More than 600 concerned families and educators listen to George Scott from the Center for Counseling Services, Mercer County, speak about teenage suicide and prevention during a recent seminar in St. Gregory the Great Academy, Hamilton Square. Rose O’Connor photo
Responding to the rising number of teenage suicides, including several within the Diocese of Trenton during the past two years, more than 600 parents, educators and concerned adults recently attended a suicide prevention seminar in St. Gregory the Great Academy, Hamilton Square.
“It’s so important to have this conversation, as many are impacted by suicide,” said education specialist George Scott, a licensed marital and family therapist from the Center for Counseling Services, Mercer County.
“Substance use disorders represent one of the most pressing public health crises of our time.”
This statement is from the preface of the first U. S. Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs and Health, a report revealing that, in 2015, more than 27.1 million people were current users of illicit drugs or misused prescription drugs.
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It can begin innocently enough: a pain that needs to be alleviated or a family habit planted subconsciously. But before long, and without intent, an addiction to drugs or alcohol has formed, leading to withdrawal from family, friends and activities once loved as isolation into a destructive lifestyle takes root.
“Very few people have a ‘Hallelujah’ moment where they realize they need to change their lives,” said Rich Glickstein, director of addictions recovery services for Catholic Charities Diocese of Trenton.
After walking the walk, if anyone has earned the right to talk the talk, it’s Robert Brooks.
Growing up in Trenton with an absent father and a mother who was in and out of psychiatric hospitals, Brooks and his three younger brothers were often left to fend for themselves. Despite being a bright student and talented athlete, Brooks’ focus became doing what was necessary to provide for himself and his brothers.