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An Anniversary No One Wants to Celebrate

On June 21, 2012, I had the honor to speak at Bucks County GRASP's (Grief Recovery After a Substance Passing) first anniversary meeting in Bristol, PA.

This type of anniversary no one ever wants to be in a position to celebrate.  

GRASP represents a nationwide network of support groups for parents and family members of those who have died from accidental drug overdose.

I spoke about what led me to become involved with GRASP and it's parent group Broken No More: my experience with addiction and mental illness in my family, my recent awareness of our country's failed drug policies and how my work with my clients has been transformed as a result.

The anniversary meeting was an opportunity to acknowledge the growth of the Bucks County GRASP group, which offers those suffering from their devastating loss the opportunity to connect with others in an atmosphere of safety that helps to promote their healing. 

A Place to Turn: Family Loss from a Drug Overdose Death

I just got back from the inaugural retreat of GRASP (Grief Recovery After a Substance Passing), a support group for family and friends of those who have suffered accidental overdose deaths. About 40 GRASP members from around the United States made the trip to Tampa FL, and it was great to meet many folks that up until now I had only known via GRASP's Facebook page.

The retreat combined an opportunity for everyone to connect and participate in some experiential exercises around grief and loss as well as take part in a lively workshop led by the dynamic Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) duo of Meghan Ralston and Stephen Gutwillig. Meghan and Stephen educated us about harm reduction and how the failed public health drug policies of the United States contribute to thousands of accidental overdose deaths every year.

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