*This is an older piece but I’m reposting it while I write a few new blogs on how dangerous it is to ignore the moral component of addiction and how the disease model has become a religion of degeneracy. I’m also trying to move away from full time real estate and construction so I can write a new book for parents and spouses about how us becoming addicts is not your fault whatsoever. There is nothing external that can be blamed for who we are and what we do. Any and all external “causes” of addiction are myths, including genetics and other ridiculous notions such as addiction being some evil entity that we caught in the air, or waking up one day and suddenly having a brain disease. We are not born addicts. We voluntarily turn ourselves into them. And there are no such things as “triggers.” That one just makes me laugh. Any addicted person can recover permanently, become free and never again struggle so long as they remove their actual condition, which is insanity, which is achieved through total accountability and spiritual help. Therefore, relapse is NOT part of recovery. That is a marketing slogan designed by treatment centers and peddled by clueless addiction “specialists.” Relapse, needless to say, has nothing to do with recovery. More to come…
Achieving physical sobriety is not an accomplishment, nor is recovery is not a function of time. It is a function of what actions we take and at what frequency we take them. The fact remains that no alcoholic or drug addict can achieve and maintain any quality of recovery without cultivating and obeying his or her conscience. Once the obsession to drink or use has been lifted and willpower restored, relapse becomes a moral failure, especially if you consider the degree of agony and pain we cause others. There is no science that can justify ripping a mother’s heart right out of her chest. Sorry, but that is just the truth as it has been revealed to us through our experience…
I took Steps and recovered and stopped robbing my family blind about 15 years ago. Because of that, my mom was recently able to sell her condo in the communist republic of Cambridge, MA and buy her cozy little dream home out by my family. I brokered the deal, helped her move, contracted work on the house, built her a desk and shelves, put up chandeliers, towel rods and mirrors, drywalled gaping holes left by the overpaid electricians, built a casing for the new service wires, laid a concrete floor to finish the basement and sprayed the entire room with waterproofing after scrubbing every inch of the foundation with a metal brush and Mold-B-Gone. I also rented an auger and a 4′ bit and drilled footings at the end of her driveway for two 8′, 6×6 pressure-treated posts to protect the new condenser for the AC split system we installed.
Why broadcast the above laundry list and ruin any shred of altruism? Because there is no chance in fucking hell I would have even helped my mom do any of that and save her thousands of dollars were I still some self-indulgent, worthless drug addict. Mom would be broke and most likely broken inside after burying me years ago. Sorry, but if you think addicts and alcoholics have the right to whine about their feelings, cry in a pity pot, act like blameless victims and declare that the world owes them something, you are not only clueless, but you should be banned from addiction treatment.
I wrote the italicized paragraph above a few weeks ago, but tonight, after reading a story about a mom who lost a son to his selfish heroin addiction, I thought I’d post it again. There is just no excuse for crushing the spirit of a mother and veiling the rest of her life experience with a thick cloud of bitter, heart-wrenching darkness. I am a father now and I will tell you that the love for my children is boundless and cannot be controlled. I would give everything I have to love them the right way, to ensure their happiness and success in the world. I would kill to protect my children (hence the one thousand rounds of hollow points and buckshot in my safe, lol). I cannot imagine in my wildest dreams what the loss of a child would do to me… what it would do to my heart, my soul, my life.
And here’s the thing… the saddest thing of all: We kill ourselves. The addiction is not some evil force that kills us. There is nothing any of us can conveniently blame, including our genes. Sorry, nope. Regardless of our physical loss of “control” (not choice) while actively using and the insanity of the mental obsession, we kill ourselves. We are not born addicts, we become them. It is our selfishness that kill us. It is the loss of conscience. By using and drinking over and over and over again, the mind and soul deteriorate to the point of moral and spiritual destitution. Fact. And it will happen to anyone who engages in this sort of destructive, indulgent and irresponsible behavior.
Addicts and alcoholics have no excuse not to prevent drug and alcohol addiction from killing us. We have no excuse to give up on life, to give up on ourselves, to not FIGHT for our souls. We have no excuse not to reach out, ask for help, get over our pride, ego, and preoccupation with comfort. We have no excuse not to reach out to God… or to just find a solution that actually works without being doped out on some concoction of mind-numbing meds for the rest of our lives. Really, the key to recovering is just not being a fucking wimp.
Trust me, once an addict begins to get better, and by that I mean once he or she begins to repair themselves spiritually and the conscience returns, never in my life have I seen a person relapse and die, because the truth is if we come to care about the consequences of our actions, there is no amount of suffering, boredom, frustration, depression, anger, angst and selfishness that would have us once again ravage our mom’s poor soul. There is nothing that would have us break mom’s heart so deeply and so permanently. You are basically killing two people. Make that three to include your father. And any siblings you may have as well.
I write the way I do about addiction not to piss people off, although I’m certainly fine with pissing you off. This is addiction we are talking about. Should I hold my tongue and not rip into a sponsee of mine if he was some dumbass who needed that to survive? Why would any of this shit matter outside of the subject of addiction and trying to get people to go get better in order to stop hurting other people? I write this way to get lazy, immature, entitled, indulgent pigs like myself to run with this solution no matter how shitty we feel and then never look back, because once we lose control of our drinking or using, we no longer have the right to use. We no longer have the right to remain sick.
So please… get better so that you do not commit the crime of choking the life out of the woman who gave life to you, the woman who raised you, fed you, stayed up all night with you, sacrificed everything and gave you her time, energy, body, mind, love… the woman who gave you her heart… not to mention your dad who probably loves you more the anything in this world.
Can I be the first person to read your book for families and spouses??!! I am the husband of an alcoholic wife. You have kindly responded to me personally and I read that email at least once a day. I feel that your words ring so true. As I embark on taking my daughter trick or Treating tonight, I can't help but feel the void of the other parent…I try every day to not let my grief spill over and hurt our daughter anymore than she already is. The wife is in detox again, and feeling sad and kinda distant from me. Best not to engage. I have to pull myself out of the spiral too, I can't be a wimp either. I have a life and a child. If you need any personal accounts for your new book, I would be happy to be one. Thank you for this…it is a helpful place for me to come and read and not beat the crap out of myself or feeling guilt.