You have used again. You have longed for the escape from your life, your problems and the over stimulation of the world. You take that one drink or that one hit and then you feel the hot sweat of shame making it’s way into your stomach, your chest, and your knees.
You want to hide. The urges come at you like a salt filled wave.
Addiction relapse is common.
Studies suggest that approximately half of all individuals who try to get sober return to heavy use, with 70 to 90 percent experiencing at least one mild to moderate slip. In other words, not many people say “I want to get sober,” walk into a treatment center, and never use drugs again.” – Psychology Today
Some say you fell off the wagon. Some say you are back at square one. Other’s become frustrated by your reoccurring slip-ups and make threats and ultimatums.
You feel hopeless. You feel like you are the one person who will actually never be able to change.
But, don’t be fooled by shame and it’s sly little ways. It wants you to believe you are in a land of quicksand.
Instead turn your mind to the next right step.
Turn your mind to the truth.
- Most people in recovery relapse at least once. “Up to 60% of patients who receive substance abuse treatment will relapse within one year,” – Journal of the American Medical Association
- You are traveling the normal process that EVERYONE goes through in the stages of change. “Relapse is not a failure but instead a common — and very frustrating — part of recovery from addiction.” – Addiction.com
- There are many treatment centers to choose from. Try one. it might give you what you need at that right time, and then in the next phase of your recovery you might need something more intense, or something less rigid and you can try a different program. That is ok. Click HERE for a list of resources in Minnesota
- Try not to make the situation worse. Your shame will tell you that you have failed. Your shame will tell you to keep using. “Often, people suffering from intense shame want to numb their negative feelings, which puts them at an increased risk for developing a substance abuse problem or obsessively engaging in a pleasurable behavior. It’s a way of self-medicating, in other words. And while they might feel better temporarily, which reinforces the addictive behavior, they end up feeling ashamed at their inability to stop.” – Addiction.com
- The BEST thing you can do is reach out and ask for help.
The only mistake you can make is NOT asking for help!” – Sandeep Jauhar
Recovery is a journey and for many the journey to health and wholeness takes some time.
Understanding your readiness to change by being familiar with the six-stage model of change can help you choose treatments that are right for you. A treatment professional with the right training will understand where you are in terms of readiness to stop drinking and help you find and maintain the motivation to stop drinking (or using).” – Psychcentral.com
What is most important is that you don’t allow yourself to be buried by the shame of a relapse, but that you reach out to those in your support system to help you.
We at Beauterre believe recovery is possible AND we believe it is an individual journey.
Does this speak to you? Are you feeling lost and alone in your relapse? Do you wonder if you have used all of your free passes, your nine lives, your cup of grace? No…you haven’t.
Do the next right thing and call for help. Now. Today.
*Photos from Unsplash