My son Jason recently died from a drug overdose. The pain is so sharp I find it hard to breathe. Jason would hate to know that this is what his drug use caused. He was not an addict. He was what is considered by some a recreational user. I am writing this letter for two reasons. Number one, to try to make people realize that it's not just the hardcore users that end up dead. Any and all drug use can end like this. Number two, I want to say how proud we always were of Jason. He was a smart, funny and loving person. He made a mistake. A mistake that cost him his life and will forever leave a hole in this family and many broken hearts. RIP my sweet Jason. They found three things in Jason's system: cocaine, Valium and an unknown opiate. We had caught Jason drinking and smoking pot in the past and we had addressed those issues very firmly. Or so we thought. We had never seen any signs of anything heavier and we did do drug testing from time to time. We feel this harder drug use was something new and the medical examiner confirmed from the condition of Jason's body during autopsy that he was not a heavy drug user. The problem is that they may never be able to determine exactly what happened. We have heard rumors that Jason did do coke from time to time. Apparently not too often or we would have caught it on a drug test. Maybe he did a little that night. Jason had stayed home all day sick with the flu. We think he took the valium to try to self-medicate -- he had complained of a bad headache earlier in the day. He had thrown up during the evening. Maybe he thought he had thrown up the dose he had taken and tried one more. He may not have known it was laced with an opiate. He had done his homework and had his backpack ready for the next day. I let him sleep in and was checking on him in the morning to see if he felt well enough to go to school. If he was still ill, I was going to take him to his doctor. Instead as I went to wake him, I found him dead. Jason was not a heavy drug user. -- he thought he could toy with this stuff and be okay. Any and all drug use is dangerous. Even buying it from 'a friend' could be a case of not getting what you think, it could be laced with other things. Straight-A students, as well as addicts, can end up dead.
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