A 19-year-old grandson of Connecticut resident Sigrid Auslander never woke up one morning this past September, dead from an accidental heroin overdose, says the Hartford Courant. During the last few weeks, four young people – three of them teenagers – have been charged with heroin possession.
The increasing presence of heroin among suburban teenagers is tied to growing abuse of expensive opiates, like Percocet, which are often found in the family medicine cabinet. Heroin, also an opiate, is a cheaper alternative that is also relatively easy to obtain. The price is as little as $5 or $10 a bag, compared to expensive prescription pills, which can cost $60 apiece on the street. Significantly, heroin is now snorted like cocaine. “This drug is the main concern. It is what our kids are buying,” said Mary Marcuccio, a mother who founded a group called Parents 4 a Change after a relative developed a drug problem. She runs a regional support group of at least 80 parents whose children have become addicted. “You can either choose to stay in your lovely bubble of denial. Or you can actively take control of the situation while it is young enough and small enough to try to manage.”