30-year-old Pamela* was referred to us from the Santa Clara Drug Treatment Court. When we met her, Pamela had been using heroin and meth daily for the past 15 years. She was isolated and struggling with depression and extreme social anxiety.
At Community Solutions, Pamela was provided with a case manager who met with her weekly to work on managing her depression. She was initially cautious and guarded about the program. She was anxious and did not like being in groups, but she was also motivated to do whatever it took to get her life on track. She “made” herself attend every group even though she was anxious. After the first few weeks of groups and one-on-one meetings with her case manager, she reported that she was starting to enjoy the group environment.
Pamela attended groups three times a week and met with her therapist twice a month. She was about halfway through the program when she became pregnant. Despite morning sickness and doctors’ appointments, she continued with case management and therapy as well as attending NA (Narcotics Anonymous) meetings and working with her NA sponsor.
Pamela has not used meth or heroin since entering the program. She says that as a result of the program she started to “think more about her child and less about herself.” Her priorities began to change, and she started to focus on her relationship with her fiancé and how she was going to be as a mom.
Pamela says that the program taught her to “Get things done!” “I learned structure and how to keep a schedule,” she says. As she overcame her anxiety about the groups, she also learned to reach out to others, especially those who were struggling in the program.
Pamela now has 22 months clean and sober. She gave birth to a healthy baby girl, and her fiancé was able to take paid paternity leave to help support her. Through our Donations Closet, they were able to get a gently used crib and high chair, diapers, and lots of baby clothes.
Pamela is continuing with case management and therapy and will be monitored closely for post-partum depression. He case manager is happy to stay in touch, as he loves holding the new baby!
*Name changed to protect client confidentiality