Are we too hard on addicts?

Discussion in 'Member Casual Chat' started by Le Chef, Jun 8, 2022.

  1. MJ Davies

    MJ Davies Well-Known Member

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    I have smoked three cigarettes in my life and it was disgusting each time. My mother buys them by the case (not carton, the case). She smokes about 3 packs a day. After I got my license, she would come in my room in the middle of the night and start choking and slapping me to get up to go get her cigarettes. Even prior to that, we had to walk to the store with a note to buy her cigarettes. She had a heart attack about 20 years ago and swore on a bible that she would stop smoking. As soon as her feet touch the ground outside she was demanding me to get her cigarettes from her handbag. I didn't even try to argue with her. She is batsh!t crazy with them. You don't want to see her without them. And, the most unfair part about it is all of us have asthma because she's always smoked (pregnant or not) and she has no respiratory problems.

    Alcohol is its own demon too. One of my employees was married to a guy that had been with his company 20+ years (close to 30 but can't recall right now). One day, his manager had to go into his office and found a flask in his desk. He was sent to HR upon his return the following day and told he needed to not bring that stuff into the office. He agreed but he didn't stop. He got a second warning. Then, one night, he was involved in a car accident. Nobody died but it hit him that he was out of control and he checked himself into an alcohol treatment program. He was the only breadwinner as I had to terminate her for a very big mistake. She called his job every day and said that he was sick and wouldn't be in. However, because he was using his company's health insurance, they found out that he was in that program and terminated him over the phone. His wife was upset because she felt like they were punishing him for getting help and couldn't grasp that he got away with that for the whole time he worked there and he was in the wrong.

    I don't have an addictive personality and I can't imagine anything being so **NEEDED** that I would risk my livelihood or life or someone else's life getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming mind-altering substances. I have some life long injuries for the severe abuse I went through as a child and I just man up as I won't take narcotics. I live alone since my divorce and I don't want that in my system if I know I might have to run errands or go to appointments. I'd rather deal with the pain than the unrelenting guilt and shame I would feel if I ever hurt someone in an accident.
     
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  2. James California

    James California Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    ~ I hear that ... I was " motivated " by my own Doc warning me of the health penalty of being overweight as I get older . Sometimes we all need a ' kick in the arse' to motivate us . :wink:'
     
  3. 19Crib

    19Crib Well-Known Member

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    You don’t have a physical addiction.
    What needs to happen is we have to find an under the skin “neutralizer” that negates all of the effects of opiates.
    We can’t allow people to be ruined and live at great expense to taxpayers.
    It goes to the top to bottom criminality of the side effects of addiction and their affect on the citizenry.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2022
  4. Nightmare515

    Nightmare515 Ragin' Cajun Staff Member Past Donor

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    It really is a terrible feeling, your entire life becomes dependent on the vice of choice whether that be nicotine, alcohol, caffeine, drugs, etc. The bolded part is what thankfully separates you from those who didn't have the willpower to never begin in the first place. And once you begin and become addicted nothing in the bold matters to you anymore.

    I lived alone during those dark times as well and the thought of "I may have something to do today I shouldn't drink yet" never manifested in my brain after a certain point. For me it was simply "I may have something to do today, **** it". OR at worse go out and function in society WHILE intoxicated because I just didn't care. Then do stupid stuff like convince myself "You drink all the time you don't get drunk you just drink, nobody can tell". Thankfully for me I at least had enough sense left to not want to get in real world trouble so if/when I did decide to drink starting at 9am I just wouldn't go anywhere or at the very least I would walk to the store. I was terrified of getting a DUI but I was too dumb to realize that public intoxication was also a "thing". That pretty much led me to having zero social life at all, my life was the bottle. Work, go home and drink until I passed out, wake up repeat. And sadly yes I will openly admit that while I was scared of getting a DUI there were a handful of times where I was so dumb that I could convince myself that I'm "perfectly fine" and I can easily drive around the corner to the store and back. I mean it's the middle of the day...who gets a DUI at noon?

    One morning after my mandatory exercise run for work I was standing in the elevator sweating and my buddy looked over at me and said "Bro...you literally smell like 100% pure whiskey, holy crap". Yeah whatever, I just ran 4 miles with you guys I'm obviously fine. It wasn't until years after that when things got really bad that I realized something was terribly wrong. A friend of mine came over to my house and he walked in and saw my entire kitchen counter was full of empty whiskey bottles. And my little bar in the corner was full of full whiskey bottles. He stopped dead in his tracks and looked at me and not even in the normal joking with a buddy way and said "Hey man....this isn't good at all, I'm not ****ing around with you as boys bro..Is this seriously what you do all day?" And once again I just brushed it off and tried to rationalize it to him and myself. "Naw man, this is from like 3 years lol, I collect the bottles". (No, this was from like one month and I didn't care enough to take the trash out).

