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Drug User Battling Addiction Offers Words of Hope to Others

DEAR ABBY: I'm currently in a mental hospital. I have been in and out for years because of suicide attempts and drug use. My drug of choice is crystal meth, and it has been a vicious cycle.

I'm 19 and will be 20 soon. I would like to share my story with your readers, young and old, who may feel lost or alone. I was sexually abused and have prostituted myself for drugs when I was desperate. I'm going through intensive treatment now. When I was at my lowest, my family looked the other way.

What I want to tell people is to get help if they are contemplating suicide. I want them to know their lives are valuable. I struggle with hallucinations, and it's scary at times. But no matter what we go through in life, we must remember that we were built to be resilient. I believe in our strength. Thanks, Abby. -- OVERCOMING IN WISCONSIN

DEAR OVERCOMING: I believe in your strength as well, and I'm glad that you are getting treatment. Recovery from addiction can be a daily challenge, which takes courage and determination. You appear to have both.

I am printing your letter because it carries an important message for anyone who is feeling suicidal. The phone number of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 800-273-8255, and it is toll-free.

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