Is my drug addiction really that much worse than her alcoholism? - page 3

by Magsulfate | 6,336 Views | 41 Comments

This morning I noticed something, and it didn't really upset me, it just confirmed what I've been told over and over.. and what I thought I've seen in the past. I was skimming through the posts here, in the recovery forum..... Read More


  1. 1
    There are too many generalizations here. Magsulfate, you may have gotten or get that impression (from real comments or not) from the meetings you attend,but all meetings,made up of different people, are simply not the same. I learned that the oh...so hard way when in the beginning of my recovery(the first time) I attended the same AA's meetings and thought they were all cult members ! Yes, the sick mind of the newly recovering. I can't quite articulate what i'm trying to say here. Could It just be a form of xenophobia on their part ? I recently had a horrible experience at a new job,where I felt no warmth or very little welcoming from the staff even though I was personable and friendly. Was I invading their territory ? Who knows....? Maybe they felt uncomfortable because the thought of "being new" brought up bad/unpleasant images for them ?
    Magsulfate likes this.
  2. 3
    Quote from su
    [quote=suesquatchrn;3641297
    so now addicts are better than drunks? kettle, pot.
    suesquatchrn,

    jack never said that addicts were "better" than drunks.

    in na, the belief is that alcohol is included in the definition of addiction and this is why no alkie will ever be turned away, rejected, humiliated , ignored, unwelcomed or any other negative responses that addicts have received from some aa people.



    http://www.12step.org/references/na-...chapter-4.html


    "
    the only way to keep from returning to active addiction is not to take that first drug. if you are like us you know that one is too many and a thousand never enough. we put great emphasis on this, for we know that when we use drugs in any form, or substitute one for another, we release our addiction all over again.
    thinking of alcohol as different from other drugs has caused a great many addicts to relapse. before we came to n.a., many of us viewed alcohol separately, but we cannot afford to be confused about this. alcohol is a drug. we are people with the disease of addiction who must abstain from all drugs in order to recover. "
  3. 0
    [quote=exnursie;3642311]
    Quote from su


    suesquatchrn,

    jack never said that addicts were "better" than drunks.

    in na, the belief is that alcohol is included in the definition of addiction and this is why no alkie will ever be turned away, rejected, humiliated , ignored, unwelcomed or any other negative responses that addicts have received from some aa people.



    [url="http://www.12step.org/references/na-basic-text/na-chapter-4.html"
    http://www.12step.org/references/na-basic-text/na-chapter-4.html[/url]


    "
    the only way to keep from returning to active addiction is not to take that first drug. if you are like us you know that one is too many and a thousand never enough. we put great emphasis on this, for we know that when we use drugs in any form, or substitute one for another, we release our addiction all over again.
    thinking of alcohol as different from other drugs has caused a great many addicts to relapse. before we came to n.a., many of us viewed alcohol separately, but we cannot afford to be confused about this. alcohol is a drug. we are people with the disease of addiction who must abstain from all drugs in order to recover. "
    nursie, what is the point of your post?

    frankly, the non-alcoholics in this thread have been quite rude to those few of us who have responded. this post was, as well.
  4. 3
    You're being overly sensative.......
    jackstem, Magsulfate, and Rascal1 like this.
  5. 2
    Quote from SuesquatchRN
    So now addicts are better than drunks? Kettle, pot.
    [quote=SuesquatchRN;3642356]
    Quote from exnursie

    Nursie, what is the point of your post?

    Frankly, the non-alcoholics in this thread have been quite rude to those few of us who have responded. This post was, as well.
    You accused jack of saying addicts were "better" than alkies, when he said that he has never seen similar behavior towards alkies in NA meetings that we all have witnessed happen in AA towards addicts. You called him disingenous and calling the kettle black also.

    You also previosuly said about NA:"I will not, however, see you at those meetings. I would be an intruder, and there under false pretense. Nor could I add much to the group's collective experience, strength and hope, not having recovered from the same thing you did."

    MY INTENTION was to educate you in this matter. I was hoping that Your belief that your battle with the bottle holds nothing that would help people in NA was based on lack of knowledge of NA, and not due to bias.
    Eastcoast24 and Magsulfate like this.
  6. 1
    I believe it's just because alcohol abuse is legal.
    Magsulfate likes this.
  7. 7
    Folks, please! What on earth are we fighting about here??!! We all have problems...........none is "better" or "worse" than the others. Addiction is addiction is addiction!

    This forum exists as a help and support for nurses with substance abuse issues---it was never intended to be used to one-up each other. As a recovering alcoholic, ex-smoker, and food addict, I don't believe it speaks well of our progress in recovery if we are trying to make ourselves feel better by saying, in effect, "Neener, neener, neener, my addiction's more socially acceptable than yours." Copping an attitude of superiority just means that we are NOT working our steps, and I'm really sorry to see that happening here.

