About Junk

My brother is a junkie.  I am not.  He used to be sweet & smart.  Now he’s not.

Heroin is his sister now.  

I am not.

10 years ago my brother broke his collar bone. His doctor prescribed him Oxycontin. Within months his Oxycontin addiction was full blown. A poor college student, he found a replacement when his prescription ran out, HEROIN.

I started this page to help me deal with his addiction and the havoc it wrecks upon our family. It has evolved into a safe place where people can talk about how addiction has affected there lives. My Junkie Brother accepts submissions to share on this blog. If you have a story you would like to tell please send me an email.

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26 thoughts on “About Junk”

  1. I googled “my brother is a con-artist and heroin addict” and your site came up. I think we have a lot in common…. My brother was addicted to heroin for 5 years. Then he went to rehab to get clean…. then of course relapsed recently. For the past 2 months, he’s been using, stealing from our family, our church, and our neighbors. He realized this and checked himself back into rehab. The SOB called my grandparents and made up some story to get out of rehab. Now he is living with them and everyone else in the family has disowned him and my grandparents. it sucks seeing your family torn apart. Especially when you are really close to your brother. If you need to talk, just let me know. I’d love to share stories sometime.

    ~Stacy~

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    1. My brother is a heroin addict as well. He has been for 10 years. I feel numb to my own life because of what he’s done to his. He’s ruined my family. I don’t know what to do anymore.

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      1. Can I third that. My brother is an addict too. 7 years. It destroys everything. I wait for the telephone call that he is in jail or dead. My brain mentally prepares for these events…and then my heart falters….and decides to hope in change…and the possibility of an alternative outcome to life’s current sadness. This is stupid. Because each time he just lies and it’s back on the roller coaster.

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      2. I’m in the same place. My brother has destroyed my family. My grandfather stopped eating and died after my brother went to jail. I feel so hopeless and my family only pushes me away.

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  2. Having been through the chaotic experience of being a sibling to an addict (now a long term methadone user) I am painfully aware that I have profoundly changed to an extent that I will never be quite the same or be able to see the world in the same way that I once did.
    Over the years I have wondered why this experience has had such an overwhelming impact and I have decided that it is partially because I have had the experience of encountering a problem that COULD NOT BE FIXED The experience of learning that YOU CANNOT FIX THIS PERSON really stopped me in my tracks and I still find it very confronting.
    I have felt a lot of despair, guilt and sadness over this drugs impact on my brsibling. It has also made me strong and independent and empathic towards others.
    I would just like to say to anyone who is struggling with this problem I know that it fu**ing sux, and it feels like no one cares.
    I hope it makes you feel a little bit better to know that you have probably grown far beyond your years from this experience.

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  3. I stumbled across your blog and began weeping immediately as I started reading. Everything you have experienced, I have been going through the past five years. I can’t believe how similar our stories are. It’s a horrible thing to go through and I wouldn’t wish something like this on my worst enemies. I begin to question my faith sometimes because of it. Why him? Why my brother who had everything going for himself? A former Marine who was one of the smartest and brightest people I know? I’ll never know why. Keep posting. It’s really nice to know that I’m not the only one going through the same, not that it’s a good thing.

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  4. I am the sister to a brother who has been in and out of jail for 6 years now. He is a meth, heroin and bath salt user. I’m surprised that he is still living.. even though he isn’t really living, he is just a shell of who he used to be. His drug use started when I was 7 and he was 14 and our parents had just got divorced, he started off with weed and my parents weren’t too worried, not knowing what the future had in store. Eventually about 4 years later he moved on to the strong stuff and it worried my parents, they tried to put him in rehab but he signed himself out everytime, since he was 18 he was allowed to do whatever he pleased. I was 11 when I found out why my brother wasn’t at my elementary school graduation or my dance recitals or even my birthday parties. I was forced to mature at a young age so I could even mentally grasp the concept. I am almost 15 now, and it is around the time I last saw my brother 3 years ago. Now, he is mentally unstable due to drugs and has just been released from jail. He shows up at our house about once a month and each time having to call the police because of the restraining order we have against him. I miss my old brother, even though its hard to remember a time when he wasn’t like this.. Anyways your story helps me understand that i’m not alone in this and makes me want to start writing a blog to see if it would help me to vent, just like this story has made me feel as if a weight was lifted off my shoulders. Thank you for reading.

