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Posted On: 10th Jul 2012

The Pen v Dependency

The Pen v Dependency

Karina Ritchie (17) has just published a book of poems about her past, and is now encouraging young people to express their feelings and not to turn to drink and drugs.


Problems with drink and drugs all started when Karina was 14-years-old.


Quickly, what started out as a problem became more of a habit, and Karina knew her life was spiralling out of control when her son was taken away from her because she could not look after him with her drug habit.


“This was the turning point for me,” she says, “as I realised how I’d been hurting my family with my behaviour.” 


Karina’s comfort came in poetry, which she would write regularly to express how she was feeling.


Karina's PoemsHer poems focus on stories about events in her life, right through to poems written to inspire others. In her poem, ‘Be Me’, Karina describes how she is “lifting her head high, setting her heart free.”


Now Karina’s poems have become more than personal scribbles, as a book of her poetry has been published to inspire other young people to stay away from drink and drugs.


“Using drink and drugs is not the answer,” she says. “There are people available to offer you help. My life is much better than it was which shows anyone can turn their life around. Everyone is unique and everyone has potential,” she says. 


“No matter what your dreams are, you can make them happen. But some people need a helping hand getting there. If no one else believes you, always believe in yourself.”


You can read Karina’s collection of poems here.


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