Let’s go ahead and face it head on, there is a stigma where addiction is concerned. People that battle substance abuse often times do not do things that are morally proper. Whether it is the amount of drugs or alcohol that are consumed, or the desperation to get their next high, people that abuse mind-altering drugs tend to do unappealing things that hurt the people around them. Sometimes it is intentional and sometimes it is not, but the fact-of-the-matter is that all of the apples are bad when addiction is present.
There are people in 12-Step meetings that share about having the stereotype of addiction. This vision many times envelops that of a “homeless person drinking out of a brown bag” which may have kept them out of meetings because they were sure that was who showed up to “those” meetings. Most people are actually pleasantly surprised when they become a part of recovery to find ordinary everyday people that attend. All walks of life get addicted to drugs and alcohol, and all walks of life journey down the path of recovery.
The age of technology and social media has brought about a bigger awareness with addiction and recovery that reaches more people every day. Addiction and recovery are socially accepted more than ever because it seems that everybody knows someone that is addicted to drugs or alcohol, or are themselves. For many people, there is not as much shock value of what someone will do under the influence thanks to television shows like “Cops” or “Intervention”. The stereotype of addiction is factual in what happens. When someone crosses the line of socially using or drinking with friends to full-on addiction, it is pretty much the same every time – heartbreak, jails, institutions, or death.
The stereotype that recovery gets can be based off what movies and television shows portray, as well as the relapse rate for people that are in recovery. Instead of seeing people trying to stay sober, often human nature dictates that people like to see people fail more than when they succeed. There is also the principle of anonymity that has limited people in the past to open up about their recovery, although you will see people posting on social media about their milestones without ever mentioning the actual recovery program that they used.
Times are definitely changing when it comes to how people view recovery. We need to keep carrying the message whether it is by word-of-mouth, phone, text, or social media. Recovery really works, if we work it.
Serenity Oaks Wellness Center wants to help you or someone you know that is struggling with drugs and alcohol. Our 5-week extensive program fosters care to those who want to embark on a new life of recovery.
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