In The News
So many things in life seem relatively straightforward on our first pass. Later we discover that there is more to it. For example, at first, all deciduous trees seem to look alike—tall and leafy. Gradually though, our eyes can tell the difference between oaks, maples, poplar and ash. Finer discriminations come over time. We could also do the same with fear, anger, bipolar . . . almost any category. And we can do it with addictions.
On our first pass, addictions are lusts. They are out-of-control desires that usually hurt the addict and anyone else who is close by. But if we spend enough time with addicts we might notice subgroups within addictions, and though lust applies to them all, there are other biblical approaches that could be even more suitable.Read More
Somehow Thanksgiving, our holiday of gratitude, has morphed into a gluttonous melee of over-indulgence and excess. If there is ever a time to practice coping with urges, resisting temptations, and moderate indulging, it is amidst the relentless onslaught of food and drink offerings that we are bombarded with throughout the celebratory festivities of November’s fourth Thursday.Read More
Drug addiction is one of the most expensive lifestyles on the planet. Many drug addicts who are heavily addicted find that they’re spending more than a hundred dollars a day on the drugs that they need. Some users spend significantly more than that.
However, it’s not just the financial aspect of drug addiction that can be considerably expensive. Drug addicts also pay for their habits with their friends, their families, their homes, and sometimes even their lives.Read More
We are in the thick of the holiday season, and while this should be a joyful and celebratory time, it can be challenging for those of us trying to maintain our sobriety. But, dealing with an addiction doesn’t have to ruin your holiday fun. We’ve come up with seven tips to help keep you on the right track all the way through New Year’s Day.
Play the Tape All the Way Through.Read More
Drug and alcohol addiction are powerful diseases that should not be taken for granted as they can completely overtake both the body and mind. Addiction can happen to anyone. There’s a reason addiction is characterized as a chronic disease, it is influenced by genetics, it can be treated but not cured, and addiction has both medical and behavioral components, just like every other chronic medical illness. The National Institute on Drug Abuse explains that once abuse has begun, the brain’s structure and function are altered, resulting in changes that persist long after drug use has ceased.Read More
The cycle of addiction is created by changes produced in brain chemistry from substance abuse. It is perpetuated by physiological, psychological and emotional dependency. This cycle of addiction continues unrestrained, until some type of intervention occurs (self-intervention, legal, family, etc.).
What Is the Cycle of Addiction?Read More
While I worked at a nonprofit geared toward rehabilitating ex-prisoners, the organization paid one of our graduates to do some renovation work on a transition house. He hadn’t been incarcerated for a drug offense and, to our knowledge, didn’t have a drug or alcohol problem. He apparently hid it well; once the check was in his hands, he disappeared without doing the work. The last we heard of him, he’d blown all the money on drugs and was homeless.Read More
The concept of rock bottom implies that if I want to change a pattern of addictive behavior then I must lose everything and hit the lowest level possible before I will change. Beyond the disheartening message that I have to destroy and ruin everything that matters to me, there is an obvious logical fallacy in the notion that truly losing everything will motivate much other than an intensification of self-destructive behaviors. It is precisely when everything is lost that substances are at their most appealing. The intensity of substance use is a direct reflection of the intensity of pain, so adding more pain and loss by pushing someone towards rock bottom is not only unlikely to be helpful, it is likely to be harmful.Read More
September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and after a summer characterized by isolation, social unrest, financial strain, political division, and a startling loss of life due to Covid-19, this National Suicide Prevention Month should remind us all that we’re not experiencing these times alone. While some individuals may feel the effects of the present climate more intimately, we’re all weathering the same storm. Suicidal thoughts can happen to anyone, regardless of their race, wealth, age, or gender. In this way, suicidal thoughts are not uncommon. However, suicidal ideation should never be normalized, as the act of suicide is usually related to an undiagnosed mental health concern. Unfortunately, these mental health conditions – not surprisingly – have seen a sharp, correlative rise with Covid-19 and its rippling effects on everyday life. It is amidst this backdrop that suicide prevention resources are becoming all the more necessary.Read More