Jolted out of a drug haze with life-changing news: ‘I went to sleep at 15 and woke up at 23, pregnant.’

Bree Swarmer and her daughter, Brinlee, live in New Stanton. On May 25, 2018, Swarmer celebrated being clean for 26 months. (Photo by Maranie Rae Staab/PublicSource)

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Bree Swarmer’s eight-year struggle with addiction began with the painkillers a dentist prescribed for her after removing her wisdom teeth. She was 15.
“I fell in love,” she said of the Percocet, a hybrid of oxycodone and Tylenol. From there, she found more pills and eventually moved on to shooting heroin. She tried to hide her addiction from her family in Westmoreland County.
But the next turning point in her life made her determined to kick her addiction for good.
“I went to sleep at 15 and woke up at 23, pregnant. I had to learn how to be an adult. You stop maturing when you start using hard drugs. Having to be an adult while you’re raising another human — it’s tough,” said Swarmer, now 25 and living in New Stanton.
By the time Swarmer became pregnant, she had been in and out of drug rehab several times.


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