Women Doing Drugs
Women Doing Drugs
Virtually all the women who used drugs into their adulthood had experienced rape, molestation, or abuse before they were adults. Ingrid was introduced to prostitution when she ran away from abusive foster parents. She never had a steady relationship, a conventional job, or a stable residence. The stories in this chapter illustrate the importance of social roles for women; yet, while social roles can be sources of strength, they can also be sources of stigma when women do not fulfill gendered roles to the standards of conventional society. Their multiple roles as mothers, partners, and friends were often in conflict, such as when partners were caught with drugs. Under threat of losing her children, Martha left her husband, a marijuana dealer, although he was a good husband and father, only to have her children taken away later due to her alcoholism, induced by loneliness. Women who had economic resources could afford the best treatment, but their road to recovery was through multiple relapses. Solutions that worked for the women included unconditional love, supportive housing, targeted treatment, and comprehensive social services. Mothers needed childcare services along with job training and employment. Aging women needed health care to address years of neglect.
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