Artesia is a pleasant and highly cultured city in southeast Los Angeles County, in the state of California, in the United States.  Artesia was initially incorporated on May 29, 1959, and is one of Los Angeles County’s many Gateway Cities. The city has a 2010 census population of 16,522 according to the United States Census Bureau. Artesia is surrounded on the west, south, and east sides by Cerritos, with Norwalk to the north of the city.

Artesia is the home of the infamous East-West Ice Palace, an ice rink which is co-owned by Michelle Kwan. This city was also the childhood home of former First Lady Pat Nixon, who lived there from 1914 to 1931.  The city holds on to its heritage and is cultured around many historic elements.

As for the city’s niche economy, there are a large number of Indian-owned stores and restaurants that all rest along Pioneer Blvd. in Artesia. Despite this concentration of Indian-owned businesses, Asian Indians made up only 7.9% of the population of Artesia in the 2010 Census, but the economy and the city’s GDP would be reduced by about forty percent if it wasn’t for the stores.

Throughout the years, proposals have often been made to designate a portion of the city as, “Little India”.  The city certainly does have a very strong Indian influence and in recent years this has led to a significant amount of tourism in the area.  Another proposal in the area too has been for a “Little India” sign at the Pioneer Blvd. exit off of the Artesia Freeway. Opposition, primarily from other ethnicities in the city, has so far balked such plans, but the strength and the support for the plans have been growing each year.

According to an LA Times article that talked about the city, “Artesia Thinks the World of Itself.”  After this four of five City Council members were outraged at Assemblyman Rudy Bermudez’s attempt to make the designation without consulting the local council. But there is some truth in the statement as each year the city impresses more culture upon the town’s look and appeal, and makes its history more known.  All in all this is a small town city that started out as another road sign but is now a bustling tourism and shopping sector.

Substance Abuse Strikes a Cultural Town

Sadly, drug and alcohol abuse and addiction has followed the dollar and has essentially arrived at major troubles and problems for Artesia.  Whenever a city begins to experience a growing population that starts to make a difference in any given area and in any given way, the drug dealers of that geographic sector will notice and will take an interest in it.  What usually happens next is that drugs are pushed into that city, and are sold to the residents and to anyone who is a part of the thriving economy there.  This is always a beneficial investment for drug criminals, and sadly the situation has been no different in Artesia.  If something isn’t done soon to correct this, then it is feared that the entire issue will begin to take over.

Addressing Addiction in Artesia

Addressing addiction in Artesia is not always easy to do.  In fact, it is usually very difficult and trying for the family to deal with, unless the addicted loved one is totally willing to go to rehab.

Experts recommend the developing and the repeating of a consistent and positive message to your loved one.  You want to really get across to them that you care about them and that you want to get them help.  Define and really put your foot down that substance use is a problem for you and others who care about the individual. Don’t blame them, don’t threaten them, and don’t be condescending.  Avoid playing the blame game.  Expect argument, and be prepared with a kind counter-argument.

You might want to involve more than one person in any kind of discussion you get into with your addicted loved one.  Perhaps you have a friend, another family member, doctor, clergy, boss, co-worker or some other significant person who might be able to have an effective discussion with your loved one and make some progress.  Sometimes, addicts will totally block out something very true to the point that someone says, and then totally open up to it when they hear the exact same thing from someone else.

There are some pretty definitive dos and don’t’s when it comes to dealing with an addicted family member.  These are intended to protect you and your family.  As you continue to work to try to talk to the person in need of help, please remember these important details and apply them to your discussions:

• Don’t try to talk when either one of you is under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  You will get nowhere.

• Do protect yourself and others around you from physical harm.  If you are in danger yourself then you won’t be able to help the addict.

• Do call police if there is violence and be sure that you make a firm stand with the addict that unacceptable behavior will not be tolerated.

• Do set limits that will protect your home, finances, and relationships, and stick to those limits.

• And if you are at your wits’ end, you might consider a formal intervention too, as this is sometimes what it takes to convince an addict that it is time to hang it up and check into rehab.

In the end, the idea is to help the person.  This is the only way that Artesia is going to change.  With effective rehabilitation in California and the efforts of those who live there, addiction can finally become something of the past in Artesia.