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An addiction story I know far too well...

Updated on July 7, 2012
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Lets Play Pretend...

Let's put you in the position of a former druggie from a rich area in the US. For the purpose of this article, please pretend that you are John/Jane Doe, 25 years old from a rich suburban area in New Jersey. You work full-time and don't associate with many of the people that were in your circle of friends from high school and even college because of their odd but common behavior. Many people in your age group have fallen deep into drug use and you are trying to stay away from those types of people, but you find it difficult to stay away when all your friends have at the least some kind of association with drugs. Your town, which happens to be one of the richest towns in America is also a town rich in drug use among young people.

Experimentation...

You did experiment with drugs in high school, and for the first couple of years during college you engaged in drug use, but your main focus in life was on working and finishing school. You were basically a functioning addict, but in your mind, you had control over what you were doing. Your definition of experimenting with drugs was doing it every once in a while, but in large amounts to see how it feels. And you felt good. You liked it. But you knew it was bad for you. You were lucky. You have a great family support system, very loving and always there for you. Somehow after seeing all the dangers of drug use, your family values and religion helped you step out of the drug scene.

Then reality hits...

In the past couple of years, you've heard bad news about a few old friends that overdosed and died from heavy drug use that became a trend in your teen years, a trend that you yourself participated in. You are grateful that you did not fall deep into the drug scene as many of your fellow peers surely did. You've stayed away from drug use for about 3 years now, and have seen a lot through the years in how it can ruin your life. Drug use that starts from adolescent years has many different effects and affects on people. All people experience situations differently and the body reacts differently in all people as well. You've seen many different types of situations, from bad family life and family values, to peer pressure, to bad school values, and you yourself have experiences some of these negative issues. Now, since you did your experimentation does that mean your off the hook as a drug addict? Does that mean your body has recovered from the negativity you fed it in the past? Your "experimentation" lasted for a couple of years. Does that make you a recovering addict?

What do you think?

In your opinion, is John/Jane Doe a former/recovering addict?

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Addiction, what is it?

Addictions. We all have them. Not necessarily drug addiction, but it can be anything. Smoking cigarettes. Soda. Chocolate. Anything. Addiction is a compulsive use of a substance that is known to be harmful by the user. Obviously some addictions are worse than others. But any addiction, ANY addiction, can eventually cause one to lose control over their lives. Addiction is habitual which may mean you engage in use everyday, every week, once a month or even a couple of times a year. If it is consistent and done in large amounts, knowing it is harmful to your body or life, it is considered an addiction. So my question to you is, is John/Jane Doe considered a recovering/former addict? With drug use being so widely used in today's society, and so many people abusing it more than others, is it correct to say that John/Jane Doe's experimentation and secession to drugs considers John/Jane Doe a recovering addict? Let's just say John/Jane Doe doesn't think so, what do you think?

Drug Use is TOO common nowadays

The reason I wrote this article is to get a viewpoint from the general population on what they think a drug addict is. I grew up with so many people doing drugs around me, that they thought they weren't drug addicts and probably still do. In my opinion, and according the the definition of being an addict, if you use drugs consistently, meaning everyday, once a week, once a month or even a couple of times a year, you are a drug user. You have to completely stop to be considered "normal", and a non-drug user. Drugs, even a little bit here and there, messes with your mindset and will change the way you think and feel about things forever after use. You will never be the same again. And the more you use the more it messes with you. I think it's sad how most teens and young adults think of drugs as a normal activity in life. Not all do but a good majority do, and it is not normal and does affect you negatively. Look at all the rich and famous people doing drugs, they have everything they need in life and they are still doing drugs. Why?! Because their mentality is such like John/Jane Doe's as I mentioned above. But that mentality is not a good one, and people need to be informed of the dangers associated with drug use in a more persuasive way, even when occasionally used. I don't think people really understand that when it comes to drug use, you are taking a risk in your life. You can die. I know a couple of people from high school that have passed away from drug use, and although I didn't know them personally when it happened, I did know that they occasionally used as teenagers while we attended high school together. It is so sad to hear of people you saw everyday for years while in school with them, all of a sudden grew up and instead of finishing college or becoming a working adult, they lost themselves to drug use.

