I can’t do it on my own.
Hi. I’m Amanda. The Boston Rescue Mission has a way of loving the unlovable and trusting the untrustworthy. No other program has been able to help me. I’m glad, because I didn’t think anything was going to work.
When I was two years old, my mom was a raging alcoholic and my step dad was a prescription drug addict. I felt like I raised myself, even in the crazy house where everyone was always over. I left my home at 16 and started drinking during high school. At 18, I started to run wild with no rules. When I drank, I felt funny, attractive, sociable, and stopped noticing how anxious I was.
When I was 22, my stepdad committed suicide; he couldn’t live with or without drugs. Depression overwhelmed me. I worried more and more, and psych meds were added to my alcohol addiction. When my mom and I reconnected, I took her to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. While I was there, they recruited me! I was in major denial about my heavy drinking.
Check this out: I met my husband at work while bartending. When I was sober, I didn't like him, but when I drank, I thought he was great. We had kids together, but the house became very unsafe.
After I left him, I drank every day for 3 years. My depression was out of control. Without my kids, I thought I would die, and I became suicidal. But I kept thinking about my father, and how that made me feel. I didn’t want to do that to my kids, so I soldiered on. On Mother's Day, they found me lying on the ground with a blood alcohol level over .400.
My medical state had become very serious, but I didn't think I had the strength to become sober on my own. Someone in detox said "pray for the willingness to be willing." I had exactly nothing. I realized that without further treatment, I was going to become one of those people who died on the street with no one around to care--a Jane Doe. I could see what was coming--a nip of vodka in the morning to stop the shakes, back to my drug addict boyfriend, and on the streets. I prayed to see the way out. Then I received a call from the Boston Rescue Mission.
A lot of people may say it, but the Mission changed my life. Everyone is very kind. The structure and ability to help others gives me a sense of well-being. Taking and taking all the time is not how I want to be. Now I can walk down the street with confidence, sleep better, and live without fear. I can work, take care of my children the way they deserve.
- Mary Ellen