Friday, May 10, 2013

Excuses and Addiction

Not sure where to begin with these posts.  So I'm just going to simply write, you know no planned out post just write what comes to mind. 

Addiction. It's....Insidious. Painful. Selfish. Sad. Heartbreaking. Frustrating. Debilitating. Confusing.  It...Destroys. Hurts. Lies. Ruins. Is a disease. Those with addictions become mere shells of their former a flower with no petals.

Withdrawal.  It causes....Suffering. Pain. Horrible Sickness. Cravings. Brain fog. Exhaustion. Sleepless nights and days. Extreme Anxiety. Restless legs. Sweating. Chills. Cravings. Nausea. Vomiting. Diarrhea. Shakes. Mood Swings. Sadness. Agitation. Lack of Motivation. Oh the physical and mental symptoms are endless.

What most people don't realize is that withdrawal symptoms can be experienced long after the detox process, anywhere from 3-18 months. Not to mention the strong cravings that try to draw the addict back in.  The brain has to essentially rebuild itself which takes time.  Hence why early on it can be quite a struggle to get and stay clean.  Drugs take over the pleasure centers of the brain, upon withdrawal those same pleasure centers can be rather hard to regain and regenerate. 

Watching someone you love experience all this is incredibly difficult.  There is a feeling of wanting to take care of them but even a stronger feeling of wanting to yell "was that high worth all this suffering and destruction" "wake up you are destroying yourself and your life" Because essentially you watch the life being slowly sucked out of them. And it infuriates you enough to want to go after the drug dealers themselves, whom are living large off their lucrative business of destroying others lives.

To hear about it on the news, to watch documentaries or reality shows about it, to learn about celebrities or friends of friends who suffer from addiction honestly doesn't even begin to convey the true horrors of it. Having someone close to you with an addiction is like living through a very real and frightening nightmare.  The two scariest aspects are the financial ruin (addicts eventually run out of money, leaving them with nothing or severely in debt) and the loss of the addict.(the more that is increasingly ingested the higher the risk of eventual overdose)

There are many difficult aspects, especially the lies and excuses.  The lying is beyond comprehension an addict even lies to themselves.  Next to lying, excuses are probably one of the biggest hindrances in the recovery process.  Oh addicts will come up with every excuse in the book as to why they have to continue to use. They will try to justify those excuses as well.  Or even start using other substances. Addicts want a quick fix to everything in life!

Instead of putting that energy into changing their behavior or thoughts, developing solid coping mechanisms and new ways of learning to deal with life or handle stress.  It's much easier to fall back to what makes them feel good, then to do the hard work required to recover.  And there is no quick fix to getting clean.

Here is an incredibly enlightening and insightful easy read about Excuses.  Those are just a sample of excuses, the list is endless.  Just think about the excuses the average person makes, so imagine what an addict can come up with. 

And those excuses, well there is just nothing those close to an addict can do about them.  Yes people can call them on their excuses or even point out the very transparency of them.  But its up to the addict to realize their excuses are just a way to justify keeping their addiction alive.  Excuses are one of the many components responsible for relapse as well.

That's basically where this person close to me is right now.  In a recovery program but hasn't been 100% committed to it these past few months, as they have been still creating and finding excuses.  Until they are ready to let go of those excuses they cannot fully progress in recovery.  Along with letting go of the excuses, lying must also be stopped.  Excuses and lying just perpetrate the vicious cycle of addiction even further.  Accountability is a necessity.  One simply cannot recover without complete honesty, help or support. 

Fact is when an addict wants what their addicted to bad enough, they will do anything to get it.  Well same goes with recovery....if an addict wants to beat their addiction bad enough, they will do anything to achieve that.  If it means working day and night at recovery, they will do it.  And that's something to keep in mind when say excuses rear their ugly head.

For now I continue to pray that this loved one will be able to get past the insidious withdrawal and cravings.  Will find a way to let go of the excuses and lies.  And that some how they will find the strength and motivation to do the very difficult work necessary to overcome it.  And to eventually get their petals back. 

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