Cindy Doucette (Berwick Maine) has seen her poignant story depicted in It Can Happen To Any Family used by the juvenile correctional system of York County, Maine, to effect turn arounds in young people.
Below is a testimonial written by a young person who was in the correctional system and who is testifying to the influence of Cindy Doucette’s book on her.
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(Editor’s note: There is a power in telling your story! Never forget that. The vignette printed here is anonymous to protect the writer.)
It Can Happen To Any Family is written by a mother (Cindy Doucette) who lost her daughter (Candice) to a methadone overdose. The book starts with signs of Candice slipping into addiction. Candice began “rebelling” by skipping out on family trips and saying that she didn’t want to do something and that she would rather do another thing. At the time, Cindy did not know what would come of all these little rebellions but now regrets many decisions she made. Knowing what happened to Candice and seeing the effects on her family, I never want this tragedy to happen to my parents. “It can happen to any family,” and I don’t want to leave my parents all sad over the loss of a child over stupid drugs. I only have one life, and so do my parents.
The Doucettes are a family that has worked hard for everything they have today. Knowing this family personally, because Cindy cuts my family’s hair, I know how she thinks about her daughter every day and wishes she could have changed events to keep her daughter with her and still have her to this day. Our family has already lost an aunt due to drinking and driving and we all think of her every day. I know if my family ever lost me, or another member, they would be devastated. Drugs are just as bad if not worse than drinking and driving. You don’t know what will happen. That is why they are illegal.
I very much thank you [the social worker at the correctional institute] for giving me the opportunity to read this book and for giving me a chance to settle everything outside of court. I have already began passing the message of the book to my friends because I do not want to lose anybody else to drugs. Our school has already had two people that I knew die from drugs, and we really need to get the message across to kids that it’s not a good thing to fool around with drugs. Most adolescents think they are cool doing drugs, but it really is not cool to put your life on the line for a little high.
Having read It Can Happen To Any Family, I am going to make the smartest decision and just not even be near drugs.
Again I thank you very much for this opportunity, I have learned a lot from my mistakes and from Candice’s tragic story.