These two Mom’s met at an AA meeting and ended up starting ‘Mothers With A Purpose’. If you notice all they are offering the teens is to attend AA and NA meetings. They do not point out that AA and NA have no meetings for minors. There are only adult meetings with court mandated felons. It is great to see an effort being put out to reach teens.
They need to offer them something other than the 12 step program. www.smartrecovery.org has teen literature for those that want to start a teen meeting in their area that is non-religious and science based.
Local Moms Fighting That Drug Problem on Our Doorstep
Meet the Pleasanton moms and founders of Mothers with a Purpose, who want to beat the pervasive drug problem through education.
By Autumn Johnson and Tanya Rose Email the authors March 8, 2012
In July of 2010, when Donna and Kelly spearheaded Mothers With a Purpose, a group that provides support and raises awareness for families battling prescription pill addictions, they had no idea they would end up foraging friendships from working through the pain. The duo met when Kelly recognized Donna’s son while attending an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting with her own son. The two mothers connected and realized their children were going through a similar battle of prescription drug addiction.
After meeting for hours and crying over the agony of the opiate addictions their children were fighting, they decided to take action and to start a support group. They have asked that their last names not be used, to protect the privacy of themselves and their families. Donna recruited other families in the community who were suffering from the same problem. The group rapidly grew from the two tenacious mothers to now close to 100 people.
“Forty years ago, addicts were seen as the scum of the earth,” said a former addict, who has spoken before the group about his own struggles in an effort to help Pleasanton kids who are suffering. “Today, it can be a child from a family that makes a million dollars. It’s not someone who lives in alleys; it’s your own neighborhoods.”
Mothers With a Purpose meets on the second and fourth Thursdays of every month at Foothill High School in Pleasanton. They welcome anyone who wants to attend and both say it takes courage to walk through the door of those meetings to face and work through their worst fears.
The former speaker said that before Mothers with a Purpose, there wasn’t really an organization out there solely for support.”The best way to get help was to talk to another parent in the same situation,” he said. “There’s no place to turn — it’s not like you can go to church and ask around. It’s really a hidden thing.”
“Everyone is hurting from something,” says Donna.
According to Donna, the mission statement of the group is to provide total awareness, support and resources to those children and families confronting and struggling with the disease of addiction.
The group, which has recently become a non-profit organization, has had overwhelming support from the Pleasanton Police Department, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, the Mayor’s Office in Pleasanton and the Pleasanton Unified School District.
In addition to the bi-monthly meetings and a website that offers many resources, Donna and Kelly attend local drug and alcohol forums. They often bring children to speak who are recovering addicts. After the forums, parents usually thank the pair for their candor. Both agree that the disease of addiction, specifically prescription pill addiction, is a nation-wide problem. Locally, they say the knowledge of this problem in the schools and in the community still shocks residents.
Donna says every parent should have to go through a class before their kids start school. “[This experience] teaches you different areas you need to balance,” says Kelly. “I look at life differently now. When it happens, you are a fish out of water. It is a life-time journey.”
Donna says her biggest challenge in starting the group has been standing up in public forums. For Kelly, the biggest challenge has been getting parents to listen. “Listening is what is going to cause change,” said Kelly. “The only way to beat this is to educate people.”
“It is our recovery too,” added Donna. “If I had had this education growing up, maybe things would have been different,” the forum speaker said. “I didn’t even know what an alcoholic was; I just knew that I did drugs and I did it well and I loved it. Every day, I struggled with addiction but now I have tools so I don’t need to do drugs. I can cope with life.
“It is all about the parents being educated,” he says, noting that he knows of a parent of a drug-addicted teen who wanted to take her own life, because she didn’t know what else to do and felt so desperate.