re lost.”
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