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    1. My brother has been addicted to heroin for 10 years. I’m suppose to be his little sister and I had to grow up to be the big sister and help take care of him. I don’t know what to do anymore. It’s gotten worst lately. And I just can’t keep living this lifestyle. I have two older siblings. And my parents are always so busy and stressed out with my brother’s problems I feel so insignificant to even go to them about mine. It’s taken years for me to even tell them things that have happened to me because I don’t want to stress them out more or break their hearts more. I’m losing hope everyday. How do you keep staying strong?

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  5. My baby brother was addicted to heroin (and so many other things) for a few years, and finally went to rehab (for the umpteenth time) last Thanksgiving. He’d stolen my grandparent’s truck, driven across the country, run off to Arkansas, lived in various Walmart parking lots, called me crying that someone was chasing him to murder him, stolen, lied, cheated, become a different person (“person” is generous here)… all kinds of things. I set clear limits in my life with him, telling him I loved him and because of that, I could not participate in the life he was living. I set these limits and so did much of my extended family. And when he went to rehab again in November, it seemed maybe the limits were working. He got out of rehab and looked so much more human. He seemed to really take to heart the things that he “learned.” He moved in with my mom (ugh), but then moved out and into his own apartment (with roommates). I told him that if he got a job, I’d be willing to have dinner with him. He got a job and called me to tell me he was ready to have that dinner! We had dinner and he held my 9 month old daughter for the first time. He seemed to be doing so well. He was working, paying his own bills, looked healthy and happy. Last Monday, he graduated from another step in a recovery program he was participating in. I hadn’t seen him in 2 months because I wasn’t ready to totally welcome him back into my life. And then Friday of last week, my mom called and told me he was dead. No real details… his roommate found his dead body lying in his bed. I called the coroner’s office and they couldn’t tell me much except that he had gone out drinking Tuesday night through Wednesday morning and his body was found on Friday. Of course I feel guilt that I didn’t spend more time with him when he was doing well, but I also know in my heart that I did the right thing for him. I feel very strongly that because we were able to set clear boundaries for him and clearly define our expectations, he was able to experience the small amount of “sobriety” that he did. That doesn’t change the fact that I miss him terribly and want to hold him and tell him that I love him and am proud of him for the successes that he did have and that I forgive him for everything he did that hurt our family.

    Addiction is a horrible thing. It tears families apart. Jail, court mandated programs, legal intervention… none of that is the answer. Jail didn’t scare my brother. He’d take it kind of like a resting period. What needs to happen is that families must be educated. I can relate to your feelings of frustration with your father. I have those same feelings about my mother, though I’m not sure I’ll fully express them to her anymore, considering her baby son has died. What needs to happen is that families must be educated that the only thing that really can “help” their addicted loved one is to make it clear that they refuse to accept the addicted life and associated choices as “the best possible” for that loved one.

    I commend you for being strong with your brother. Being the sibling of an addict is a unique role. You MUST take care of yourself and your little family. I am second guessing my choices now that my brother has died at 22 years old, but in the end, I am convinced that because of my refusal to accept that low life as what he deserved, he did get somewhat better and was able to taste something similar to sobriety before dying.

    I’m sorry for the length. I want to let you know that I can relate and I appreciate you sharing your feelings and experience.

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    1. I am weeping reading your words. My brother recently died and the guilt of the ‘tough love’ I tried to show him is killing me. When I think of the times I could have smiled and talked to him but instead I tried to be hard and ignore him so he would realise his behaviour was not acceptable and try to change for his own sake makes me feel so guilty

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      1. I am going through that same feeling. My brother came out of detox yet again today. When I am mean and cold I feel just as bad. Then I torture myself with guilt. Sometimes i just wanna throw my arms around him and hug him like we were little kids again. When I am kind i feel like I am being blind to what’s really going on . It tears me apart everyday. Sometimes I feel guilty for having a normal life when his is anything but.

