By Dr. Kerri Heath
“You will see it when you believe it.” –Wayne Dyer
This is a very tough question to answer. An addict is someone whose life is controlled by alcohol or drugs. Anyone who has struggled with substance abuse has told themselves many times that they “have it under control.” But what is the breaking point? When does a person who uses substances cross over to becoming an addict? What is the point of no return? Only you can answer this question for yourself. Don’t let anyone else define you or tell you that you are an addict.
Addiction is a behavior and should not become a label. If it is a behavior then it can be changed but if it is a description or label, it is harder to overcome. Your mental model is extremely important when trying to decide if you are an addict or not. Dr. Wayne Dyer stated that “you’ll see it when you believe it” which describes the importance of making a distinction between being an addict and having addictive behaviors. If you believe that you are an addict that is what will become your reality.
I have visited Alcohol Anonymous classes on a variety of occasions in order to answer this question for myself. This group of loving and inclusive people create a safe space to open up about personal struggles. They find ways to help each other maintain abstinence from the substances or behaviors that lead to addiction. The meetings are consistently warm and welcoming, no matter what part of the world you are in. These 12-step programs give people a roadmap for which they can surrender their addictions, process difficult experiences and begin to form new habits and patterns.
The first thing I encountered at AA meetings is a group of accepting individuals that introduce themselves by stating that they are alcoholics. They make it seem so easy to say, however, I never felt comfortable introducing myself by saying, “Hi, I am an alcoholic.” It never sat right with me. I did feel the pressure from others to label myself an addict because of the negative consequences that substances have initiated in my life. I thought that people were judging me as being in denial or not ready to take the first step which is to “admit we are powerless over alcohol and that our lives have become unmanageable.” However, that statement seems helpless. I have used substances in unhealthy ways to numb pain and deal with difficult situations, but I never felt like labeling myself a victim over a substance would be productive, so I refuse to label myself an addict.
Passages Addiction Treatment Centers believes that you can create a future where substances do not have a grip on your life. They give you a chance at life without having to label yourself or play a victim role. There is freedom in this. If you also feel uncomfortable with the first step of surrendering your power over to alcohol, then this may be the rehabilitation center for you. A team of professionals will walk alongside you to create a new reality, one where you are in full control of your future.
How to Contact Passages Addiction Treatment Centers:
Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.