Before Portage (How I started taking drugs / alcohol and why)
Before Portage, my life was crazy. I was constantly in and out of jail; I had a horrible relationship with my grandmother. I think I was suffering from depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). I was always high or drunk and had no self-respect.
I had no intentions of ever being sober and I could see nothing wrong with my lifestyle. I started doing drugs when I was 12 years old and continued to progress into heavier drugs as I got older. I was using drugs and alcohol because everyone around me was doing the same thing. Nothing mattered to me but my abusive boyfriend and getting high.
It wasn’t until I was released back into society and was found 3 days later at the side of the road passed out, that I accepted the fact that I had a problem.
What led me to call Portage (or how I was referred)
I was referred to Portage after my 5th time in jail. I was in denial about my addiction and didn’t believe I would one day end up in a rehab centre. It wasn’t until I was released back into society and was found 3 days later at the side of the road passed out, that I accepted the fact that I had a problem (read The Treacherous Pitfalls of Drugs and Alcohol). I woke up the next day in a cell and the police told me what happened. I was angry at myself and at the world. That’s when I decided I had to go to Portage. To this day, I still have no idea what happened to me that night…
My first day at Portage
My first day at Portage, it was raining. I remember sitting outside trying to put the pieces of my life together and I remember how friendly everyone was. Coming to Portage, I did not expect to change my life around. But even that first day, I felt more hope than I ever had my whole life. Talking to the girls at Portage inspired me. They made me want to be a better person.
Talking to the girls at Portage inspired me. They made me want to be a better person.
How long I’ve been at Portage and what changed
I have been at Portage for about 6 months and I am getting discharged in a week. Thanks to this program, I now have self-respect, confidence, good memories, hope and sobriety. I also have a great relationship with my grandmother. My whole life has turned around.
How I see the future after completing the program
I know that when I leave I will have the self-awareness and control to say no to drugs and alcohol.
Finally, where I think I would be without Portage
Without Portage I would definitely be either dead or in jail. Most likely dead…
River, Resident at Portage Ontario (Elora)