Hijacked is the story of Elizabeth Stern’s unflagging efforts to get her son to stop using drugs. In the process she learned the limitations of a mother’s power—and the limitless powers of addiction and the State.
REVIEWS FOR HIJACKED
Elizabeth Stern’s fast-paced narrative chronicles the emotional roller coaster of parenting a child struggling with addiction. Beginning with early childhood, she details her reactions and decisions as she responds to her son’s cycles of drug abuse, recovery, relapse, incarceration, and recovery—creating a powerful illustration of the relational tensions she experiences as she supports her son. Stern’s rendering of the family’s experience with the Department of Corrections is particularly compelling as she deftly exposes the arbitrariness of the criminal justice system. Hijacked By Heroin unpacks one of the most emotionally complex issues of our time.
Diane Salmon, PHD, Professor Emeritus, Educational Psychology, National Louis University
Filled with terror, hope, and love, Hijacked is the story of what happens when a son’s addiction shatters his life and his mother’s. I’m a parent of an addicted daughter, and this narrative rings true. Hijacked is an important book for everyone—those touched by addiction, those who know nothing about addiction, legislators, therapists, and policymakers.
Caroline Wheeler, founder of Compassion Rising (www.compassionrising.org)
Elizabeth Stern has very aptly titled her book Hijacked. She tells the dramatic story of how drugs “hijacked” her son’s life, as well as her own, in a painful parallel process. Too often we see only from the perspective of what is happening with the person who is dealing with a substance use disorder and miss the damage it causes to the family. Parents struggling with a situation similar to Ms. Stern’s will feel less alone after reading this powerful book. I would also recommend it to clients to understand the effects of the family illness on their loved ones. Anyone who wants to learn more about addiction and how it affects families, will come away with increased compassion and understanding.
Bruce Dechert, LADC, ICADC, Residential treatment center senior clinician and private practice therapist
Hijacked By Heroin is an absolute must-read. Stern’s resilience is nothing short of miraculous. What a gift she delivers in this important and inspiring testament to parents. She delivers a brutally honest, brave exposure, pulling back the curtain on her extraordinary journey. Brilliantly, she takes us through confusion, isolation, and torment. As a result, we witness the truth of her strength, determination, and steadfast belief in her son. This courageous retelling tears down the walls and throws humanity in the face of stigma and shame.
Tanya Beecher, MSW, LICSW, co-founder of Honoring the Parents (www.honoringtheparents.com), psychotherapist specializing in addiction