No one chooses to become an addict. Chances are that your addiction grew over time, as the result of hundreds or even thousands of tiny choices that may have seemed irrelevant or inconsequential at the time.
There was never a time when you woke up and thought, “I want to be an addict”.
The truth of addiction is ugly, and most people understand that before ever picking up a bottle, taking a prescription pill, or tampering with a more dangerous drug. But, if you have allowed those tiny choices to get the better of you, and you are addicted, is it your fault? Are you responsible for your addiction?
The truth, like addiction itself, is a complex one. Addiction is not your fault, but it is still crucial that you understand that you are responsible for yourself, and therefore for your addiction.
Stop Blaming Yourself
Self-pity walks hand in hand with addiction. It’s often how we become addicts. Even more frequently, we use it as a crutch. If you feel sorry for yourself, it’s easy to keep using, because if your condition or your mental state are so bad, then you ‘need’ it. Addiction is a disease, and it will prey on your negative emotions to convince you to keep using. Blame is a negative emotion, and whether you’re prone to blaming yourself or hating yourself, or trying to point your finger at someone else, it has to stop.
Negative emotions make you feel bad, feeling bad makes you less likely to get clean or sober. Negative reinforcement is a well-documented psychological reaction, that proves that you are more likely to go back to substance abuse when faced with emotions like guilt, anger, blame, and self-pity. These emotions create a vicious cycle where you seek out the thing that makes you feel better, and then blame yourself, so that you return to substance abuse again.
In order to break this cycle, you have to work towards emotional stability where you understand that you can’t blame yourself for your addiction, but that you do have to take responsibility for it.
Taking Responsibility for Your Addiction
The first step to taking responsibility for your addiction is admitting that you have a problem. This can be incredibly difficult, especially if you’re not accustomed to needing help. You don’t have to blame yourself, you simply have to accept that you have a problem and that you need help to fix it. What happened in the past happened, and there is nothing you can do about it. What you can do is make the decision to ensure that your past is not your future.
Taking responsibility means seeking out help, so that you can beat your addiction. Addiction is caused by a myriad of underlying causes, ranging from unhappiness to past trauma, to using substances socially or as part of a treatment for an injury or medical condition. But, to correctly diagnose and solve underlying issues, you need professional help.
Get Help for Your Addiction
This means looking for a professional treatment solution where you will be given the tools to get clean.
Addiction is painful, but if you can make the decision to move forward and get help, things will get better. Only you have the power to free yourself from addiction, and taking responsibility for that is the first step to getting your life back.
If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, please call Lighthouse Treatment Center today for help. We are happy to provide a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with one of our experienced treatment advisors. Help is available now.