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Reviews of An Addict in the Family

Suraya Dewing, Creator & Founder Stylefit and The Story Mint

Contact: suraya@stylefit.co.nz

When I finished reading this book, I was not sure how I felt, apart from very sad. So often we read about the addict’s journey from his or her perspective. These accounts are frequently peppered with bravado that seems to almost glorify drug abuse as a lifestyle. We hear about the rebel, the lost, the search for self, the struggle and in some cases, mercifully, the redemption. But rarely do we read about the impact of the drug user’s behaviour on those close to them…especially parents and mothers in particular. Mothers carry these children next to their hearts for nine months. Medical research now shows that each child leaves a part of their DNA in the mother and vice versa, so neither child nor mother are ever completely separated. It is probably for this reason that mothers experience such terrible inner struggle when their children suffer. Perhaps it explains the terrible pain they experience, the guilt, the absolute self-recrimination as they examine in minute detail what they did that led their child to seek refuge in drugs. How many times can a person relive their child’s life, and have it play out differently in their imaginations so that they mitigate the effects of trauma before it turns into drug abuse. And, of course, none of those reincarnations in the mind are possible. The moment has been and gone and how was anyone to know that that was the trauma that turned a child into a drug dependent adult. How can a parent be that vigilant and hyper aware? A child is who he or she is and the parents who they are, all living their lives to the best of their ability…often struggling to forge their own lives with inadequate emotional and physical resources, often alone. An Addict in the Family captures all the terrible horror of a parent’s experience of a drug dependent child who becomes enmeshed in the drug underworld. She makes no excuses for his behaviour. Nor does she slip into the all to easily found black tunnel of feeling sorry for herself. There is no self-recrimination and no evidence of all the if only’s that she could so easily slip into. We do see a pro-active mother trying to do all she can to give her child a new start in life. We see her doing all she can to work with authorities and the frustrating dead-ends she encounters. We have a feeling of how surreal the whole experience is. However, when all she has done fails, we again see the amazing courage with which she accepts this, and realises it is time to let go. That is an amazingly courageous act. Those with a spiritual belief can place the child into the care of a force greater than any individual and believe that he or she is living their journey the way he or she is meant to. Meantime, we have our journey to make, and this is the journey Stephanie has chosen to follow. As a reader, I am relieved for her, but I know that no parent who goes through what she went through is ever the same again. And maybe that’s what it is all about, relinquishing power and admitting that some things are bigger than us – that there comes a time when we offer up what we can and do all that we can to make our corner of the world just a little better for us having been here. Stephanie has done that by sharing her story. And I pray her son knocks on her door one day and says, with a smile, “I’m home.”

MrsMoa .jpg

Mrs Moa 

Mrs Moa comments on Ages of Pages 2023

I love this woman's generosity and love for books and authors.

She mentioned my books in a post leading up to Ages of Pages 2023 and again after the event where she's covered An Addict in the Family alongside several other authors.

Thank you Mrs Moa!

Click on these links for her posts on Instagram.

Before Ages of Pages event

After the Ages of Pages event

 

And if you love books, follow her and enjoy her posts too.

Heavy Concerns Written About in a Readable Way

Review by Meg
Posted 29 November 2023
on Flaxroots 

It’s a small book in size, 75 pages, written with heart about a big subject.
    The subtitle sums it up as this is a mother’s tale of heartbreak, courage and resilience when living through the experience if having a son who is a convicted drug addict and supplier. It’s an experience no mother wants, yet many find becomes a reality for them. 
    What should she do? Turn her back on him and run, as she is advised? This mother doesn’t.
    Despite all the heartache, she engages with the situation and all it involves, including the possibility of putting herself in personal danger, dealing with the frustration of having to learn about the justice and prison systems, and finding out who not to trust among those about her, the majority, and the few she could. Heavy concerns,  but written about in a readable way.
    In seeking to understand her addict son, Charlie, the author also comes to knowledge of herself.
    In the introduction, she writes of her hope that this memoir will “be a conversation starter leading to awareness of the widespread effects of addiction and paving the way for change. Change in the way society views addiction; change in the way those addicted view their place in the hearts of those most affected by their actions; and change in the availability and type of support systems that all those touched by addiction so desperately need.”
    It is a hope that is captured well in the cover art.

@LittleLibrariesAuckland
Instagram post 17 May 2024

It's such a surprise to see people are reading my little book. And to hear that it's touching hearts. Follow her on Instagram for some interesting insights into books and the community.

And check out her post covering my memoir here

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