Margarette arrived at Adult & Teen Challenge in December 2021 and will graduate this December. The Central Ohio native’s parents found out about the organization and persuaded her to go after she had struggled for years with alcohol and later, crack cocaine. “My mom knew that I believed in God and that this was a spiritual place and we just gave it a try,’ Margarette said.
Initially, she only planned to stay for 30 days, but she believes the program’s length is part of the reason it worked for her. “They really do emphasize, not just counseling, but the fact that God really will change your life. He does,” she said.
ATCOV is Margarette’s first personal experience with long-term rehabilitation, but she also used to work in the field as a social worker. It’s the first program she had any connection with that combines spirituality and counseling. For a long time, Margarette was a functioning addict. She paid her bills and used what was left to support her habit. “Unfortunately, I leaned on alcohol and drugs so much that it gave me a false sense of who I was, and helped my anxiety,” she said. “But it eventually permeated to the point where I couldn’t control it.” She lost her job, destroyed her relationship with her boyfriend and was losing friends and growing distant from her family.
“Fortunately, God has done a great restoration with me and my family,” she said. At one point, she was in danger of losing her license as a social worker after incurring multiple DUIs. She worked hard to earn that licensure and loved doing it. After graduation, she wants to return to social work and hopes to one day open her own faith-based recovery facility in southern Ohio.
Her relationship with her parents and her brother was strained before she entered ATCOV, but it’s improved, “Right now it’s really great,” she said. “They have gone above and beyond to understand recovery and addiction because we don’t come from a family of addiction.” They’re also receptive to knowing who God is and understanding Margarette’s recovery process. “Honestly they are — and I cry when I say this — they are a glimpse of God’s love,” she said. “They are the most amazing people and the biggest supporters in my life. I am beyond thankful for who they are.”
Margarette believes she’d likely be dead if she hadn’t arrived at ATCOV. In January 2021, she was treated for alcohol poisoning. The doctor told her she was in liver failure and would die if she didn’t stop drinking. Now she’s healthy, her liver is functioning properly, and she’s planning her future. “It’s been a beautiful thing to see the small miracles every day,” she said.