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    Old 05-19-2005, 10:08 AM   #1
    Travis420
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    An addict is always an addict?

    "An addict is always an addict" is what I keep hearing. How is it so? What I'm being told has any truth to it? What if you been clean for like 30 years, would you still consider yourself "an addict" in recovery? This disease can't possibly be life long, what about if your in your 80's or 90's would you still consider yourself an addict?

    People say I was born with this disease, how can that be? Was I destined to be this way? Where did it all go wrong, is it when I first pick up a joint or is it when I first pick up the needle? How come I'm the only one who has this and not two other sisters?

    I know I'm asking a lot of questions, sorry, but I hate that Fraze. It's so degrading and daunting to be told that you will always be an addict. Like there's no hope for you at the end.

    Travis

     
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    Old 05-19-2005, 12:02 PM   #2
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    Re: An addict is always an addict?

    Dear Travis,

    I hate labels but, I feel, that some people need to say they are a recovering addict long term, because it helps them to stay clean.

    Everyone is different, some can quit on their own CT, some need meetings and the support of them, others must go into detox and rehab. Everyones road to recovery is different.

    I feel that if you are not using and not thinking about using that you are no longer an addict. You are obviously, more prone to using drugs to solve problems (which they don't) but, I don't buy the "you were born with it", theory. That sort of shifts blame, doesn't it? Well, I know, I own this problem. I was aware, every time I took too many pills. I made up excuses to myself, but really I could stop using anytime I wanted, but, obviously, I didn't want to bad enough.

    So, if you are an "ex addict", you are aware of it and it is YOUR DECISION to be one or not. I chose not to be one anymore. And I won't.

    To me, "addiction" is a certain pattern of behavior, if you no longer behave in this manner you are no longer an "addict".

    Please understand, this is MY belief system, no one elses. If a person needs to say he is an addict in recovery as it helps him to not use again, then that is the way that he insures sobriety.

    So, those of you who are reading this, I am not criticizing those who believe in the "12 step system", it just did not work for me. I feel "whatever it takes" to break one of the addictive behaviour, go for it. No way is better than another, just different.

    So Travis, my answer to you is "NO", you are not an addict forever, unless you choose to be. So choose life and remember, you are the master of your fate. Make yourself proud.

    take care,
    emily's mom

     
    Old 05-20-2005, 01:33 AM   #3
    now&then
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    Re: An addict is always an addict?

    Hi Travis,

    That's a tough but fair question and many opinions exist. RR or Rational Recovery says you reach a point in recovery where you cease being an addict. AA's school of thought is that once you're a pickle you can't go back to being a cucumber (essentially the purpose of that thinking is so people remember their past so as not to repeat it). Some religious programs go with or against AA philosophy.

    All are schools of thought for the purpose of solving a common problem. All are of course voluntary and not mandatory. Consider this: if medical science understood addiction that well, one would think we'd already have a cure for it.

    AA considers its approach suggestions rather than rules or requirements. It defines alcoholism (or any addicition) as an allergy of the body and an obsession of the mind coupled with a general spiritual malady. It has one example in it's big book about a guy who was able to use willpower to overcome booze for his entire career. Then upon retirement he picked up the bottle again and was dead within years. So this has happened and it certainly could happen but I don't interpret the story as meaning it will happen to everyone.

    I asked this very question many years ago. I didn't want to be bogged down by some problem I didn't ask for or want for the rest of my life. I didn't want to be a second class citizen. After trying everything (and I mean hospitals, church-based recovery, shrinks, medications, eastern philoophies, etc.), I ultimately went with the program that had the best track record of results and that worked best for me.

    I sure do remember that the problem I had was very real and life threatening. Today I have a treatment that is as good as a cure and has provided me with about 4000 consecutive days clean & sober. So for me at this point, the ultimate answer is no longer a big concern.

    The experience of my past helps provide strength in my present and hope for my future. Because being clean and sober comes first for me, everything that comes second comes first class!

    Best wishes and thanks for my sobriety.

     
    Old 05-23-2005, 08:09 AM   #4
    mrgrateful
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    Re: An addict is always an addict?

    Addictive behaviour is a real doozie to get a grip on. Since coming through the Sub detox thing, I have been acutely aware of all my "habits", I have to watch what I eat, because I probably go on a junk food binge. I am trying to be addicted to good behaviours, like diet and exercise and regular sleep and regular worship.....I think an addict is someone who knowingly partakes in a behaviour that they know is not something they should do but do it anyway. I am really trying to make this character flaw a positive trait by always being aware of the choices I am making every minute of every day, and try to make "good" choices...........JT

     
    Old 05-24-2005, 01:14 PM   #5
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    Re: An addict is always an addict?

    It is what you make it. Personally , being over three years clean from heroin and crack, I am not going to keep classifying myself as a dope fien, addict, or any of that. I am what i am today and that is just a normal person that is honest, hard working, reliable and i refuse to keep that whole thing going. At some point when it is over and behind you it is over and behind you. Don't get me wrong because there was some serious recovering mentally , physically, and spiritually that i had to go through before i really felt like i was normal and ok and could put it behind me. But i think what that whole thing pertains to is the fact that if i am an herion addict even if 3 or 30 years goes by if i pick that up again in any form i can be back at square one in like two seconds flat. I just had a baby a month ago and they gave me opiate based pills in there that were very strong and i will tell you it scared me because i liked it and it did not effect me like it does other people. other people it knocks out , and me it gives me energy in a weird way. you would think that would pass in time but it did not. and not only that, but basically you will always have addictive tendancies with things. but do i think you have to freak out about it for the rest of your life once you are settled and on the right track and have you life together? No! you gotta find what works for you and go with it. and i refuse to call myself an addict or dope fien or any of that. i am not and i demand the respect i deserve for the way i live today. and that is not one that a dope fein or an addict would get. you are what you do. you are what you have recently consistently done. but when i say recently i mean for a few years. Personally , when it comes to AA and NA, and i am all for whatever works for who ever , but for me and in my opinion that is why i don't choose to participate in all of that. i think a lot of their ways and little sains like that are unhealthy and only hold you back. I think to keep rehashing the past years after you are done is pointless and only keeps you sick and not moving forward and honestly does not allow you to just be normal and find balance in the world and in life. a lot of their ways are very helpful and much needed but a lot of it, for me anyway, is just a negative thing and will hold me down. I have tried the whole meeting thing getting clean a million times only to find myseld obsessing on things they put into my head when i had plenty to really think about already that all of that was not nessasary. finally the way i got clean and stayed that way was by taking what i needed and leaving the rest from all my little clean moments and methods. i made my own system and did pretty good too. i know that is scary and was not possible for me for at least a year clean but when i was able i did it and i am happy and healthy. the longest i ever stayed clean before was 9 months with the whole meeting thing and i was not happy. now i am over three years and happy.

    Last edited by jessy28; 05-24-2005 at 01:36 PM.

     
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