Woodbury mother takes aim at methamphetamine addiction issuesThe things that one Woodbury woman went through while her daughter was on methamphetamine are things only other mothers of addicts can understand.
By: Riham Feshir, Woodbury Bulletin
The things that Debra Roach went through while her daughter was on methamphetamine are things only other mothers of addicts can understand.
“It is the worst life to have for a parent, for families,” the Woodbury woman said.
Calling it a “devil drug,” Roach is now trying to form a Minnesota chapter of MAMa, or “Mothers Against Methamphetamine.”
After years of dealing with her daughter’s addiction, Roach sought support from MAMa online. Then she said she thought Minnesota needed its own chapter.
How it began
Roach’s daughter, 26, began using meth when she hung around the wrong people, she said.
Choosing not to share her name for privacy reasons, Roach said her daughter was only 15 when she started dating a boy who introduced her to meth.
She went from being a straight-A student to flunking high school. She would run away from home, spend nights outside of the house without keeping in touch with her parents and isolate herself from her family.
“She would never call anybody back, she would never text anybody back,” Roach said.
Then finally at 17, she came to Roach and said she needed help.
She got back on track, went to treatment and was off meth.
But that didn’t last long.
Roach said it seemed like every three years her daughter would be off meth for a few months and go back on it.
“I’ve never seen a drug that can do something like that to somebody and wreck somebody’s whole life,” Roach said.
Roach’s daughter went to treatment a second time, then she relapsed.
That last time was the worst, Roach said.
People stole from her, her friends took advantage of her and continued pressuring her into using again, she added.
Every night, Roach would go to sleep with her cell phone in her hand worried that she would never see her daughter again.
“The night my daughter went to treatment was the first night I got to put my phone on the charger,” she said.
During those months, Roach felt helpless and didn’t know what to do. She started blaming herself and thinking “what did I do wrong?”
“No matter how much you talk to them, yell at them, not talk to them, it’s not going to help,” she said.
She wanted to find something similar to Mothers Against Drunk Drivers, something specific for mothers of meth addicts.
When she found Mothers Against Methamphetamine, she thought others in Minnesota would benefit from a local chapter.
She’s currently in the process of forming the nonprofit that she hopes will become an educational organization to spread awareness about the dangerous drug.
“There are so many people out there that don’t know how to cope,” Roach said.
Getting back on track
Her daughter is now sober once again and is back on track with a GED, a job and her own place.
“I believe in giving people chances,” Roach said, adding, “Our prisons are too full of drug addicts and drug dealers that maybe treatment could’ve helped.”
Roach is also studying to earn her degree in criminal justice from Rasmussen College, while working a full-time job in St. Paul.
She’s also starting to speak about her experience at treatment centers and is in the process of gathering a group to form a board for “Minnesota MAMas.”
She said she’s hoping she can help more people by providing support and therapy resources for addicts.
“You never know what their rock bottom is going to be,” Roach said. “If you can help one person, you feel like you’ve done something.”
Roach can be contacted through email at firstname.lastname@example.org