August, 16 2018

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The Trail Troubled Teens Follow When They Don't get the Help They Need

Mark was swallowing 30 Percocets a day when he entered the four-week residential treatment program at Seabrook House in Upper Deerfield, Cumberland County. Though pharmacists warn that the prescription painkiller can cause drowsiness, it made him feel alert and normal.

Without them, his body ached, as if he had the flu "times a million." He learned to let that happen as little as possible. In the meantime, he built up tolerance to the opioid. Soon, he knew, those pills wouldn't be enough.

Not the First Time

He'd been through this before. A few years ago, he went through a different rehab program to kick a heroin habit. Last summer, he finished a yearlong jail term. A girlfriend broke up with him and he had been kicked out of several apartments.

A union construction worker, he had a hard time holding a job. Just finding the medicine to help him feel normal was work itself.

"It's a tough game to play," said the 25-year-old, who did not want his last name published. "You learn how to manipulate doctors. You find (pills) on the street. They're available. It's a never-ending game. If one person's out, you have to find another person who has them."

When did the Problem Start?

Mark grew up as a straight-A student in a middle-class family. His parents were good to him, but they weren't close. He started smoking marijuana when he was 15. By the time his family realized he needed help, it was too late.

"My life was pretty bad," said Mark. "There were a lot of days when you just don't want to live anymore. After a while, the drugs don't make you happy anymore. They make you miserable."

What are His Options Now?

Interviewed while at Seabrook earlier this year, Mark said he had hope and planned to join a 12-step program. He said he wants to stay clean more than anything else.

"Ultimately, it's up to me," he said. "I can't take this anymore."

Related Articles:
Ohio Program Reaches out to Troubled Teens 11/19
Charges Dropped against Whisper Ridge in Virginia 11/15
New Zealand Troubled Teens Get a Peak at Prison Life
Pennsylvania Girl Accused of Killing her Father Remains in Residential Treatment 11/14/07
Washington Program get $2 Million to Help Troubled Teens 11/11/07
New Mississippi Boot Camp to Meet with Local Residents 11/9/07
Missoouri Boot Camp Death Investigated by FBI 11/9/07
Texas Guard Shortage Forces TYC to Move Boot Camp inmates 11/9/07
Nevada Teachers Learn to Spot Troubled Teens 11/8/07
New York Adults 'Stoked' About Mentoring At-Risk Youth 11/7/07

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