Do You Have A Problem?
Determining if you have a problem with drugs or alcohol is often a difficult assessment to make. After all, self-reflection is never easy. As we wrote about previously, denial is a serious issue for those struggling with addiction. Have you promised yourself you would stop using drugs or alcohol time and time again, only to “slip” and start again within weeks or months of making that promise? Have you ever tried to control your using, but failed? Do you ever use alone?
Often times, a great first step is to look at the consequences of your behavior. Have you gotten yourself in trouble overusing? Have you lost a job or a loved one, lost money, gotten a DUI/DWI or another penalty, hurt others, or put yourself in danger?
Have you lied to anyone about the extent to which you use alcohol or prescription drugs? Or left out important information to “save face?”
At the end of the day, there is really just one question you need to answer honestly: Do you think you have a problem?
A Complete Picture of Addiction
Addiction doesn’t only affect us physically. It has an effect on so many areas of our lives, and the lives of those around us, even areas we believe have little to do with drugs or alcohol. Addiction is an insidious disease, and a difficult one to diagnose (especially through a series of questions on a blog post). Only you have the power to prevent it from going further.
You may have heard of an addict’s “rock bottom.” You may have heard stories of other’s rock bottoms and felt an urge to compare yours to theirs. You might think, “well, my problem isn’t that bad. Maybe I’m not an addict after all.” Or you may think, “I can’t relate. I’ve never been in jail,” or “I’ve never become abusive when drinking,” or “I’ve never lost a job from using.” You may be going through a particularly difficult time in your life, and feel that using is a normal way to cope (after all, doesn’t everyone turn to alcohol?)
Comparing your insides to others outsides is a dangerous habit. If alcohol or drugs are having a negative effect on your life, or the lives of those around you, it would be wise to recognize that it’s become a problem. If you truly feel that you can have just one drink or two and stop there, by all means, go ahead. And if you truly feel that you can quit using drugs, or limit the amount until you are able and willing to live a drug-free life, then it’s your decision to do so. But if you often wonder if you have a problem, chances are you do.
A Better Way
No matter what your diagnosis may be, if you have a negative relationship with drugs or alcohol it’s okay to seek help! Though some might try to quit on their own and white knuckle it through new sobriety, this is not recommended. Since recovery can be isolating without the proper support, it is recommended to find treatment and the right kind of treatment for you. Often times, addiction is coupled with another co-occurring issue, and it’s important to recognize this dual diagnosis in recovery, in order to receive proper treatment.
If you are struggling with alcohol or drug use and want to speak to a professional, contact the experts at JourneyPure at the River today.
Chris Clancy is the in-house Content Manager for JourneyPure’s Digital Marketing team, where he gets to explore a wide variety of substance abuse- and mental health-related topics. He has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist and researcher, with strong working knowledge of hospital systems, health insurance, content strategy, and public relations. He lives in Nashville with his wife and two kids.