To the editor:
I was moved by the honesty and beauty in the perspective piece by Laura McKowen (“Our dreams are not in conflict,” Marblehead Current, April 12). Her writing manages to touch the head, heart and spirit all at once.
As someone who knows the good folks of Marblehead and other similar towns, I can attest that we don’t intend to be hypocritical, but often, we are. We don’t want alcoholism and addiction in our communities, but by burying our heads in the sand and pretending it doesn’t exist, we only make these problems worse. Addiction is everywhere, hiding in plain sight, and not acknowledging it and addressing it only makes it worse.
That’s why the fact that the town is supporting people in recovery is something to be applauded. These individuals have taken the life-changing step of going to rehab and are now taking another major step of trying to live a sober life. They have committed to the strict requirements of living in a sober home and should not only be supported but also congratulated for taking such an important step in their recovery journey.
Having such a resource in your town is a blessing. You never know when a friend, family member or loved one might need such services. We can’t pretend that addiction and alcoholism are issues that only happen in other places, and that our beautiful, picturesque towns are immune from the problems plaguing communities all across this country.
So, what can we do? If it is not your dream to help people in recovery, that’s fine. Continue to go about your daily life. But please don’t invest energy into trying to hinder people in recovery whose dream is to lead a successful sober life in a safe and supportive environment. Instead, let’s come together as a community to support and uplift those in recovery, and work towards a future where addiction and alcoholism are no longer stigmatized or ignored.