People suffering from alcoholism or drug addiction come to be seen as enigmas by those who are closest to them. This is because substance abusers are such experts at putting up walls and assuming false faces that no one is ever really sure what exactly is going on inside their heads at any given time. Addicts and alcoholics are masters at hiding the truth about what they have been doing and how they have been living, and obfuscation and deceit eventually become like second nature to those who constantly must lie in order to prevent others from discovering the sad truth about their chemical dependency.
Abuse of prescription drugs has been classified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as an epidemic. More people die from an overdose of opioid analgesics (like Vicodin, Oxycontin and Demerol) than from heroin and cocaine combined. The scale of the problem is without question, but the main issue when it comes to protecting people from the dangers of these drugs is that they have legitimate medical uses. How can a drug epidemic be controlled when doctors across the country are professionally required to distribute them on a daily basis?
For the atheist who takes the first step and admits powerlessness over his or her addiction, they face an immediate stumbling block: the second and third steps. "Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity,” and "Made a decision to turn our will and lives over to the care of God…as we understood Him.”
For those attempting to leave a substance abuse problem behind them, the risk of relapse is a very real threat. Nevertheless, it is not something that you can ever really prepare for, because almost everyone who goes into rehab does so with a high level of determination and an absolute conviction that they can and will beat their addiction. So when you start out full of hope and enthusiasm, only to end up back in that terrible pit of despair that you have come to know so well, it can deal a devastating blow to both your self-esteem and your sense of purpose.
Using cocaine, as with other illegal drugs, carries serious risks and consequences. Addiction to cocaine leads to excessive use and potentially severe health effects. Use of cocaine, even just one time, can lead to death. If someone you know and love may be using, know the facts about cocaine so that you can help them in any way possible.
It is very easy for someone who does not struggle with addiction or who has never cared for or loved someone who had a drug addiction to dismiss the idea that addiction is a disease. The myth that becoming or staying addicted to drugs is a choice that people make is pervasive in spite of the research that has shown otherwise. While there will always be detractors in the scientific community, most current research indicates that addiction is a disease that afflicts some people and not others.
The Bible is clear that children are to honor their parents and obey them. But the Bible is also very clear that parents are intended to love, care for, provide for, and teach their children in love. As Ephesians 6:4 instructs, “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”
The only thing worse than experiencing all the losses and hardships addiction will throw in your path firsthand is to watch a close friend or relative experience this. Whether it’s your parent or your best friend, a dear aunt or your little sister, the urge is the same – to do anything in your power to help them kick the habit and get better. The question is: how? Short of throwing yourself upon the tracks, what can a friend do to help someone struggling with addiction? And as a Christian, what is your obligation to your friend and to your faith?
They call us the sandwich generation, as we make it through our week wedging the caretaking of children and parents into our already full work schedules. Caring for an aging parent can be difficult enough when health issues, mental health concerns, or socialization needs can pull a care-giving family member in a myriad of directions, but add a drinking or drug problem into the mix and the situation can become extremely stressful very quickly.
The pressure to be perfect is driving more and more women to amphetamine addiction. Leading the way for this generation’s drug of choice for women seems to be Adderall, a common medicine used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. According to author Brad Lamm, a board-registered interventionist and former addict, this particular drug enables women to experience easy weight loss and focus.