…I know my using has affected you… My using made me lose motivation for school also. I would sometimes ditch class and get high with friends. This led to falling even further behind in school. I still wanted to suceed(sic) academically, but when I showed up to class I often wouldn’t know what’s going on and I’d leave. This made me feel inadequate and embarrassed. When I got in trouble for using and getting caught, I denied it so I could do it more. In these moments I felt mad that I was punished for it and only made me want to use more. After situations like this I often became angry. I felt like you were trying to stop me and punish me for my actions which made me feel ashamed and violated. I had a tunnel vision towards getting high as it’s all I could think of. I tried gaining attention by self-destructive behaviors such as stealing your car, hitting myself and your property, saying depressing remarks and mean things towards you as well as more things. These events were in an act of rebellion and to gain attention to me as I felt inferior in most situations at home. I also recognize that I have problems with the law and I’ve gotten in trouble with the police on more than one occasion. An example of this is the incident that ended me up in Juvy and eventually going to (wilderness)… I already felt frustrated, powerless, and inferior. I then started arguing and my anger boiled over. I got up in your faces and yelled, threw my backpack at a wall, which made you call the police on me. I felt abandoned and broke the house phone and walked up the hill where the police were. I got in their faces and ended up at (a 5150) where they released me to Juvy. I felt like I was an outsider and I felt ashamed and abandoned. At this point I knew I needed help and agreed to get it. This is something I had a hard time with in the past. I was in denial of lots of things including my using and aspects of my at home life. I denied I had a problem with drugs and denied that they had an effect on the way I act. I also denied when I got in trouble. An example is when you’d find my drugs or smell it and I would say that I’m holding it for a friend, or that I wasn’t doing anything. I tried to lie and deny to make you not as disappointed in me and also so I could keep doing what I was doing. This damaged our relationship and I always felt dissapointed(sic) in myself.
When I used there was always a lack of honesty and communication because I felt like you would always fear the truth. This made me feel sad that I couldn’t openly talk about everything. Often I’d hang out with friends and lie about my whereabouts. This made you guys scared, especially when I’d dissapear(sic) for a couple days and you’d have no idea where I was. Not only did my actions affect you, but it also affected (my younger brother.) I am ashamed that I couldn’t be there for him in the past, and that my actions likely hurt him…
When I couldn’t provide for my using I started selling to gain extra money. I would sell to my friends so I could have a little extra pocket change to provide for my using. I got a natural high from selling and this fueled my self-esteem, and my self-image, making me feel better about myself. I loved the rush that drugs, and selling, gave me and I chased that high which led to stealing. I didn’t do this to (sic) often but when I would I would steal from other kids to get the high, get what I wanted, and to boost my self-esteem. My morals and beliefs did not match up with my actions. I often felt bad about what I did/was doing. I felt haunted by the damage I caused to the family and your property… In the future I’d like to be able to communicate openly and assertively.
Love you, Trevor
Published with the permission of Jeff and Michelle Leopold, Trevor’s parents