For many of us, when we see someone we know, or love, stuck in the pain and obvious destruction that comes with an addiction, we wonder why they have not tried to get help—to find freedom. But it is easy to forget, an addict really only has one thought that drives their movement: “Where can I get my next fix?” You can imagine a person living with an addiction, or drug abusers, as being stuck in a whirlpool. Small movements are possible, but ultimately the current controls their life. They spiral around and around and eventually they will get sucked under. They might believe they have a handle on things, but those looking from the outside can see: no matter what happens, as long as they are in the swirling whirlpool their life is out of control. And the only way out is help from an outside source, a lifeline that the person can grab ahold of to pull themselves out of the vortex.
Twenty-three million Americans are currently addicted to alcohol and/or other drugs. Only one in 10 of them (2.6 million) receives the treatment they need. So if it is so clear to those on the outside of the whirlpool of addiction that their loved one is in a dire and dangerous situation that they can not rescue themselves from why doesn’t the addict look for help? Here are four common reasons, and suggestions on how to help.
4 Reasons Drug Abusers Don’t Ask for Help
Reason: They don’t want to stop using
This is the biggest reason an addict won’t find help. An addict’s brain has been hijacked and their only desire is to get that next fix. That’s why they will lie to loved ones, manipulate their surroundings, even commit crimes. It is their sole motivating drive, and is constantly on their mind. And their brain believes it is all a wonderful ride. Giving in to that craving feels so good for a single moment (of course that single moment is never enough). Beyond the euphoria, their body actually needs the substance, and the reaction they have when it is withdrawn is like having oxygen taken away. Sadly, most addicts simply don’t want to stop.
Solution: Ultimately recovery is up to the addict, however there are plenty of examples of forced recovery being successful (ie. court mandated recovery programs). Of course, if you are not a judge, that option might not exist for you. For most people, the first step is an intervention. The key aspect of an intervention is to break through denial and help the addict see the dangerous vortex they are in. Bringing in a professional interventionist is the best plan in order to make sure the intervention is safe and effective. If you need help finding your next step, call us today. We can help you find decide your best option: 1-844-489-0836.
Reason: They don’t think they can afford it
Rehab and treatment centers are expensive and the price can be an overwhelming hindrance for a person with an addiction. Of course, it is important to remember an addict will look for any reason to avoid recovery. Their only motivation is to find a fix, so an easy way to continue in their destructive path is to say they can’t afford it.
Solution: Ultimately, studies have shown that in the long run, the benefit of treatment outweighs the cost of remaining in addiction. This includes long-term financial issues, but ultimately it includes the fact that an addict is in a life-threatening situation that will always end poorly. To help with treatment costs, the Affordable Care Act required many insurances to provide at least partial coverage for substance abuse treatment. The first step is to call us and see what your insurance covers. We can help you navigate the often-overwhelming information and get you or your loved one the help you need, right away.
Reason: They don’t know where to go
Admittedly there are a lot of treatment centers, and rehab is a significant investment (financially, emotionally, and length of time). You want to make sure you find the right one for you or your loved one.
Solution: First talk to your doctor or psychologist/therapist. Getting a recommendation from someone you trust is always the best place to start. You will want to find a program that you trust and a team you feel good about. For some people, getting out of their current surroundings is an important aspect of recovery. But if that is not an option you can always ask a couple of pertinent questions to a local treatment center such as: Are staff members properly certified? Are there follow-up programs to help prevent relapse? Are there special treatments available, such as wilderness treatment, art, or Yoga?
Reason: They are afraid of the stigma
It is a sad reality, the moment many addicts finally admit to needing help is the same moment they get treated differently. Even people living in healthy long-term recovery are in danger of being stigmatized as “unstable.” Once a person gets treatment, there is a risk that those in their social surroundings will label them as a “druggie” or brand them with a character flaw. The societal stigmas are real and are one of the most significant contributing factors keeping people stuck in the mire of their addiction.
Solution: Every person must refuse to discriminate. Even better, become an advocate. At one point leprosy carried a heavy social stigma until advocates came out and helped educate the people in their lives and culture at large. The only way to combat stigma is with education. Make sure that people are aware that addiction is not a moral failing. It is out of the control of the person, and the best thing an addict can get is treatment, not shame or blame.
There is still hope!
It doesn’t matter your background, family history, or socioeconomic status, if you or a loved one are struggling with substance abuse and need help, First Steps Recovery can provide you the services and personal care you need to make your recovery a reality. We offer a wide range of drug treatment programming that is effective, proven to work and backed by intensive scientific research. Our experienced staff will work with you every step of your treatment journey and implement an individualized plan of recovery that will perfectly fit your unique and specific needs. Call First Steps Recovery toll-free today and create your own success story: 1-844-489-0836.