Man, that's f’ed. I had mates who were on smack too. Plenty died, some came out the other side. It's nothing to do with you, you did everything right. Once someone gets a habit their ability to tell the truth seems to be the first casualty, rational behaviour is second to go. You couldn't have known the outcome, I'm sure he'd want you to live a good life and not live burdened by guilt. I know from experience how many people give up on junkies, if you were still with him that far down the path you probably outlasted every one else in his life. Mates who went off the rails burnt every bridge until often there was no-one left in their lives that cared.This is a good point! Even for those of us who have been affected with battling their demons it doesnt necessarily translate to being allknowing or helpful
to others in the same situation!
Today is the 10th anniversary of my best mates death! And it still haunts me every day. We were incredibly close, our mothers were sisters but still
i have plenty of cousins but none i shared so much with! In and out of each others pockets from 4 years old we were as they say 2 peas in a pod!
We pretty much shared every possible experience in life, right from the young days playing sport, going to the footy and just generally clowning around
To our adolescent years, meeting girls, taking up smoking. wagging school with the girls getting ourselves pissed like naughty boys!
Remember once when we were only about 11 or 12 years old wanting to go to Luna Park. Knowing we had to catch the train to StKilda and we
Would have to go down Fitzroy st to get there, we convinced ourselves that we needed to stuff socks down our pants in order to negotiate
the tough scene at the time so we looked like Pimps! lol....Can only just imagine what the locals must have thought seeing these young punks with
Bulges bigger than Johnny Holmes strutting down the boardwalk!
As our teenage years were ending and we started becoming young men. Our harmless curiosity started turning a little more sinister and we began
then our initial dabbling with drugs and more and more drink, constantly partying for what seemed an eternity!
Together we both became hooked on the sh*t and for many years it was a constant battle to not destroy ourselves especially in
the Music scene as we were back in the day....But still no matter what we were always there for each other and helped each other out numerous
times when it came to having the other ones back!
As the years rolled on and i got married, he of course was my Best man, i began to pull back from the life that i knew even then was killing me
So when my first Son arrived i had well and truly quit the drugs and tried making a fist of being a responsible working father!
My mate sadly fell deeper and deeper into the abyss of the Drug culture to the point it was now compromising who he was in every way
Still we never went more than 2 to 3 days without checking in on each other! Even when my marriage and world fell apart he was unbelievably
kind and helpful to me, taking me in all the while still taking drugs like a Mofo!
Eventually i got myself sorted again but he continued down the path of self mutilation! Anyways after numerous attempts to get him help with
Rehab and other forms of support he was still sinking faster and further!
Then one day when i had my boys over for the weekend he popped over as usual, only problem was he was completely shitfaced on
copius amounts of Heroin, looking absolutely dreadful in front of the boys who used to idolise him. I was most concerned about the impact this was
having so nervously tried making small talk with him about what he was up to for the day, when he replied loudly that he was planning on taking a
sh*t load of drugs and then stealing a car i cracked and showed him the door! For the first time ever i had kicked him out. Even still as i was walking
him to the car explaining that i just cant have him talking like that in front of the boys there was still no bad blood, just sadness on my part!
So when he then proceeded to tell me how he was going to kill himself for what seemed like the 150th time i scoffed at him and told him to
Grow the **** up! As he was leaving he said he was so sorry and that he loved me! Twas the last time i saw him!
We then went 2 months without contact till one night i got this horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach and frantically was trying to reach him
Only days earlier his mother my auntie was about to travel to Greece with my folks when she made me promise to her at the airport that i Must
look after her boy! Your the only one that has ever reached him she said....My boy is in trouble, please help him! I agreed but secretly was at the
end of my patience with him.....Suffice to say in my desperate search for him that last night i went to his sisters where he had been staying for a few days
Missed him by half an hour. She was very worried repeating the same calls for Suicide from him and pleading with him to go to my place as i would as always
Help him! His last words to her were tell Steve i'm sorry man, thanks for all you've done but i'm too far gone sis this is it!
Next morning i got the dreaded call! To this very day it haunts me in a way i cannot shake! I had abandoned him and cast him out, promised his mother
i would take care of him only to walk away from a desperate man! Tried to justify it to myself that i had taken his threats seriously the first 100 times
and was tired and had enough dramas in my own life that i didnt need this sh*t! Now he was Dead and i have had to live with the overwhelming
shame and guilt that i let him down so horribly when i was needed the most!
Even though family and friends have tried being supportive to me over my overwhelming grief and guilt including his mother whom i never
could look directly in the eye ever again till she passed just recently! To be honest i have never truly recovered from losing my soul mate and brother
due to feeling so bloody horribly guilty about it all! Its still a real grind to find happiness again after the personal trauma of feeling responsible!
Still miss him so much! And wish with everything i have that i could go back and change it all! No matter what anyone says i just cannot forgive myself!
So Gringo know you did the right thing brother and you should be very proud even after being personally attacked and hated for it at the time
that you stood up to be counted man!
From what I saw having two people who have had drug problems were probably the two worst people to be around each other, you did probably the best thing you could do for him by showing that you could move ahead with life and change things. I saw guys steal everything from their families, have treatment programs at the families expense then go straight back to heroin over and over. It really is something you can't do for anyone but yourself when you're ready.
Go easy on yourself man.