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Katie J’s story

Our family service helped Katie repair her relationships with her children.

I started drinking when I was about 14 to try and deal with mental health issues and block out family problems. I drank because I wanted to act selfishly, I had no commitments or responsibilities to care about. From around 2011, I was in and out of prison 16 or 17 times.

Whenever I was in prison, I was offered a detox programme to try and help my addiction, but it never worked as I wasn’t ready. But, when I was offered treatment by Forward’s ReNew substance misuse programme in Hull, I realised I needed to get sober for my kids. Since then I have never looked back. ReNew changed my life.

It was so helpful being able to talk about my addiction and mending my family with people who have gone through it themselves

As part of the treatment, ReNew offered the Family Ties Programme. This helped me to learn about the boundaries between addiction and my family and made me realise how my addiction affects others. What I put in at ReNew and the Family Ties programme I got back in support from the staff, and it really worked. It was so helpful being able to talk about my addiction and mending my family with people who have gone through it themselves, as have lots of people who work at The Forward Trust. They really understood.

The Family Ties Programme helped me earn back love from my kids. Before I was in recovery, Christmas was always about myself and how drunk I could get, but now it’s all about my kids and what I can finally give them.

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The staff at Forward were brilliant and so helpful. I found this was because many of Forward’s have gone through the recovery process themselves, so they know what it is like.

Keith W, Former Forward client