People don't "claim" addictions. Addictions claim people.


Is this really a stigma these days? It seems everyone I see is now claiming an addiction. Nearly as much as those professing to be gluten intolerant (new studies show as vastly overstated) and suffering from Lyme Disease (albeit the new one). Can we not focus on treatment before we get trendy? The use of Heroin is nothing new (Opium Wars); the issue is purposeful flooding of the market where once was amply (?over?) prescribed opiates in a population idle due to a poor economy and precious little outlets for boredom (especdially during long winters).

Is this really a stigma these days?

Yes.

It seems everyone I see is now claiming an addiction. Nearly as much as those professing to be gluten intolerant (new studies show as vastly overstated) and suffering from Lyme Disease (albeit the new one).

People don't "claim" addictions. Addictions claim people. Addicts and alcoholics admit defeat and usually very privately and with great shame. Likening the courage of the admittance of an alcohol and drug addiction, past or present, to "claiming" a food intolerance is an attempt to diminish the courage of openly discussing a painful past and the genuine power of addiction. The numbers of people are shockingly high yet that does not diminish the veracity. As many people who are known addicts and alcoholics are exponentially more people who are quietly suffering and dying from their addictions.

Can we not focus on treatment before we get trendy?

Long-term sobriety and living clean is a part of long-term treatment. Treatment doesn't end when someone leaves rehab (if they are lucky to have insurance coverage). I can only hope that shame reduction and honest living becomes trendy!

The use of Heroin is nothing new (Opium Wars); the issue is purposeful flooding of the market where once was amply (?over?) prescribed opiates in a population idle due to a poor economy and precious little outlets for boredom (especdially [sic] during long winters).

What is new is the number of people dying and becoming addicted.

As your reply to this courageous and honest article of admission demonstrates, there will always be repercussions to acknowledging who we are. But I, like the author, have a conscience that dictates I not stay silent. 

My name is Averyl and I am a person in long-term recovery-- 21 years--from alcoholism.

Comments

  1. What a powerful post, Averyl. I am not suffering from an addiction, but I AM suffering from Lyme disease. And, like addiction, I did not claim Lyme disease; it claimed me, along with my marriage, my career, along with many other things. I'm 16 years into my illness, so I guess that makes me a trend setter! Some folks have a need to advertise their lack of compassion. I say, if you haven't walked a mile in someone's shoes, why not err on the side of compassion? No one can look into someone's heart and life and know what it feels like to be them. It takes no courage to post an "expert opinion" on an online forum, but it does take courage to fight against something that's threatening to take your life and be willing to put it out there in order to strengthen and educate others. Congrats on your 21 years. What a symbol of strength you are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Melanie. It's only in the past couple of years that I've become comfortable with being open about my recovery. It has been very therapeutic as I know it can sometimes be for others. Mostly, though, I feel a sense of obligation to be authentic and help others. There are risks which include people attempting to shame and diminish your experience. I'm sorry to hear about your Lyme and its detrimental impact on your life! My mother has long term Lyme and I know someone else who does as well. It's one day at a time for many of us!

      Delete
  2. I think we are an addictive species, and we all have vulnerabilities that we need to learn to be vigilant of.

    I hope that day 21 years ago made you deservingly proud.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Dr. J. I don't feel proud when I think of that first 24 hours. I see every day as day one. The days have racked up into years, then decades, and THAT makes me feel grateful.

      Delete
  3. God bless you, Averyl. Thank you for your honesty. That can't have been easy.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment