How many times have you sworn off drugs, alcohol, or both only to go right back to the bar or a party the following day? There are so many reasons why we justify our inability to make an effort to stop polluting our bodies and messing up our life. Sometimes, we are just not willing to try hard enough.
For me and so many people in active addiction, the excuses were plentiful.
Read on and see if any of the following excuses ring true for you.
1. My friends will no longer want me around.
We all need connection. With friends, family, loved ones, and pets. If you are involved in a group where drug and alcohol use is a regular event, it may feel difficult to walk away. This is not unusual and a common thought process. Fears of being ousted from a circle of friends are scary, especially when trying to overcome addiction. If your friends tease or bully you when you discuss sobriety it may mean that you are testing their own inner need to get sober. To be accepted and not ruffle too many feathers can hinder our better judgment and our sobriety.
2. I don’t know if I can get sober on my own.
This is an excuse used too often. The fear of asking for help or admitting that we need help can be seemingly dangerous. It’s much easier to go with the flow, get high or drunk, and let that underlying feeling of wanting to get clean fade away. We plod along without change for fear of the unknown and do what we have been doing over and over. It is only when we can and do admit to ourselves that we cannot overcome this alone that we start on the real path to recovery. We don’t have to be that strong if we aren’t. There are terrific people willing to help you.
3. If I don’t get high or drunk, I'll think of problems I don’t want to face.
This is true. Loneliness, mental and physical trauma, or abusive relationships can feel more easily dealt with while inebriated. While rehabilitation and medical care will help you not only to get off the drugs but also cope with some of the things that led you to use in the first place, you still find yourself fighting that first step into recovery for this reason. Drinking and using somehow just seems easier. Even though you may lose job after job and relationships after relationships, you continue to want to numb yourself to whatever it is that has hurt you. The important thing to realize, though, is that whatever is hurting you will never stop until you address it head-on; drugs and alcohol are not the cure.
4. I am going to start tomorrow.
Like starting a new exercise program, so many of us say this and mean it. We tell ourselves that we are going to start fresh tomorrow and not use, drink or whatever it is that we are abusing. Just one more day is all we need, one more high and we will start taking it all seriously and quit. However, when tomorrow comes, there will always be something else that gives us reason to do it again. This could be anything from self-hatred, self-doubt, the need for acceptance, or just plain addiction.
5. Sobriety is boring.
Think sobriety is boring? That is a big mistake. Sitting with yourself with an active and thinking sober brain is very different for someone who uses every day. Sometimes, silence can be overwhelming. Those who are addicted tend to get high and drunk in order to not pay attention to or take care of themselves. They would rather block out who they really are or might become. Since they never got the opportunity to truly discover themselves, hiding out like this is easier. However, one of the biggest joys of being sober is finding out who you really are, and that is nothing short of exhilarating.
There are so many excuses you can tell yourself and others in order to stay stuck. That’s always going to be the case until you just make the decision to stop.