Hitting bottom can feel like a hard fall in addiction. Handling the truth about what havoc addiction brought into a person’s life can be difficult. People in recovery may feel aware of addiction and its effects but most of what is known is based on myth or incorrect information. When an individual enters recovery, it can be hard to navigate the process and wade through what is true and what is false. Find out what the hardest truth to realize about recovery is and develop tools to support the journey forward.
One statement people hear about addiction is ‘once an addict, always an addict.’ Research demonstrates that people who use drugs and alcohol may be defined as a person with addiction even though he or she is no longer using drugs or alcohol. Many people recover without attending meetings or treatment, by moderating use or through complete abstinence. Addiction treatment has grown to support a more individualized approach to treatment rather than a one-size-fits-all approach which does not represent the range of people and conditions which exist as a result of various addictions.
Recovery is believed to be possible only once an individual reaches the bottom, or an extremely serious low point during addiction. This may also be termed ‘bottoming out,’ which is a catalyst for quitting. Hitting bottom looks different for each person but a person may quit using drugs or alcohol, then relapse and hit a ‘new’ bottom prior to recovery. A person may ‘hit bottom with trap doors’ and chronically relapse. Many people do not actually quit when the problem is at its worst, due to the stress of ongoing addiction and relapse. Hope and possibility bring change more frequently than coming straight up from the bottom.
Outdated Notions of Addiction
People are rarely informed that assumptions of addiction are not always accurate. Conventional wisdom may have been refuted but since people think the media and other news sources always tell the truth, it is hard to debunk myths about addiction and recovery. The problem becomes further complicated by the fact people may not recognize the complexity that leads to relapse. Not every person will recover from addiction by moderating a drink or use of certain drugs. Some people are not able to quit using drugs or alcohol alone, without treatment or rehab to provide structure and guidance.
The Hardest Truth
People come into addiction for different reasons as variable as the reasons individuals get out of addiction, into recovery and back on the road to health. The hardest truth for people with addiction to realize (as well as those surrounding the person) is that addiction has stripped away everything. Until a person realizes there is nothing left but to surrender and seek help, not much else can be done. Quitting starts with realizing a problem exists. In spite of what the world or others around a person think about addiction, all that matters is the individual is finally ready to commit to getting better. When this realization comes, it is the start of a new day with a brand new outlook on life and nobody can take that away from another person.
The Villa provides resources and information for individuals trapped in the cycle of addiction. If you or a loved one need help getting out of the cycle, call us. If you are committed to quitting, we are committed to helping you get well.