    It controls your life...I didn't want friends, I didn't want to socialize, I didn't want to talk to anybody and I didn't want help or therapy because those things are for punks (in my head). All I wanted to do was sit in the dark and drink straight whiskey and think about how miserable I was acting like a spoiled brat because I wasn't getting what I wanted. I was self destructing at a rapid pace and I didn't care because the pain of possibly hurting someone else or myself didn't hold a candle to the pain of trying to live my life sober.
     
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  5. Aleksander Ulyanov

    Aleksander Ulyanov Well-Known Member

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    And it doesn't and it is.

    We are all addicted to food and food has just about EXACTLY the same overall effect on all of us as drugs do.
     
  6. bobobrazil

    bobobrazil Newly Registered

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    most people have an addict in their family, that they may not even know about, im always reminded of a friend whos uncle was a baptists 50 yrs ago and would not drink booze, however he frequently bought codeine cough syrup, 42% alcohol and 4 grains of codeine in 4 oz bottle, and yes booze can be worse as its justified as "not that bad"..my mother was an RN starting back in 1942...she was addicted on and off her whole life to lesser opiates, she had easy access and never was in any trouble and never robbed walmart
     
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  7. MJ Davies

    MJ Davies Well-Known Member

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    I am not a superhuman. I made a choice not to drink or do drugs or engage in risky behavior as I didn't want to compound the severe emotional pain I was in due to what I endured and survived.

    My parents didn't stop verbally or physically abusing me even after I became an adult so my only goal was to put myself through college and keep gainful employment. All my grandparents and both parents were alcoholics and it didn't look like fun at all. Both my grandfathers died from alcoholism prior to their respective 60th birthdays and both grandmothers stopped drinking in their 60s and both died within a decade. I recall our dad picking us up from school and driving from bar to bar looking for his mom. They never told us anything about their childhoods but it was obvious that he was in emotional pain during those moments. He drank, but never in public and never went to bars except to find her. He was a Chicago police officer so he had a rotating shift so he was drunk passed out on whatever two consecutive days he had off, would stop and sleep it off and go back to work. He hated me with a passion and would use his connections to find me, kick in my door or show up at my job to beat the hell outta me. Or, my mother would call the HR department at my job and get me fired. They were relentless but I kept holding strong and still didn't turn to drugs or alcohol.

    So, in a way, their inability to love me helped me to become self-sufficient, responsible and more focused on taking positive steps. I used my experiences to help other people and have always been involved in some kind of advocacy work. I knew I had to stop doing the court stuff when I seriously contemplating kidnapping some kids to get them away from both of their crazy parents. I'm no good to anybody on the run or in prison so I started a consulting business and helped develop non-profit organizations in various communities around the country as a way to help people without having to subject myself to the excruciating pain of feeling helpless because our judicial system is not designed to effectively handle domestic situations. This is why I'm pro-Choice. Love and nurturing and caring can't be mandated and I know for a fact that I wouldn't be here if my mother wasn't Catholic. She told me my entire life that she hated me and would have aborted me if she could have. They always told me that I wasn't welcome there and they kicked me out less than a week after my high school graduation. So, the people that scream about "precious little lives" are the people that haven't seen the group homes, foster homes, children forced into prostitution, juvenile delinquency, spike in crimes or rampant abuse and/or neglect that happens to unwanted children. Forcing somebody to bring a baby into the world (through guilt or legislation) they do not want or care about is one of the cruelest things we can do to our society's children. It still breaks my heart because I know many, many people that endured way worse than I did and many that have not been able to climb out of their pain. It's tough stuff.

    I would be remiss to not disclose to you that my body chemistry is not aligned properly which I believe helps tremendously. What I mean is my body doesn't respond to medications or chemicals the way other people's bodies do. So, I'm not a superhero. I just can't get drunk. I have to take a few medications for the rest of my life due to some internal injuries related to my abuse and my ex calling the cops that burst in and attacked me within days of a surgery (causing internal bleeding and scar tissue). One of them has a side-effect of drowsiness so it can't be administered in the ER if I drive myself to the hospital. However, it has never made me sleepy and it's not because my body has built up a tolerance to it. It's never made me sleepy. I can drink as much beer as I want and it doesn't nothing except send me to the facilities. So, I'm going to assume that if there was something that I could do that would take away the nightmares, I'd probably be an addict too. LOL Just kidding (but I really would like the PTSD to give me a break sometimes ;-).

    Usually people who've stayed up all night drinking. ;-)

    I think that is one of those things where everyone stumbles sometimes. You know, we think we can handle something and then realize we can't when it's too late. Look at Tiger Woods and Pelosi's husband. The singer Brandy and Tom Cruise have both killed someone in car accidents. I can't recall if any of them were inebriated or high at the time but killing somebody due to one's own carelessness is a life changer and while nobody died at Pelosi's hand, it was not his first DUI either. Nobody should ever have a second one of those. I've helped some women to meet their community service hours in some of the programs I developed and I have yet to hear one reasonable excuse for getting behind the wheel of a car when one isn't fully alert. I don't even excuse sleepiness as a friend in college was working two jobs, fell asleep, cross six lanes of traffic and injured several people. Fortunately, nobody died but why take that risk?

