How sweet son become drug addict before death: Mum
"I HAVE yet to find the words to describe the experience of having your beautiful, caring, kind, and sweet child become paranoid, violent, crazed, irrational, haggard, needy, dependent, ringing you at any hour of the day or night most likely between 2 and 6am, hopeless, pleading, loving, blaming, drug addict."
Toowoomba mother Linda Davies' words are terrifying for any parent.
Mrs Davies' son, Trevor, died at the age of 24 in 2006.
"Trevor didn't want to be a drug addict; he was a very kind and giving person, a Christian who shared his faith," Mrs Davies told an audience at Sunrise Way earlier this year.
"He brought wonderful people into our family life, good people who helped him in his battle with drugs. However, once Trevor started using drugs he just couldn't stop. He was an addict. It's the most terrible pain to watch anyone, not just your own child, go through drug addiction. Not being able to make it better."
Trevor went to rehab several times in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Newcastle in bids to overcome his addiction after he began smoking marijuana as a teenager before moving on to other drugs.
He was also hospitalised during times of mental health crises but would be discharged after short stays of a couple of days.
Mrs Davies said that at the time, "there was simply no help at all".
Speaking with The Chronicle yesterday, she said she doubted the situation had markedly improved over the past decade.
Easy access to counselling and rehabilitation, she said, remained problematic.
"You have a small span of time to act and if you have to wait days or weeks to get help you can miss that window. If you're not close to where help is available that's an added problem," she said.
Ultimately though, she said, the decision to seek treatment was something that the addict had to act on.
Shifting to that mindset potentially could be aided by improved counselling services, she suggested. She also felt that it Trevor might have been helped if he had been directed to some sort of facility while in hospital.
"He didn't want to leave. And he didn't want to be an addict," she said.
"But he just couldn't make that break."