Posts tagged 12 Steps
As I See It 2... By: Liz Lucey

Over 24 million Americans 12 and older suffer from alcohol or substance abuse, or both. Triple this number (at least) if you consider their loved ones who suffer right along with us.  Of this 24 million, only about 2 million are admitted into treatment each year.  This means there are over 20 million untreated people with a substance abuse disorder in the United States now.  Many of those untreated are incarcerated, and the remainder are dying. There is no other option besides recovery, jail, or death. There seriously is no other option, as there is no such thing as a “functioning addict.”  It is significantly easier for an addict to get a bag of dope than to get help.  We are at a critical point in our history as a country, and treatment and recovery is going to be determined by our collective voices or our collective silence.  Those that have found a solution need to use their voice and speak up.  Although it is considered progress that substance abuse is recognized as a treatable medical disease, it also made the field of addiction treatment a “business.”  When this happened, managed health care recognized the profits of this new “industry” and the business of recovery and treatment fell into their hands.  And they have no idea how to treat us, so people continue to use, continue to die, and the stigma emerges that we do not comply with treatment and do not want the help they are providing.  The recovering community is their only resource for a viable solution.  Unlike other diseases, they must go to the ones with the problem to find their solution.  If we remain silent, we are contributing to the problem.  De-stigmatizing and reducing the shame of addiction is possible by showing our faces and using our voices.  Those that are ignorant and judge the addict are justified if they do not see that there are millions living a life of recovery and productivity alongside them.  

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