April 4, 2007

Conquering Addiction: Who's in charge?

Seeing someone you love struggle with a drug addiction or other addiction will wear you down mentally. It will depress those who seem to be of the strongest character. Those who feel as though they can do something to free their addict of the prison of drugs are the ones who will be in for the biggest fall and let downs of life. This is because there is nothing you can DO to stop your addict from using. You, their loved ones are totally powerless in this matter. The addict has lost control of his or her life and you as their loved one can never gain back that control of what they have lost. It is not in our power to do such things.

We all sit idly by and must watch the devastation and chaos that is their life unfold as they veer further off the right course in life.

What spouse of an addict has not experienced these feelings of helplessness? Which parent of the addict has not known the depths of this decline? We know all too well. Conquering drug addiction is the job of the addict coupled with the love and support of those around him.

The addict is the one who has allowed the addictive substance into his life. It was his open arms that welcomed it. If addiction is to be conquered, it must be the addict who severs the relationship once and for all.

Many addicts wish to pull their loved ones into the fray by begging and pleading for help from them. Now we as their loved ones wish to help in whatever way we can for as long as possible, but it is ultimately up to the addict to get clean and to stay clean. There are no exceptions to this rule.

Why do many addicts seem to go on for many years without getting clean and changing the course of their lives?

I believe that many of them continue on in their addictions far longer than they would have to because they are being enabled by those who love them.

Well meaning loved ones will often give money and other means to score drugs to their addicted loved ones and this will enable the addict to carry on his dangerous lifestyle. I have enabled addicts before, but I don't anymore.

When the loved ones of addicts fully grasp the truth that their addict cares more for the drugs than they do them, this is when the enabling behavior stops.

The addict truly does care more for their drug of choice more than they do their loved one's feelings or needs. This is sad but true. The structure that surrounds the drug addicts life is totally geared toward scoring and doing more drugs. This is what it's all about for them. The addict may care about what his actions are doing to you, it's just that when the rubber meets the road, they care more about their drugs.

Many years ago I decided I would stop enabling the addicts in my own life and would turn all of my cares and worries about them over to the lord in prayer. This is when my life took a turn for the better. Giving into an addicts whims is draining. It will depress you and take your life away if you let it. All of you who are in a similar circumstance must let go and let God get into the center of your addicts destructive mess which is his life.