Pubdate: Tue, 18 Feb 2003
Source: StarPhoenix, The (CN SN)
Copyright: 2003 The StarPhoenix
Author: Bob Schumacker
Bookmark: (Methadone)
Bookmark: (Treatment)


No drug addict I've met has set out to become one. Most of them became 
addicts through some misfortune in their lives, such as having been abused 
as a child or wife. Some drugs help temper the emotional scars they may 
carry for a lifetime.

The methadone program provides one of the few available avenues for addicts 
who desire to turn their lives around.

My friend, companion and partner was addicted to morphine. She was weak and 
her health so poor that she couldn't take the methadone program. I wanted 
to save her life but I couldn't.

I was with her every day for eight months while she suffered painfully but 
there was little help I could provide. This experience was worse for me 
than the pain I suffered later as I, too, became addicted to morphine to 
drown the sorrow and loneliness of losing her.

I knew I was in trouble. Twice I quit the drug "cold turkey" and twice the 
unforgiving cravings brought me back. The third attempt to quit made me 
realize that I would rather kill myself than to go through withdrawal pains 

I sought and received help from the methadone clinic. I was on the program 
for 11 months. I have been off the program for four months and I have no 
physical pains or cravings for either drug.

I have no intention to touch morphine again. I take time to talk to other 
addicts and tell them of the benefits of the methadone program. I owe my 
life to the doctors and staff of the clinic.

To lose this service would be a tragedy for all residents of Saskatoon.

Bob Schumacker, Saskatoon
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