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Understanding Drug Abuse and Addiction


The world of drug abuse is a dark and seedy one that is often difficult to understand from the outside. You might even make the case that those on the inside do not understand it either. What we do know is that getting help for drug addiction is imperative to prevent as much destruction as possible.

It is important to know that drug addiction harms the life of both the addict and his/her family. It is not something that is isolated just to the individual. Drug addiction ruins marriages, irreparably damages friendships, reeks of financial havoc, and has definite adverse health effects.

To help get a better understanding of drug addiction, let’s look at both the addict and his/her loved ones. You may find yourself identifying with one or both of these camps.

The Drug Addict

There isn’t a drug addict alive who set out to purposely become addicted to drugs. It just doesn’t happen that way. Drug addiction starts with some sort of gateway substance the user mistakenly believes is completely harmless. Gateway substances include things like marijuana, ecstasy, and common household solvents.

Unfortunately, the future addict derives enough pleasure from their early substance abuse to encourage them to continue. Before long, their behaviour is something they perceive as a way of escaping the trials of life. Whenever they are not feeling good about themselves or their circumstances, their way to escape is through substance abuse. That’s where addiction starts every time.

Once the individual start using drugs as a means of escape, addiction has a foothold in their life. From there it is a downward spiral. The more the individual uses drugs, the worse they feel about themselves and their circumstances. And every time they are feeling bad, they take more drugs. It is a vicious cycle with no end in sight.

The Addict’s Loved Ones

The addict’s family members are often the forgotten ones in the addiction equation. Unfortunately, we have a tendency to believe drug abuse only affects the abuser themselves. But it doesn’t. Spouses, children and siblings are often devastated because of their loved one’s drug abuse.

That devastation can manifest itself in any number of ways, including:

  • Guilt – It is not uncommon for family members to feel guilty about their loved one’s addiction. It is as though they believe they are partly responsible for the destructive behaviour of the addict. Along with that guilt is often an overwhelming sense of shame.
  • Emotional Stress – The concern for the health and safety of the drug addict often leads family members to endure incredible emotional stress. While they feel powerless to do anything, they are overwhelmed by thoughts of the potential consequences of their loved one’s drug addiction.
  • Uncontrolled Anger – The combination of guilt and emotional stress sometimes leads family members to uncontrollable anger. They become embittered and lash out at others at a result. This anger is simply the manifestation of their other negative emotions, yet it cannot be ignored.
  • Financial Ruin – Drug addicts will normally depend on family members for the financial resources to continue their addiction. When those family members stop providing money willingly, the addict is forced to steal. It is not uncommon for families to be financially devastated by drug addiction.

The fact that you have read this page all the way through suggests either you are an addict or you know a family member who is. In either case, please understand that help is available. Private Rehab Helper exists for that very reason. If we can help you, please contact us right away. The sooner you do the better.

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