Stop the Drug Addiction Stigma
For years I have heard from various people that addiction is a weakness, or “if he wanted to stop he would.” It is time that we end the drug addiction stigma. No person I have met wants to be in the situation they are. Chemical changes occur in the brain. Whether it is using alcohol or drugs. The pleasure/reward centre activates. Some would say it over activates. Abusing alcohol or drugs creates powerful cravings and a compulsion to use. Once stuck in this addiction cycle, it may seem impossible to stop. According to the Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions “addiction is not a choice, it is a complex health condition.” Thus, treating addiction needs a multitude of recovery solutions. Although recovery may seem impossible, no matter how hopeless you feel, you can achieve sobriety.
Public stigma about drug addiction
I respect everyone’s opinion and believe they are all valid. What I don’t agree with is when opinions are not backed with evidence. The idea that addiction is a moral dilemma, which is accompanied with shame, is a step back into the past. Science has come a long way, as has the understanding of mental health. Until otherwise proven different, we need to treat addiction as such. Creating a new ground for love and understanding allows a more human way to treat those afflicted. The self shame that we hold, coupled with our view of societies public shame, keeps most suffering from addiction, in a dark place.
Addiction can happen to anyone
No one is exempt from the horrors of addiction. This disease plays no favorites. According to science it is a combination of biology and environment. Being exposed to traumatic events significantly increases the possibility of addictions to occur. Thus dealing with addiction with shame or guilt will just push one further away. Finding an qualified addictions counselor is crucial to being able to start the recovery journey. Having an experienced counselor help map out a drug recovery treatment plan will greatly increase the chance of long term sobriety. You can be a part of ending the drug addiction stigma.
Taking the step to recover from addiction
Realizing that you have a problem and taking the first step to recovery will be one of the hardest things to do. Fortunately, millions of people have done it before. Realizing that this is not a solo mission gives the once hopeless new found hope. The ability to relate to others and not feel alone is a breath of fresh air. Nobody has the answer to addiction, but we have solutions to treat addiction. When you can begin to believe in yourself, you have begun to end your own drug addiction stigma.
Recovery services and treatment options are at an all time high. There is no reason for anyone to suffer from the disease of addiction. It is normal to feel conflicted about giving up your drug of choice. Regardless of all the problems it is creating, we can get stuck in the twisted comfort of it. The one constant of all is that internal guilt and shame that we feel. Give yourself a chance and try something different. You can always go back if the alternative is not more appealing, but I guarantee you that you will love your new life.