Family Member or friend
I have supported my 30-year-old son with his addiction since he was age 14. He has had over 35 admissions to psychiatric units, detoxes and rehabs in NSW and Victoria, not to mention numerous presentations to emergency departments.
Accessing the right supports for him has been a struggle. Alcohol and other drug (AOD) services and mental health (MH) services have referred him to the other. He has private health insurance but the public system isn’t connected to the private system. He has a trauma history and a mental health diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder.
Stigma really affects the way he engages with services. If he feels he is judged, he will not engage. Stigma has also affected me. We have both become socially isolated from friends and family that don't understand addiction and think 'he should just stop using' and that I should 'stop supporting him'.
If only it were that easy!