What is it that causes so many young people to turn to drugs and alcohol?
That’s the question tackled in the latest episode of “Enough is Enough: Addiction.” The episode features a conversation between mother and son, Gail and Brad, about their experience with drugs, and the loss of Brad’s best friend to suicide.
“Communities have just disintegrated,” says Gail. “It’s very difficult for young people to have this human connection.”
Brad began using drugs in high school, sometimes smoking pot before class, and often binge drinking or smoking in the afternoons. That’s where he met Hugo, who became his best friend. But despite their close relationship, Brad felt that he could never reach Hugo entirely.
“I was a really good friend of his, but I think maybe he didn’t even trust me enough to talk to me about it,” Brad says. “He was sick of taking substances just to get by, not even to be happy. I think he was searching for something deeper and he couldn’t find it.”
Hugo had talked about committing suicide, but Brad never knew that his friend was serious.
“I know for my personally the periods where I was most depressed I was basically willing to try almost anything,” he says. “The more depressed I was the more likely I was to use any particular substance.”
Now, both Brad and Gail try to find a solution to the disease that claimed Hugo.
“I tell my son, ‘You have a responsibility to be part of the solution. Your heart was broken, but lets honor these young people who have given up hope,’” Gail says. “I don’t think anything is going to happen until we as adults come together and realize that we’re all suffering from this…. Disease that is eating at our young people and all of us.”