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  6. I have been dealing with my brothers addiction to IV use of methamphetamine for 12 years now. Today I found out he has relapsed, again, and his wife is finally leaving him. He has been in and out of rehab many times, resulting in hope that this horror story may finally be over, only for the hope to be shattered into thousand painful pieces. I am just starting to come to terms with that this will never end. He will always be an addict and the brother who I shared my childhood with does not exist any more. I am sick of watching it ruin my own and my parents life. I am tired from the pain, the fear, and the empathy I feel for him and my parents. I am so tired.
    I am overwhelmed with the amount of other people with exactly the same story, the same fears,the same pain. And I feel a kind of relief in not being alone, and sorrow that this have to happen to so many people. I just want to say thanks to everyone for posting about their experiences and I want to send my love out to everyone who is going through the same. Thanks for making me realize I am not alone.

    Lots of love
    Lina

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  7. thank you all for sharing your experiences.

    I am in the same spot as you ladies.

    I am a writer. I am beginning research on addiction and the effects addicts have on their families. My mother is a clean gambling addict and addictive traits run in me. I wonder everyday if I am an addict ( I have smoke pot since I was 17 daily). I have never let my habit become an obligation like heroin has been to my brother.

    He is 72 days sober. And I pray every day for his sobriety. I sometimes feel like a hypocrite.

    I don’t know where I stand.

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  8. I found your blog while looking for some sort of outlet, something to make me feel like I’m not the only one going through this. I am really losing my mind, my brother is a heroin addict, well actually he is an “anything he can get his hands on” addict. He is only 20 years old, and we have been dealing with his addictions since he was 14. I am a registered nurse, my mom is too. My parents are still married (33 years) even though he tries every day to drive a wedge between them. We grew up in a wonderful household with a wonderful family and more opportunities than most. I am not gonna lie, I was everything my parents could dream of for a daughter, and sometimes I feel that my successes ultimately attributed to his downfall. Is it horrible that at this point, after 6 years, I pray that my brothers life ends soon. His disease continues to get worse and I feel as though his death would be the best thing for everyone especially him. His life has come down to 1 thing, sticking a needle in his arm. And I don’t want this to go on for years and years. I don’t want to watch my parents die from the stress he has caused. Am I crazy to wish death on my own brother? Please email me if you ever have the opportunity. I’d love to be able to connect with someone going through these same cycles.

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    1. I Think, at a certain point, it is normal to feel that he would be better off dead. Not only better for you, but for Everyone, him Included. Intravenous Addiction is the definition of evil. I feel Death would be more “humane” than addiction. If my Brother were to die, I feel I might be able to move on with my life, after time, and going through the 5 stages of grief. But the thing about addiction is, they keep during, and coming back, and then during again. So its hard to get over something that is constantly coming back. I just want you to know I have felt the same way about him Dying, as everyone in my family. Him included. But I don’t know if I will be thinking the same thing when and if he does die.

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  9. rather than typing out the details of my own heroin disaster, i’d prefer to hear more about yours… this is YOUR blog after all. you don’t seem to be posting much lately, well for quite a while actually. i’m on the flip side of where you are, and as clique as it sounds, a lot of things you’ve written, i’ve been there, but now look back and say “i sure wish i knew THIS back THEN.”

    i believe strongly that people who’ve already lost the battle (especially THIS one) tend to be the most useful resources for those who have not yet traveled here and vice versa. i would love to hear from you… i’m not after gory details of the events in your life, i don’t want to compare stories, i don’t try to “one-up” people, i don’t pity others, i don’t preach about how someone should feel, i live in a judgement free world, and only give advice on occasion but only when asked. i’m not cold hearted or snotty know-it-all. i’m just a listener… i listen to understand, i don’t listen to respond.

    SO up to you. i’m over on my blog, over there —->

    if not, it’s no biggie. i know it’s a crappy situation to be in, no lie there. and do sincerely hope something good comes along for you, even just to help offset all the negativity and BS that’s probably being chucked at you left and right. those little distractions can almost keep you sane. :\

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  10. I am glad I found this site. I have a brother, currently in jail for the first time due to stealing to support his 2+ year addiction. He has a bail…we are not getting him out. This may be the first time in years hes been forced to be sober. He is going through severe withdrawal, on day 3. Its been a rough journey. So much more to the story, but long story short, he has been on drugs for years, but as of a couple years ago, heroin has stolen my little brother. Our family, his girlfriend and 2 daughters wish for him back.

