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Meet Doug: A Fellowship Missions Recovery Story


At Fellowship Missions, we believe recovery is always something to celebrate! We love being able to give those who are working hard every day on their recovery journey the opportunity to share their stories of hope and healing.  

One of our residents at Fellowship Missions agreed to share his own recovery story with you. Doug became a part of our Fellowship Missions journey in 2023 and we’re grateful he was willing to share his story with you.

What is your background?

I was born and raised in Fort Wayne Indiana, unfortunately in a dysfunctional family where there was alcohol abuse in our home. I was mentally and physically abused and turned to alcohol and marijuana as a young teen to cope. When I turned 17, I quit school and left.

I’ve lost dear family members due to drugs and alcohol, and have been to prison myself, sometimes to try to escape the mess I was in because of my addiction.

It got worse in 2014 when I got in an accident. Doctors prescribed me opioids for pain after my surgery and that got me hooked on those pills. Eventually, I moved to suboxone, a medicine to treat dependence on opioids, but then became dependent on suboxone itself.

Why did you come to Fellowship Missions?

I was in a very low spot in 2021 and tried to end my own life. During this dark time, I got directions to Fellowship Missions and when I got there, I had everything I needed within 10 minutes. I had a safe, hygienic place to stay and people who could help.

During that time I was able to get a job, but due to circumstances with the law, medical emergencies, and family crises, I was in and out of Fellowship Missions as a resident until 2023 when I lost my wife.

After my wife passed away, I wanted to stop drinking and using drugs. I’m sad it took losing her to convince me to change my lifestyle.

I had nowhere to go, so I waited until there was an open bed at Fellowship Missions for me. Once I was able to stay, I felt immediately at home, like I was with family, which was healing because I had lost so much.

How has being at Fellowship Missions helped your recovery?

Because I could stay at Fellowship Missions, I had support when I wanted to quit drinking after my wife passed away. Instead of having to jump quickly into work, the staff encouraged me to slow down, take my medical condition into consideration, and prioritize my sobriety first.

Now I work in the kitchen at Fellowship Missions and doors have begun to open for me. Being here has changed my outlook on life, I feel like a valuable person as part of something bigger than myself and am proud to have responsibilities and people counting on me every day.

What is something that has impacted your recovery journey?

I was attending a church service while I was incarcerated and was able to forgive my parents. When I decided to forgive them, it felt like a burden had been lifted off my shoulders. 

I’m so amazed by God’s forgiveness, and how Jesus has forgiven me for all I’ve done.

What are your goals for your life moving forward?

I am working on getting disability through Social Security and am also working hard to be able to stop being dependent on suboxone safely.

My goal is to work through all 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and be able to share my testimony with more people.

Fellowship Missions is here to help!

Through Fellowship Missions’ Addiction Recovery Hub, we are committed to helping unite our community around the areas of prevention, treatment, and recovery programs and to offer support to those struggling with alcohol or substance use disorder and their families.

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance use disorder and addiction, call the Fellowship Missions hotline today to get the help you need: 1-800-337-3219

If you would like to get involved with our Recovery Mentor program and help those like Doug who are walking their recovery journey, click below to learn more about how you can become a volunteer.

What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

James 2:14-17, NLT