    I'm also sorry that some of you have not fared well in 12-step programs that weren't designed for your particular addiction, but that is no reason to paint all their members with the same brush. Generalizations are NEVER helpful, and indeed are almost always a cover for intellectual laziness. I'd like to think we are above that.

    Bottom line: if y'all can't discuss this without shredding each other, this thread will need to go away.

    Carry on.
    Roy Fokker, Elvish, shugrr22107NA, and 4 others like this.
  8. 4
    Recovery is recovery....no matter what your substance of choice. This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart, as a recovered opioid addict who attends AA meetings almost exclusively. When I overdosed in January 2007, I went to an NA meeting. I took nothing away from that meeting and wasn't compelled to go back. I made it about a month or two before my addiction grabbed hold of me once again. Fast forward to June 2007. I started attending AA meetings while in rehab because the meetings were attached to our rehab facility. I LOVED them. I took so much out of those room and learned so much. I felt like I belonged in that room and with each share I heard, I became more and more aware that I was not alone. To this day, 11 months later, I consider that to be my home group, even though alcohol was not my drug of choice. I cannot say I am not an alcoholic because given the chance, I just might very well switch addiction (I had a hard time coming to terms with that reality....I was deadset against even thinking I would ever have a problem with alcohol. I now know one drink would turn into 10, which would turn into 50, and that could possibly lead me back to my pills. No thanks. I'm quite content to drink a Coke while others are imbibing!

    I also attend weekly CA meetings that are wonderful as well. They are a mixed bag of folks...we have alcoholics and those addicted to various drugs who attend regularly. I have learned so much from these people and their stories have proven invaluable. One of the reasons I am still sober today is because of the wonderful meetings I have sought out. Now, I decided I should give NA another go since my drug of choice was not alcohol but narcotics. It was a good meeting but the majority of the people there had court cards that left halfway through the meeting and the others who were left didn't open up much. I didn't get the same feeling from that meeting as I do from my AA meetings. So it was back to my regular AA meetings and I will keep looking for an NA meeting that I can learn and grow from. My husband actually attends an AA meeting Saturday night with me (our date night..lol) and he comes away from those meetings having learned a lot.

    There are a few AA meetings I have been to that I know not to introduce myself as an alcoholic. Those are the meetings where I tend to just listen and not share. At first, it irked me that I was not welcome to introduce myself as an addict and I struggled with that "control issue" about how I couldn't do what I wanted to do! But they are great meetings and I take away a lot from them, even if I don't share. There are other addicts in those meetings with me and we all respect the group conscience in that we don't discuss our addiction nor do we introduce ourselves as addicts. I'm lucky enough to have a diverse group of meetings to choose from and attend. I go to some meetings simply to hear those with years and years of sobriety speak and I go to others knowing I can spill my guts, no matter what my drug of choice.

    Can't we all just get along?? :kiss
    Eastcoast24, jackstem, Magsulfate, and 1 other like this.
  9. 2
    Quote from Life_is_good_1973
    Recovery is recovery....no matter what your substance of choice. This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart, as a recovered opioid addict who attends AA meetings almost exclusively. When I overdosed in January 2007, I went to an NA meeting. I took nothing away from that meeting and wasn't compelled to go back. I made it about a month or two before my addiction grabbed hold of me once again. Fast forward to June 2007. I started attending AA meetings while in rehab because the meetings were attached to our rehab facility. I LOVED them. I took so much out of those room and learned so much. I felt like I belonged in that room and with each share I heard, I became more and more aware that I was not alone. To this day, 11 months later, I consider that to be my home group, even though alcohol was not my drug of choice. I cannot say I am not an alcoholic because given the chance, I just might very well switch addiction (I had a hard time coming to terms with that reality....I was deadset against even thinking I would ever have a problem with alcohol. I now know one drink would turn into 10, which would turn into 50, and that could possibly lead me back to my pills. No thanks. I'm quite content to drink a Coke while others are imbibing!

    I also attend weekly CA meetings that are wonderful as well. They are a mixed bag of folks...we have alcoholics and those addicted to various drugs who attend regularly. I have learned so much from these people and their stories have proven invaluable. One of the reasons I am still sober today is because of the wonderful meetings I have sought out. Now, I decided I should give NA another go since my drug of choice was not alcohol but narcotics. It was a good meeting but the majority of the people there had court cards that left halfway through the meeting and the others who were left didn't open up much. I didn't get the same feeling from that meeting as I do from my AA meetings. So it was back to my regular AA meetings and I will keep looking for an NA meeting that I can learn and grow from. My husband actually attends an AA meeting Saturday night with me (our date night..lol) and he comes away from those meetings having learned a lot.

