When it comes to addiction, there’s one thing that all addicts have in common: at some point, they realize that their life is headed down a path they don’t want to go down.
Addiction can begin innocently enough; someone might start taking drugs or drinking out of curiosity, peer pressure, as a coping mechanism to help them feel better, or even as a type of performance enhancer. But as time goes on, they need more and more of the substance to feel the same effects. As the addiction grows stronger, it will become increasingly difficult to manage; eventually, everything will begin to fall apart.
If addiction has begun to wreak havoc in your life, and you’re ready to turn things around, you may not know where to begin. You may have already tried to quit or cut down, but have been unsuccessful. So what can you do? How can you reach out for help?
Recognize Your Courage
You may feel shame, sadness, or anger at your choices and how they’ve negatively impacted others, but you should be proud that you’ve decided to reach out. It takes a great amount of courage to admit when you need help. It takes even greater strength to begin taking those first steps needed to get help with an addiction. Be proud of yourself for recognizing that, even in the throes of addiction, you’ve realized that your addiction has taken over your life and you need to make a change.
Be Honest with Yourself
Many addicts are all too familiar with lies and manipulation; it’s a daily habit for most as they struggle to manage the unmanageable. It will be difficult, but it’s important to be honest with yourself and others so you can start your recovery on a solid foundation. Resist soothing your ego or diminishing the pain your addiction has caused others; admit that you don’t have all the answers, you can’t do this alone and you need help.
Search online for help with your addiction. In addition to finding books and articles, you can also locate groups near you for support. You can also find chat rooms, hotlines to call for help, and treatment centers.
Talk to Someone You Trust
You hopefully have someone in your life you trust who you can talk to about your addiction. They may not understand what you’re going through, but it will help you to talk about it and to have someone who will listen and support you. You can also talk to a doctor or therapist who can assess your situation and help you take the next steps.