I decided to write this article on a topic very near and dear to me, the struggles of Addiction. There are so many kinds of addictions out there, we are a world of hurting people but the main one I am going to address is addiction to prescription medicine. We all have our demons, and our “crosses to bear” in life, and this was one of mine. I am happy to say that the last time I went on a binge was in 2004. A doctor once told me, your type of addiction is one of the hardest to beat, because we will experience pain in life, and will most likely need at one time or another, to use pain medication. He is absolutely correct in saying this, because you do, and I pray my way through each and every time. The thing with Alcoholism is that if a person does quit, he never has to have a drink of alcohol again, period. It’s a conscious decision, but with prescription medication, it’s like playing Russian roulette.
My addiction started in 2002 right after the death of my younger brother Daniel. I was in so much pain, and so angry with God for taking him from me, that pills is where I turned. The old saying in Narcotic’s Anonymous is, “One is too many, and a thousand is never enough.” It is true, a person who has an addiction is looking for that little place within to hide, to feel the euphoric effects of the medication to escape. Little do they realize that your body while it is being damaged from the other ingredients in the medication, is building a tolerance, so the addict never really ever reaches that feeling of the first high again. You just keep taking more and more until you either run out of medication, or overdose. I would honestly say that it is safe to say that most people who overdose on pills never planned for it to happened that day, its just a dangerous consequence to the dice that you are rolling. I came close to it twice.
There is hope, there is faith that a person will get better. It is through the love, mercy and grace of Jesus that it happens. The first step is a person must admit to themselves that there is a problem, and that they want to stop. Until that happens, I repeat, until that happens, there is not much anyone can do to help that person. They must want to get better, it is just like a tiny mustard seed of faith, thats all it takes is the will to get better. I truly believe God will take care of the rest. Rehabilitation usually is necessary, and I mean in-house. To me, outpatient recovery is extremely difficult, because there are so many temptations to get back to. The doctor shopping, the people that enable you to use more are all there waiting for you to fall. It is far, far too easy to get a doctor to write a prescription for pain medicine. I had a doctor that use to write me prescriptions for 120 Percocets at a time, simply because I told him my back was hurting. It takes less than a week to become addicted to Percocet. A family must not, I mean it, must not enable the addict to not get better. Feeling sorry for them, financially supporting their habit is a death wish! Sorry to be so blunt, but it is often well meaning family that get in the way of recovery. There is nothing to be ashamed of, cover up, or hide from, addiction could happen to any single person if the conditions are favorable. Often times, a family member must allow them to hit bottom before they get help. Getting high is an escape, and until the core of the problem of what they are escaping from is dealt with, why wouldn’t they not want to stay high?
There are several organizations that can help, Celebrate Recovery is a Christian based 12 step program that meets in the church weekly with a support group, and a Sponsor. A Sponsor is a person who has been in recovery for years and walks side by side with the person who is trying to get clean. This I recommend first, then there is Alcoholic’s Anonymous, and Narcotics Anonymous. The family is encourage to get support as well from Ala-Non. A person who does not use alcohol can go to AA, in fact, that is what I preferred, an addiction is an addiction. Ala-non is the same concept but for the family, to teach them how to help their loved one, but most importantly how not to enable. You must take that serious, a person who is enabled by loving, well wishing people may not recover!
Above all, most importantly give it all to God. He is the one who will guide your steps toward recovery. Ask for forgiveness from your sin, in which it is a form of Idolatry. I am always here to answer questions, or help you along the way if you want to get better, or need some honest answers.
You might be thinking, why did I write this article? God told me this morning, ” I did not bring you out of your addiction, to not share and help other people.”