LETTER: Dad writes of pain losing 16-year-old son to ice
After reading Wednesday's article about Yeppoon man Jordan Fletcher and his battle with ice, former Rockhampton man Mark Bransdon was inspired to share his heartbreaking story about the devastating drug and its impact on a loved family member.
THIS drug is affecting young people and families across Australia and I wholeheartedly agree with Senator Matt Canavan - stamping out this abhorrent drug must become the priority for governments across the country.
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Sadly, Jordan Fletcher's story of ice addiction is all-too common.
For me it was like deja vu - I have lost my 16-year-old son to this evil drug.
He, too, has attempted suicide, resorted to crime, has lost friendships and shunned family.
He failed to get through Year 10.
If he cannot get help - or want to be helped - then I fear he will either end up in jail or dead.
I have cried a million tears for my son and will probably cry a million more.
It took an enormous effort for me to try to find help for him because there just is none - most NGOs (e.g. Lifeline, Men's Help Line, Parents Help line, Ted Noffs Foundation, Youth Off The Streets) don't know how to advise you on how to tackle this problem.
I finally was able to get my son to see a mental health worker and had him booked to consult with a psychiatrist, but he did not want to see them and ignored the appointments.
He now shares accommodation with "mates" and lives day-to-day for his ice habit.
I'm glad Jordan Fletcher and his family were able to find help and I hope and pray he stays off ice and is able to help others in CQ.
Good on you Jordan. Having seen the devastating effects of ice on my son and my family I know how hard it has been for you and your family.
Senator Canavan: Please push as hard as you can to get your parliamentary colleagues to address this problem immediately, otherwise we are going to have a generation of kids who will be suffering with mental health issues, homelessness, will be unable to find jobs and who basically will miss out on all the good things life has to offer.
This problem is now - it needs action now.
- Mark Bransdon