Stories of Addiction

It can be hard to quantify all the harm heroin can do. Broken trust, illness, criminal acts, even death. Heroin addicts and their loved ones face a difficult path. Meet the real Wisconsin men and women who’ve come to understand the high cost of heroin firsthand.


“What Has Heroin Done to Me?”

Ben's Story
Ben's Story

"I wake up to hell every day. And I've got to be thankful for it." -Ben

Mandy's Story
Mandy's Story

"I didn't care about who I hurt, what I said, how abusive I was." -Mandy

Josh's Story
Josh's Story

"I was doing more and more every day." -Josh

Carol's Story
Carol's Story

"I said, 'Craig, I have a really bad feeling you're going to die.'" -Carol

Danny's Story
Danny's Story

"There she was on the floor." -Danny

Julie's Story
Julie's Story

"Those were the days when I slept the best, when he was locked up." -Julie

John's Story
John's Story

"This is something that hits home and it really hurts families." -John

Ben overdosing
Ben on Overdosing

"The worst part is when you wake up."

Ben dealing
Ben on Dealing

"People prostituted themselves. I made that possible for them."

Ben withdrawal
Ben on Withdrawals

"I couldn't get up to even wipe my own butt."

Ben not friends
Ben on No True Friends

"You don't care about them, they don't care about you."

Mandy pushing people away
Mandy on Pushing People Away

"I was in so much emotional pain."

Mandy the risks
Mandy on the Risks

"Never once did it occur to me that this person could seriously hurt me."

Mandy relapsing
Mandy on Relapsing

"As soon as I got that little bit of trust..."

Mandy guys
Mandy on Using People

"I manipulated men for money."

Josh going broke
Josh on Needing Money

"I blew $7,000 in two months."

Josh the life style
Josh on the Lifestyle

"It's actually a boring life"

Josh being clean
Josh on Trying to Stay Clean

"I know what will happen. I'll end up right back in prison."

Julie the letter
Julie and the Letter

"Lord have mercy."

Susan stealing
Susan on the Theft

"I would sleep with my car keys under my pillow."

Danny the bank
Danny on the Deception

"You can't imagine how heartbroken, how mad, how sad..."

John finding Cassie
John on Finding Cassie

"They ditched her to die."

Julie on being Opiate Naive
Julie on being Opiate Naive

"They can’t handle what they had been using."

Susan on Talking to Teens
Susan on Talking to Teens

"This is gonna follow you around, and it makes the climb even steeper."

Dawn on how Aaron Changed
Dawn on how Aaron Changed

"The first thing addicts become are liars."

Dawn on the Relief of Jail
Dawn on the Relief of Jail

"I know he’s safe there; I know he’s not going to end up dead."

John on the Alternative to Prison
John on the Alternative to Prison

"I used to think prison was the worst… but the next problem is an overdose."

Lisa on being Desperate to Treat her Son's Addiction
Lisa on being Desperate to Treat Her Son's Addiction

"You still have that hope every day that somehow he’s going to get better."

Pat on Heroin's Deadly Power
Pat on Heroin's Deadly Power

"It just takes hold of these young people."