Going to a treatment center, let alone actually trying to stay sober, is rarely the first option that an addict tries. It’s not even in the top twenty things that an addict will do to stop or moderate their drug use. Why? Because being sober scares most addicts. It means actually being honest with their selves and owning up to their addictions for the first time. Wanting nothing to do with treatment or recovery, they search for an easier, softer way.
Willpower is often the first method addicts try to use to get sober. If they try to control how much they drink, they’ll go out to the bar and say, “I’m only going to have one or two beers tonight.” If they’re trying to stop altogether, they’ll say, “No matter what, I won’t drink tonight.” Either way, they break their resolution not long after they’ve made it. Someone pushes a drink, a pill or a joint their way and they take it without thinking twice. All of a sudden, their willpower has ceased to exist.
Fear and consequences are another thing addicts think they’ll stay sober by. Many face serious consequences if they act out again. They’ll be expelled from school or fired from their job. They’re on probation and will go to jail. They face serious health risks, both physically and mentally. Their boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, or wife threatens to leave them. Whether they’ll lose money and material things or relationships and personal things, fear simply does not work. Addicts convince their selves they won’t get caught this time. Or, they think they’ll get caught… but it won’t be so bad. Or, they use fear as an excuse to drink anyway — drugs and alcohol are the only way they know to ease their tension.
Finally, addicts begin thinking of “only if” scenarios. Only if they worked at another job, they wouldn’t drink as much. Only if they dated someone different, they wouldn’t need to use drugs. Only if they lived somewhere else, they’d be sober. Any addict who’s tried these will confirm: there is no work solution, there is no relationship solution, there is no geographical solution. An addict who’s honest with him or her self has to admit that they don’t need these excuses to get high. They do it for the same reason they breathe air and eat food: to survive.
Willpower doesn’t work, fear of consequences don’t work, and changing the fine details of your life don’t work. Most people who’ve been sober for long have one thing in common: they started their recovery at a treatment center. It’s usually a last resort, but it’s always available for addicts who need it. To find treatment, call 888-231-9174 today!