BY: Marc McMahon
I stumbled across this post on my Facebook page it was a memory from years ago and it struck me as odd the way I have struggled with addiction. This was 6 years ago but it is also much like the present in some ways. Anyway here is some advice I gave my friend about life, and our use, and how I handle it In my life. How I have been able to come to terms and forgive myself for most of the crap I did in my addiction. How I have learned that I really am not a piece of shit just not a very good person when in the midst of my addiction.
My friend was quite depressed and I feared it had been going on to long and that he was about to end up suicidal if he kept on his current path. I told him what had helped me Come to terms with the things I have done, how I cope. It doesn't ever make the wrong behavior right, but it will help you sometimes see the bigger picture so you don't end up like I once did. Wanting to commit suicide for the shitty things you do or have done as an addict in active addiction.
I went on to tell him that I learned we need not be quite so hard on ourselves all of the time for constantly screwing up while getting high. How we weren't necessarily in complete control of ourselves and influenced much if not entirely by what our addiction wanted us to do. And that if your a real addict like I was the name of the game was get high at all costs, period. So we lie, cheat, steal, beg, borrow, you name it in order to get the next high. But when we get sober we don't act like that so if that's the case I'm really not a bad person I start to think.
So I tell people to be gentle with themselves and give themselves a chance to grow, heal, and understand what it is they are going through. To let them know that although they may have done bad things that they weren't doing them because they are bad people, but because they have a bad habit. And once that habits gone the behavior stops.
I try and get them to believe that, to make amends to those they have wronged if able to and then move on clean and sober without the bad behavior lurking around every corner. To a place where they can enjoy happiness and this new found freedom. The place we learn to walk with honesty and some integrity.
When we're not honest with ourselves we set ourselves up for a very hard time and that sets us up to hurt others, wanting to or not. Brutal honesty with self is the beginning of wisdom. Nine times out of ten I think we know what we're going to do before we do it whether we like to admit it or not. Take me for example I love my son, but I don't see my son enough. I miss my son, I told him when I get money today maybe I would call him, I should go see my son, I want to see my son. But how about a quick reality check for me, ready for it?
I'm a mother fucking drug addict who's heart wants to see his son but who just got money and is gonna get dope and get loaded like I do most nights and only message my son like this on here. That's the fact, should I go yes, should I be in a program trying to quit so I can be a better dad yes, does it hurt me yes, does it hurt him and my family yes, am I going to change it, ????? Honestly, not today! Tomorrow maybe but I won't make plans or lie to myself that tomorrow will be any different because I only have today and today has enough trouble of its own the bible says.
I can want to change and may change in the future but I'm 99% sure that won't be today. As far as my son goes I think it hurts him more believing I'm going to change and never seeing it than it does to accept that I love him with all my being and struggle with the hold that drugs and alcohol have had on me. Then he knows I want to see him, he knows I love him, and am ok but his hearts not broken completely when I don't show up when I say I am or don't do what I promise.
Is this attitude right? I don't know, is it wrong? I do not know. Is it my reality? Sadly I must say yes and on the daily and regardless of what others think, feel, or say it doesn't change it. But if you can do some of what I mentioned above and give yourself enough breathing room to grow I think then your a step closer to change than say you may have been before.
All I know is odds are there's a lot of things about you that you want to change, that will change, but on there time. All you can do is manage them to the best of your ability. If your addiction is anything like mine there's going to be collateral damage to. You just need to do your best to keep it to a minimum but accept that people are going to probably get hurt along the way due to the selfishness of our disease. Don't get me wrong here this is not an excuse to stop trying to change but hopefully more of a reason why you should.
Now if You have chosen to live the life of a drug addict then one must learn to deal with all of this, accept it. You have to be ok with it and know your not a bad person because of it! Because the person we are in our addiction is not the best version of our self, that comes when we are sober I think. Have you ever heard the phrase?
"I may not be what I want to be, I may not be what I could be, but thank God I'm not what I used to be"
That is exactly how I see it today. All though still struggling with my sobriety at times I thank God I am not the homeless, thieving, under the bridge living dope fiend that I was for so many years. Complete sobriety is my goal and I will get it back soon enough I think but I thought I might share my journey through this it helps keep me sane I think and who knows might even help somebody in some way 🙂 Thank you all I am sending much love. Stay blessed, my friends.
About The Author: Marc is a 51-year-old Author, Speaker, and Soldier in a war to loosen the grasp that Substance Abuse has on our society. He is a Father, Son, and friend to all those seeking refuge from this incorrigible disease. Marc resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest where he enjoys, writing, hiking, and kicking the disease of addiction in the teeth, every chance he gets. As Marc always likes to say, “be blessed, my friends!”