Mom Speaks Out 1 Year After Overdosing With Baby In Back Seat And Says Photo Made Her Get Sober

by Ileana Paules-Bronet
Ileana is the Senior Editor of Branded Content at Wild Sky Media. She grew up in upstate New York and Oregon and now lives in Queens, NY. Ileana graduated from Skidmore College with a degree in sociology. After graduating, she attended the Columbia Publishing Course in New York City, then worked as in marketing at Oxford University Press. Since transitioning to editorial, she has written for BuzzFeed, HuffPost, and Woman's World. She has also worked for local newspapers and magazines in upstate New York. In her free time, you can find Ileana watching Law & Order: SVU, eating ice cream, and spending time with her dog.

People all around the country die every day from drug overdoses.

Addiction is a disease that is hard to beat, and sometimes people need to hit rock bottom before they finally make a change for the better.

Last year, police officers in Indiana found Erika Hurt passed out in the front seat of her car. She had a needle clutched in her hand.

It was obvious Erika had overdosed on heroin. Making matters worse, her 10-month-old son was in the back seat. Luckily, officers were able to revive her using Narcan, but they made sure to snap a picture of Erika’s nearly lifeless body first.

The picture was then shared all over the internet, with the intent of discouraging others from using drugs.

Within days, people worldwide had seen Erika Hurt at her very worst, in the throes of a horrible heroin addiction that was threatening her own life and the life of her baby.

[H/T: Romper]

It’s been one full year since Erika’s overdose photo went viral, and the young mom is finally speaking out about the impact the image had on her.

On October 22, 2017, Erika took to Facebook to write about the past year of her life.

erika overdose

Erika wrote:


I’ve seriously debated for the past month, on whether I should repost such a painful picture displaying the absolute worst moment of my life. 

erika happy

I’ve clearly decided to go ahead with my choice. As you all know, I overdosed in my car at a parking lot..

Yes, with my precious baby boy inside the car with me.. but what you may not know is, that overdose happened one year ago TODAY!

erika baby

I’ve decided to repost the picture simply because it displays exactly what heroin addiction is.

Also because I do not want to ever forget where the road of addiction has taken me. Little did I know that day, my life was about to change, drastically.

son and erika

Today, I am able to focus on the good that came from that picture. Today, I am a mother to my son, again.

Today, I am able to be grateful to actually have solid proof where addiction will only lead you, and today I am able to say that I am ONE YEAR SOBER!

erika park

I have thousands of shout outs, too many to list.

Just know that I DO NOT tackle recovery alone, I have a very large group of supporters standing behind me each and every day to help make sobriety possible for me!

erika narcan

Now, Erika is happy and healthy, and hoping she can help other people fight their own addictions.

Erika knows the photo of her overdosed in her car is heartbreaking and difficult to see, but if there’s any way the picture can help others, Erika knows it’s worth it.

erika playground

Everyone who saw Erika’s post offered their congratulations on her incredible accomplishment.

One woman wrote: “Not actually knowing you personally but through you wonderful Mama, I can say I love you and support you 100%.”

erika toddler

Another woman wrote: “So proud of you sweetheart… you are an awesome person and a great mommy.. it took real courage to post this… you are simply amazing…”

It’s obvious that Erika has inspired many in her year of sobriety.

baby erika

If you think everyone deserves to live a life free of addiction, please SHARE this article with your friends!