A bad addiction experience can help us to grow

Every negative or bad experience we go through can be used as a chance to help us grow. If you are reading this as someone who has come through the other side. Either from the misery of active alcoholism or drug use, I do not need to convince you.  You have almost certainly experienced the awful things you lived through have now enabled you to grow as a person. This has been to become a more broadminded, sympathetic, understanding and tolerant person. None of us would have chosen to put the people we loved through the hell that we did. But we can now be a better parent, son, daughter, friend, employee etc. This would have never been possible if we had not gone through the illness.


It is not just the very difficult experience of our life that can be turned to positives and growth. A relapse while most certainly not recommended; can be used to help us realise that we really cannot drink or use ever again as one drink or drug will definitely lead to another. When I was trying to beat the illness, I did manage to only have a couple of drinks. This just fooled me into thinking I was OK. The next day I would inevitably have more and I would be back in the misery very quickly. This is a progressive illness which will never get better on its own and from which we never can be cured. It is a lifetime abstinence programme.

Tools to deal with life

Being in recovery does not mean that we will not have to face life’s ups and downs. Now though we have tools to deal with these more negative experiences. We know that obliterating feelings or avoiding issues through drinking or using will not work and will never make things better – only worse. We can turn to our support network of friends in recovery if we need to as they will help us through. Sharing at meetings is a way of lessening the burden. Or we can turn to help from our higher power or from God – whatever we choose to call our spiritual help.  Building strength for the future is an essential part of addiction rehab treatment.

12 Step programme

Many people are put off the Twelve Step Programme, Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous because of the concept of a Higher Power. They assume this makes it a religious programme or some form of cult. It does not. It is about recognising that we need outside help and support through something that is stronger than our individual ability to overcome our addiction. If we stop trying to resist the help offered by these support groups and accept it. We can feel the genuine power of the good will and empathy within the meeting. Most of the people in the meeting will be prepared to go the extra mile to help the suffering addict. And with this expect nothing in return. That is powerful – a form of Higher Power in action.

The Haynes Clinic is a drug and alcohol rehab clinic offering detox and treatment for those suffering from addiction to alcohol, drugs and prescription medication.

Call 01462 851414 for confidential help and advice.



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