Monday, April 22, 2013

Drug Recovery, Alcohol Consumption & All its Controversies

Who are they to say I'm not clean because I have a a couple drinks every couple months?

Now that's a sentence that fires up a very controversial topic and in order to write this post I wanted to dig deeper into the belief that having a drink on occasion is relapsing, even if the person was never addicted to alcohol. Most believe this specially if their NA, which is great if it will helps them not relapse back to their drug of choice. Only they know their boundaries, their capacities and their breaking point. Although I believe it isn't right to put that belief on to others and tell them they aren't clean if they have a drink on occasion, and again that's if they were never addicted to alcohol. In my opinion, being clean is not using illegal drugs and the substances that caused the addiction and messed up the persons life. So the argument shouldn't be about being clean but about the risks of drinking alcohol. 

An interesting question that came up was is the person recovered or in recovery. Now I'm thinking can someone be "recovered" or are we always in a state of recovery, some might argue on that point also. NA believes you are never truly out of recovery and that might be true for some people but I believe that  people can be "recovered". By recovered I mean no cravings or triggers what so ever and a good amount of clean time. This also changes depending how long the life of addiction lasted. If their not completely recovered, then alcohol is really not a good because it alters their state of mind and lowers their inhibition which can lead to bad decision making, like using again specially if they still have cravings or triggers. Even if someone is "recovered" I do NOT suggest they try drinking because the person could get addicted to alcohol but some recovering addicts are drinking normally and they shouldn't be judged or told their not clean because they drank. If their not addicted to alcohol then its not an addiction. Alcohol is legal and the majority of the population consumes it with out being told their doing drugs. 

Another example would be when someone who's never had a problem with prescription pain killers is prescribed some by their doctor. If they are taken like prescribed would that person still be considered clean ? According to NA they wouldn't. 

Here's a Quote from The Body:

People in recovery from addiction are often scared to take pain medication for fear that it will "reactivate" their urges to get high and lead to relapse. Some go so far as to refuse opiate pain killers after major surgery. Some members of 12 Step programs even advise others to forgo medication that their doctors have recommended.

This attitude can be severely destructive. Pain slows the healing process, and untreated pain is more likely to lead to relapse urges than properly treated pain. Even if your drug of choice was heroin or prescription opiates, you should not refuse appropriate, doctor-prescribed medication.

 I'm not saying their wrong all I'm saying is there is definitely more than one way to do things and there's more than one opinion out there so respect other people’s opinion. Plain and Simple. I respect your opinion even if I don't agree with it, people should lend me the same courtesy. I know I'm clean and I'm living a pretty great life compared to where I was and it just keeps getting better. For me being able to drink normally was about knowing myself and knowing my limits. So what I have a drink at supper with my grandma on Christmas or I go dancing with the girls on my birthday. I'm 24 and enjoying life the right way this time, I shouldn't be restricted because of my pass, I should be giving confidence that I'm strong enough and smart enough to make my own decisions. I quit drugs and changed my life own my own after all. I think I deserve some credit. My family supports my decision and really that's all that matter at this point. I just want recovering drug addicts to know that they don't need to feel bad or feel like they lost their clean time if they had a drink on occasion. To each their own, every recovery is different and what matters is that we are leading happy productive lives.

Before I went out for the first time to have a drink and dance with the girls I had already overcome all my triggers and they no longer had a hold on me. I had been around not just alcohol but my drug of choice many times with out wanting to use which I believe was critical because if I seriously didn't want it anymore lower inhibitions wouldn't change that.  I don't recommend drinking whatsoever or trying to push your limits to find out if you can, but if you do already drink on occasion people shouldn't take your clean time away from you. I couldn't believe the harsh and down right rude comments I got when inquiring about this topic. I even got a comment stating that I wasn't in recovery because I didn't do the NA steps and attend the meetings. This made me feel like NA was some kind of religion with the philosophy that if its not our way then its wrong. NA isn't for everyone and shouldn't be pushed on to others or make them feel less proud of themselves just because they did it another way. People who do this give NA a bad name, so shame on you. Sadly Ill probably get those kinds of comments again for posting this but I should be allowed to write my opinion on my own blog. 

PS: Keep negative comments to yourself. Thank you.