Let’s see what is needed here:
1. First, get off drugs, then
2. Stay off drugs.
If the addict is actually, really addicted, step one must be done with the help of a qualified addiction counselor, in a detox rehab program designed to genuinely help the addict become DRUG-FREE. Simple enough, right? Then why do so many detox and rehab programs mess up this first step?!
There are many rehab programs out there and most of them will send that client on his or her way, after about 28 days, with their heads spinning and a few new prescriptions. They didn’t even accomplish step 1, much less step 2. The addict is still dependent on drugs and cannot stand stably alone without them. Only the names and sources of the drugs have changed.
Throwing more drugs at the problem has never worked. I can cite dozens of celebrity examples and there are many thousands of deaths each year in the US alone which are less famous but just as dead, all of which prove this point.
They could never accomplish Step 2, because they never made it to Step 1! The only way to be off drugs is to actually stop taking them.
Alright then, with the help of a solid and drug-free program, withdrawal from drugs can be accomplished and recovery can begin. Now we’re working on Step two.
The factors that bring a former addict to the point of relapsing back onto drugs are known; they are both physical and psychological. It is a grave mistake to address only one or the other in treatment. You must deal with each factor to achieve long-term sobriety.
The addict’s body is toxic from years of poisonous chemicals, so cleansing detox is needed as the very next step. Then, because the diets of addicted people are usually very poor, vital nutrients, vitamins and minerals must be replaced to facilitate and expedite the repair process.
Because mentally and emotionally, drug addiction can bring a person to ruin, the next step must be building the former addict back up psychologically and emotionally, this is absolutely necessary. Former relationships and shameful mistakes made can weigh heavily on the person’s outlook on life and can bar them from happiness, a perfect recipe for drug relapse. These things are now confronted and dealt with by the recovering addict and even more strength returns.
Abilities which most people take for granted are missing in the recovering former addict and these must now be gained. Things like:
• The ability to have and maintain self-confidence in any situation
• Being able to see errors before they occur
• And to be able to recognize those persons who are negative influences and can bring one back down emotionally
These are essential skills for living a drug-free and productive life.
The final step in any successful rehabilitation of a person’s life must be to recognize what is right and what is wrong. We’re not talking about morals, but ethics. Morals change from group to group, from year to year. Ethics are deeper and permanent. What is actually beneficial for oneself, one’s family, friends and all others must be understood and considered in every action the recovering addict takes.
In the end, the recovered former drug addict can walk forward in life–head held high and with no reason to hide his or her face from the world.
That is a high that no drug can deliver.