Author talks about life as a heroin addict
La PORTE — La Porte County CASA and the La Porte County Drug Free Partnership hosted a special In-Service Event at State Street Community Church last week with guest Speaker Herbert “Herb” Stepherson author of “Junkbox Diaries: A Day in the Life of a Heroin Addict” to raise addiction awareness in the community.
CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocates, provides children who have been abused and neglected a volunteer to be their ally and guide them through the child welfare system. CASA volunteers get to know the child on a personal level and then advocate for them in court.
The event was special to Stepherson because he had had his own encounters with CASA during his time in the court systems.
Many gathered to hear his harrowing story of his struggle with heroin. He shared that speaking at these kinds of events helps him stay sober like a traditional meeting would in other sober living programs.
“The saddest thing about my story is that it’s somebody’s reality, today,” he said.
Stepherson was well on his way to a promising career in baseball when he starting abusing substances.
He ran into trouble in his teams when he was having difficulty feeling satisfied with what the world had to offer him. He was always looking for “something more.”
“I was confused all of the time,” he said. “I didn’t know who I wanted to be. I could never accept love. All of that went away when I started using.”
Stepherson lost much of what he held dear while he was using. He lost his best friend to an overdose when he was just 20 years old.
As years passed, his family lost faith in him. Soon he had nothing but a car, where he lived with his pregnant girlfriend, and had no form of employment.
About seven years ago, his son was born addicted to both heroin and cocaine because of his parent’s dueling addictions.
Stepherson lost custody of his child soon after. It was a decision by the courts Stepherson said he was relieved to hear due to the depth of his addiction to heroin.
Stepherson has since gotten sober and become a nationally certified family recovery coach and intervention coordinator with True Interventions, a company that provides recovery resources to families.
During his speech, he expressed how grateful he was for the CASA volunteers for being an advocate for his child during his battle with heroin.
By advocating for children in need, CASA volunteers are doing everything they can to ensure that these abused and neglected children are going to the best and safest place possible. Interested volunteers should visit www.lpfamilyadvocates.com