Saturday, February 12, 2011

Am I really an addict?

   
I didn't know I was an addict.


     I didn't know I was an addict for a really long time.  I always thought addicts were people who were on the street everyday selling their bodies and their souls for a piece of a euphoric drug.  It never really came to that point for me and my addictions.  I do see now though how I was addicted without realizing it.


     For me, I would always tell myself how I wasn't addicted.  I would always use some relative comparison to show how better off I was than someone else.  "I don't sell stuff to buy drugs."  or "I don't rob people."  were my big "...So I'm not an addict."  premises.  I was killing my life though.  I realized after many years of drug and alcohol addiction that I was losing good friends and doing things that weren't setting myself up for success in life.  It finally came to a point where I just said "Enough, you're an addict.  Get help.".  I really don't know what caused this but at some point I woke up after being passed out for many hours and just was sick of it.  The euphoria and magic drugs gave me was gone and I was just a shell of my former self.  It was a real eye opener for when I asked myself "If I were supervising the management of my life, would I say I was doing a great job?".  If I were another person looking at my life choices, would I call them great?  Would I approve of them?


Here's a list of the analysis I used in coming to terms with my addictions.  I'm not telling anyone they are or aren't an addict of something with this, I'm just stating some methods of thinking that made me realize I was an addict.


Are you successful?:
     No really, are you?  Would you call yourself a success?  Do you try your best everyday?  What's getting in the way of  your success?  Are you at the job you want?  I couldn't say I was a success as an addict.  I knew I wasn't reaching my potential because of my own stubborn laziness.  It's hard to do anything well when you're high or drunk all day.  I would try to manage my chemical usage but it never worked.  I could never do everything I wanted to do and continue to use drugs and alcohol.


Do you get mad if I tell you to stop?:
      This is kind of an interesting question.  I thought about it this way... I eat at a particular restaurant often and eat the same thing.  I know this restaurant and this particular meal aren't healthy for me, but I will eat it occasionally because I enjoy it.  If someone told me "Stop eating there, you're addicted.  It's bad for you.", I wouldn't really care.  I could take it or leave it and it wouldn't really upset me.  However, if you had told me "Stop drinking everyday, it's ruining your life" I would get defensive and very angry quickly.  "HOW DARE YOU TELL ME WHAT TO DO!".  I would come up with lists of people that would drink or do drugs and still be successful in life.  "Do you know Ben?  He gets drunk every night, smokes pot all day, and has a 100k a year job.  I think I'll be fine.".  Saying that though was so pointless when I knew I wasn't fine.  I wasn't managing my consumptions and I knew it.  It pissed me off that I couldn't be an addict and also be successful.  I had to come to terms with this before I ever had a chance of getting (and staying) clean.


Are  you hurting relationships with friends and family?:
     This is a hard one to admit.  When I would ask myself this question, I would say "No".  I knew I was actually destroying my relationships with my friends and family because I was too drunk and high all the time to talk to them.  What I convinced myself was "I don't NEED friends and family, I JUST need drugs.".  This is a sad and shameful thing to admit, but drugs really replaced the need I had for them.  Without the drugs I would have to face my crumbling relationships and send myself right back into my cycle of addiction.  It's terrible to see how many people I hurt because of my actions.


     I don't know if anyone else is an addict and everyone has to come up with their own conclusions about themselves.  Nobody can force you to get help and most addicts would hate it if they were told to do so.  It's really about being able to sleep at night with your decisions.  If you do anything obsessively with lots of compulsion and euphoria involved, you simply need to be ready to accept whatever consequences come with that.  That being said, once a person does realize they are an addict they do need to go to an AA or NA meeting promptly (or like me, go to an out-patient/in-patient treatment center if you can afford it).  There's help out there, I found it, and I'm enjoying getting back on my feet again and rebuilding my old relationships.


Also THREE MONTHS CLEAN.  Honestly feels good.  Here's hoping to continued sobriety.  I encourage you all to better yourselves daily (even if you're not an addict) and try to push yourself to be the best and most successful person you can be.  No hate, just love, and never settle for mediocrity.

