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Difficult circumstances lead to substance abuse among immigrants

Though coming to the United States may have initially started out as a positive endeavor, you may have quickly started bearing the burden of living in a new country on your own. Like many immigrants, you may have had to leave your family behind in your native country as you tried to start a new life here in Michigan. Though you hoped for a successful result, you may not have realized just how hard it would be.

Unfortunately, these difficult feelings may have you, like many other immigrants and refugees, turning toward alcohol or illegal substances. While it may seem like something to blunt the hardships that you face on your own, alcohol or drug abuse could quickly put your immigrant status at risk.

Why is substance abuse prevalent?

The hopes of finding a new and better life may dwindle over time as immigrants find themselves facing setback after setback. They may realize that they do not have enough money to send for their loved ones as quickly as they had hoped, or they may have to face long delays in their journey for citizenship and in obtaining visas for their loved ones. The following difficulties may affect you and others in similar situations:

  • Experiencing separation anxiety
  • Feeling depressed and alone
  • Facing conflict in various forms
  • Living in difficult conditions
  • Missing your family
  • Feeling isolated
  • Enduring the stress of moving to a new country and learning a new language

Whether you chose to come to the United States as a hopeful endeavor or had no choice but to leave your native country due to the difficulties you faced there, these feelings and experiences could affect you either way. They can also lead to substance abuse that could put you at risk of facing criminal charges that could affect your immigration status.

What if you face charges?

If the stress and hardships of coming to a new country have resulted in your having substance abuse issues that, in turn, led to an arrest, you undoubtedly worry that you will face negative repercussions relating to your immigration status. If so, you may want to contact an experienced immigration law attorney who may be able to assess your situation and determine what options you may have for remaining in the country and minimizing the consequences of your arrest in regard to your immigration situation.