Mother of former Suns star turns to faith for healing - Dallas News |

Mother of former Suns star turns to faith for healing

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Stoudemire. You say that name, and people, especially basketball fans, think of the young rookie who came and ignited the Phoenix Suns in 2002.

He was making headlines in the sportsworld, but his mom was making headlines of a different kind.

2002 was a new life and a new beginning for Florida high school standout Amare Stoudemire.

For his mom, Carrie Stoudemire, it would be a new chance to kick bad habits. Among them, drug addiction that had plagued her since she was teen in Florida.

Carrie had another secret, a secret she'd kept since she was just 12-years-old.

That's when she was molested more than once by an older man.

Her addiction to drugs started soon after that at 15.

But by 2002, more than 30 years had passed, it was a new city with her new NBA star son, but no amount of time passing or money could help her outrun her demons.

"That I brought it over, didn't know how to react as a wealthy woman on the other side, instead of in poverty, so it was still there in me after so long," said Stoudemire.

Carrie Stoudemire was flying high on cocaine and often crash landing.  

The mug shots were a low point.   

"I was out of my mind, that wasn't me," said Stoudemire. "I couldn't kick my habit, I couldn't kick it. I tried then I'd wind up in jail."

She says she'd tell Amare how sorry she was, and she would finally tell him about the molestations that have haunted her.

"He said, 'Mom, you did the best you can. We still love you, but I couldn't accept it. I could not accept love, I couldn't. I didn't know how cause I didn't love me. I didn't know me," said Stoudemire.

Carrie Stoudemire figures she's been in jail more than out over her lifetime .

The last time she decided was the last time . It was May of 2006, a judge in Phoenix sentenced her to three years on jail for felony DUI.

She's been out since the Summer of 2008, in trouble again in 2010 for a DUI, but now says she's finally kicked her addiction.

"I didn't--I couldn't do it. God did it. I was tired of my self esteem. I was tired of going to jail. I was tired of not being there for my kids. I was sick and tired," said Stoudemire.

Two years after Carrie was released from Perryville, Amare moved on in a big way.

He signed with the New York Knicks and got a $99.5 million contract for five years.

Carrie could live anywhere, but at 57, she lives in a house in a quiet Phoenix neighborhood. She's been in the valley 11 years.

"I could have left and I still can, I just won't. I find myself loving it. I guess I found peace here. At first I didn't because it was still a little hoodie, but as God matured inside of me, I start maturing myself. I'm here. I love it here now," said Stoudemire.

Now she looks back on her journey and then looks forward searching for a way to do good.

She's found the answer in her deep sense of faith.

Instead of running from her past, she's using it to minister and reach out especially to young girls with a unique perspective.

After all, she has been there, done that.

"It's done so now I can minister to young girls. I can tell them what it feel like to be a prostitute. I can tell them what it feel like to be in jail, in prison. I can tell them what it feel like to be a thief, homeless. I can tell them what it feel like to give up your children for your addiction, I can tell them that now. If I had never went through these things in my life, I wouldn't be able to talk to any one about them," said Stoudemire.

Stoudemire, now a minister, does a radio show, special testimonials and appearances.

She has had tragedies since moving to Phoenix, but says she remains strong and ever faithful.

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