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Woman’s Story of How She Beat Crystal Meth Addiction for Her Children

It takes strength and courage to be able to reach out for drug addiction counselling, and many people affected by addiction will only do so when they reach their rock bottom. In many cases, the person with the addiction may be faced with an ultimatum from loved ones, or have faced a shocking event that makes them realise that they need help. This is what happened to Dee-anne Allender from Perth, Australia, who found herself behind bars for manufacturing crystal meth as she tried to fund her own crippling addiction.

Can You Get Hooked on Drugs After One Use?

Some people will try drugs out of curiosity while promising themselves that they are going to try it ‘just once’. However, with some drugs, this one time can be enough for an addiction to take root, and Dee-anne says that this is what happened to her when she tried crystal meth for the first time, aged just twenty-four. For the following eight years, she was hooked on the drug and struggled to break free.

She is now forty and a mother to four children and has decided to speak out about her experience with crystal meth and how she almost died as a result of her addiction. She said, “There was that time I was at the train station, I was screaming at my dad over the phone. I just thought you should just end your life by jumping in front of that train... make it easier for everybody. I also had a near death experience when I didn't weigh my drugs, and I lost all balance and hearing and collapsed. When I went to the clinic, the doctor said, ‘that was a mini stroke’. I couldn't walk or talk. I had to crawl into the shower and sit there with my clothes on for hours.”

Can a Strict Upbringing Prevent Drug Use?

There are many reasons some individuals turn to drugs, including boredom, curiosity or wanting to numb painful memories of a traumatic event. Another reason is early exposure to drugs or living in a home where drug abuse is normal. This was certainly not the case for Dee-anne. In fact, in her home, drugs was a topic that was prohibited. She said, “Drugs was a taboo subject.”

Dee-anne revealed that at age eight, she was diagnosed with dyslexia, but at the time the condition was something that most people just did not understand. She said, “At the time, no one knew what the condition was doing to people. I was struggling in school. I remember my family saying, ‘If only she tried harder’, but I knew I was trying as hard as I can. I thought ‘I must have been stupid’. My brother and sister are quite successful. My parents were successful... and then there was me. I always felt I was a little different.”

Dee-anne left home when she was fifteen and moved in with friends. It was then that she tried drugs for the first time, starting with marijuana. However, when she was seventeen, she began to use amphetamines and before too long was hooked. She said, “As soon as I tried it, I liked it. I was depressed as a teenager. I remember trying amphetamine and feeling high on energy. But then I would get all these suicidal thoughts when I was coming down.”

After trying crystal meth for the first time, her life quickly began to spiral out of control, and she started taking the drug five times a day, costing her up to AUS $1,000 per week.

Hitting Rock-Bottom

In 2010, Dee-anne was sent to prison for attempted manufacture of amphetamines. She said, “I was sent to jail for almost a year. I was told my children were being taken away from me. I just lost it. I was in a fit of rage. I was screaming. I knew I wasn't well. Security guards had to hog-tie me because I was smashing my face against the glass window.”

While behind bars, Dee-anne managed to break free from her addiction to crystal meth. She explained, “It was a short time [in jail], but I thought it was a positive thing. I was taken away from my addiction because I was separated from drugs. At first, I thought I wasn't hurting anybody. But there's nothing worse than your own children visiting you in prison, and then you realise the damage you've caused.”

Nevertheless, upon release from prison, Dee-anne relapsed after falling in with old friends once more. Fortunately, she managed to overcome the addiction with the help of drug addiction counselling when she decided to admit herself to a rehab centre with the support of her children.

Dee-anne said, “I remember my youngest daughter calling me when I was in prison, asking when I was coming home. I realised how I disrespected my children. I was being selfish because I was putting drugs before them. I didn't know what was on the other side of it... the soul-destroying drug that almost took over my life. I can't even imagine the pain they went through. I love them so much, and they have been such forgiving little things, and my dad has been amazing.”

After turning her life around, Dee-anne is now helping others to overcome their addictions to drugs, and she hopes that sharing her story can inspire others to seek drug addiction counselling and help for their illnesses.

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