Sep. 1—For many, addiction is a lifetime struggle. While tools exist for addicts, other circumstances can prevent them from getting help. One of the toughest obstacles in a journey to sobriety is children. Addicts with children often have no recourse for care other than to surrender their children to CPS.
Thankfully, there are those like Charlie Crawford who plans to open a sober living home for mothers who struggle with addiction.
"Most of the time, as mothers, we don't want to lose our children. We won't just leave them to go get treatment for an addiction problem. Generally a mom isn't just going to willingly hand over her child to go to rehab," explained Crawford. "I feel like we can keep families together if we can put moms and babies somewhere safe so they can recover from drugs and alcohol before her kids get taken away and before the family gets completely discombobulated."
The Mommy and Me facility will offer Independent Living Programs (ILP), counseling, parenting classes, and more.
Crawford herself is a recovering addict-alcoholic who is now enjoying her 16th year of sobriety. As a mother, she understands first-hand the inability of the healthcare system to treat those in her position.
"There was nowhere for me to go. I had no family. I had nothing," said Crawford. She said she had no place to take her children and felt isolated.
"I was trying to get rid of my kids so I could get [myself] together, but there was nowhere to go," Crawford said. "I'm one of the lucky ones. I didn't go to treatment, but I did find [Alcoholics Anonymous], and I found a really strong support group."
While Crawford was able to defeat her addiction through a support group, this is not an option for many addicts for whom quitting cold turkey would result in severe withdrawal symptoms and even death.
"The perfect scenario would be to reconnect families," Crawford said. "My goal is to try and keep families together. So the ideal situation would be for the dad to have a place to go get help and the mom to have a place to go get help, then they can reconnect and start a new life together on a path that's drug-free and safe for the child."
Crawford also claimed that keeping busy was one of the best ways to stay sober and felt teaching addicts life skills are invaluable to those in recovery.
"Even now 16 years later, I stay immersed in my business," said Crawford. "I'm an entrepreneur. I'm always reinventing myself and trying to stay fresh a relevant. Oftentimes, our disease can surface in other areas, and I've chosen to focus my attention on business and the success of my family."
Crawford said that drug rehabilitation should encourage people to establish healthy routines so they can continue to keep occupied.
"A lot of times they go to rehab, they get 90 days, and that's it, they send them on their way. You can get off drugs in 90 days, but what life skills have you really learned?" Crawford said. "In my opinion, it takes a year before you're even able to think straight."
"You've got to invest in the long term, and women can't do that unless they can bring their kids with them," Crawford said. "My next project will be for dads, because there are just as many single dads out there as there are single moms," said Crawford. "You can't forget about them, because they're just important."
The center will be called "Breakthrough Soul Evolution." Crawford asks for tax deductible donations on her gofundme which can be found here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/mommy-and-me-sober-living-house?utm_campaign=p_cp+share-sheet&utm_medium=copy_link_all&utm_source=customer