NH1 News Investigates Lost Children: Heroin use impacts the whole family
Heroin addictions and overdoses have been on a steady rise since 2012 in New Hampshire, and every year about 100 Granite Staters die from an overdose.
New Hampshire sees about 1,000 children per year up for adoption because of that, some children substance abuse take precedent over their own well-being.
"I couldn't even describe it. . . . very stressful . . . very emotional. The same judge that said I couldn't raise my boys, is the same judge that gave me back my daughters," said Jessica Carter.
Jessica is at the end of a three-year battle fighting for custody of her two teenage girls. When her daughters were just 12, they had to live in a foster home.
"It wasn't a good experience," said Desiree Reyas, Carter's daughter. "I mean going into a foster home - it's not like anything fun. You don't know them, and they're strangers - and you're going to live with strangers, and you expect everything to be Ok. But then you get scared because it's not, and you're not with your family."
"It's our responsibility to share with the court what our concerns are and at times request removal of children who are being left in those potentially dangerous situations," said Marcia Sink, President of CASA of N.H.
Carter has custody of her two girls, but not her two sons. The boys have been adopted, but because of Carter's past substance abuse and lack of financial stability, they are lost to her.
"There's not a day that goes by that I don't think - or even mention - the boys," Carter said. "It's just very hard because I know I won't see them."
Organizations like CASA are always looking for volunteers to provide healthy homes for N.H. children. If you would like to get involved, fill out an adoption application.