Parents Supporting Parents
Parents Supporting Parents is a support group for parents and family members coping with their child's addiction.
The group was recently filmed for the upcoming HBO documentary Heroin: Cape Cod, USA, directed by Steven Okazaki.
MissionThe mission of Parents Supporting Parents is to establish support groups across the US that educate and strengthen family members coping with their loved ones' addictions. We shall achieve our goal both through raising funds for such groups and raising awareness that family members play a crucial role in their loved ones' journeys to recovery.
Parents Supporting Parents meets every Monday evening. Meetings start at 6:30pm, except on the first Monday of each month when they start at 7:00pm. There will be no meeting if the Monday falls on a holiday.
Meetings are held at 5 Bates Road Mashpee, MA (between Woodruff's Art Supply and the Pet Store -- additional parking in rear of building).
Lisa grew up in the city of Boston as the oldest of 5 children. She attended Catholic schools and served as an alter girl in the local community hospital. She graduated in 1984 from an all-girls Catholic high school.
After giving birth to her daughter Teena-Marie in 1985 and daughter Chanel in 1990, her relationship with their father ended. Lisa returned to school to earn her certification in Phlebotomy and her Medical Secretarial certificate. She began working two jobs to support her daughters.
The first of many drug-related deaths to affect Lisa would be the death of her beloved sister Sherry, who was twenty-five years old and mother of a little boy named Richard. Lisa didn't know much about addiction then.
Addiction would once again enter into her life when her daughter Teena-Marie was given a prescription for pain medication after having six teeth removed to make room for braces. Teena-Marie's addiction began at the age of fourteen.
It was at this time that Lisa began her daunting quest of finding treatment for her daughter, which included sectioning her, to only find out that she was sectioned to a woman's prison while not even legal adult age. She became frustrated at the lack of resources available for people struggling with addiction and their family members, who she felt didn't have a voice.
Her daughter continued to deteriorate for another six years and Lisa continued to seek support from her co-workers and friends.
In 2006, after many attempts at recovery, Teena-Marie entered treatment and remains in recovery to this day.
In 2010, Lisa formed Parents Supporting Parents, a peer support group for parents and family members seeking resources and education about addiction.
Today, Lisa lives on Cape Cod with her husband of twenty-one years, son James, 18, and daughter Rachael, 19. Lisa works in the local hospital, facilitates the support group, advocates for increased treatment and services, and helps others to find treatment.
Her goal is to form support groups across the country, as she believes that parents have a crucial role in their child's recovery.
Linda grew up on Cape Cod in Bourne, MA. She attended the local high school and then went on to get her undergraduate degree at Northeastern University in Boston, becoming a speech pathologist. She started her career working in New Hampshire. She moved back to Massachusetts to work in her hometown of Bourne where she continued her education while obtaining her Masters in Education and then her Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies from Fitchburg University.
Linda has four sons who she raised largely on her own. Her ex husband suffered from alcoholism throughout most of their 16 year marriage that ended in divorce. They had four sons. Brent, Sean, Kyle and Corey.
When her youngest Corey was about 13 he started experimenting with marijuana. At the age of 16 Linda came home one day to find her son with a friend. As he tried to convince her to let him take the van to drive his friend home, his head hit his chest and bounced back up. Immediately suspecting something, she dropped his friend off at home and took Corey to the local emergency room for a drug test, not knowing drug tests are not given without a Dr's orders. She phoned her local walk in clinic, explained the situation and they phoned in orders for a drug test.
The next part of the journey, was a nightmare. Many parts forgotten because remembering them can be too painful. In and out of more detox' s and rehabs than she cares to remember. It seemed as if rehab was a revolving door that seemed to never close. Detox, inpatient, outpatient, hallway house. Hopes built up and then wham relapse. Conceivably trying everything she could to save her sons life. Ultimately realizing that there was nothing she could do but try to get the help she needed to support her on her journey and to help her stay strong so that she knew what to say and how to react when her son did reach out, when he was finally ready. This is what led her to find the Parents Supporting Parents Support Group. It took tough love and homelessness but her son Corey, finally did find recovery. Today he lives in Florida. He worked his way through recovery with the help of the 12 step program. He ultimately stayed in a halfway house for 6 months, then spent another 4 months in a 3/4 house. He saved enough to get to work on a bike, then a scouter, then a beat up car. He is now the Assistant General Manager of a fine dining Italian Restaurant. He has been able to get himself a nice car and a nice apartment. His employers are very supportive of him and he is very grateful.
It is through the support of the Parents Supporting Parents Support Group and all of our experiences on this journey that I have learned what I needed to know to stay strong. The support I get from my fellow group members is indescribable. Our stories are stories that those who do not have a child with the disease of addiction could never understand. We cry, we laugh and most important we are always there for each other. In time, as I became stronger I took on a more active role in the group becoming a co-facilitator.
To contact Parents Supporting Parents, or to make a donation, please email LindaC3232@aol.com or use the additional contact information listed above. We will respond to all inquiries as soon as possible.