When someone you care about is struggling with alcohol and/or substance abuse, it presents a special challenge, especially for young people. That’s what happened to Jessica. When a close family member was abusing prescription drugs and alcohol, she found 360 Youth Services’ Positive Choices Positive Voices group. Specifically for teens and young adults who are coping with a loved one who is “using,” the group helps family and friends navigate the uncertain territory that comes with such a challenge. Positive Choices Positive Voices is a safe place to share concerns, learn ways to communicate, and discover that just because someone close to you has gone down that path, it doesn’t mean you can’t keep yourself healthy.

“Honestly, I don’t know what would have happened if I hadn’t gone,” says Jessica.

One of the suggestions she learned in the group was to write a letter to her loved one about how the situation had affected the whole family. Being around other people who were dealing with the same situation and hearing their stories helped her realize she wasn’t alone. “They understood what I was going through,” Jessica adds.

You may not be able to control what is happening around you, but you can learn to use your choices and your voice to create a happier, healthy you. Fortunately, Jessica’s family member is doing well now. Definitely a positive voice for others, she is a college student majoring in nursing and sign language interpretation.

And that’s where Jessica is now.


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