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  11. After reading your posts, I actually feel like I could have been the one sitting in your chair typing your exact words. I’m 23 and have been dealing with my brothers addictions since I was 11 and his heroin addiction since I was 16. The only people who can understand are the ones who have walked in our shoes. Thank you, thank you, thank you for creating this blog. I’m sure it’s an awesome outlet for yourself, but you are also giving a TON of people a feeling of not being alone and for that I am forever grateful. I hope you smile a little more today knowing how much you have helped me.

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  12. I can’t tell you how much I relate to your blog. I’m sorry you’re going through this.

    I just buried my own brother last week. And I will tell you that even though you may be expecting that call for years (over two decades for me), and many times even hoping for it, just to end the pain and torment, it does not make it any easier when you DO get that call.

    Thank you for writing this. i wish I had found it sooner.

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    1. I have been the little sister of two ‘junkies’ (very sick individuals) for the last 18 years. I idolised my big brothers growing up, they looked after me when we moved to a new country and were always looking out for me. That is until they hit their twenties and literally just got involved with the wrong crowd. Their addiction was a massive shock and my parents did everything in their power to have them admitted to detoxes and sent to rehab but each and every time they would relapse. In the meantime I tried so hard to be good to try to let my parents have at least one child they could be proud. Unfortunately after all our hard years of struggle, my beautiful big brother died five weeks ago aged 38. He was using heroin for the last 18 years and had been in and out of prison for most of that time. He had no veins left and eventually his artery burst causing massive blood loss and cardiac arrest, amazingly the paramedics revived him after 60 minutes without oxygen so he was in intensive care for five days before being declared brain dead. It was a very traumatic experience but noting compared to everything we went through trying to save him from his addiction. My older brother who is 40 is also addicted to heroin and no doubt his funeral will be soon. I’m sure even the sight of his brother’s coffin won’t make him stop. We are from a very good, loving and loyal family. I am 33 and a lawyer. Despite very thing we have done and the thousands of pounds we have spent it wasn’t possible to fight the evil that is that drug. I remember being 15 years old and feeling like my world was falling apart when they starting using drugs, unfortunately despite everyone’s efforts it still is and getting worse.

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  13. I want to tell my brother that I have asked our most merciful God to take his sins as my own. Since then I’ve had no peace and yet every so often I glimmer of radiant light returns making its way through the dung heap of putrefied death of sin. I would gladly spend my life atoning for his sins. He is my brother and I love him.

    I want to tell my brother he is free to rise and go now, to the Father who has always loved him and always will. I want to tell my brother he is forgiven.

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  14. My little brother, two years younger then me and the youngest of seven, the most troubled of us all and the most talented is/was a drug addict. He was and not a bad person but the drugs where more powerful than I will ever know and of course as all of us know the drugs lead to prison, in and out several times over the past 30 years, robbery 3rd strike -your out.

    He died in prison last April and we are having the memorial for him next week. I am totally devastated. I was lucky enough to hang by him over the years so I have no regrets other than for his missing so much of what life is about. I was able to see him right before he died and of course prison hospitals suck you get one hour, three times a week and some guard sitting there. But I did go, the day he died, I said “it was a good day to go” and looked in the sky and saw the streak of white smoke across the sky heading away from the prison, he was out of there.

    I am so glad that I always wrote, went to visit as often as I could and I know he knew I loved him. He is free and I miss him so.

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  15. My brother is an addict. I also have my own addiction problems, although my mistakes have enlightened myself and I’ve kind of figured stuff out with my own common sense and such. He’s not the same. He’s always had psychological problems and was always very needy as a child. Super spoiled, when he got to his teenage years it spiraled out of control and never was the same. At this point, it’s 15 years later and he and his heroin addicted girlfriend are sleeping on the couch of my mother. They’ve been addicts for at least 3 years. We(my family) are all done at this point. Every time I encounter them I’m disgusted. They don’t seem to try, but are so disappointed when things don’t work out. I come from a family that knows it takes effort and work to do anything. I am at my wits end. My aunt is at her wits end. And I feel my mother, who almost died last month, is at hers.

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