JP H. successfully completed the Turnbridge drug rehab program, graduating in September 2014. JP came straight to Turnbridge after finding himself in a Williamsport, Pennsylvania jail cell with several drug-related charges hanging over his head. At 25 years old, JP’s road to recovery has already been long and trying for himself and his family. However, since coming to New Haven, JP has dedicated himself to living a life without drugs and alcohol, and has accomplishing things he never thought were possible.
JP’s issues with substance abuse began at age 14, when he began experimenting with alcohol and marijuana. In high school, JP began using harder substances, such as cocaine, while at parties on the weekends. Then, like many others, JP was introduced to prescription opiates after an injury forced him to undergo surgery. “I was prescribed a lot of narcotic pain medication and pretty quickly became addicted,” JP explains. “After a few years, doctors stopped prescribing narcotics for the pain, and I turned to heroin to fill that void.” JP’s heroin addiction, along with heavy alcohol use, led to a string of arrests that kept him in constant trouble with the law and put enormous strain on his relationship with his parents.
At age 21, after an arrest for Driving While Intoxicated, JP entered his first treatment center. “It was a 30 day treatment center,” says JP. “When I got out, I stayed clean for maybe two or three days and went back to my old ways. I wasn’t done. I started hanging out with the wrong crowd and picked up right where I left off.” Although he heard a message of recovery, JP wasn’t willing to admit that he was an addict and thought that he could manage and control his drug use. He was living at home and working various jobs to give the appearance of productivity, but was typically fired for missing work.
“That was definitely rock bottom,” JP confesses. “I had absolutely nothing left. I had no desire to continue the way I had been. Something happened in that jail cell and I knew at that point I was done.” After fifteen days in jail, he received a call from his parents, who explained that they were willing to help one last time. He was taken straight from jail to Connecticut, and was enrolled at Turnbridge.
“I was happy to be at Turnbridge,” JP says. “I was ready to change and willing to do everything that was asked of me.” He didn’t immediately buy in to the program and he encountered his struggles in Turnbridge, but JP took the suggestions given to him and persistently worked a daily program of recovery. Slowly, everything began to sink in and his outlook for a sober future became more positive. “I did not like looking for work and sticking to the routines,” JP admits. “But I kept doing what I needed to do and finally got a job. From there, everything started to go well. I found a good group of guys that I am still close with and a sponsor that I talk to almost every day. All in all, it was a great experience.”
While in sober living, JP began taking real estate courses at Gateway Community College and in January he hopes to become a licensed real estate agent. After graduating from Turnbridge, JP decided to stay in the New Haven area and moved into a house with a few sober friends. “Some things have happened recently that I thought would never possible,” says JP. “I have a house today. I have an honest job. I have strong relationships with my family. Fifteen months ago I had no idea any of that was possible.”