by Tana Ganeva for The Intercept
MILIE ROSE HANSCOME remembers the first time her boyfriend overdosed in their bed. He was breathing strangely, keeping her awake. “I kept poking him because I was annoyed,” says Hanscome, a petite blonde. When she flicked on the light, she found the father of her children foaming at the mouth.
“Then he was almost turning gray, black,” she recalls. Paramedics got there in time and administered Narcan, the opioid antidote that reverses overdoses. Deep into the opioid quagmire, the EMTs seemed annoyed about having to revive yet another junkie, she remembers.
Her boyfriend’s descent into addiction had mapped the journey that so many have taken before him, repeated step-by-step in so many journalistic portraits of the heroin epidemic: When Kevin Manchester was a young teenager, he was prescribed Vicodin for football injuries. By the end of high school, he’d suffered so many big hits that he had to stop playing — 13 concussions before his senior year. Giving up the game he loved exacerbated his longtime depression, anxiety, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
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