Monica recalls when she finally decided to stop using heroin and discusses how she accomplished this.
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Deciding to Stop Using Heroin - Monica's Story August 4, 1986, I woke up and I said, “That’s it, I am done. I am absolutely done. I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.” So I found a methadone program for us both to go and get on and I did that, and used methadone the way it was supposed to be used. It’s a really great medication to kind of help addicts get their lives back together. A lot of people abuse it. You know, they go to a methadone clinic instead of when the drugs are bad on the street. They’ll say, “Yeah, let’s just go to the clinic until the heroin gets better,” and I did that a lot. So I used it right, got off of it and have remained clean and sober, and I have just tried to get my message out to people, and the biggest thing about running your story and sharing. That is never forgetting where you came from, and that’s so important because the minute you forget that and you think you know it all, that’s when you’ll take your fall. Also something very interesting, the time you are the most successful in your life, that’s when you can take your hardest fall also because you think you are untouchable, and I have to always know that I am one step away from taking a fall. I mean, I don’t live on the edge and think oh my God, this is going to happen. I don’t live like that, but I just know that if I don’t do certain things I will be right back using. If I get my feelings hurt, I don’t express how I feel, that’s very dangerous. So I always have to have a safe arena and have support people and groups to do that, and I just really encourage women to find that, even if they don’t have the money to go into treatment, find a support group. That’s the most important thing to be able to share your story and hear other stories to know you are not alone because about addiction it’s that loneliness and that fear. And when you do heroin it makes you feel all warm, and it kind of takes away that fear, but it’s so temporary because you just, you got to keep fixing and fixing and fixing. And you have to keep yourself in check all the time.