We'd like to share Richard's story, told from the perspective of being a patient's relative.
Warning: this contains sensitive themes including addiction.
Thirteen years ago, Richard received a call from our hospital where his Dad was receiving treatment for jaundice due to alcohol misuse.
“We jumped in the car and I drove from Richmond to Cambridge. The last two miles it really hit me. I couldn't stop crying.”
Richard arrived at Addenbrooke's Hospital to find his Dad unresponsive, having been fine a few days previous. Overcome with emotion, Richard took a short break and grabbed a coffee. Unfortunately by the time he’d returned, his Dad had died.
Although Richard and his Dad were not close, he urges: “Time has passed, but the wound has never healed. If you know anyone with any form of addiction, please try and help them. And tell your loved ones that you love them.”
Richard fondly remembers his Dad's role in many different bands over the years including ‘Mister Lucifer’. They played the Cambridge Folk Festival around 1977 and also supported ‘Smile’, who were later joined by Freddie Mercury, and changed their name to ‘Queen’.
Other bands you might recognise, all local to Cambridge, were ‘Backtrack’ and ‘White Spirit’.
Thank you to Richard for sharing his family's story.
If you, or someone you know is affected by alcohol or drug addiction, visit https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/drug-addiction-getting-help/