Becoming Clean: Samm's Story

“The drug of my choice was heroin.”

A drug epidemic has become a huge problem for many in Indiana. Many of whom who have overdosed and left their loved ones and others where it’s tearing the family apart. According to, Marion County alone has had 643 overdoses so far in 2016 whether it be on heroin, meth, painkillers, etc. The county is trying its hardest to overcome the epidemic of drug overdoses.County commissioners say this is the worst year so far on record.

Photo courtesy of Samm Ford.

Photo courtesy of Samm Ford.

But, every cloud has a silver lining. Meet Samm Ford of Indianapolis. She is a graduate from Decatur Central High School in the top of her class in 2012. She was an all-star athlete in high school playing soccer. She received many awards for her athletic performance as well as her academic performance. Ford would also help out at the local firehouse with her father who was the fire chief.

After graduation, Ford attended college for a few semesters and then things became worse. She started hanging out with the wrong crowd and became interested in drugs.

“I was just interested. I started smoking weed and a lot of other things became available and I just took interest and wanted to try and experience them at least once and say I’ve done it,” Ford said.

She says that no one influenced her to do drugs and there was no peer pressure. The environment that she had put herself in around them and made her become interested.

“[On occasions] when my boyfriend at the time wanted to do something and would only talk me into it,”she said, “but I was never forced against my will to do them.”

Ford made it a daily ritual of smoking marijuana a couple times a day. She would always smoke when she woke up, before and after they ate, while driving around, watching TV, and before bedtime. At one point, it became an all-day thing.

“But when I started using harder drugs, my focus shifted a little bit and I was only using once or twice a day, but it was a much more expensive habit and those one or two times a day is what I looked forward to,” Ford said.

Ford mentioned that her relationships with her friends, parents and relatives were very rocky because of the drug addiction. That’s when she decided it was time to seek help and overcome the addiction.

“When I was actively using, I didn’t think there was a way out. I was in such a dark place in my life that really I thought dying was the only way out. I didn’t think I could ever get help. I just accepted that [the drugs] were going to be my life and there was nothing anyone could say to me to make me realize that it doesn’t have to be like that.”

She had finally had enough of the pain and suffering and she has lost everything worth anything to the drugs. Witnessing a couple of friends end up in the hospital because of overdosing definitely made her aware that she needed to get out and get help.

“I really wanted to get clean for myself. I was actively using for a couple of years and I knew that I wouldn’t stop unless I really wanted it for myself,” Ford said, “I’ve tried to quit for other people before like my mom and dad, but it doesn’t work unless you want it yourself.”

After a vacation with friends, she reached out to her father saying that when she came home, she wanted to come clean and seek help.

“[Samm] seeked help from me back in July of this year,” said Paul Ford, her father, “While she was gone on a trip, she told me how much her body hurt and I questioned her more and more. That’s when she said she was a heroin addict.”

Paul was very eager to help her in her journey of becoming clean. He researched and found Fairbanks where Samm still resides and is seeking medical help.

She says it’s an amazing program and she has met so many awesome people in the short time she has been going there. Samm says they offer so much.

“I’m really not positive that I would be alive today if it wasn’t for Fairbanks.”

When asked if she would offer any advice to someone who was wanting to get help, she said that she’s really early in recovery so she can’t really give advice when all she needs is advice.

“It’s a huge lifestyle change. Huge. I was actually scared to get clean because I didn’t know what sober people did. I didn’t know how to act or what to do with my free time.”

She said that Fairbanks is always welcoming those who want to start living a drug-free life and that there are wonderful programs. She said to join some of the meetings to see if it’s the perfect fit for someone who is interested.

Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

Every cloud has a silver lining, and Samm Ford has definitely shined on that silver lining while coming clean of drugs. Since August 1, 2016, she is 47 days clean.