Cloe Henri is a Silver King ABE student who is getting her life back on track. She wants to share her powerful story of facing her demons and coming to college so she can make a great life for her and her daughter:
Addiction took everything from me. My dignity, self-respect, self-control, and everything that I loved and cherished. I didn’t care about anything or anyone. Before I lost control, I had my beautiful daughter with me everyday, I had friends, a supportive family and a loving boyfriend. I had no idea how lucky I was, and how much I took it all for granted. When I let drugs take control of my life, I lost it all, and most importantly I lost touch with myself. I didn’t know who I was; I couldn’t recognize who I had become. I let my demons take over. That was scary. Scarier than anything I could ever imagine. Little did I know, the self-control I had lost would push me to the deepest depths of my self-created Hell. Eventually it got too overwhelming too mentally, emotionally and physically draining to deal with. At that point I tried to take my own life. There was no meaning anymore, no desire or hopes or dreams. I was numb, numb from any sort of joy or happiness. Pain was my worst craving. And death was my goal.
When we do drugs, we never think it will be us who get permanently damaged. Mentally, psychologically, and emotionally scarred. I experienced these all. And I will for the rest of my life. During my time in the mental hospital I learned how substance abuse has caused severe mental disorders. Although treatable, these are some of the repercussions I will always live with. Recovery was a long and straining process, and to this day it still continues to be so. With all the work I put in at the hospital and then the treatment center, I was able to regain my sense of hope and eagerness to continue with life in a healthy and positive way. I am rebuilding relationships, moving forward and working towards one day being able to help individuals that have dealt with such hardships in their lives.
Today I am 20 years old, recovering from my past, and building my future. I am proud of what I overcame. At a young age I have become one of the survival stories of someone who has overcome their mental health and addictions, because I learned that I was worth more than the person that my demons had convinced me I was.
I still battle with theses demons everyday. But it is a battle worth fighting for.
Cloe’s advice for people who may be struggling with mental health or addictions:
“If you start feeling you are dependent on drugs or alcohol to numb whatever you are going through or, being under the influence becomes your “normal,” you need to be honest with yourself and face the reality that you need help. Reach out and let people know what’s going on – whether its a friend, or counsellor, or family person – – – it is really the best thing you can do. It is embarrassing to say “look, I really have problems,” but there are people out there to help you and you are worth fighting for!”