Addicts and Self Destructive Behavior

In my brief sojourn on this planet (how is that for melodramatic) I have seen more than one person battle their own personal demons. Some of those demons have been created by themselves and their own behavior. Some of them opened Pandora’s box and dared the devil inside to steal their soul. They were people who enjoyed pushing the envelope. They liked skating on the razor’s edge.

Others were just searching for something that they could use to try and fill the hole in their hearts. In the end it didn’t matter why they started using. All that mattered was that they slipped into the abyss. They went careening over the edge. Did they know that they were being dragged over. Did they see the danger. Did they heed the warnings.

I suppose that you could say that they didn’t.

The self-aware addict understands that they can’t put their hands in the fire. They recognize that they dare not risk it. It is just too dangerous.

For those who are wondering I am not writing about myself. I haven’t any problems with drugs or alcohol. But I have known more than a few addicts. I have been to more than one meeting. I have watched friends tear themselves apart. I have seen them turn into sick and twisted versions of who they once were.

It is not like the movies. The happy endings don’t always work out.

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3 Comments

  1. Jack's Shack March 9, 2007 at 4:54 am

    Getting high is fun and nothing can change that.

    That is a big part of the problem.

    Mark,

    Addiction is a disease. Unfortunately too many people fail to understand that.

  2. Mark March 8, 2007 at 12:16 pm

    Jack – Addiction is a disease that is the result of a combination of genetic and social factors. Alcohol and drug abuse are symptoms of the disease. Often it is the result of a need to self-medicate a deeper psychological problem, one that could be addressed with conventional therapy and drug treatment if it is identified. Too often the underlying problem is masked early on by the side-effects of drug abuse or not recognized by parents who are not paying attention.

    I have rarely seen anyone become an addict or an alcoholic simply because of social factors. I am quite certain it happens but there are many different psychological factors in play, and they don’t always have to be as severe as, say, a bipolar disorder. It could be simply low self-esteem brought on by parenting issues.

    And that is not to say that ultimately it is a parent’s fault. The self-aware addict in recovery takes responsibility for his own actions and takes steps to rectify his or her behavior accordingly.

    I often wish there was a twelve-step program for non-addicts and alcoholics who think they have their social and psychological shit together. Most people could benefit from the principles of AA, whether they abuse substances or not.

  3. Paula March 7, 2007 at 6:38 pm

    I worry so much about my kids cuz drugs/booze is EVERYWHERE. At least half the kids in high school here do drugs, and it has nothing to do with broken families or bad neighborhoods or anything like that. We live in a “good” school district, bla bla. With some of this stuff, it’s so easy to become an addict, even when nothing’s wrong in your life. I don’t buy the line that there always has to be an underlying problem. Getting high is fun and nothing can change that. Everyone thinks they can stop until they can’t. Scary.

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