    Due to the stress of my divorce I started having an irregular heartbeat and sometimes pass out. About two years ago, I was cooking something on the stove and collapsed. I woke up in the ER. I was told that my neighbors heard my fire alarm and called 911 when I didn't respond to their knocks. The paramedics tried to resuscitate me here but couldn't. As soon as I was discharged, I ordered a toaster oven and air fryer, both with automatic shut-off. I will not use my stove at all if I'm home alone. Again, I would just never forgive myself if something happened and any of my neighbors were hurt because I didn't consider them. It's been hard because I love to cook and bake but I simply set that boundary on myself and I won't cross it. There is no meal that I have to have that badly.
    That sounds familiar. My father was in the Army before he met my mother. He could swim like a fish (and took us swimming after school when he worked morning shift). He would literally jog 50 miles a day (25 miles to my mother's office and back). And, I know that odor your co-worker was talking about. I would dutifully sit on the side of the bed and spoon feed my dad when he was passed out drunk because he couldn't coordinate a utensil to his own mouth. The odor eventually comes through the skin and no amount of showering will help because it's in the pores of the skin (which is multi-layered). And, like you, he probably thought that nobody would notice. But it's like smoking. Those of us that don't smoke or drink can pick it up almost instantly. I'm allergic to cigarette smoke so it feels like I'm being choked to death (and my father did choke me quite often so I know the feeling) just to get air. It permeates everything.
    And, this is one of biggest problems with our society. A person can drink, be a drunk, beat his wife and kids, have affairs, not pay his bills, get into fights at the local bar and do all kinds of stupid stuff and it's mostly shrugged off but if he (or she) wants to see mental health services, it puts a halt on their upper advancement. Essentially, we are telling people that as long as they do their dirty deeds in secret, it's all good. Getting help, which is very, very hard to do, is frowned upon. So, what choice do police officers, military people and others have when they are struggling but afraid of stalling their careers or being ridiculed? Shouldn't it be the other way around. Shouldn't we want the people that risk their lives everyday to keep us safe to have the support they need before something snaps? It's not fair to ask someone to put their life on the line every time they suit up and keep all the pain locked inside. The human mind isn't designed for that. The human body isn't designed for that.

    It shouldn't have been easier for you to down all that liquor in that short period of time than to pick up a phone and call somebody for help.

    It shouldn't have been easier for my father to stalk me and beat the hell out of me whenever he was pissed at somebody else (he usually ignored me so none of my "fall from the sky beatings" were about anything I did or didn't do).

    It shouldn't be easier for my ex to have multiple affairs, abandon the family, destroy my credit and reputation, have some dirty dealings with people in the workplace while rejecting the idea that some professional counseling was needed.

    It shouldn't be easier for my now ex-employee to have unprotected sex with several men a week (no man is told "no"), get all kinds of infections, get beat up because she is walking the streets just to pick up men she doesn't know while screaming at the top of her lungs that she will not go to counseling.​

    What kind of society do we live in when any of that makes an ounce of sense? When hurting ourselves and others is the tune we accept but helping ourselves by seeking qualified help is out of tune? That's outrageous.

    I'm not sure but I'm assuming you are sober now. If so, congratulations. I know it wasn't easy. My father passed last Summer and he never stopped drinking and never stopped hating me. It feels strange because I feel like I've been grieving the "loss" of my parents my whole life because they didn't want me. I do love them in spite of all they've done to hurt me. I feel that not allowing myself to become bitter and/or vengeful is the best gift I can give myself. I understand that everyone I encounter teaches me something -- even if that's how NOT to be.

    All the best to you, my friend.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2022
  8. SiNNiK

    SiNNiK Well-Known Member

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    Intensity.

    Way different.

    One of my brothers just died the other day from whatever drug he was doing because it had Fentinyl in it. Luckily a friend of his did CPR for 20 minutes until the EMT's got there.

    He made it. But we're in our 50's, he knows better but just doesn't care.
     
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  9. James California

    James California Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    :omg:'❓️~ Are we all addicted to the internet — to Political Forum ... !! :wierdface:
     
  10. Le Chef

    Le Chef Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I'm not addicted to this place. I quit 3 times last week.
     
  11. VotreAltesse

    VotreAltesse Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I likely have ADHD (could not do the tests yet), and have many behavorial addictions, luckily enough I never got hooked to substances. ADHD mean litteraly that you have a dysfunctionnal prefrontal cortex that is what enable impulsion inhibition.

    As far as I know Portugal treat addictions mostly as mental diseases with good results. However it mean a decent state funded structure that can deal with that (socialism some people would says).

    Even for people with regular functionnal pre frontal cortex, our "willpower" can get tired, especially if we have money problems, other things to worry about. It's like a muscle, it can't be on tension forever.
     
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