I am one of the Frederick County parents who lost my only son at the age of 21 to the disease of addiction. No one should have to suffer the pain I feel every day. When you lose a child, you lose part of your soul. Unless you have lived with or loved someone with this disease it is clearly not understood.

We, the parents of Maryland, need help. Our children are dying every day from the disease of addiction. I had a friend  whose son recently overdosed and was taken to the emergency room. As soon as he was sober he was released. His mom tried getting him into treatment that day and was told nothing could happen until Monday. My question is, why couldn’t this boy with a disease be kept at the hospital until Monday? I understand our hospitals are full, but these kids, adults, old, young, rich, poor, and all nationalities are going out, overdosing and dying. These people are good-hearted people, most very educated.

Drugs do not discriminate. They take the best of humanity. It’s our people who discriminate, who are the worst of humanity. Why can’t we find easier ways to get these individuals help? We want to know why Frederick County is so high in overdose rates: No. 4 in our state to be exact, as stated in a Frederick News-Post article. Well, the answer lies here. We need immediate response on this situation.

In a Facebook page I have with many advocate groups, I see numerous people dying all over the nation daily. It is clear we need to all come together and figure out what we could do better to save our children.



(26) comments

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You are one angry dude. Perhaps you need some work on step 1


WOW!!!! I can't believe the ignorance on these comments. Maybe you negative people should educate yourself before writing and sounding so insensitive when really you apparently have not known or loved someone with the disease of addiction I also lost my son to this disease and yes I said DISEASE.. If anyone needs full information on how it works on your brain I can do that. It's not trying to take away from any other illness. We ask for help for those also. I have had family members die from all different diseases and addiction is just as bad. My son hurt his back at work and was put on pills. That's when he became an addict. Within a year we lost him. So before you judge someone at least learn the facts. Annette sorry for your loss. Thanks for trying to help others and turning a negative into something positive.


Heroin use is often a one-way choice. It's illegal. The recidivism rate after "treatment" is high. So, natural selection rules! Probably better to legalize - under direct medical supervision - but nobody seems to see the light.


Drug addiction should be treated like a medical issue, not a law-enforcement issue.


if addiction were an actual "disease" you wouldn't have to say the disease. its a crutch. sorry you lost a child but that's my opinion. addiction isnt the responsibility of the local, state, and federal government. No one forced a needle in any ones arm. Government didnt pay for my surgery but maybe i should call the sheriff about that. you wanna fix the herion problem, let Darwinism run its course.


I agree that it is not a disease. It is a learned behavior that the addict then looses control over.


There are genetic components to addiction. Some folks have a inherent propensity to substance addiction. Science,ever heard of it?


Yes, I have heard of science and I am well aware of it's findings. Scientist have been unable to find a specific "addiction gene" in people. A person will not become an addict because of theri genes. Scientist have found biological changes in the brains of some addicts that make it harder for them to quit once they start, but it have not found a gene that causes a person to drink or use drugs. Furthermore, the biological changes have only been found in about 50% of people who become addicts. So, that "addiction gene" argument doesn't hold up for all addicts.

Addicts make a choice to become an addict when they choose to take their drug. The biological changes in their brains they may or may not have are not forcing them to use a drug for the first time.

Don't get me wrong, as a person whose father, sister and brother were addicts I am all for treatment. My issue is that people don't want to hold addicts accountable for their actions and just want to have something to blame it on. It's easier to blame it on a "disease" then to accept that a loved chose to take that first step that is necessary to become addicted. They chose to use a drug.


I guess you advocate for not treating lung cancer in people who smoked or heart disease for people who ate too much bacon? And forget hip replacements for arthritis for people who exercised too much.


As a mother who lost a child to suicide due to bipolar and addiction I learned several things about getting help for my son. First of all unless it is a life or death overdose do not go to FMH, they were wonderful to my son when he was there but to get into treatment you have to take them to Montgomery General where they are released into treatment and not just sent home.
Secondly, there is no long term help for poor or middle class people. The treatment programs you do get into are for 30 days or less. Not enough time to really help someone. So unless you are wealthy and can afford long term care you are pretty much screwed.
And for all of you who are going to say there is the health dept, think again. There is at least a 5 month wait to see s doctor there because the majority of the appointments are for kids with ADD. And if you are lucky enough to see one, the cost is more than private treatment.
Until this country takes a better stance on mental illness and treatment this is unfortunately not going to change.
And yes, I agree that people need to help themselves but sometimes the illness is greater than they can overcome.



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You mean the party on enablers, the democrats, which approve of drug abuse with there gov handouts and treating these crack heads as if they are the victims?


Having been down this road myself with a father, sister and brother, I learned through counseling that you can't help someone who doesn't want help. You can force someone to rehab but often times if the addict hasn't hit rock bottom and isn't ready to accept he/she has a problem then rehab is a temporary fix for the loved ones only. My mother took my sister to rehab 3 times and all 3 times shortly after getting out of rehab she was back at it. It wasn't until my sister, through tough love of our family no longer helping her and supporting her, accepted she had a problem and needed help that rehab was a success. She has now been clean for 20+ years.

I know first hand how hard it is to be a family member of an addict and how hard it is to watch them go through it, but the addict needs to accept they have a problem and take responsibility for their sobriety with the help of their family and friends.


It's time for a sheriff who makes this a priority. Jenkins is a political hack.


Annette, Thank you for putting the thoughts in your heart on paper. We have to keep talking about addiction. It's time to stop blaming parents and family members and start looking for the best way to help them help those they love.


The concept of addiction as a disease is well founded by medical and mental science. Otherwise, health insurance would not pay for treatments.


The disease of addiction?? If addiction is a disease then it is the only one contacted through handling money.

I know! Every time a pothead exhales the fumes enter another person's nose and that person just can't help but go buy weed from criminals and smoke it!


Is lung cancer less of a disease because someone smoked? Is diabetes less of a disease because someone ate poorly?


Diabetes is not a disease based on what one has eaten if the patient has Type 1 Diabetes. Just a little info.


Way to miss the point


And this is a prime example of being un-aware. Did you know 10% of the population has an addictive personality? One might be addicted to Alcohol, food or drugs.

Learn more,


From a father of an addict in remission


There's probably something different about an addict's brain function that needs more study.
The only hope right now is that a potential young addict never experiments. Unfortunately, the curious, the adventurous, the questioning, usually are among the brightest as well and so it shouldn't surprise that educated people fall victim to addiction. So sorry, Ms. Hanlin-Cooney, your heart must break watching others follow paths you've taken.


"Did you know 10% of the population has an addictive personality?"

I suspect it confers some type of evolutionary advantage. A population might well benefit from having some individuals who do the same thing over and over and over again, depending upon the thing. And yet the population could suffer if such a trait were too common.


robert,"Weed" is NOT addictive, and your remarks are ignorant and insensitive!

My condolences Annette,



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