Man Who Became Addicted to Drugs as a Teen Reaches Millions With Blog
Over 15 years ago, Kevin Alter developed a drug addiction as a high school freshman that would seemingly rule the rest of his life. He believed drugs gave him a way to cope with his insecurities, but his teen addiction continued far beyond high school. His addiction quickly burned through more than a decade, leaving Alter as a 27-year-old homeless man with a $400-a-day heroin addiction.
After reaching rock bottom, Alter went to an addiction treatment facility for the 29th time. This time, however, something clicked. Alter learned that he was using drugs because he disliked himself, and to become sober he would have to learn self-love. He left treatment for the last time and set out to share everything he learned throughout his recovery journey.
Now 31, Alter founded The Addict’s Diary, a resource for people of all ages who struggle with addiction. He shares recovery blogs, stories from members of the community and tales of his own day-to-day trials. Since creating The Addict’s Diary two years ago, he’s gained over 570,000 followers who are looking to learn more about addiction recovery.
Kevin’s Journey Through Addiction
On his second day of high school, Kevin Alter was introduced to marijuana. He began smoking it every day, and he felt he’d found a way to overcome his insecurities. By the time he was 17, however, the marijuana had been swapped out for drugs like Xanax and cocaine. A few years later, after dropping out of college, he began using heroin.
Alter’s story illustrates the dangers of using drugs in high school. He used substances as a way to fit in, self-medicate and cope with feelings he had about himself. It led him to dozens of visits to treatment facilities, starting with inpatient drug rehab for teens.
The Addict’s Diary
The bulk of Alter’s addiction recovery blog is found on the Facebook page for The Addict’s Diary. Instead of simply sharing about his own journey, however, Alter uses the platform to help others share recovery stories.
On the page, readers find words of wisdom, motivational posts, stories of recovery and more. The community is designed to help people know that they are not alone, and it helps members connect with others who may be struggling with the same problems.
Involvement in Youth Drug Prevention
With a first-hand understanding of the impact drugs can have during adolescence, Alter has made it a point to participate in drug prevention programs for youth. He has shared his story about recovery with over 25,000 students. Alter visits high schools throughout the country to help raise awareness about teen drug use.
Nearly half of high schoolers report using marijuana. Further, early drug use increases the likelihood of substance use disorders later in life. Teen drug use also contributes to risky behaviors, such as dangerous driving and unsafe sex. These can have lifelong consequences, not to mention the fact that drugs can impact brain development during adolescence.
Alter and The Addict’s Diary seek to prevent these consequences from occurring by sharing resources and stories with young people. For those who are struggling with addiction, Alter shows that recovery can be accomplished — even when it seems impossible.
If you or a loved one is struggling with a substance use disorder, Next Generation Village can help. Contact us today to explore comprehensive teen treatment options available to you.
Alter, Kevin. “‘I took hostages everywhere I went, and the first one was my grandmother. Loving, kind, and elderly made her the perfect target for my addiction.’” Love What Matters, (n.d.). Accessed January 30, 2020.
The Addict’s Diary. “The Addict’s Diary.” (n.d.). Accessed January 30, 2020.
Hein, Alexandria. “Man overcomes decade-long heroin addiction, reaches millions with viral blog posts.” Fox News, November 19, 2019. Accessed January 30, 2020.
The Addict’s Diary. “Meet the Man Behind The Addict’s Diary.” (n.d.). Accessed January 30, 2020.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Teen Substance Use & Risks.” April 1, 2019. Accessed January 30, 2020.
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