When you hear the phrase” I don’t want to be another statistic”, what does that mean to you?
What I hear is, I don’t want to be a part of a larger number that diminishes who I am. A larger number that takes away any personal aspect and relegates me to an unidentifiable fraction where I’d be completely lost. Once a statistic, I am insignificant, removed.
Last month the CDC reported there were over 100,000 drug overdose deaths in the US from April 2020 to April 2021. One hundred thousand! That’s almost a 30% increase from the same period the year before.
In fact, it is so large a number, it often loses its impact, meaning if the number was half of that, at 50,000, or double at 200,000 it elicits the same response. A large number like that becomes distant and impersonal.
There were no names in the CDC report.
When you think of 100,000 funerals planned by moms and dads, brothers and sisters, devasted by their loss, their lives changed forever, and the deep indescribable pain endured every day, you might think differently about that statistic.
Each of the 100,000 had hundreds of people involved in their lives, now you have over 1 million people directly and personally effected.
Perhaps you’re one of them.
The statistic that mattered to those family members and friends was ONE. One, of the hundred thousand, with a name, a personality, a family.
How does a family deal with this kind of loss? And how do we make that number drop, one by one, rather than allow it to maintain it steep trajectory?
We don’t have the answers here. But each of our guests here on this podcast have something to share, that might just help families struggling through addiction, grief, and healing.