    There are a few AA meetings I have been to that I know not to introduce myself as an alcoholic. Those are the meetings where I tend to just listen and not share. At first, it irked me that I was not welcome to introduce myself as an addict and I struggled with that "control issue" about how I couldn't do what I wanted to do! But they are great meetings and I take away a lot from them, even if I don't share. There are other addicts in those meetings with me and we all respect the group conscience in that we don't discuss our addiction nor do we introduce ourselves as addicts. I'm lucky enough to have a diverse group of meetings to choose from and attend. I go to some meetings simply to hear those with years and years of sobriety speak and I go to others knowing I can spill my guts, no matter what my drug of choice.

    Can't we all just get along?? :kiss
    Thanks

    I really do think that the 12 steps are helpful to me. I am also glad they are online, I have even found meetings online,, not the same, but atleast it is interaction. One thing that I do like about AA is there are the "old timers" , most of them are wonderful, and they love to share their years of sobriety experience with you.

    I think it's most important for the recovering addict/alcoholic to share with others their trials and tribulations with others who are new in recovery. Both benefit.

    As far as this thread getting heated, I don't see that.. maybe I have numbed myself to the criticism, but I have actually learned a lot from the responses.
    sissiesmama and VivaLasViejas like this.
  10. 4
    The biochemistry of addiction...whether ETOH, opioids, benzodiazepines, gambling, sex, etc. is the same. While we all have a "drug of choice" based on our specific genetic make-up, environment, and exposure, the concept of cross addiction is well known and discussed in the literature. A song from the 70's says it pretty well, "If we can't be with the drug we love, we'll love the drug we're with." There are always exceptions to every situation. While opioids are my drug of choice, I certainly used sedatives, ETOH, benzo's, etc. when I didn't have an opioid available.

    The 12 Steps are amazingly pliable and can be adapted to the various addictions known. They are actually a pretty good map for life in general. Having had numerous friends and colleagues die as a result of their addiction(s), I'm all for using methods of recovery that work for each individual addict. The 12 Steps have a track record of success since 1935. While originally intended for recovery from the addiction known as alcoholism, the 12 Steps have proven they work for other forms of addiction as well. To deny someone the benefit of these 12 Steps for whatever reason, is no different than denying someone treatment for other chronic, progressive, potentially fatal diseases because the original treatment was intended for a different disease. If the treatment is "off label" but is capable of keeping a disease in remission, does it make sense to deny the treatment?

    Early in my recovery I constantly focused on the differences between my set of circumstances and those of the people in a meeting with me. I didn't drink alcohol to excess, so I was "different" than the alcoholics. I didn't buy heroin, prepare my drug of choice by "cooking" it in a spoon, or reuse "dirty" needles or syringes. So I was "different" than heroin addicts. I never used cocaine, methamphetamine, or marijuana...so I was "different" than they were as well. I told me counselors in treatment (the 2nd time around) why I didn't go to AA, NA, CA, or any other "A's" was because I didn't have the same experiences as the other people there. George, my primary counselor, was about 15 years older than I was, was a black man who used mostly heroin and cocaine. He was clean and sober for almost 20 years. He grew up in an area of town that would be classified as a ghetto. His father left before he was born. His mother was a housekeeper working more than one job, his only sister was killed by her boyfriend when she was in her late teens. His older brother was in prison for assaulting his girlfriend's brother. He and I were as different as any two people can be. And yet, he is the reason I'm alive and in my 15th year of recovery. He took me to a different 12 Step meeting each evening during the last 2 weeks of my in-patient treatment. After each meeting he wanted me to name 5 things I had in common with the people who shared at those meetings. "Nothing" or "I don't know" weren't acceptable answers. If I was going to have the possibility of getting my license back, I had to come up with some sort of answer. If I tried to "play the game" and just tell him what he wanted to hear, he knew immediately. To say I didn't like this man was an understatement! But at the end of those 14 meetings I actually could see the similarities. My disease was no different than any of the other folks, even though they preferred different substances or activities. The bottom line was we were all powerless over something and our lives were unmanageable. The only thing necessary for attendance was (and still is) the desire to stop using our substance (or stop engaging in our compulsive activity). It's not for me to decide if the person next to me at a meeting should be there, it's up to them. If they reap the benefit of something someone shares, then that meeting was exactly what they needed.

    Every time I relapsed it was because I stopped sharing, looked for the differences, stopped being honest with myself and others, and basically ignored the principles of the 12 Steps, not because I was attending the wrong kind of meeting. George and I became pretty good friends. It was definitely a sad day when he died. But when I struggle with my recovery, he is the first person I think of. What would George say has helped me through many a difficult time. The answer to that question is..."Go to a meeting and listen to the experience, strength, and hope shared by those at the meeting...and hear the similarities, not the differences."

    Jack
    Magsulfate, sirI, VivaLasViejas, and 1 other like this.


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