It's natural for every parent to go through bouts of uncertainty – to question if they're being too strict or too coddling – too distant or too invasive. And, in the face of an issue as complex and destructive as substance abuse, that doubt can become even greater.
In 2010, Nic Sheff, recovered meth addict and author of two memoirs about drug abuse,"Tweak" and "We All Fall Down," opened up to Diane Sawyer about his experiences with recovery and addiction on ABC World News. Sheff had been an honor student before he began to experiment with meth, and the decline was almost immediate.
"I thought drugs were the best thing that ever happened to me," Sheff said of the first time he used methamphetamines. When Sawyer asked if his parents were aware of his burgeoning addiction, Sheff said they may have known he had tried a few things, but the scope of his drug habit wasn't evident until he he began to disappear for days at a time.
As a parent, Sheff's father David – who documented his experience parenting an addict in the book "Beautiful Boy" – often tried to act as more of a friend than a disciplinary figure. But, as his son's addiction worsened, that role changed. The reformed addict told Sawyer that, at one point, his father finally said he could not welcome his son home unless he sought treatment.
That combination of forcefulness and support finally led Sheff to get professional help. Now a recovered addict, he details the complexities of addiction in "The Fix," a column for Salon.com
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