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    • EuroNinila profile image
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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Thanks Thundermama, drug use among young people is scary and I worry about my niece as well because she is getting to the pre-teen age soon! That's why it's good to teach kids good values from young a young age!

    • Thundermama profile image

      Catherine Taylor 5 years ago from Canada

      Very interesting hub. I enjoyed the perspective you chose to write it from. With three pre-teen girls I worry about drug use and the choices they will make. Very timely article for me.

    • profile image

      CJ Sledgehammer 5 years ago

      Thank you, EuroNinila, for your response. I was just wondering if people of low character are attracted to wealth or wealth works against a person's moral character once they obtain it?

      I was also wondering why the Bible has virtually nothing good to say about wealthy people, and there does seem to be ethical and moral deficiencies in this group, regardless of time and place. The Bible does say that the love of money is the root of evil, so perhaps this comes into play somehow?

      Keep cool and have a stellar weekend. :0)

      Best wishes, behave, and be well - C.J. Sledgehammer

    • EuroNinila profile image
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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      About the bible thing, it could be and it probably is. Though, I am not very religious, I do believe in god and I am Greek Orthodox but I am not so religious as to go into depth with something like this. Although I did do a research project in college about this and I found that the more religious a family is--which usually falls into the poor or working class--the more those individuals will stay away from drugs. Having family values, any family values, such as religion helps you keep away from drugs. Everyone's different though, obviously there are wealthy people that don't do drugs either.

    • profile image

      CJ Sledgehammer 5 years ago

      Dear EuroNinila:

      First of all, thank you for answering my question. :0)

      Secondly, I wonder if the reasons you offered about why wealthy people so often get into bad things (drugs, etc) is the same reason why the Bible said, "It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of the needle, than it is for a rich man to make it to heaven."

      I must wonder then, never having experienced wealth myself, if there is something intrinsically wrong with being wealthy. It just seems to me that there are certain character traits that seem to be persistent over time and place. Any thoughts?

      May God bless you and yours - C.J. Sledgehammer

    • EuroNinila profile image
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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Middle class and poor people have problems like worrying to pay their bills on time so they focus on that and try to get it done, while wealthier people don't have to worry about problems like this, they have to worry about stupid things and they don't have to take action fast, so they solve their problems by doing drugs. Also, living in a boring town with no family values, or religious values I think affects people negatively and they are more so to do drugs.

    • profile image

      CJ Sledgehammer 5 years ago

      Indeed. But WHY do you think many wealthy people, who have the whole world at their finger-tips, opt for the drug culture? I just want to know if you have any theories on why that is. :0)

      May God grant you peace and joy - C.J. Sledgehammer

    • EuroNinila profile image
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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Thanks CJ, well from my experience from where I previously lived and where I live now I see it alot with wealthy people, especially where I live now. It's sickening. These people have everything in the world yet they still chose to go through the drug route, it's sad. Thanks for reading! :)

    • profile image

      CJ Sledgehammer 5 years ago

      Dear EuroNinila:

      This is a very courageous and informative piece...thank you.

      I would like to ask you, why it is that you think the socially affluent and those who are on top of the food chain, so to speak, fall into this trap. I have my theories, but I want to hear it from you.

      Peace be with you - C.J. Sledgehammer

    • EuroNinila profile image
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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Thank you for reading and commenting Peter, unfortunately I know way too many people, both personal and acquaintances that have fallen into the death trap. Some have gotten through it, some have not made it and some are still struggling, but your right it's never too late to get clean. It is hard though and some feel they cannot do it. I'm sorry you had to go through your illness and pharmaceutical drugs, it's actually quite typical nowadays as well, with doctors prescribing anything and everything they can! A close friend of mine has Chron's disease and he went through a lot with that as well, so I know it's hard. I wish you the best in life for all you probably went through!

    • Peter Geekie profile image

      Peter Geekie 5 years ago from Sittingbourne

      Dear euroninia

      A well thought out and constructed article on a pertinent subject. I never did drugs but had my fill of mind bending pharmaceutical drugs during a recent illness. A time I never want to repeat again and for the life of me cannot understand why anyone would do it for fun!

      It is never too late to get clean and start your life again.

      Thank you and I wish anyone affected a good future life.

      Kind regards Peter