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Announcing the Medication-Assisted Recovery
Essay Contest Winners

People using variety of medications tell their recovery stories


1st place winner: Darlene DeMore


Medicated Assisted Treatment (MAT) has supported my recovery from addiction in ways I never expected.  Early in recovery my only concern was not feeling sick and having a place to sleep other than the ground or a park bench.  When I became pregnant, I was terrified that I would not be able to take care of my child.  MAT allowed me to become well, function normally, and raise a beautiful, healthy daughter.

I am commonly asked why I have been on methadone maintenance for 14 years and my reply is, “because it works for me.”  Sadly, MAT is misunderstood and stigmatized in our communities.  What most people do not realize is that my medication is only a fraction of what my recovery is about.   As with anyone in recovery, I needed therapy, family support, positive people, and finding my passion in life.   MAT is just that, assisted treatment.   It’s a medication I take to treat my disease of addiction.   Using drugs was only a symptom of other things I needed to learn how to cope with to be successful.

I continue to be committed to recovery, because when I allowed myself to be open to the process and accept my disease, I was free.   Free to be a loving mother of two; free to contribute to my community; free to share my recovery experiences; and free to be a woman I am proud of, honored to be, and will continue to become.


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