The Ugly Cycle of Drug Abuse
My name is David and I’m an addict and alcoholic. I’ve been sober since April 17th, 2008. Despite those many years of sobriety, which I’m grateful for, I’m still an addict and alcoholic at heart.
That means, by default, I can’t stop getting high and I can’t stop drinking. It means that once I put a mind altering chemical into my body, I continue to use until the wheels fall off. It means that I’m great at starting, but horrible at finishing.
Maybe you’re like me. Maybe you have a loved one who’s like me. Maybe you’re confused and unsure about what you are. It doesn’t matter – you’ve come to the right place!
I’m going to share my experience with active addiction and alcoholism below. After that, I’m going to share how I got sober once and for all. I was as bad an alcoholic and junky as they come. If I can put down the needle, the powder, the pills, and the bottle – so can you!
If you need immediate help – if you or a loved one can’t stop getting high or can’t stop drinking and want to start a new way of life today – call Lighthouse. They’re the unrivaled experts at addiction treatment.
Read on for my story of compulsive relapse and to learn how I finally stopped drugging and drinking.
I Can’t Stop Getting High
My addiction “origin story” isn’t much different from anyone else’s. I always felt uncomfortable and awkward in my own skin. Whenever I did anything good or accomplished something, I felt like a fake and like everyone was about to figure me out.
You know, common addict and alcoholic thinking.
I’m going to focus on what happened to me after I was introduced to recovery, which, ironically enough, was about a year before I actually got sober.
I’d been to an inpatient rehab because I couldn’t stop using drugs. I was in there for over four months. I got out and started attending meetings, going to therapy, and trying to live a healthy life.
I was high within a month. What happened? I wasn’t ready to deal with life on life’s terms (it’s cliché but also true).
I wasn’t ready to face the world without the comfort of painkillers and heroin. I wasn’t ready to be accountable for my actions. I wasn’t ready to do “adult” things like pay rent on time, pay credit card bills on time, show up for work on time, etc.
I basically wasn’t ready to do anything on time! I wanted to do things my way and my way led me to a place where I hated myself and couldn’t stop getting high. I wanted to stop, but couldn’t!
It talks about this place in recovery literature. It’s called the jumping off point and is described as the place where us addicts and alcoholics can’t imagine life with, or without, chemicals.
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I Can’t Stop Drinking
There I was, stuck in a vicious cycle of relapse, short periods of recovery, and more relapse. I was living in halfway houses and, when I got kicked out for failing a drug test, the streets.
My life was a mess. What did I do? I stopped getting high. I marshaled all my willpower and decided I was never again going to stick a needle in my arm or a dollar bill up my nose.
Guess what? It worked…sort of.
I stayed off drugs for a period of months, but I began to drink like a fish. Instead of taking a good, hard look at myself – I turned to alcohol to make everything bearable.
It did, for a while, but then I was left in a familiar position. All of a sudden, I couldn’t stop drinking! All my addictive tendencies had been uprooted from the land of narcotics to the land of booze.
Again, I found myself at that jumping off point within a short period of time. I couldn’t imagine living with or without liquor and beer. I wanted to, but I just couldn’t stop drinking.
Finally, on April 16th, 2008, I took my final drink and drug. I forgot to mention that after about six months I’d started to use pills and heroin again.
On April 16th, 2008, I took a few chugs from a bottle of gin and used the last of my money to buy some pills. I injected the pills around midnight. I walked into treatment the next morning and never looked back.
There is a Solution!
So that’s my personal story of being unable to stop getting high and drinking. What about the good stuff though? What about recovery? What about the solution?
Well, I found my solution in treatment and twelve-step fellowships.
While in treatment, I actually listened to my therapist. Whatever he said, I did. He told me to complete assignments by a certain date and I had them done the day before.
I shared in all the therapy groups and took an active role in the treatment community. I was still scared out of my mind by life, but I was making an effort to show up anyway.
After treatment, I began to regularly attend a twelve-step fellowship. I got a sponsor and, like my therapy, did whatever that man said. He told me to read a certain page – I read it everyday. He told me to write out my resentments and fears – I wrote them out.
I’ve been doing that ever since and it’s working pretty well. I just celebrated seven years of continuous sobriety. What a blessing! More important, though, I celebrated seven years free of fear and behaving like a crappy person. I celebrated seven years of being a good son, friend, student, employee, and significant other.
What more can you ask?
So, if you’re like me – you can’t stop using drugs no matter how hard you try – or if you have a loved one like me – they simply can’t stop drinking even though they want to – you’re in the right place.
Call Lighthouse today! Our addiction professionals are compassionate, caring, and often in recovery themselves. They’ve been where we’ve been. They know how to get better and they’ll be able to guide you along the road of sobriety.
Until then, good luck and God bless my friends!