Daily Prompt Challenge: I Dared To Help A Friend In Recovery Crisis

*Daring to help someone in Crisis*…..

December 13, 2013

Tell us about the time you rescued someone else (person or animal) from a dangerous situation. What happened? How did you prevail?

Daily Prompt: Daring Do

SOMETIMES IN “LIFE” and in “RECOVERY,” we need to step up and help others who have lost their way in their recovery. Being in semi long-term recovery myself, 7 years on Jan 29th 2014, we learn to be “Bigger then Ourselves,” and “Believe in a Power Greater Then ourselves,” in which we can be of recovery service to others. And it is exactly what I did some years ago for a member/friend, in my “Gamblers Anonymous” & our “Treatment” Groups.



It was a few days before Thanksgiving when I got a call from a good friend of mine who also was in recovery from “Addicted Gambling.” She had a little over a year in recovery. I’d also like to stress the point about the “Holidays” being a hard time for those of us in recovery from ANY type of Addiction,…..my friend called me at work on this day, crying, and was SO upset, and out of control by telling me she had “RELAPSED” a few days prior, and she was at the end of here rope! She had a gun, and was sitting in her car, and was going to shoot herself because she could NOT stop gambling! That her husband found out she had been forging HIS name on his own personal checking account, and had written & cashed checks to the tune of $8,000.00 for cash to gamble with!

While I was on the phone with her, I was texting my gambling councilor at the same time as SOON as I heard my friend USE the word “GUN”! I was texting my councilor letting HER know what was going on, and asked her what I should do? I myself was trying to stay calm, and not freak out myself. WHY?

Because I had attempted suicide myself, about two and 1/2 years ago at the time. My councilor texted me asking me to try to get my friend to tell me where she was, so I tried, but she was so scared I’d tell her husband where she was, she just wouldn’t tell me, so that my councilor could call 911 and get her some Help. The next thing my councilor texted me with, was asking me to try to make a “Deal, or a PLAN” with her. To try to talk her into coming to ME at work, to GET her to AGREE to do this before she harms herself. To meet me before she does ANYTHING FIRST, then I would agree to let her go and do whatever. BUT Of COURSE I wasn’t going to let that Happen!

Now at this point, I was getting scared a little myself, because I’M NOT TRAINED in helping people in CRISIS! And especially one where a person HAS A GUN! As I texted this concern to my councilor, she texted back saying she had 911 & Police on the line, and they would HELP BOTH of us to try to talk my friend down. She wouldn’t come to my work, but I was able to talk her into meeting me at local coffee shop. I told her if she would just give ME AN HOUR of her time to let us talk through all this mess, that I was sure we could figure something. Well, to my surprise, she did agree to meet me.

I texted my councilor that she had agreed to meet me, I gave here the location, BUT  TO Please LET ME GET her inside the coffee shop FIRST, then have the Police come inside and find us, so that I could make sure she doesn’t have the gun on her while we are inside the coffee shop. So, I left work and went to meet her. SHE DID have a gun, I asked her to please put it in the glove box,  she did, and I walked her inside. We sat down in a booth, and about 3 minutes of being there, I see two police officers come in, I raised my hand, and they came over. One sat next to her, and the other stayed standing. She looked at me, and tears came to her eyes as we looked at each other for a full minute, then she nodded her head to me.

I knew she understood. She explained everything to me and the police officers. They were going to take her to the “Addiction/Mental Crisis Hold Center”…  but she asked if I would go with her, me and the police officers agreed, and the 4 of us rode over to the center in a police car. My councilor already had the process going to get her admitted, and have a bed available for her. As she was being processed, I called her husband and told him everything that happened, and what was going on. He did tell me he went to the bank and found out what she had done. He COULD have pressed charges, and it may have been the thing to do, so she would learn a lesson of  “Accountability & take Ownership” for what she had done, but we decided that she had been through enough.

My friend spent 4 days on “Suicide Watch” and was in treatment in the crisis center for 3 weeks. When she was released, we continued going to “Gamblers Anonymous” meetings together, and the same “Treatment Group” as well. Her and her husband went to the bank together and explained to the bank what happened, so they let her make a “Payment Arrangement” to pay back the money she stole from her husband. She had overdrawn his account with all the forged checks. It all did work out. It has been years since this happened. My friend and I talk & texted a couple of times a week. She and her husband are still together, and they have saved enough money, and just built their “DREAM” home in So. Oregon……

I’M just SO HAPPY I happened to pick up that phone call that was made to me at work that day, all those years ago. I was able to help save a “Precious Life” but the rest was all GOD working another *MIRACLE* that day………
Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon

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