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Behind the Scenes: Teen writers describe what it's like to work at YCteen.
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Addiction (42 found)
Note: These stories are from YCteen and its sister publication, Represent, which is written by and for youth in foster care.
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The author feels intense pressure, so she begins taking pills that help her study. The drugs change her into someone she doesn't recognize. (full text)
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To keep up at her competitive high school, the author starts abusing Adderall. When she realizes she’s addicted, she struggles to find new ways to manage her stress. (full text)
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The author longs for a stronger relationship with his mentally ill, alcoholic father. (full text)
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Gia’s been depressed all her life. In therapy, she learns to express her emotions and begins to emerge from her personal darkness. (full text)
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Antwaun becomes dependent on drinking and smoking weed to deal with painful emotions, but gradually finds ways to deal with life without being high. (full text)
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For years, the writer's father put alcohol ahead of his family. When he finally enters treatment, he and Jessica are able to connect. (full text)
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When students discover he can’t read, Antwaun is teased and called a “crack baby.” (full text)
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Edwin smokes his first cigarette at 12 and becomes addicted. Now he can’t go a day without smoking. (full text)
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Priscilla remembers her father as an "awesome guy." They went to ball games, made model airplanes, and cooked together. That's why she misses him so much. He couldn't kick the cigarette habit and died of lung cancer when she was 9. (full text)
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Four relatives who live with Trenee are smokers, and she's sick and tired of smelling like an ashtray whenever she leaves the house. Her father continually warns Trenee never to smoke, but he's got nothing to worry about. (full text)
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In her senior year, Catherine gets expelled. She has fun partying and taking ecstasy with her dropout boyfriend—until a scary experience stops her.
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Delia is a recovering junkie. A pusher by the name of Ralph got her to join his posse when she was six, and soon Calvin and Tommy were wearing her pockets thin as she indulged her habit. Unlike so many others, she was lucky she could go cold turkey.
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Evelyn hates cigarette smoke, and can't get her father and boyfriend to quit.
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Norman isn’t proud to admit it, but he was once a world-class shoplifter. Therapy helps him overcome the addiction.
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Yamina, 16, sneaks her first cigarette when she's 12 and within two years is up to three packs a day. Cigarettes keep her sane and calm, but she can't catch her breath during volleyball and is broke from the expense, so she cuts down to half a pack and hopes to quit for good.
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The writer feels like she's betraying her parents by reporting their addiction to crack, but she also realizes she's better off living in foster care and not at home with addicts who abuse her.
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The author suffers from the death of her grandmother, her mother's mental illness and withdrawal, and going into foster care. Isaac, first her friend, then her boyfriend, supports her, but she drives him away with her cutting. (full text)
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The author finds that smoking weed dims her sadness and anger. Unfortunately, it also clouds her brain and isolates her. (full text)
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Ashunte introduces the Addictions issue by describing his own struggle to kick his weed habit. (full text)
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Olivia's mother has been an alcoholic for most of Olivia's life. Over the years, Olivia copes with the disappointment by shutting down her emotions. Now she'd like some of them back. (full text)
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Joy and her big sister were very close until her sister began smoking weed and drifted away from Joy. (full text)
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Samantha falls in love with "Joseph" despite warning signs of his alcoholism. Even after she realizes he's a full-blown addict, she keeps trying to help him. (full text)
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A family therapist describes how kids can cope with a parent's addiction and seek help. (full text)
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At 17, Hollie must cope with her mother's death from alcoholism. (full text)
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Psychologist Ira Moses explains the connection between addiction and mental illness, that drugs and alcohol won't cure depression, and gives strategies for getting sober. (full text)
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Desmin uses weed to tame his rage, but he soon realizes that getting high is keeping him from moving forward with his life. (full text)
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Otis spends so much time online that his schoolwork suffers, but he connects with many people. (full text)
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Two therapists with drug treatment experience explain how drugs and alcohol distort the brain's natural functioning. (full text)
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Chris has been in foster care since age six. He fathers a child just as he ages out of foster care, and struggles with the emotional and financial consequences of being a parent.
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When he arrives in the U.S. from Russia, Daniel turns to drugs and crime to alleviate his loneliness.
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An expert explains the warning signs and effects of drug abuse.
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The writer gets addicted to the blissful highs of the drug ecstasy, until the devastating lows of crashing force her to cut back.
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Popping pills helps Miguel forget his seemingly endless pain. He winds up homeless and unable to face his problems without drugs.
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Though she loves her parents, the author decided that it’s best for her to not live with them.
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A therapist talks about the confusing feelings young people experience when their parents are addicts, and how they can get help.
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When the writer starts smoking marijuana to deal with her turbulent emotions, it worsens her relationship with her abusive mother.
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Carmen loses her son to foster care because of her drug abuse. When they are reunited after eight years, she is confronted by his deep anger at having been abandoned.
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The writer interviews teens and adults about drug dealing.
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Charlene, 12, takes responsibility for her five brothers and sisters when their mother becomes disabled by drugs. She gets them to school, oversees their homework, and does the household chores. Eventually Charlene goes into foster care, and vows to be good parent to her future children.
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Instead of blocking out painful memories, getting high makes the author feel angry, guilty, and depressed.
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When Sandra is arrested she gets sent to a drug rehab program and is able to overcome her addiction.
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The writer turns to his two old pals when it comes to celebrating holidays: a bottle and a blunt. (full text)

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