Quit pretending

“I take the pill and scrape the coating off, place it down on the plate and crush it, make it smooth with the card, and anxiously make it into a line, I pick up the dirty bill, and roll it up, put it to my nose, and sniff there it goes.
“My pain, worries, and cares all disappear, just like that, all into my nose. I’m flying high, never felt better.”
For those naive enough to think Rainy River District somehow is immune to the scourge of drug abuse, the above passage was written by 17-year-old Tara Tovey, a Fort Frances girl who has just finished rehab for an addiction to Oxycontin.
That’s right—a Fort Frances teen.
It’s certainly not surprising to local addictions counsellors, who revealed at a conference here back in November that abuse of prescription drugs, including Percocet and Percodan, is a real problem in our area. But their plea to open a methadone clinic here to help addicts kick the habit has fallen on deaf ears so far.
Clearly there’s no more time to waste.
The local OPP and Substance Abuse Prevention Team deserve kudos for their efforts to bring home the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse to our children, whether through the D.A.R.E. program or guest speakers like Don Young—a former drug user and dealer who addressed Grade 7/8 students in Mine Centre, Atikokan, and at J.W. Walker School here on Friday.
It’s a tough job given the fine line between warning students about the consequences of their choices and lecturing them on the evils of drugs and alcohol. After all, tell a kid not to do something and that’s the first thing they’ll probably try to do.
That’s where young Tara hopes to help with her story:
“My eyes are heavy, my pupils are pinpricks, all I feel is nothing, just high. This feeling is no longer a want, it’s a hard-core depressing painful need, so evil it’ll take your soul, so quickly.
“I look in the mirror, at what I’ve become, my hopes, my dreams all gone. How did this happen, I was on top of the world, I thought I had it all. I thought wrong.
“Somebody, please, help me. . . .”
Still want to pretend we don’t have a drug problem here?