New exhibition challenges how people see drug users

December 21, 2018

‘I used to self harm trying to deal with it and I would overdose on whatever drugs I could’ via The Irish Times

A new photographic exhibition, opened in Dublin on Thursday, aims to challenge how people see drug users.

VIDEO: People Like Us Exhibition

Those at the launch included William Power (44), who said he came from a troubled family.

“My father used ask me to hide his guns. I was running around with them feeling proud and special. He got locked up for armed robbery and later for child abuse but he was closest to me.

“My mother said I was out of control, maybe I was. As much as a nine year old can be.”

He was put into care.

“I was sent to the Christian Brothers. That place was hell on earth and the Brothers were the devils. They did some horrible, horrible things to us. I used to self harm trying to deal with it and I would overdose on whatever drugs I could get my hands on.

“I went into care for not attending school and came out as a drug dealer. I was sent into prison for dealing drugs and came out an armed robber.”

Mr Power said he ended up on the streets for years.

“Ended up on drugs. Being using drugs for years. To escape. Because when I was put into care I was abused. I was abused in there but I hid it for years and I used to take drugs to block it out.”

He said he faced up to it last year.

“I put myself into rehab last year and came out of rehab and been doing great ever since. Couldn’t be doing any better. Without Ana Liffey I wouldn’t be standing here today, that’s a fact.”

‘People like us’

Mr Power was speaking at the ‘People Like Us’ photographic portrait exhibition of people whose lives have been blighted by drugs in Dublin’s North East Inner City. His portrait is part of the exhibition which was launched by Lord Mayor Nial Ring on Thursday morning.

Read the full article and watch the video here


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