Face of Meth Recovery Goes Viral

By William Georgiades 05/07/13

Photos showing a recovering addict's stunning transformation receive thousands of "likes."

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Shanna White, before and after recovery
Photo via Shanna Echols White

Eight days ago Shanna Echols White celebrated the sixth anniversary of being clean of her meth addiction with a post on her Facebook account. "If you are still in the midst of this ugly nightmare please know there is hope," she wrote. "You too can beat this and have a beautiful life. It is NEVER too late." She also added two photos side by side: one of her face after eight years of meth use, and a current photo, after six years clean and sober. The post soon went viral, and the photographs have since received over 160,000 "likes" and over 12,000 "shares." "I had no idea it would reach this many people," White tells Big Country. "I keep that picture to remind myself where it took me. I felt defeated. I look at the other picture and I think, 'Wow, I did it.' All the pictures of meth...show a person...deteriorating. But you never see them coming back up." In the spirit of sobriety, she added, "I didn't go viral. All the shares, all the likes and all the love from the people that care about this disease went viral. We went viral."

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William Georgiades is a former editor at EsquireBlack Book, the New York Post and the Grapevine and has written for several publications including New York MagazineVanity Fair, the London Times and GQ. He has been the features editor at The Fix since 2013. You can find him on Linkedin.

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