I want to introduce myself to you; I’m your qualifier and the reason you’re here. You believe just because you gave me life and raised me that you know me…but you really don’t. I’d like to use this time to introduce the real me to you so maybe you can gain a better understanding of why I am the way I am, why I do the things I do and why I’ve done some of the things I’ve done. I don’t know if I was born an addict but I do know the first time I got high an addict was born.
First of all, you have to accept the fact that I think differently than you do. Some of this will make sense to you and some of this will sound like excuses that you’ve heard before, but just know that the ones that sound like excuses are based on my fact, my perspective, and the knowledge and experience of the people who are trying to help me get clean. These are people I have placed my trust and faith in because all they want from me is to succeed in my endeavor to stay clean for another day.
please, stand back and trust the process and! It will take time, patience and your love and encouragement.
You have your own goals for me like going to college, getting a job, getting married and finally having kids so you can have grandkids and can show all of your friends their pictures. See these are your goals for me and not necessarily my goals for myself.
Let me try to explain how I see things. See, you think I have a drug problem but I don’t; I have a living problem. You think I use drugs but the reality is that drugs use me. Drugs are for those of us that can’t handle reality, and reality is for people like you that can’t handle their drugs. To me, reality is a nice place to visit but I really don’t like living there. I live in constant fear of letting you down; of not living up to your expectations. I put off doing things out of fear and you call me a procrastinator, but procrastination is just a 5 syllable word for fear.
Drugs make me feel alive and normal, but they also make me paranoid, incoherent and both destructive and pathetically and relentlessly self-destructive. Then I would do unconscionable things in order to feel normal and alive again. Drugs gave me wings and then slowly took away my sky. I looked to drugs for courage and they made me a coward. You say that I had always been a sensitive, perceptive, joyful and exceptionally bright child, but on drugs I became unrecognizable. You should try looking in the mirror and not knowing the reflection looking back at you. I long for the day I am able to look in the mirror and be OK with the person I see looking back.
Like all kids, when I was really young I used to think there was a monster in my closet and under my bed and you would come into my room and reassure me that there wasn’t one by opening the closet and looking under the bed. Now that I am older you can’t convince me of that anymore and it’s not your job to. But since I found drugs I’ve come to the realization that there is a monster; but it’s not in my closet or under the bed but inside of me, and that if I can’t learn to ignore it, it will destroy me.
When I first started getting high it was pleasurable for awhile; I had finally experienced nirvana, and then the euphoria wore off and I began to see the ugly side of my using and I experienced hell. I found the higher the drugs got me the lower they brought me. After awhile I faced 2 choices, either I could suffer the pain of withdrawal or take more drugs. I did the withdrawal thing more times than you’ll ever know. So I am asking you, no actually I’m begging you to let me go! Trust the process. I am here of my own free will. For today, I am still here. I am in recovery. Please understand.. How much I love you. But you need to also begin your journey of recovery. What I am certain of is if you continue to enable my bad behavior, poor choices and do everything that you can to help me continue in my addiction you will bury me.
-Anonymous, *with Edits by Gina Rhodes