Even when it seems hopeless, there are many reasons to believe in an addicts recovery. Half of all adults know a family member, neighbor, friend, or coworker trying to recover from addiction. Perhaps an estranged spouse, beloved child, or absent parent is the addict in your life. Maybe it’s the individual in the mirror. No matter who it is, unfair misconceptions and society’s hyper-focus on failure can make recovery seem helpless.
Now, imagine I’m shouting this atop a mountain: Recovery IS possible! There’s a thriving recovery community online that provides glorious proof of this! Even just a tiny seed of hope can grow abundant in the right environment. So, I am eager to offer solid reasons why you should believe in recovery, whether your own or someone else’s.
1. There are many successful, happy recovering addicts in the world
From rock stars with international notoriety to the guy down the street, recovering addicts are everywhere. In fact, the Office of National Drug Control Policy recently hosted an event called, “Recovery at the White House: Celebrating 25 Years.” Here’s one of my favorite quotes from the event by Laurie Dhue: “We’re not in a basement somewhere. We’re at the White House talking about addiction and recovery.” Recovery is real, and it’s getting the presidential treatment.
2. Believing in an addicts recovery helps them believe in themselves
The very scientific nature of addiction manipulates individuals into believing that it’s “feed it or die”. But this vicious cycle can be broken through knowledge, treatment, and faith. Doubting an addict’s ability to break free is only weighing them down with more stigma. Countless addicts have risen up from rock bottom; no one is beyond redemption. Your hope can be a guiding light.
3. Their addiction does not define them
No matter the nature of addiction, addicts are human beings. They are not just “throwaway” people who want to drive themselves into oblivion. They have hopes, dreams, and a future that is not dictated by their past. Look beyond the behaviors spurred by addiction and see their talents and skills. By respecting their individuality (or appreciating your own), you can inspire them the declare that addiction is not how their personal story will end.
4. You help them shake off crippling stigma by acknowledging them as individuals
Society can be cruel to anyone who deviates from the “ideal” route to success. These stigmas drive addicts to stay silent, trapped, and ashamed. They stop seeing themselves as people with potential. By believing in recovery, we believe in that potential. And since recovery is a unique experience for everyone, we believe in the power of each individual story.
5. They need your help
Addiction is a conniving beast of a disease, so addicts need all the help they can get to outsmart it with treatment. They need to be armed with support, knowledge, and mental health aid. By believing in an addicts recovery, we can build a more proactive community that addicts can draw strength from.
6. Hope is a spring to bounce back from relapse
Relapse can hurl an addicts recovery to a screeching halt, but a resilient spirit can spring back from it and hit the ground harder and stronger. Hope can give those stumbling feet wings! By believing recovery is attainable, you can transform the self-loathing relapse spurs into self-education. You can create a platform for the right questions. Rather than, “Why am I so weak and hopeless?” Try: “What caused this and how can I avoid it in the future?”
7. Accountability from people who care increases success
There’s a reason why having a consistent, dedicated workout buddy is a surefire way to achieve health goals. Accountability works wonders! The same principle applies to recovery. They don’t need judgment or criticism, but they do need to know that there are individuals who are rooting for them, counting on them, and believing in them.
8. They need to remember the good times
Addiction has a tendency to destroy relationships, ruin finances, and utterly wreak havoc on the addict’s life. It can be hard to look beyond the collateral damage, but it’s crucial to focus on how they were not always addicted. A gratitude journal, happy photographs, creative endeavors, and simple living can help them regain focus on what freedom feels like. This shift in mindset towards their personal narrative can be revolutionary.
9. Your support validates their efforts
Doubt cripples. It makes any progress feel hollow. It makes drawbacks seem like massive pitfalls fated to happen. “I knew this would happen.” Does such an attitude help anyone? People DO recover. They make it to the White House, open small businesses, raise happy families, or go back to school. They reunite with their children and spring back from rock bottom. It is not about who is stronger, it is about who has hope. So why not believe in recovery?
There are so many more reasons to believe than the ones I have provided. I encourage you to find your own personal reasons. Any addict can recover so long as they are living. A tiny spark of faith can be all that’s needed to start a recovery journey.
Morningside Recovery is an Orange County addiction treatment facility that offers drug addiction treatment, mental health rehab, dual diagnosis, and a number of other programs for mental illness and addiction treatment. Finding help is just a phone call away. Call us at 855-631-2135 to learn more about our facility and programs. We believe in an addicts recovery, now it’s time for you to start believing in yourself.