Myths abound regarding the nature of addiction but disinformation does you no good when you’re faced with the prospect of recovery. Knowing fact from myth is the first step to dealing with and defeating addiction.
MYTH: Addiction is a choice and those who continue abouse are weak or indulgent.
FACT:Drug addiction is often a debilitating, life-threatening condition that not only overwhelms a person’s willpower but also wrecks the body if not treated. The initial choice to use a drug or have a drink certainly belongs to the individual. However, one use of a substance with addictive properties can create a cycle of chemical dependency that quickly spirals out of the average person’s control. It then becomes a legitimate medical situation that requires support, care, and treatment.
MYTH: Addicts are dirty, jobless subversives or criminals.
FACT:The majority of drug addictions in the US are among working middle class adults and university students. While environmental and economic factors affect the types of drug use and resulting addictions, the fact is that anyone can become an addict, from the lonely tattooed biker to the depressed suburban housewife and the burnt out financial executive. Addiction comes in many forms and these stereotypes often serve as a way to convince ourselves that we aren’t like those other addicts. We’re all capable of addiction and realizing this helps us to admit when we have a problem.
MYTH: "I'm not an addict, I can quit any time I want."
FACT:No one wants to admit to being an addict. Most drug users and alcoholics convince themselves daily that their behavior is voluntary and harmless. The reality is any form of substance abuse has hidden consequences. If it’s causing problems or the people in your life are concerned, prove them wrong by quitting. If you can’t, you have an addiction that needs to be addressed.
MYTH: Addicts don’t need treatment.
FACT:While some forms of addiction or compulsion can be overcome by sheer personal will, the vast majority of substance addictions are so chemically bonded to the body that the experience of trying to quit without help is physically life-threatening. Severe addictions require medical treatment during the detox and clinical therapy to heal the psychological trauma and habits formed during the addiction.
MYTH: Since so many people relapse, treatment doesn't work.
FACT:Everyone’s addiction is unique to the individual so each recovery is its own challenge, however the majority of addicts who seek treatment find success with no or minimal relapse. Recovery is more common than relapse, especially with a proper treatment program. Any treatment is better than no treatment in the fight against life-threatening chemical addictions.
MYTH: Addicts who relapse after treatment are hopeless.
FACT:Drug addiction is a chronic condition that addicts battle their entire lives. The occasional relapse is not a sign of complete failure, but a part of the long term process of fighting the disease. Ongoing support is essential for an addict to reclaim their life and sobriety. As a family, friend, or society, we can’t give up on those who are trying to quit. It takes the support of the group to beat addiction.
Knowledge is Power
Hiding behind excuses and false myths about the nature of drugs and addiction is an unhealthy avoidance of a serious problem. Only by learning the truth about addiction can you help yourself or someone you know recover. Read up and spread facts, not myths. By being informed, we can all beat addiction together.
Treatment's Over... Now What?
MYTH: It's been years since rehab, so its okay if I use "just a little".
FAct:Sobriety is a daily fight. It's 100% in, or nothing. No one can try "just a little" and remain sober. Once you use again, you've relapsed. And after relapsing, the odds of falling back into a life you've left behind are not promising. Take it one day at a time and stay 100% clean...
MYTH: I'm in recovery and I haven't used in a long time, so I'm no longer addicted.
FACT:There's a reason why every person in an AA says "My name is Bill W. and I'm an addict". There's also a reason why successful recovery is based around attending meetings regularly. It's because once you've become an addict, you'll always be addict. Staying sober is a daily practice. Reminding yourself for how grateful you are for the change you've produced in your life is important. Sharing this in a connected way with others is equally important.
MYTH: All recovery programs are religious or spiritual.
FACT:Sure, many are. And they're very effective. However, there's plenty of rehab programs, sober livings, counselors and professionals that help fight addiction without the use or involvement of religion. A few of them can be found here.
Americans use illicit drugs
Use drugs for 1st time each year
Americans need addiction rehab
In need of rehab receive it
TestimonialsWhat’s your success story?
“I used to think drugs were the only way to make me fly... But now I'm clean and sober I'm soaring to heights i never knew existed.”
“When I decided to clean up I was in a bad place but because God loves us so much he sent people in my life that opened my eyes to recovery, the journey still continues.”
Elizabeth N Charles
For years I wanted to stop, and kept falling short. It amazes me each and every day what sobriety can bring... most importantly, self respect and dignity. I love life today”
“Addictions no longer rule me. I have become the person I've always wanted to be. Free from my prison and able to enjoy life.”
“I accepted that yes i am an addict and that i am powerless, and i surrender to my higher power. To live a better life! 2 and half years clean.”
“4 yrs sober and i can look in the mirror and not detest what i see.. Life continues to have its struggles but i'm able to deal with the pain without a bottle.”
“I'm proud and grateful to be called a mom, wife, and feel blessed to have the chance to start this new and exciting journey.”
Rachelle Perry Buhle
“After 33 years of drinking I found Celebrate Recovery and it completely changed my life. Sober now 18 months and loving every day as a new day.”
“I'm glad I became sober because as I am now 18, I have my whole life ahead of me. I did not think i'd live to see 18, but now I can chase my dreams and not my drinks!”
“Crystal Meth was my 'diet drug' of choice, but was killing me until the day I fell to my knees, cried out to Jesus; He set me free and gave me new abundant life-24 years ago!”
Gina Michelle Welker