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I quit doing heroin by using methadone and then I quit methadone by just quitting… and haven’t looked back. I’ve been off heroin for 8 years but a program would say I haven’t been clean because I took methadone and beyond that, I’m not decidedly abstinent from every substance of abuse that they deem to be bad for me.
Whom Should I Blame For All These Things?
Well….obviously I blame my drug addiction on a series of unfortunate events- my mother and father were never home, I have experienced abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, my brother’s suicide…. I blame society, stress, anxiety disorder, a doctor, growing up in a suburb, near a field with an anhydrous tank…. My neighbors…..I knew the dope man before he was the dope man so…. I had no real options, right? I was just a kid? I didn’t know any better? They kinda forced me. I didn’t feel loved. Did I want to fit in? My boyfriend was doing it? I wanted them to like me? I heard he smoked a little grass. It was definitely all the heavy metal music and subliminal messages? I mean, I am at such a high risk, what with my genetic predisposition and all ….plus the family history. It was the neighborhood where I grew up? How was I supposed to know it was bad for me or that I could get addicted? They held my ass down and forced me to do it and then made me think I was having fun?
The Devil Made Me Do It?
I don’t blame my problems on anything outside of myself. I had a fucked up childhood and I have lots of stuff to run away from but not a single one of those things made me into what I was or what I am today. I have a mind of my own. My brain works exceptionally well in fact and I’m far too intelligent to have stepped into some trap. My past doesn’t make me defective. I don’t blame my successes on anyone else so I can’t blame my screw-ups elsewhere either.
I Know What I Am Actually Doing
I have always known what I was doing. Very clearly I have been aware of all potential outcomes to my actions. None of the negative aftermaths of my use was a surprise aside from exactly how it felt…. I knew it would feel bad. I knew it was a terrible idea. I’ve told people a thousand times through the years that I think things thru. I always have. So if ever I’ve convinced anyone that i “didn’t know” about anything that I caused to happen, I was lying. I always knew. I usually planned it and sometimes I just didn’t care.
Rhode Shellars says that “But I knew every step I was taking when I went down.I also knew the steps I took coming back up. I did it all.”
My Experience In 12-Step Programs
Yes, I have been to meetings, been in the rooms, attempted to do the next right thing...I’ve tried to work the steps and I’ve been to multiple rehab facilities that incorporate the basic principles of step-based treatment and none of them worked for me over the long term. I don’t argue that it can work but I would argue that there’s no one size fits all to recovery and 12 steppers in my experience tend to preach that theirs is the only way… My experience with the steps was bad every time. My experience with the ideology was that they are super indoctrinated and unaccommodating and not accepting. I also apparently literally cannot complete the steps due to the fact that I don’t believe in an omnipotent and sovereign higher power that I should turn my life over to or whatever.
How Did I Feel On My Low’s?
I’ve been belittled and basically told that I wouldn’t stay off dope for very long because I had a disease and my thoughts were the enemy and couldn’t be trusted, by several asshats sitting in a smokey stinky room full of people who revived they are less than finest moments every day at a certain time and then listened to each other talk about how out of control they are without God….these people said I couldn’t get my life back and keep it without their way of doing it.
Every single person I personally know that shook their heads in disapproval at me when I was sitting in their meetings talking about replacement therapy and methadone has relapsed at least once since then….I have never relapsed on heroin or methadone. They each spend their lives at war with an imaginary demon and telling themselves they aren’t capable of change on their own….they count days and still say they are addicts even if it’s been years since they touched anything at all. I can’t imagine living that way.
“I stopped being an addict when I stopped being addicted.” I don’t fight to get high because I don’t feel like I CAN’T get high….I’m not fighting any urges. I can do whatever I want …and I really don’t want to do heroin. At all. That’s why I don’t. And why I quit.
I really don’t want to do anything and I know that I’m in total control of my actions even if I don’t want to be… Maybe it’s just who I am but I think it’s easier for me to be clean when I don’t feel like I’d be a piece of shit if I didn’t. If I want to do something I will do it. I just don’t want to. Why if I don’t have an alcohol abuse problem can I not drink a beer one time in 4 months without being told I’m not sober by alcoholics? I was a heroin addict and I don’t ever drink …I hardly think my days should start over because I had a drink of something that You have a problem with.
I was kicked out….literally told not to return to a rehab facility based on the steps because I admitted that I had been doing speed for 2 days. I was there for speed so basically I relapsed… And was kicked to the curb. I was also refused a spot at 2 different facilities because I was already taking methadone at a clinic (without any other cognitive therapy or support system) unless I was willing to go into detox right then and totally cold turkey it. To me that’s totally not helpful and completely judged and controlling. It’s also a real sucky move to treat me like a street junkie because I’m on methadone and refuse to offer support or therapy because I’ve decided to give my life and my mind time to recover before I try to force my body into detox. I’d have relapsed every single time if I expected my life to change magically and was in withdrawal when it didn’t.
What Is A Goal Really?
I’m glad it works for some people….but I think that because that is the best-known type of treatment in the world, it is highly irresponsible to refuse to share that there are other programs that could help if that one doesn’t work for a person….if the goal is for the people to gain control and heal their lives why don’t they want anyone to do that unless it is done their way. We’ve come so far with various ways of helping people repair their minds and bodies and regain their lives through various types of programs and treatments and it seems negligent to refuse to share that with people who don’t fit the mold.