I am NOT AN ADDICTION PROFESSIONAL. I am just the father of five children, the youngest of whom had a near lethal addiction. I retired from a thirty-two-year business career to go all-in on learning as much as possible about helping my son, Stevie, and to bring that knowledge to other parents and caregivers.
Like most parents, I was completely overwhelmed, frightened and clueless when first dealing with Stevie and this brutal disease. These short stories deliver, through gritty and emotionally charged personal stories, the best of what I have learned to help parents and caregivers better understand this disease and what’s necessary to help your loved one.
Along my eight-year journey, I completed a one-year fellowship and studied addiction at Harvard University. I trained to be a Parent Peer Coach. In partnership with two other fathers and a nationally recognized addiction treatment center, I co-created a podcast series called “My Child & Addiction” to provide support and education to families. I have volunteered for seven-years as a Parent Peer at a top addiction outpatient center to help educate and support parents. And, I volunteered full-time at a national addiction non-profit to create educational materials and practical tools for families.
Stevie is now twenty-five years old with over seven-years of continuous sobriety living a connected, productive, empathetic and happy life. I could not be more-proud of him.
Finally, to be clear, “Love the Kid, Hate the Disease" is purely part of a personal mission to help others dealing with addiction. There is zero economic benefit to me or anyone else. There are no third-party sponsors.
Special thanks to Stevie for your insightful feedback and generosity in supporting my sharing of these stories.
My love to my amazing wife and our "Fab Five" children for your loving support and guidance and for making my journey as a Dad beyond my wildest dreams.
My deep gratitude to Stevie's primary counselors Colleen, Audrey, Justin and Jason, his AA sponsors and the teams at Northwell Health and Caron Treatment Centers.