Of the many things that are out and about regarding addiction, many people miss the bigger points of identification and addiction treatment. Many people believe that the process is something along the lines of “person chooses addiction, they go to rehab, they return home, and everything is okay.” That couldn’t be further from a real-life scenario for addiction.
“Going Cold Turkey” Isn’t an Effective Addiction Treatment Method For Most People
Going cold turkey used to be the thing to do, long before AA and other 12-step drug treatment programs. The thing is that people don’t want to look at this honestly. In reality, going cold turkey after becoming physically dependent on a drug such as opioids is dangerous. Many people cannot detox alone without putting themselves in serious health risks.
Opioid withdrawal can include rapid heartbeat and high blood pressure. For those who have used for years or have moved on from abusing prescription opioids to using street drugs may have more serious withdrawals as their body attempts to detox from other chemicals present in their drug use.
Addiction is a Family Disease and Sobriety is a Family Journey
The phrase “Addiction is a family disease” is fairly well-known for families who have struggled to get a family member sober. But many fail to realize that sobriety is about family as well. When people return from rehab, most of the family members may not know how to act. They may avoid conversations about triggers, drugs, or places where the person in recovery used to frequent.
The thought process here is good, but often it can lead to relapse. When a person in recovery doesn’t feel that they have anyone near them to talk to, it’s possible that they will revert back to old habits. Additionally, if they feel there is no trust in the home, they may feel unwanted or that the damage done is irreparable.
Regardless of whether you are the one recovering or if your family member is recovering, you should focus on the journey of sobriety. Become involved in the process of sobriety and stay connected to those also committed to this journey.
Abuse is Abuse for More than the User
The phrase, “My dad is an alcoholic,” or “My sister does drugs,” are frequent statements. These statements leave a huge hole in the reality of that person, though. Someone who experiences the nature of addiction experiences abuse, abandonment, and a higher risk of both violent and sexual assault.
When you’re at a meeting or therapy session and hear, “my (blank) is a heroin addict,” consider that they are reporting a crime of neglect. It’s heartbreaking, but often the lack of support in families through sobriety happens because the abuse for those around the drug user is overlooked or even downplayed. Acknowledge that abuse and help them to move forward.
“Thinking Positively” Doesn’t Make the Bad Things Go Away
Recovery mantras are powerful tools. They give positive and empowering words when an addict is stumbling or white-knuckling their way through life. People in recovery may use them daily or only when they need something to fall back on for support.
However, these mantras are not a mask. For recovering addicts, they are a reminder, a source of support and power. For those around addicts, however, it may seem as if it’s a wave of positivity curing their loved one of addiction.
The thing is, mantras such as, “Strive for progress, not perfection” does not make the stress of everyday life simply vanish. It stands as a reminder that there are days when you will feel overwhelmed and that you don’t have to do everything much less do you have to do everything perfectly.
No One Chooses Addiction
It’s amazing that in 2019, coming into 2020, there is still a hot debate about whether addiction is a choice. It’s not just older generations either. Younger generations often report that their loved one “chooses” to use opioids again and again. Now, the struggle is put on proving that choice and dependency are separate. If you believe addiction is a choice, attend an open 12-step meeting and listen to those who have something to say, you will probably be very surprised.
Contact Rehab Carolinas for Addiction Treatment
Our facilities at Rehab Carolinas are here to help individuals and families through group and individual therapy. We arm addicts with recovery tools while helping their family recover from poor relationships and past abuse. With a full-circle focus, it’s likely that the family and the individual will have a better chance for