Excuses for Substances Use Disorders Don’t Help
Seeking help for addiction is never easy. There are a lot of misconceptions and stigma surrounding it. Moreover, it can be difficult to accept that you’re powerless against addiction. It’s easy to make excuses, claiming that there are reasons you cannot overcome this problem. But excuses are not your friend. They do nothing but hold you back from making progress in life or overcoming your substance use disorder. It also becomes easy to convince yourself that you have no other choice. This thinking leads to a cycle of excuses, perpetuating your addiction without ever wanting to get out of it. Such thinking stems from people who deeply misunderstand what addiction is.
While mental health issues should be taken into consideration, the most-read definition of addiction is “a chronic, relapsing brain disease that causes compulsive drug seeking and use despite harmful consequences.” In other words, you are addicted when you cannot stop using drugs or alcohol even though you desire to do so. While you desire to stop using, you cannot control your cravings. It’s a cycle of behavior characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use. While this may be the case for some people suffering from addiction, this is hardly the case for everybody who suffers from addiction. Therefore, let’s look at some of the excuses people make when they refuse to seek help.
Excuse #1 – “I Don’t Have a Problem”
This is the most common excuse we hear. It’s not a good enough reason to remain an addict. Yes, you may not have a physical problem – like a disease or injury that causes you to have symptoms – but there are other factors that cause cravings and the inability to overcome them.
For example, some people develop an addiction because they started out by only using drugs recreationally. Of course, they will develop an addiction. What would you do with a chronic craving if you never took drugs? You’d probably end up going through the stages of drug addiction. When it comes to being an addict, there is no such thing as being “in control.” This is why we say that people become addicted not because of a disease or injury but because they make poor choices and are unable to control their cravings.
This excuse does nothing but hold people back from their potential for betterment in life and recovery from addiction. You can’t say that you have no problem with drugs and alcohol, only to accept the fact that you are addicted. In truth, you may not have a physical problem to worry about. However, your drug use creates a psychological dependency.
Excuse #2 – “The Only Person I’m Harming Is Myself”
Those with substance use disorders often think that the only person they’re harming is themselves. They can’t see the damage they’re doing to their friends and their family. How can they possibly see what’s happening when they will never admit that they have a problem?
People who abuse drugs or alcohol feel like they have more of a life because drugs provide everything they’re missing. They feel as though they’re invincible and have an edge over others. Of course, this is all accompanied by a false sense of reality created by addiction. The truth is much of their lives is falling apart and their addiction is pushing their loved ones away.
Excuse #3 – “I Can’t Afford Treatment”
You can’t afford it, so you’re going to continue dabbling with and using drugs. This is one of the most common excuses, but it’s still no excuse at all. Many people who are trying to overcome addiction resist the idea of getting help because they can’t afford to pay for care. You can post your household budget online and find out how much you can afford to pay for treatment, rehabilitation, or medication without negatively impacting your finances.
If you cannot afford to pay for treatment, consider finding employment that would allow you to pay for your care costs. If you are unemployed, you can talk with your family members and friends to see if they can help. Do not make this your excuse because it is truly an excuse that does little but hold people back with their disease of addiction.
Excuse #4 – “My Life Is Unbearable Without Drugs”
It may be hard for you to get treatment because you can’t imagine not having the drugs around you. You think that most of your problems will disappear if only you can find a way to control your cravings. But this is where many people get stuck; they are stuck with their addiction because they feel as though it’s all or nothing for them.
It is impossible for someone to have everything in their life and be addicted to something else. The only “salvation” they see is drugs, which they feel they need to get through their problems. You may use this as a legitimate reason to remain an addict because you believe that your life will be unbearable without drugs. You may have created such a bad reputation for yourself that you don’t think anyone would want to see your face if you quit using. The truth is that addiction keeps people in misery; it makes them do things that cause their life to be unbearable.
Excuse #5 – “All My Friends Use, and I Don’t Want to Be Alone”
If your friends are using drugs or alcohol, you may feel like you have to use drugs or alcohol to fit in. Group pressure can be very powerful when it comes to addiction. It makes it hard for people suffering from addiction to get over the fear they may experience when they quit using drugs or alcohol because they fear no one will want them around anymore. This is not a good enough reason to stay addicted.
Remember, you’re risking your family and friends’ health by using drugs or alcohol. If they want to be around you, they will do so whether they are using drugs or not. The only way they’ll want to be around you is if they want to use drugs too, which will keep them addicted, just like you.
Excuse #6 – “I Tried Treatment Before and Ended up Using Again”
This excuse may be a reason to remain an addict because you don’t think you’ll be able to handle going through treatment again. You believe that it will be difficult for you to get clean and end up using drugs or alcohol again if you go through detox or rehab.
Some people believe that they’ll relapse after going through a spell in treatment, so they don’t want to go through the process at all. The truth is that a relapse does not equal an inability to recover. This excuse is a very common one. However, if you believe that you’re powerless over your addiction, then there’s no reason for you to remain addicted.
Excuse #7 – “My Family Needs Me Here”
If your family is dependent on you and they would be devastated if you left home, you may use this excuse to continue with your substance use disorder. It’s not logical to say that you have to use drugs or alcohol to keep your family close.
You believe there’s nothing wrong with your addiction because it’s a part of who you have become, but it isn’t a part of who your family is. They can love an addict just as much as they can love any other person in their family. Addiction does not mean you are unlovable, so you should not feel like it’s necessary to continue using because your family needs you.
Excuse #8 – “I’m Not Ready to Quit”
You may be convinced that you’re not ready to quit using drugs and alcohol because of your health. Maybe you have chronic medical conditions that your drug or alcohol abuse made worse. Maybe you think that the drugs and alcohol help control your chronic pain symptoms, which makes it nearly impossible for you to contemplate quitting.
The truth is that using drugs or alcohol does not help ease your pain; it makes your pain worse. The mental and physical health problems caused by addiction make it dangerous for you to remain an addict because it may cause more damage than recovery can fix.
Recovering From Addiction
Not everyone will be able to overcome their addiction on their own. Some people struggle before and after treatment. However, they can learn how to manage the disease of addiction and make long-lasting recovery a possibility. The 12-steps program can help your recovery by offering you a way to live without drugs and alcohol.
Get Help Now
If you believe that you’re ready for recovery, then it’s time for you to talk with your doctor about treatment options or support groups in your local area. You can also find help on Google by searching for “rehab centers near me.” Drug rehab programs are the perfect way to make the switch to recovery and learn how to live a sober life.
Live and Let Live
Perhaps you have been in denial about your addiction, or maybe you feel that your addiction is not as important as other people’s issues. No matter what your reasons are for abusing substances, it’s never too late to change. Recovery will help you start living the life that you want to live. Go through treatment and talk with others about their experiences with addiction so that you can understand how recovery works for them. The most important thing that can happen to you is finding a comfortable place in your own mind, knowing that you are able to stay clean and sober.
Alcoholism and substance use disorders are very typical problems because so many people struggle with the problem of drinking too much alcohol or abusing drugs. These are issues that many people face, and they are diseases that can take a while to recover from. It’s essential to know that recovery from addiction is possible, and it starts with talking with your doctor or therapist about treatment options like rehab and 12-step programs.
If you have questions or concerns, you should seek the help of professionals who can provide you with practical solutions to your addiction. Granite Recovery Centers is one of the top alcohol and drug recovery programs in the United States, and we have helped many people overcome substance use disorder. We also have a great network of facilities where you can go for treatment. Contact us today so you can get started on your path to recovery.