Addiction Does Not Discriminate
Let’s set the scene. A man in his mid-40s, an accomplished lawyer, married with children sits next to a newly 30-year-old woman. This woman just got her first nursing job in the Emergency Department like she always dreamt of. They are joined by a young 20 something male who just got a 4.0 GPA in his first semester of college at his father’s alma mater. Another young woman is among them, she is homeless and barely got her GED after growing up without parents. A shy, polite 56-year-old man in between jobs sits with them also.
The descriptions and circumstances are ever changing as you look around the room. Despite the differing backgrounds, experiences, and ages, each of these individuals have something in common.Addiction is complicating their life. Some still are holding down their job, some are still happy in their relationships, while some have nothing left, and others are losing grip on things they care about. The devil is NOT in the details here. Addiction does not care. Addiction is blind in its rage and attacks at random.
Addiction ignores how hard you worked, how smart you are, or where you come from. Once the disease is awoken within you, it is part of you. The level of acceptance of addiction as a disease that you, your loved one, or your family has, will dictate the level of success of treating it. If you are struggling with alcohol or substance abuse-do not be ashamed. The myths and public perceptions about addiction muddy things. It taints the ability for people to recognize the problem. It makes it hard to accept the problem. It clouds the ability for people to open up and seek help.
Don’t let it hold you back from owning it into your life and fighting back. Accept that addiction does not happen to only the homeless, to the poor, to the morally weak, or the broken like the stereotypes say.Accept that addiction can happen to anyone just as simply as one can catch a cold. Germs do not discriminate, just like addiction does not. Put your ego aside. Put your families’ judgements aside. Put what the world thinks aside. Because the truth is, we know addiction does not discriminate. We know you are worthy of help.We know you have strengths and we know you can overcome it.We know you are a person, complex and unique, deserving of care and support. Ask for help, just like you would if you were sick, because addiction is a disease. Take the time to treat it–we are ready to help you heal.