Well, the first time indeed is a choice. Almost everyone tries drugs or alcohol at some point in their life. So why do some to on with their lives and others get addicted? Why can’t others just stop taking it?
When researchers first linked addiction to brain disease, I had a hard time believing it. I was once an addict and when I became clean and sober, I discovered the addiction as a brain disease theory. I thought it was just a way to let addicted users get off the hook or not claim responsibility for their own conduct. To this day, people still question this theory and even recovering addicts differ in their opinions. So, is addiction a choice or is it really a disease?
One mother I knew has a son who would not get treatment. She also lost her father to drugs. She finds it hard calling addiction a brain disease. Apparently, her child would use a variety of drugs and would steal, lie, and hurt his loved ones. The mother argues that other people with other diseases do not do such things. Without a doubt, she believes it’s a choice.
Genetics Has Got Something To Do With It
Studies have determined that genetics can play a major role in this illness. Meaning, addiction can run in the family just like heart disease and diabetes.
Scientists have reason to believe that a person’s brain chemistry can change upon the introduction of drugs. Once the brain has been chemically altered by the addiction, many experts believe that the person can lose the power of choice and the control of their own behavior.
I had a father who was an alcoholic. When I was a teenager, I swore that I would never be like him. Instead, I used drugs, not knowing that I was doing the very same thing I swore not to do. By the time I realized my problem, I could no longer stop. All my feelings, my thoughts, and actions were dramatically changed.
My own drug addiction was progressive. It didn’t take long before got worse and took over me. As my addiction flourished, I believe my thinking also deteriorated. I could no longer make logical and rational decisions. My thoughts were impaired and I was continually in the process of denial, deflection, dishonesty and blame. I continued to put my life and the life of the ones I loved in jeopardy.
Addiction is like hell to both the person caught in it and the family who loves that person so much. Nobody wakes up and declares “I want to be an addict.” If it’s really a choice, no one ever chose to live this way.
Recovery Isn’t A Matter Of Choice Anymore
However, for addicted users, there really is only one choice to make and it is always not their choice anymore. Since addiction is not a choice, so is recovery. Hence, the family must step up and make the necessary choice for them.
Whether or not addiction is a brain disease or a choice, no amount of nagging, yelling, pleading, controlling, or rewarding will help. There must be consequences that will motivate change.
If the addicted person is resistant, consult professionals. Do not attempt to do this alone. Remember the person you love is not in their best condition and may hurt you. Addiction is treatable; they recover eventually. Rehab Near Me is here to help you and your loved ones find a healthy life.