I believe that you can learn from other people’s mistakes. My whole life I have lived with a great family, since I was younger I was taught to be kind to everyone no matter what, to not judge anyone, to give everyone a chance, and to treat everyone equal. My parents are the kindest most loving people you can ever meet and I feel blessed to have them. But every family has problems, and my older brother is an addict. I remember how Todd’s addiction totally changed his mood and attitude, he was different than usual. This issue didn’t just affect Todd; it affected everyone in the house. Than when I was in 5th grade I found out that Todd was smoking weed. He starting getting into a lot of trouble and slaking off in school, he was not the normal kid I knew. I was totally confused; I didn’t get how Todd could go off and screw up his life like that, after seeing all these example of addicts in our family all ready. But Todd’s problem got worse, when he was in 9th grade he got arrested, and in trouble at school, getting suspended all the time. This kid I saw wasn’t my brother, it made me so upset, I was slowly loosing my older brother Todd. Before his addiction started Todd was a good kid, yeah he fooled around in school like any normal teenage boy, but Todd was actually into sports, and cared about school, he hung out with different friends, had a different more kinder respectful attitude,but now that all changed even his apperance. His issues also cost us money, my brother would constantly ask my mom for money, saying he wanted it for food or needed it because he was going somewhere, but I new the real reason, I wasnt that stupid. The bad part was, my mom started to cut todd off with money, she wouldn’t support him anymore because she new what was going on, so Todd started to steal from us. I remember you couldn’t leave money anywhere in the house, Todd would just take it, he didn’t care he needed it for his weed. It was so sad, seeing my sister come home from a babysitting job, leaving the money in her coat pocket and coming back, to see it was gone. Than as the years went on Todd started stealing our electronics and selling them, we couldn’t leave anything out in the open anymore. Todd kept on getting in more trouble with the law. When he was in 10th grade I remember him going to a detention center for his problem, and for commiting the crimes he did. Todd made us all feel bad for him I remember I missed him so much, and I was so excited, he promised he’d stop smoking when he got home and everything would be okay. He stayed in the Detention Center in Bridgeport for a month, he went back to a new school, was getting good grades, and not smoking, than suddenly once he got off probation, he started again. Todd than dropped out of school, and than when he was in 11th grade, he got in more trouble, he kept getting arrested, and than eventually went to rehab. Todd put us threw an emotional rollercoaster, and this time, I remember the first day I went to go visit him in rehab, tears running down my face, he promised us he’d stop, he made me believe he was done, that this was going to change him. I visited him every Sunday for 6 months while he sat in that rehab, convinced that he would change, I defended him whenever anyone was mean to him and said that he would never change that he was a sick addict because I knew my brother and when he set his mind on something he could do it. Once Todd got out of rehab, he started smoking again, than he was put on house arrest for violating probation. They kept on giving him so many chances keeping him out of jail. Recently he was taken off house arrest, but than he violated probation and was sent to rehab again, I don’t believe Todd will stop, he keeps on getting more and more chances, but I think if he really wants to he will,I believe he will keep on making mistakes.
Even though doesn’t learn from his mistakes, I learned from his. I have learned that drugs and alcohol are not the answer, that once I make a mistake and see that it has a bad affect I should try to change my life. I see what drugs do to people how it changes you into a totally different person. I look at my brother everyday and see that there are two paths you can take in life, Todd accidently took a wrong turn, I need to make sure I stay on the right path and never end up like him. Everyday I work hard in school to get the grades I do, I make sure I stay out of trouble because I never want to end up in that position. When Todd was in rehab, he made me a braclett, Ive had this braclett for exactly a year and two months, it symbolizes something more to me than just a braclett, I never take it off, it reminds me of the effects of drugs, and just life in general, how when you make a mistake you must take the initiative to change your life, and actually want to.