She was hiding.  Even after years of headlines and documentaries and front page coverage on America’s drug crisis, this mother refused to share her story – with anyone.

I can tell she is hiding.  And I ache to help her.

A professional colleague, she was just beginning to get a glimpse of this new world.  Her college-aged son was using drugs.  The kind or quantities she didn’t know – or wasn’t ready to say.  There were no warning signs.  At least none that she recognized.

Sadly, I watched as she uncovered his addiction one frightening chapter at a time.  It was like reading a gripping murder mystery and trying to guess who the perpetrator was.   First the failing grades.  Then the sullen moods.  And finally, the summons. Was he actually selling?  And if so, to whom?

Ultimately, she will realize there is no perpetrator.  It was the kid all along.  No one else had caused it – and certainly not her, although she doesn’t know that yet.

As confused and shattered as the boy is, so is his mom.

Yet, shame envelopes her.  She is not ready to face this hideous condition that can enslave families – rich, poor, broken or united – and that she, too, is now part of a world without boundaries.

She knows there is help around her.  But she’s still in hiding.

When she is ready, I will be here for her.

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