Neil says it’s hard to remember when he started using drugs, but he remembers taking them occasionally with his ex-partner. He says what began as once a week soon became more frequent, and before he knew it, he was drinking and taking drugs every day.
Neil left his partner, hoping he was strong enough to make a clean slate of things, but he soon met someone new and began the cycle again, rapidly descending into a cycle of taking coke to get high every day and then a combination of other substances to come down again. His life hit rock bottom when he lost access to his children and family.
Thankfully, a close friend suggested Neil got in touch with Alabaré and desperate to turn his life around, he did. The first time Neil referred himself, he failed the drug test, but he says he’s grateful to our team, who told him to come back three days later when he had a second chance. Neil says he was a total mess when he moved in, but he says that our support changed his life, helping him get doctors appointments and onto a drug programme. Neil stayed for 3 months and says he got up every day, had a shower, got dressed, and even started going to the gym. He says he felt good about himself, and everyone could really see the difference. Neil even started to see his parents again, which he was thrilled about, and finally, he got his children back.
Unfortunately, in November, Neil had a heart attack and was in hospital for five days. He came out and stayed with his parents for a few days before returning to Alabaré. One other resident was the person who found Neil and who called the ambulance that saved his life; Neil says the residents and team were so supportive, helping him remember to take his heart tablets and not to overdo it.
Neil says his Alabaré home saved his life, it gave him his family and his life back.
The Alabaré team recently supported Neil to move into his own home where he could have his children stay over. Neil’s son also wrote to the team, telling them how excited he was to be able to stay at his dad’s home once more.
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