Lindsay’s Story

Lindsay has a New Start

Lindsay McAteer

Family & Children's Services, Mental Health Association Oklahoma, Legal Aid of Oklahoma, Parent Child Center

Lindsay had been an addict for 20 years when she was arrested on a drug charge and was looking at a potential sentence of 12 years to life. But the judge offered her another option: the Women in Recovery program, an intensive, outpatient alternative for women facing long prison sentences for non-violent, drug-related offenses. Lindsay chose recovery.

“It turned out to be exactly what I needed. I don’t think anything else would have helped,” says Lindsay McAteer about Family & Children’s Services Women in Recovery program. But she hasn’t always felt this way.

Her initial reaction was that the program was too intense. “I was convinced that I didn’t need that,” she says. But she soon realized she needed time to focus on herself and get back on track.

Lindsay has moved into housing and been reunited with her young son. She has taken parenting classes through The Parent Child Center of Tulsa and received assistance from Legal Aid of Oklahoma. She also went through the Mental Health Association’s Work Force Readiness Program to help her with job skills.

Now Lindsay works as a property manager for Mental Health Association Oklahoma in the very same Work Force Readiness program that helped her.

Lindsay has now graduated from the Women in Recovery program and knows that she has more recovery to work through. But she was encouraged to have her whole family at graduation. “I have so much gratitude. To have my whole family there was really amazing. It was a healing experience for them, as much as it was for me,” she says.

Without WIR and the other programs, Lindsay admits that, “I would be in prison, still addicted or dead.”