Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • Charmaine Sauls began using drugs in high school as a way to fit in. She started with weed, moved to coke and eventually tried heroin. She snorted it at first. She still remembers that first high. The drugs made her blissed out, carefree. She always told herself she'd just snort heroin, never use a needle. But once the drug took hold, all her promises to herself went out the window.

    After a five-year stint in prison, Charmaine got clean. Today, she's a secondary syringe exchanger in D.C., where she helps IV drug users get access to clean needles and other supplies. She's not in any kind of addiction program like N.A. She says helping other addicts is therapy enough to keep her from using ever again.
    • Share

    Connected stories:


Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.