59 comments:

  1. So did you go to meetings or rehab or what? How were you able to clean yourself out?

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  2. @Snerd Williams
    I went to an out-patient program for 3 months. This was about 3 hours a day talking with other addicts. During these three months and for about a year after I went to AA meetings once a day.

    I like AA better than NA personally just because you get (in my opinion) more discussion at AA meetings. People at NA meetings generally have done lots of illegal things and aren't as talkative.

    It's hard to force yourself to go everyday but it becomes worth it as you realize you are staying sober and have people to support you.

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  3. Keep it sober and good luck.

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  4. Im addicted to cigarretes, and i get mad when people tell me to stop smoking, i know how it feels. But good for you, keep it clean.

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  5. grats on the sobriety, hope it keeps on coming.

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  6. this is very...touching i would say

    definetly

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  7. wouldn't say i was an addict myself but i could see myself drinking a little to much. stopped when i was 19. been clean for 7 years!

    can't wait to hear more of your incites

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  8. Great blog man. Keep up the good work.

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  9. I know i have an addictive personality so i just dont get into situations when i might be tempted

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  10. Addiction is a very difficult thing to conquer and a demon that I have often done battle with.

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  11. Keep up the good work! You're an inspiration.

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  12. Congrats on 3 months clean! I do it rarely, but i manage straight A's so its all gooood.

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  13. Congrats and stay strong! It isn't an easy road to go down. I hope to see more of your story and might send more people your way to inspire.

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  14. good job man, keep it up. I've dealt with friends and family that are Alcoholics and it's a never ending battle for them. Stay strong brother.

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  15. Thanks for sharing, will be following your blog

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  16. I worry about a friend who's an addict. Congratulations all the same!

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  17. Congratulations on being clean man, keep up being sober.

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  18. this is quite inspiring, well done and keep it up.

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  19. Well done, and never get back in the hell of drugs!

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  20. Addiction is a very serious demon to overcome. Blogs like yours can definetly help.

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  21. my addiction is food and its killing me.

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  22. "addiction" is an interesting word, because there's no absolute definition

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  23. Your posts are written with such passion and being such an insiprational story aswell just makes it all round good read man keep up the good work

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  24. Congratulations on three months! That is no small task!

    I quit smoking cigarettes about thirteen months ago.. it might not seem like such an accomplishment but to me it was. Glad to see anyone recover.

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  25. when I got up this Morning i didn't know I would find a blog this awesome.
    reading this is almost better then a hot cup of Coffee!
    so Please, keep up to good work! :D

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  26. Damn man.. this is intense stuff... thanks for sharing

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  27. wow man, thats really intense, thank you for sharing with all of us

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  28. Congratulations on making 3 months! I'll follow; your success so far is inspiring :)

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  29. Thanks for sharing man i know the addicted feeling and am glad i got rid of it when i did. congrats on 3 months!

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  30. My New Years resolution was to give up smoking, I am doing well. :). Also Nice blog and so proud that you are clean now.

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  31. Congrats on 3 months clean keep it up

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  32. One day at a time, one step at a time. I'm pulling for you.

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  33. Good work on the 3 months being clean.

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  34. I have seen my freind go through drug addiction sadly he isnt clean.

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  35. I could be addicted to my computer. every day, hours a day. is this a problem?

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  36. congrats and keep up the good work. i have faith in you!

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  37. Congrats on getting clean! Keep up the good work!

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  38. congrats though i have never taken drugs nor smoked weed keep it up its much cheaper on this side

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  39. Great post! Must be a struggle. Drugs aren't then worst addiction, but can be pretty bad. Followed

    Www.shiftymcgrifty.com

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  40. this is why i dont drink coffee

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  41. Doing a great job man, keep fighting the good fight.

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  42. Good job, congratulations on being clean.

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  43. congratulations on the sobriety,nice post

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  44. congratulation on been clean!!
    lets make it another 3 months!!!

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  45. Congratulations on your 3 months sober. I enjoyed your post. I used to teeter between the lines of addiction, until I had a mushroom trip that changed my perception of things, and gave me a new appreciation for sobriety.

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