Posted at: 05/23/2013 6:04 PM
Updated at: 05/23/2013 9:19 PM
By: Joseph Lynch, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Accidental overdoses from prescription drugs are a bigger threat to teenagers in New Mexico than automobile accidents. The Attorney General's Office brought people from around the state to Albuquerque to speak about stopping the epidemic, and they heard one woman's personal story of loss and hope.
"Addiction doesn't discriminate and it grabs hold of our kids and it robs them of their souls," Jennifer Weiss said.
Weiss' son, Cameron, was an athelete at La Cueva High School. After he suffered a collarbone injury, Cameron was prescribed pain killers.
"He was in a lot of pain. So, he should have been. He had surgery on one of the collarbones. So, it was a legitimate prescription he should have received," she said. "Unfortunately, he loved the way it made him feel - he didn't want to stop taking them."
Weiss said it got so bad that when Cameron couldn't find other pain killers he started using herion. She said she noticed changes, but she chalked those up to adolescence.
"It was something else. You know - that he was depressed or that he was having trouble in school. Or that he was having trouble adjusting- things like that. I never really thought is was drugs," Weiss said.
Cameron lost his battle to addiction nearly two tears ago.
Weiss is often seen in the community talking about her son to anyone that will listen.
She told law enforcement officers, doctors, nurses and others about her tragic outcome. She hopes it can be a wake-up call for other parents. And that medication prescribed to help - can hurt.
"Prescription drugs is what began the journey for my son down his pathway to addiction," she said.