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Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Heroin(e) Diaries Part V

Melissa is a 37 year old woman struggling with addiction. She is fighting her way through addiction with the help of the Brighton Recovery Center for Women.

In an effort to put a face on addiction, is documenting her journey. It's real and raw and relevant. She is our Northern Kentucky neighbor. She is our heroine. Her story is important. 

Here's Mel:

Part 5 of my story is about how far my drinking and drugging, you might want to get confortable. My mother came down here packed Morgan up and took her back to Celina, I wasn’t even there to say goodbye because I had stolen money from my mom’s purse to get high and by the time I got back Morgan was on her way to live a better life.

Somewhere in the mix I was introduced to crack, and it began to dominate my every move. I couldn’t get my mind off getting more and since I had no job the ways of getting money was to start stealing from store and returning the items to get gift cards or just get what the dope boy wanted.  Crack took me away from everyone and everything, it dominated my mind. I began staying at dope house that served all day and all night long and when men came in and wanted a women I became that girl.

Thus began a new career of prostitution. I had no home, no car, no family. The only home I had was the streets of Over the Rhine and the only family was the lost souls that walked them with me. I have seen things that no human eyes should ever witness and I have done things for money that no women should ever do especially with strangers. 

Being uncomfortable became comfortable. Each time I got into a car I took the chance of being raped or never coming back alive and that became OK with me. Not just for me, but for all the women whose lives that have stolen by this disease and walked the same broken roads that I walked daily. I was in and out of jail every week; the Hamilton County Justice Center became my address.

I can remember seeing cars that resembled my sisters and prayed that it was her coming to rescue me. It never was. 

My sister told me that they only way she knew how to track me was by getting online and seeing my arrest record, that was her way of knowing if I was still alive. She said one time I hadn’t been arrested in a couple of weeks so she called records and they informed her she might want to call the  morgue because girls like me usually don’t get found.

Sometimes you just don’t see a girl on the streets anymore, and then you hear that their body parts have been located in different parts and or different wooded lots. Yet I continually risked me being that girl to feed my disease.

To know that my sister had to hear those words about her little sister hurts my heart, I can’t even imagine how it hurt hers. 

This is who I became a thief, a junkie, a prostitute and an overall all menace to society. Daily necessities became a thing of the past. Things we take for granted like bathing, brushing your teeth, running water, your own clothes, toilet paper, soap, electricity and knowing where you are going to lay your head. Sleeping became a luxury I no longer had; the disease of addiction does not have time to sleep. I stayed in abandon buildings that had nothing but the reminisce of whoever lived their prior. A change of clothes came when they were found or when I had stolen then from some John’s house.
I have had things done to me that I would rather not discuss but if you think it could have happened it, believe me it did. I adapted to my surroundings, this life style overtook the daughter, the mother, the sister, and the friend I once was. I became an animal trying to survive in a place I did not belong. I had literally sold my soul to the devil.

In 2004 I got a possession and did my time at Talbert House waiting for a bed at Chaney Allen Treatment Center. I was finally introduced to some type of understanding of who I was and I wasn’t alone. I was introduced to Alcoholics Anonymous. Thank God AA comes into jails and institutions to give people like me some hope.

A woman came in and gave her lead I heard my story coming out of someone else’s mouth. She had felt the same way I had and she had a ‘him” also. She was once as lost as I was but yet here she stood in a jail willingly sharing her experience. I saw a glimpse of hope and asked her to sponsor me. She took me to Chaney Allen where I would spend 3 more months to find myself again, to learn how my perception of life had been screwed up since I was a child, to work the steps of AA with my sponsor, to go to meetings, to become a part of something positive.

My sponsor said I should begin believing in something bigger than me. She never told me who or what just some type of Higher Power. I knew this meant it was time for a long talk with God.
I began to get happy again and started to see the light. I got to see my mom and Morgan again for the first time in years. Life got good.

However it didn’t last long, when I got my 6 month coin in sobriety I had just relapsed and spent the next 2 years back in Over the Rhine. The vicious cycle had begun again.

In 2006 I had many misdemeanors and a theft charge that put me back in Talbert House for 5 months. I was released in March and went directly back downtown, but knew in my heart it was not going to last long. On April 11th of 2007 I had no idea this would be the beginning of a journey of soul searching and lifestyle changes. I had found that life didn’t have to be so miserable and I deserved to be happy. I was about to actually get it this time and find out the meaning of true happiness.


  1. Wow. What a strong woman. Shocking. I hope she's doing okay now.

  2. Mel I am so very proud of you! You are an inspiration to everyone you meet! You are an incredible woman and so worth this process. I love you!

  3. as an old friend I never knew the truth about your situation. rumors would fly but I didn't want to believe the beautiful person I knew was so lost. Not that setting old rumors straight at this point matters, what I am getting from this blog is HOPE for those who are struggling. CONTINUE TO BE THE LIGHT FOR SO MANY THAT NEED THE DARK TO RUN!!

  4. Mel, I love your total honesty. Keep coming back, it's our only chance

  5. Oh my God. I just stumbled across these and read every single one. You lived my life! I live in Fort Thomas right now and have been needing to hear that I'm not the only one.

    Mel I love you! Please keep teling your story.

  6. Happy Belated Birthday! Love you- MJ

  7. So Thats It? I finally allow myself to read this, and I see the person she was, the person she could be, the person she is in her heart and her soul. A glimmer of hope and a glimpse of the potential within her. And I keep looking for the next part- the part where she finds true love- finally reconnects with the only best friend she has really ever had only to find she had missed my wedding (again:) and both pregnancies. And I was still there, as always, yet no longer the enabler I had once been. I tried so many times to reach through to her. I came as "family" support to her rehab, I picked her up from jail/ rehab/ meetings. I took her to court and I visited her in the psych ward. I wasn't mentioned in the story....but I have loved and accepted her since the 5th grade- and she has always been a wild child- but I never would have predicted this. And every time she sobers up and reaches out, I am there because I will always be her friend, whether I am significant in her mind at this present moment or not. And I am not her only family- I know her REAL family- she is loved. But she is an addict- and loving an addict sucks. It hurts. It pisses you off and it scares the shit out of you. She is not the only one I have loved and I am probably one myself if we really get down to it. But we all make choices. Make the right one this time. Please. Not just for those who love you, but for yourself! God willing you are even alive. MJ