Southwest Missouri woman turns life around with help from McDonald County treatment court

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McDONALD COUNTY, Mo.–For several years, a woman in McDonald County was addicted to drugs and had the option to stay in jail or go to treatment court.

“I didn’t know what recovery was. I just knew there was sober or high,” explained treatment court graduate Christine Huff.

Huff began using drugs at 14 years old. When using them, she removed herself from her family.

“I isolated myself from anybody that actually loved me and so if I wasn’t around them, they couldn’t hold me accountable.”

One day, she was caught with meth inside her car by the McDonald County Sheriff’s Office. A few weeks later, an administrator from the county’s drug treatment program came to visit her in jail.

“There’s glass between us, so it’s very, very stiff and unfriendly,” explained treatment court administrator Alissa Hendricks. “And the jail is a very busy place, so you have to talk loudly and it’s not always our first impression.”

Huff had the discussion of staying in jail or going into drug treatment. Little did she know, trusting others was going to help her.

“I thought they were always the bad guys, but really, I was the one being the bad guy,” said Huff.

“Christine then was sad and manipulative,” Hendricks added. “She was just trapped.”

Huff completed the program in 1 year and 3 months. She joined a recovery group called “Come As You Are” at Split Log Baptist Church in Goodman and received counseling. During that time, she focused on bettering herself, the community and most importantly, the relationship with her son.

“I wanted to get out of jail–that’s why I chose to take drug court,” Huff explained. “And then, I changed that to I wanted to get my kid back, and after I got my kid back, I changed my wanting recovery to actually change for myself.”

“It makes me happy for her,” added Hendricks. “It makes me happy for her son. It makes me proud that we had just a little piece of the puzzle to do with that.”

“As I went through the program, I realized I learned a lot about the people on the treatment team and they want to help you be a better person for their community,” said Huff.

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