Randy – Age 29

Name (or alias): Randy

Age: 29

What substance(s) are you struggling with? Oxycodone

How long have you been struggling? 10 years

Are you sober? If so, how long have you been sober? Yes. 34 months

What are your goals for your current treatment? To continue seeking treatment with SOAP counselors and my doctor. I also enjoy SMART recovery and AA/NA Meetings.

What strengths have you learned since you have been in treatment to help you stay sober? I have worked hard on my patience and figuring out what my triggers are and have found exercises to cope with these triggers – from journaling to working out, playing sports and video games to my biggest help, other than my support network, which is chess!!

Due to your recovery experiences, what would you advise young people in Worcester about substance use? To learn as much as possible about all illicit drugs and every possible consequence to the abuse of drugs and alcohol and not just read the words, but actually retain the information.

What would you attribute your success in recovery to? My support network and a whole lot of will power.

How has addiction affected your relationships with friends, family, peers? It actually hasn’t impacted my relationships for the most part. I am extremely lucky. I’m probably one of the rare cases that hasn’t burned any bridges – YET!!

What are some of the common pitfalls and places that people in Worcester can avoid to stay substance free? Stay away from bars, clubs, and gentlemen’s clubs, but also stay away from the commons, also Millbury Street, Piedmont Street, and the Valley.

What resources were the most helpful to you in Worcester, MA in achieving sobriety? CAC Worcester. Everyone there has been extremely knowledgeable, kind, understanding and sensitive to my needs. Along with my doctor and AA/NA meting.

What resources would you like to see in Worcester, MA to help decrease substance abuse? More online work shops and SMART recovery meetings.

What do you suggest for preventative measures for young people before they pick up a substance? Maybe a class on all drugs once or twice a month at schools and may even a required online test or workshop.

What else could the community do to make it safer? More public awareness classes for everyone including classes for people who enable and more half way houses and sober living environments maybe even some therapeutic communities.