We’re collecting stories from people that illustrate what prevention and resilience look like. A prevention or resilience story may illustrate risk and protective factors, and why a person made choices not to misuse substances.
This collection will be organized into monologues, as told by people who submit their stories in this submission form. Stories will be kept as close to how they were submitted as possible, to retain and honor the voice, memories, experiences, and perspectives of those who lived through them. The intention of this collection of stories is to reduce stigma around talking about difficult choices, to build empathy for people with different lived experiences around these choices, and to offer healing to people who feel their story is one of isolation who may see a story similar to their own within the collection.
What is the difference between a recovery story and a prevention story?
A recovery story is a real-life story of an individual’s path to recovery that illustrates the science of how recovery supports and services work. These stories are inspiring, help to reduce stigma, and encourage others who may be struggling with substance misuse to find their path toward recovery.
A prevention story is a real-life story of an individual’s path in life which illustrates concepts of prevention science, how they were present in the author’s life, and how they influenced a path that didn’t lead to substance use or a substance use disorder. These stories may illustrate risk factors for the development of a substance use disorder, such as adverse childhood experiences including parental substance use disorders, parental incarceration, intimate partner violence in the home, homelessness, or others. These stories may also illustrate protective factors against developing a substance use disorder, such as family norms and values that don’t promote substance use, low availability of substances, or strong connections to the community.
These stories may include times when a person had to make choices around substance use that were difficult, such as not choosing to use when there was peer pressure. These stories can look like many things, but they would be different from a recovery story in that the person telling the story never entered a period of active addiction to a substance. These stories can also be inspiring, help reduce stigma, and encourage others to engage in the work of prevention and help young people find their paths through adolescence without engaging in substance misuse.
I honor that girl who kept fighting for the really good stuff, even when good stuff was hard to believe in, hard to trust….One of the crossroads I stared at over and over was my own choices around alcohol and drug use. I find myself making choices around that more often then you might think, for someone who’s never had a drink of alcohol. For me, that’s not where the good stuff is….You can’t know how things would be if you had made other choices, those roads are behind you. And I won’t blame myself for the impossible choices I made. But I do think my choice to lean into the adults I knew who saw my light, and my choice to avoid the substance that called my dad’s name, have helped me keep finding good stuff. Read Sarah’s full story for inspiration.
Requires sign-in to google forms.
Submissions are due by April 4, 2022.
If you want to give your story anonymously, you do no need to provide any demographics at all. Your unique perspective can be an insight to your personal brand of resilience and strength, but your story is yours to tell only how and when you are ready, so you’re welcome to submit without any demographics or name, should you choose to. If you do provide your name, we will honor your story and words by including your name with your submission.
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