This book, the Addicted Child is one of the best “non-novel” books I have read in a long time. If you are like me, your life has been touched in one way or another by addiction and/or mental illness. Reading this book reminded me of so many things I didn’t ‘see’ when it came to my family member. I know her parents saw some of the signs very early on, but in reading this book there were so many I missed. Maybe I didn’t even miss them all but felt that “this couldn’t be happening in our family.”
Disclosure: I received product in exchange for my review. All opinions are 100% mine.
How the Addicted Child Can Help Parents
There are so many things in this book that will help a parent be on the lookout for any signs of substance abuse. Richard goes over all of the types of drugs (illegal), over-the-counter, prescription medications, and the signs to look out for.
There is also a section that deals with self-harm, anorexia, bulimia, gaming addition, and even cell phone addiction (or abuse). You will find a lot of information on resources for substance abuse, mental health resources, and more.
About My Niece
I only wish I had been able to read this book or one like it years ago.
The thing is, no family is immune from having an
addict substance abuse disorder family member. Parents can do their best and it can still happen. My niece started her substance abuse disorder around the age of 14-15 years of age. I remember a friend of mine saying she heard that AC (that is what I will call her) was seen taking pills in the highschool bathroom. I was so mad because I was sure they were just Tylenol or ibuprofen. So much so that I didn’t even tell my sister. So for a while, I blamed myself. Because what if I had? Would it have made a difference? I know now the answer is no.
If I told you all that AC went through in all of the years of her substance abuse disorder and later with her mental health disorder you would be astounded. But that part isn’t my story to tell.
AC was in and out of rehabilitation centers. She didn’t have a drug of choice, it was mainly whatever she was able to get her hands on. I felt she had mastered the art of lying or at least telling you what she knew you wanted to hear very early on. Whenever she slid backward she always promised she would be better next time. There were many different times and situations that AC had gone through. She did graduate high school and for a while had a job or so. There were also many times I and others in our family thought things would get better.
We weren’t sure but felt that AC had an underlying mental health issue(s). Some doctors had mentioned she had this or that, but always said the substance abuse disorder needed to be dealt with first. I myself always felt that the mental health disorder needed to be dealt with first which would then allow the substance abuse to be worked with. But that wasn’t how it seemed to work. It is a vicious cycle because they self-medicate to take care of the mental health issues and then the mental health issues make them want to use.
From October 2019 to January 2020 AC was in a local jail for some things that she had done due to her use of drugs and poor decision making. AC then went from jail to prison from the end of January 2020 to August 31, 2020. We talked to one another more than once a week and emailed back and forth quite often. She got out on an early release due to Covid19 and good behavior.
My husband and I had visited her during her time in jail, at least once a week, sometimes twice. When she had to go to court my husband and I went to support her as her father was in a terrible car accident very early January 2020. So her Mom was with her Dad during this time. My husband and I had always been close to AC, and even closer during the hardest time in her life. Due to different circumstances, I hadn’t seen her from the time she got out of prison until the morning she had overdosed and passed away. (which was November 2, 2020)
The heartache this has caused has immense, to say the least. She was only 23 and more than half of her life was her, dealing with her demons. One of our biggest quotes after AC passed was “If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever”. This is so very true when it comes to a situation like this.
It will be 5 months April 2 since she left us. Some days are easier than others. Our family misses her every single day.
If you are a parent that has an up-and-coming teenager buy this book.
Even if your child never touches drugs or alcohol it is better to be prepared and know what to look out for.
Description of ‘The Addicted Child’ by Richard Capriola
The Addicted Child is a resource for parents. It addresses adolescent substance abuse. Readers learn the extent of adolescent substance abuse in America, how drugs impact the teen brain, warning signs every family should know about, assessments and tests important for a comprehensive assessment and diagnosis, how eating disorders and self-injury can accompany substance abuse, how to recognize street drugs being used by teens, and resources to help identify treatment options.
Parents will learn from Richard Capriola, a mental health and addictions counselor, the importance of comprehensive assessments – and what to look for in a counselor to know you’re getting the right help.
Praise ‘The Addicted Child’ by Richard Capriola
Literary Titan Book Award (Gold) 2020
In this pragmatic and accessible text Rick Capriola has distilled the wisdom he accrued from decades of experience on the frontlines of substance use treatment. He provides a valuable resource to all parents attempting to find their bearings in the often confusing and frightening world of intertwined adolescent psychological and substance use problems.”-Major R. Bradshaw, Ph.D Department Of Psychiatry, Houston Methodist Hospital
“Rick has written an invaluable tool for parents. The Addicted Child helps parents understand how alcohol and drugs influence their child’s behavior, offers resources to help parents find effective treatment options, and explains which assessments are important for a diagnosis and the professionals that should be involved in making those assessments.”-Jamison Monroe, Founder and Chairman Of Newport Healthcare
Whilst doing research on an upcoming book I stumbled upon this newly released gem. Richard Capriola is a retired addiction counselor who has taken the time to share his extensive experience in this well-written book. The language is easy and the flow of information effortless. The book tackles the shock of parents when they first learn about their children’s drug use disorders and mental health problems, before providing the information necessary to help the parents help their children.
It describes the commonly abused drugs out there (from a US perspective) and highlights the need to look out for process disorders such as eating disorders and self-harm. Finally, the book demystifies the principles for adolescent substance abuse treatment and describes available treatment approaches. In my opinion, a fantastic book that is targeted towards parents that want to be better informed when it comes to drug abuse and mental health problems of their children. A must-read!”- Stephan Neff, My Steps To Sobriety
“The book hooks you right from the acknowledgment. The author tells a poignant story describing why he decided to write this book and goes on to share stories of parents who were surprised by underlying mental illnesses. This personal touch gives the book a human quality that puts the rest of the information into perspective. Any parent would benefit from this book.”-Literary Titan
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Giveaway Addicted Child by Richard Capriola
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