Families of Addicts

By Mark Powell

Addiction is a Family Disease

Home, they say, is where the heart is. That’s also true for addiction because when it hits home, it breaks a family’s heart.

But rather than let that hurt linger, a Dayton mother chose to fight back.

Lori Erion is no stranger to addiction. She’s been in recovery herself for 13 years now from alcohol use disorder. But everything changed nine years ago when she rushed her daughter April to an urgent care facility. “I saw needle marks on her arm and asked, ‘What’s that?’” She remembers April’s answer: “You know what that is.”

Lori suddenly faced a choice. “I wasn’t going to say, ‘You’re a heroin addict, there’s the door’,” she says. Instead, she chose to help her daughter. But that proved easier said than done. Finding treatment was difficult because April would walk away from it. On top of that, Lori’s jewelry was missing one day. It was a painful time for everyone.

Then Lori turned the tables on herself, and that changed everything. “We started talking and I listened. April educated me about her addiction. She shared what was going on in her mind during her active addiction as well as when she was in treatment and showed me what things were broken in the system.”