How Did You Overcome Your Addiction?
Recovery from addiction to drugs or alcohol is possible, but most people find that it’s not easy. If you have the compulsion to get high or to use mind-altering substances to escape from reality, that compulsion can quickly take over your life.
You may have made multiple attempts to get clean. You may have found that even though you thought you could quit any time you wanted, actually going through with stopping, and especially with staying stopped, is a lot harder than you expected.
Hitting Rock Bottom
What helps people finally get clean from their addiction can vary a lot from one person to the next. A large number of people who successfully recover from addiction reach a point where they feel that it’s become unbearably painful to keep doing what they are doing. At that point, getting clean seems like their last hope. Some call this “hitting rock bottom,” while others refer to it as the gift of desperation.
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Some of the things that drive people to this point include:
- Legal problems such as causing car accidents, being arrested for DUI or ending up behind bars because of stealing to get high or other crimes committed under the influence
- Financial problems such as losing your job or running out of sources of money to support your habit
- Marital or relationship problems
- Major health problems
The Influence of Other People
Your family and friends probably have tried to convince you to go to an alcohol or drug rehab using a wide variety of redundant tactics. They may have cried, begged, pleaded, screamed and issued ultimatums. If you’re like most other addicts, you managed to convince yourself that they were the ones who were crazy and that your problem wasn’t as big as they made it out to be.
For some addicts, other people eventually get through. A spouse may stick with an ultimatum, leaving the home or asking you to leave. Your family and friends may get together and stage an intervention, putting you in a position in which getting help is your only choice. You may be court-ordered to attend support groups for addiction recovery. These are examples of catalysts that trigger addicts to finally get clean.
Some addicts are lucky enough to randomly meet someone who is in recovery. When you hear about sobriety from someone who truly understands where you are coming from, it can be the one thing that helps you finally get clean. Discussions with a counselor or through a support group may also lead to a decision to get help once and for all.
Making a Decision to Get Clean
The ability to finally overcome addiction starts with making a decision that your life isn’t working as long as you are using substances. Once the decision is made, you will need to get help from professionals in the field of substance use. You can start your journey by talking to your doctor, to people at a drug rehab or by calling a mental health professional. Another option is to contact a support group such as Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous or attend some meetings. Many people take this step before they actually go through with trying to get sober.
With the help of a doctor or counselor, you can decide if you need to get treatment through an inpatient treatment facility or through intensive outpatient treatment. If you are physically addicted to any substance, especially alcohol, withdrawing from the substance without medical supervision can be extremely dangerous. At an inpatient drug rehab, you can go through detoxification while under the supervision of medical professionals, and doctors will be able to administer medications that can help ease the intensity of these symptoms.
Once you have gone through detoxification, you will begin to learn more about addiction and how to deal with cravings or triggers that may tempt you to go back to reliance on substances. Recovery is a journey, and ongoing recovery may include many different aspects such as support groups, individual therapy, family therapy and mindfulness-based approaches. A much better life is possible once you decide to get clean from your addiction.
If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, please call us at (866) 339-3544 or submit the form below to learn more about our addiction treatment programs in Los Angeles.
Since 2004, Lori has worked with the behavioral health treatment community to bring awareness about mental health disorders and evidence-based treatments. Lori strives to help people better understand mental illness and provide support to those needing help and their families. As a mental health advocate, Lori works to be a voice for those suffering from substance abuse, dual diagnosis, borderline personality disorder, depression, anxiety, trauma, or any other disorder.