Sunday, November 26, 2017

When an Addict Recovers

I never really thought about how an addict becomes a former-addict/recovering addict. It was something that I never dealt with personally, so it didn't ping my radar...


Until recently.

So what does it take?

Recognition
Of course, the addict has to see she's an addict, and that it's not ok. Whatever "not ok" looks like, how ever "not ok" is defined- that doesn't matter. But the addict recognizes that where she is isn't ok.



Action
Then a decision to do something. Quit. Self control isn't always enough. Support, medical supervision, an in-patient program.

Support

Then there's the other lifestyle changes. Maybe the addict goes to meetings- AA, or other group meeting program. Get rid of the old friends, and make new friends. Learning to live without the addiction, finding other ways to cope with stresses and boredom.

Time
It takes time to develop these new behavior patterns and habits. Time to end old friendships (or rather convince the old friends that they are no longer welcome in your life), and create new friendships.

It seems that most of that time is required to prove that the "old me" doesn't exist any more and to build a reliable track record. So what to do in the meantime? As I said in a previous post, when one person changes, others in the same circles will resist. Family will continue to accuse or judge, friends will continue to tempt (that's why the addict sometimes has to ditch the old friends and find new clean friends). Even law enforcement sometimes will sometimes try to round up "the usual suspects."

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