Brother’s that Are in it Together


I am thirty-six years old. I grew up in rural Missouri and went to school in a small town. That said, there was not much to do growing up. When I was thirteen years old, I smoked my first joint. I included my younger brother, who was eleven at the time. Things would be very different today if I had only known the portal I was opening.

Growing up, we were best friends. We did everything together. We hunted, fished, rode horses, and got into trouble. When I was fifteen, I got drunk for the first time. I enjoyed how it made me feel, so I had to introduce him to the fun. In the blink of an eye, we were participating in meth, painkillers, benzos, and any other mind-altering substances we could get our hands on.

After I graduated high school, I left town and went to work on the road. Shortly after I left town, he dropped out of high school. When I returned, I had piled up quite a bit of cash. We started cutting firewood to sell, and of course, we spent all the money we made on drugs. I then realized how bad his addiction got. He started using IV, and I told him he needed to stop. He told me he couldn’t, that you can’t stop once you start. I decided I was going to show him it was possible. I was addicted to Oxycontin, so I let him shoot me up, but I had him stop; I didn’t quite care for the buzz.

Three years later, we went to work on the road together. Our adventures were riddled with drunken extravaganzas and partying, including drugs, as well as many fistfights with each other. The roller coaster went up and down for the next ten years. We eventually had a falling out. He liked meth, and I liked opiates. I hated it when he was high, and he hated it when I was high.

When I was thirty-three, I tried shooting meth for the first time, and it was off to the races. Then fentanyl came into the scene. After he OD’d and survived, I thought I would try and hang around to watch over him just in case. After all, he was my little brother.

It wasn’t long, and then I OD’d and survived. We would get each other high and have a big argument at least every other time we hung out. We both OD’d several times and finally decided we needed help. But I thought he needed it more so than me.

Finally, I told him I would be right behind him if he went to treatment. I didn’t necessarily plan on going, though. Shortly after he arrived here at Narconon, I began getting calls from the same guy who helped him. Things then started playing out right, and the next thing I knew, I was on a plane to Narconon. I had a hard time at first. It was my first time ever going to treatment, but I was soon determined to stay and fix what was broken between us.

One month in, we received a call. My brother’s youngest son, who was fourteen, had been killed in a motorcycle accident. We were on a plane back home the next day. I didn’t plan on going back to treatment. But after the funeral, he wanted to return to Narconon, so I felt I should go with him. We were in good hands and realized we made the right decision to finish the program. I am very grateful to be here, and I cannot imagine how much different things would have been had we stayed home. My guess is there would have been at least one more funeral by now.

As we neared the program’s end, we somehow began to heal from our grievances. We are best friends again and always will be. I owe so much to everyone here at Narconon and, most of all, to him. I am excited to begin my new life with the tools I have acquired in the past few months. The people I have met will always be in my heart and thoughts.

S.F. Narconon Graduate

If you or a loved one are struggling with losing a loved one and masking the pain with addiction, reach out for help before it is too late. We all think, “That will never be me. I'll never overdose.” And then the next thing we know, it is too late. Here at Narconon, we help people get the treatment they need. Give us a call today to start your journey to recovering and healing.


Alina Snowden

Originally from Kentucky, Alina decided after changing her life that she wanted to help others understand the dangers of addiction and help families know what to do if their loved one is struggling. She now writes articles to spread awareness and positivity about how those with addiction problems can turn their lives around.