I think to myself sometimes how a lot of us don’t know how to get the right resources and because of that a lot of us are scared to reach out.
When I went to S.O.S (Sexual Violence Services) annual event to honor survivors and raise awareness, I never knew how much resources that one community can offer. Every vendor was interesting and had something I could obtain from. For example Family Tree Clinic, a clinic that focuses on reproductive sexual health. MNCASA (Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assualt) and so many other services are all out there to find support for survivors and victims, especially during COVID when it was announced that domestic abuse has increased ever since the start of COVID. Don’t ever feel ashame for reaching out for help. For me, recognizing it is always the first step.
What urged me to write about this is because, I just got tested today for COVID-19 and if it wasn’t for my sister then I wouldn’t have gotten tested today. Long story short, a friend and I were going to get tested today and but the place wouldn’t allow it unless you register for it and when we did they were full from today to the end of the week. It’s almost absurd that we have to see our health as a luxury when it should be need for all of us. After parking in a gas station and looking up and calling every Walgreens, CVS and clinics left us with no hope. I decided to call my sister because she works in Ramsey County with public health, she was my only option at that point and I needed her thoughts on what to do. If she hadn’t gave me a website that led me to free COVID testing sites, my friend and I would’ve cried our way home. We both quickly registered for a place and even though there slots were full, it’s never full fully because they give room for walk-ins. My friend and I arrived at the place right as they were opening and asked if we were able to get tested even though we were both on the waitlist. The kind lady approved and we were able to get tested. It was fast, friendly and free. All they needed was your registration proof and phone number and you qualified for it. You can do it in the comfort of your car or sit in one of the seats they placed outside for you. It was a painless procedure for me, yeah sure it was a bit uncomfortable but it only took about 5-10 seconds. I did a nose swab and the lady explained that she was going to swab both of the inside of my nostrils which will trigger me to cough or sneeze. She was right. I coughed. A lot was processing through my head at that moment because I felt a mixed of positive emotions. I thanked the lady and so did my friend and I’m being honest all I remember was coughing and laughing as we were leaving. We were both so caught up on in the moment that we forgot to ask how long the results would take. My friend and I were making our way home and we were just laughing at ourselves and the situation. I was glad that my first experience was friendly, enjoyable and painless. Thinking about my experience really just made me think about our healthcare system. What I experience, should be everyone’s experience. Fast, free and friendly. Fast, because the whole entire procedure probably took about 3-4 minutes and that’s including check-ins. Free, because they didn’t ask for my insurance or identification or anything they just asked for my registration which you can quickly fill out online. Friendly, because the workers were very nice. They cracked a few jokes here and there which made me feel less anxious. Of course, this is just me explaining my first great experience, you won’t truly know until you experience it but there’s something about just being able to do things easily and accessible that gives you a feeling of relief.
If you wanna know what place I went to, I went to the New Hope Baptist Church and did a drive-thru. It’s times like this where I’m thankful for easy accessible resources for people of ages, and color. And most of all, I’m thankful for my sister.
I chose to write about this because I wanted to open my eyes more to the things than my school, the media and friends tell me.
If I am completely honest, hearing about having to write about this made it seem easy but the more I thought about it. I don’t want this to be some prevention post full of stats and things I have heard many times.
Although, this won’t exactly be an outstanding post but my intentions with this is something to share about the things that I don’t know about and shed to light to it.
One of my biggest questions, how do you help someone with an addiction to drugs or alcohol or both? And more importantly how do you approach it to them in the most loving and harmless way?
According to my research from many articles, the first step to approach it, is to mention how their changed behavior makes you feel. When you do this you want to highlight the positive things that they use to do and the times that this person was there for you and vice versa. Hear them out and don’t judge them. Along with all of that it is important to stay calm because if the slightest wrong saying or change of tone, the person will get defensive.
Second thing is, remind them that you still love them and will continue to be there for them. This can give them the confidence they need to overcome their addiction. Studies show that many addicts feel alone, make sure to reassure them that they are not alone in this situation and that there is no shame in getting help.
All through out this the person may feel that this is their fault, the only thing that they are responsible for is recovering and supporting them is the thing to do so.
Do all of this under the right circumstances and what I mean by that is, talk to them first thing in the morning or when they feel clear-headed, DO NOT do this while they are on the influence.
If a loved one of yours is battling through their addiction and is in denial and care deeply about them, using these steps may save their lives. Listed down below are the articles I got my research from and more info about addiction.