Lost my daughter to addiction

Hi, just signed up. I lost my beautiful 19 year old daughter Lily on the 6th of May. Sometimes I think I’m coping and other days it’s like being punched in the gut and my breath leaves me. It’s been 8 weeks. Every Saturday I wake up and think, “how is that another week without her?”
My girl struggled badly with her mental health the last couple of years and as happens to so many, the help wasn’t there. She had some help from CAYMS when she was younger and after that ended it was just a battle. Once she hit 18 I wasn’t able to get her appointments with the doctor of help in that way anc she struggled to do it herself. That’s when she really started with smoking weed, taking Xanax and diazepam she bought off the street, drinking a lot and her self harming really escalated. We were always very open with each other and I’m glad she could tell me she was doing all this and why. She was just trying to block out and self medicate to not feel anything. She phoned her doctor herself and asked for help and was given anti depressants and melatonin to help her sleep but could not have a mental health assessment until she’d been clean of everything for 6 months. That’s a lot at 18 and I understand it was difficult. Lily was in hospital several times after self harming, she was given a 10 minute mental health assessment once, and sent on her way. Her behaviour at home was volatile and eventually I had to ask her to leave. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done but we managed to get her into a supported living facility. I thought that would be a new beginning but unfortunately that’s where she was introduced to heroin. We’d spoken about it before and I’d begged her not to try it because it’s so addictive and sucks the life out of people. She did though, and told me the day after she’d done it. Said she wouldn’t do it again because she felt awful. She did though. Long story short, eventually she asked to come home and I went and got her within an hour. We got her off every thing for about 6 weeks, she was doing great. Our relationship was back on track, she was making plans for the future and was healthy and back to her funny, clever self. Lily made one silly mistake when out with ‘friends’ and the next day she felt really ill. Shee Ed just wanted to sleep and rest but we were chatting on and off all day. I gave her water and paracetamol as she was achy at 10.30pm. I checked on her at midnight when I was going to bed. I knew as soon as I saw the way she was lying that something was wrong….I phoned an ambulance and gave her cpr until they arrived. I knew she was gone but I thought I could save her. The paramedics were amazing but I still lost her. My heart breaks every morning when I remember when I wake up. I’m angry, sad, despairing, happy when I think of all the good memories I have. The thing is telling people that you’ve lost your child to mental health and that it was a drugs death. I can see the look on their face sometimes and I want to punch them. I’m not ashamed of her. The system is broken and she tried so hard. The messages I received from her friends from all walks of life telling me what s beautiful caring soul she was and how funny she was, how she went out of her way to look after people and how loved she was have made me even prouder.
I just needed a rant. I have a big family thing later and I’m dreading it.
Thank you for reading my essay. Didn’t mean it to be that long :heart:


Much much love to you and my very deepest, heartfelt sympathies. I am so sorry for your loss.
Your daughter sounds a very strong young lady. You have to be strong to work through addiction, its a daily battle.
You don’t need to tell people what your daughter went through if you don’t want to, it is the truth to say you found her unresponsive in bed, and people don’t need to know more than that, unless you wish to tell them.
I truly do feel your pain at not being able to bring your daughter back, i did CPR on my son and felt so guilty, angry and sometimes hopeless that I didnt/couldnt save him. I felt I’d failed him, which wasnt the case at all because even the professionals couldnt have saved him, so how could I!
Sending you love and a comforting mama hug, take good care of yourself xx

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Hello Alyson, so sad to hear what happened to your daughter. My girl died in similiar circumstances in January 2022, I was at her house and she appeared to be sleeping. I was checking her regularly and was reassured she had a good colour and, as she often slept in that day, I thought it best to leave her to sleep. On my final check she was clearly dead. Like you, I called an ambulance. They tried for 53 minutes but couldn’t save her. My whole family collapsed. Things have improved tho and her children then 15 and 16 are now learning to rebuild their lives. I am trying to do the same. There are now often better days than at first but it never leaves my mind. We are still waiting for the inquest. I don’t expect it to give me any ‘closure’ as it’s a tragedy that never goes away. On my better days I can function so that, to the ordinary onlooker, I am coping. To be honest I got more kind and generous support from outsiders than I got from my own family. Those relationships are now veneered over, but they will never be the same again. Yet somehow we carry on breathing and keeping on keeping on. On the bad days I just remind myself that there can and are some better days. I’ve had a huge amount of support from Compassionate Friends and they really are compassionate. Through them I got a Grief Companion and have met other parents who lost their child in the way we did. Seeing others coping and building some sort of a life again is part of what keeps me going. I’ve grabbed all the help I could get and little by little, one day ok, one day down, I am surviving and there are times of pleasure, which I would not have thought possible. This website helps too. I have given up on expecting any help whatever from the NHS and that’s saved me even more pain and frustration. My daughter had Bipolar and her mental health was in a very bad way, she fought and fought for a diagnosis and then didn’t get the help she needed either. This is sadly the norm and there is no accountability when it comes to NHS failings. I just wanted to say that you aren’t alone and many people on here have stories just like ours and are here so we can support each other. No one ever ‘gets over it’ but I am finding slowly, slowly that I can learn to live with it. It’s up and down but that’s the journey. I send you love xxxxxx

I feel the same, I lost my son on 17 March 2023. I thought he was asleep, then realised the horror, did CPR until ambulances arrived, police. I knew he had gone. He had struggled with drugs for several years, like a rollercoaster ride. I love and miss him so much, the pain is awful. I’m waiting for an inquest, I know the outcome. I try to avoid people as they say such stupid things sometimes and have no idea what I went through. I can honestly say I can feel what you are going through.