Whether you’re the addict, or the loved one of an addict, you’ve probably asked this question more times than you can count—why me?
Even if you’re not suffering from the perils of addiction, most everyone, in every path and at every stage of life has at some point or another asked—why me?
When it comes to wondering WHY addiction has impacted your life, there are a number of potential answers or “causes,” but none that will make you immediately have that “ah ha” moment where you suddenly feel better or where you suddenly feel as if you “deserved” the addiction. So WHY?
Why does addiction impact the lives of great people like me? Why does addiction take the lives of so many? And WHY did I become addicted in the first place?
I don’t deserve this. I didn’t do anything to wish this upon myself. So WHY?
Let’s take a look at WHY people, good, well deserving, faithful and solid people, get addicted to drugs or alcohol:
We’re ALL Victims of Addiction
Addiction can affect the lives of anyone who chooses to take a drug or just a sip of alcohol. This doesn’t mean that as soon as you choose to use a substance that you will become immediately addicted—but just like they say in AA, the drink that gets you drunk is the first—it’s because IF you don’t use the drugs or alcohol, you will NEVER become addicted.
Unfortunately, substance use, especially drinking alcohol, is a norm in today’s society. We drink when we go out to bars with friends. We drink at mealtime to share a toast with loved ones. We drink on special occasions—let’s face it, we drink!
For many, these drinks or the occasional use of a prescribed pain medication or the regular use of a prescribed medication will never amount up to an addiction. But for some, that first drink, or that first prescription or that first use of a substance with friends is the one that leads to long term, sustained use, and subsequent addiction.
And more so, what about those of us who DON’T ever take the drink or don’t become addicted, but still suffer at the hands of addiction because our loved ones fall victim to this terrible disease? WHY?
The point is, 1 in 3 people suffer from addiction. If you aren’t the one directly suffering, you likely know someone close to you that is suffering—WHY?
Because addiction is not prejudice. If affects the young and the old, the rich and the poor, the Hispanic and the whites and the blacks and the Indians, the mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, the faithful and the atheists, it doesn’t matter who you are or what you do, there’s a great chance that you either WILL suffer from addiction at some point in life, you ARE suffering from addiction right now or you KNOW someone who’s suffering from addiction and trying to make sense of the “WHY ME” in their life.
Everyone is Different
We’re all very different. We have different beliefs and thought processes. We have different health matters and physical abilities. We have different capacities to learn and to advance in life. And we have different abilities to cope.
For many, addiction is the result of “coping” or at least trying to. It’s very common for a user to begin taking drugs or alcohol as a means of masking or “numbing” the pain of a trauma or situation that is painful to them. But what about those of us who cannot cope with the seemingly simple challenges of life such as moving, or finding a job, or dealing with everyday stress or child rearing or maintaining a relationship?
We’re all different, and for some of us, everyday challenges are too much to bare. Drugs or alcohol take the place of “stress” or “coping” and numb the pain and anxiety—but eventually this “numbing” becomes an act of survival. Eventually, addiction impacts us all in some way.
That drink, that smoke, that single pill that once took all the pain, worry, or discomfort away eventually turns into two drinks, or three smokes or four pills to get the same effect. Tolerance builds, and the risk of addiction begins to deepen. At this point, the WHY me really begins to come up.
It’s likely that you didn’t feel that “Why Me” factor prior to the development of a tolerance to the drugs or alcohol, but as you realize you need more and more, and as you realize that the substances are no longer performing their “duties” of numbing and taking away the internal pain, you begin to worry and wonder—why me?
Lack of Support
There’s a good chance that your addiction began as a result of a clear lack of support. But this doesn’t mean that you didn’t have friends and family that love you and care about you. This doesn’t mean that you didn’t have access to support through self-help groups, medical professionals or others that could have helped you along the way—but chances are, you simply didn’t realize that you NEEDED such support.
Let’s face it, you were coping with your struggles. You were using substances to get by. You were numbing the pain and doing just fine—right?
But WHY ME? Why did addiction now get in my way?
A lack of proper support, and a lack of knowledge of the need for said support can allow addiction to just settle on into the thrones of your life.
Now that it’s present, you need help. You NEED support—but where? From who? And how?
Support Options for Recovery
You have a number of options to aid in your recovery. Addiction may be a factor in almost everyone’s life in one way or another. Addiction may be the leading cause of strife and discomfort in your life RIGHT NOW. But the bottom line is, you have support and there is help available when you’re ready to make a change.
Most likely, a combination of the above will be what it takes to get you past this age old question “Why Me?” and on your way to that “ah ha” moment when you realize, addiction isn’t the end. Addiction doesn’t have to rule your life anymore—you don’t have to have that consistent “Why Me” feeling.
Don’t let addiction take away another second of your life—get on the track to recovery and healing, get ready for the big “ah ha” where you can look back and say—that’s it! That’s why I WAS an addict, and this is why I’m NOT anymore!