Ginny Burton was born in 1972 in the United States, near Washington. She became addicted to hard drugs at a young age and eventually ended up in prison. After being clean after many previous attempts, she decided to go to college. Now she wants to change life in prisons so that addictions can be tackled inside the prison walls.
Ginny was one of seven children born to a mother who was a drug addict, drug dealer and had a mental illness. When she was four, her father was sent to prison for a number of armed robberies. Her mother introduced her to drugs at a very early age. For example, she used crystal meth when she was 12. She soon became addicted.
A childhood full of troubles followed. She had a child when she was 17, whose father was shot. Then she married and had another child. At 21, she became addicted to heroin. A few years later she was heavily addicted. She was also a criminal by now. “I have 17 convictions for crimes. I’m the person who would randomly attack someone in public,” Ginny tells KOMONews.
It really gave me the opportunity to stop and think about what I wanted my life to look like
Three times Ginny ended up in prison, where she had her addiction under control. “It really gave me the opportunity to stop and think about what I wanted my life to be like.” But when she was free again, things went wrong again and again and she fell back into her old lifestyle. “The beast that was so much bigger than myself would wake up.”
The last time Ginny was incarcerated was in 2008, when she was incarcerated for just under three years. When she was released, she stayed clean for six months, but then relapsed again. On December 5, 2012, she was arrested again for theft while high on crystal meth and heroin. When she was arrested, she begged to be placed on the Drug Diversion Court program at the King County Jail so that she could really get over her addiction. She went through the treatment program, got clean. And stayed clean.
In the years that followed, Ginny did social work with hundreds of ex-addicts. She also went to school. Initially, she attended classes at a school in Seattle. It made her realize how much time she had wasted in her life. ,,And I also recognized that I was actually good at learning. Something I liked.”
A little later, she was admitted to the University of Washington, where she studied political science. Then, at the age of 47, surrounded by children from wealthy families, Ginny realized for the first time in her life what her abilities were. “I just never had that chance,” she says. Ginny excelled at the University of Washington and was even voted that year’s Truman Scholar in 2020.
Everyone wants to be loved and supported
While Ginny was finally getting her own life together, she also worked on a reconciliation with her husband Chris, who was also an addict and incarcerated, but released. Chris is also clean now. The two live together in a small town near Seattle.
Ginny has now graduated and looks back on her special path to her diploma. That’s why she shared a before and after photo of herself (at the top of this article). She was incarcerated in King County Jail in 2005 and is now graduating from the University of Washington at age 48.
change the world
What Ginny now focuses on is helping addicts. She wants to change life in prisons, making it easier to kick the habit within the walls of a prison. “No one wants to hurt others,” said GInny. “Everyone wants to be loved and supported.”
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48-year-old woman became addicted to hard drugs at 12 and is now graduating from university | Abroad
Source link 48-year-old woman became addicted to hard drugs at 12 and is now graduating from university | Abroad