Can you still live a fun life without drugs, alcohol or getting “high”? It’s the million dollar question asked by drug addicts and alcoholics. “How do I have fun without being high?”
First, the real question is – are you really having fun while you’re high?
Let’s be honest, a drug addicts is only actually experiencing feelings of euphoria or a “high” for less than half of the time. Most of the time is spent searching, waiting for a drug dealer to text or call and running around in a rat race trying to score. And for what? For maybe a day or two of what’s perceived to be “fun”? Sure, in the beginning, it might have felt good. And an addict may have even enjoyed the rush of seeking after the drug wondering if they were going to get caught. But was it really a good time? The disease of addiction tries to convince us that we are having a good time. But the ultimate result of addiction is slavery and death. How fun is it to be controlled? How fun is it to lose your life or the life of a loved one? Hot much fun is it to serve a master that’s ready to pull the plug on your life at any moment with no remorse?
When an individual starts using drugs, they may feel a tickle in their throat coupled with a warm trailing feeling trickling into their belly. But these feelings don’t last long and for someone who acquires the disease of addiction or an individual with a genetic predisposition to it experiences depleted dopamine levels afterwards that creates sad and depressed feelings. Many addicts who continue onward and don’t seek immediate addiction treatment and recovery wish they could e free form it or have even contemplated committing suicide. Addicts continually let themselves and loved ones down, experience dreadful withdrawals, wish for another’s life that’s free from drug use and addiction. Simply put, most long-term drug addicts and alcoholics are not happy and/or satisfied with their lives
People who’ve been or are addicted are accustomed to instant gratification. “I want what I want and I want it now.”
Addicts may have experienced some initial, powerful pleasure. But inevitably, they end up at the bottom, fighting to feel just a tiny little bit of it. You didn’t reach the highest mountain top, you only imagined you did as you were wallowing around in the mud at the bottom. You didn’t have the best of the best, you had the worst of the worst deceiving you, by telling you it was the best. You haven’t experienced all the pleasure the world has to offer, you touched the pits of hell that entranced you via a mirage of lies, making you believe you had a good time.
Fun therefore, needs to be redefined for an addict. Fun isn’t nodding out turning blue in a gas station bathroom. Fun isn’t throwing up your entire dinner so that the pills will kick in better. Fun isn’t picking your face in the bathroom mirror for hours because you’re convinced you have pimples that aren’t there. Fun isn’t blacking out drunk at a family get together while your mom looks at you in horror. This. Is. Not. Fun.
We have a warped definition of fun in active addiction. Admit it. Be honest with yourself, again.
Defining Real Fun Apart from Drug and Alcohol Addiction and Mind Altering Substances.
Fun is looking at your children laugh and burst with excitement on Christmas morning. Fun is waking up not sick in withdrawals, looking forward to a new day. Fun is spinning on a merry-go-round at the park even though you’re a little old for it. Fun is holding someone who loves you and going four wheeling. Fun is trying something new you didn’t think would be fun. Fun is going for a walk at midnight, completely sober, with a friend and breathing in the cool nights air. Fun is swimming in the ocean, gazing at the magnificence of all God created before you as the sun sets on it. Fun is throwing a football with your brother like you did when you were kids. Fun is trying a new restaurant because you’re feeling adventurous.
It takes time for an addict’s brain to re-wire. So in the beginning, an addict may have to try a little harder to convince hi/her self that they’re having fun. It’s not because what you’re doing isn’t fun, it’s because you haven’t had real fun in a long time. It’s okay to re-learn what we think we know.
Recovery isn’t a cake walk. It takes effort. It takes being conscious of the changes you will experience and rolling with them. It takes a positive perspective and outlook. It takes a lot of guts to walk into the unknown and be vulnerable. But it’s rewarding and guess what, even fun.
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