Last updated: 05/6/2019
Author: Addictions.com Medical Review
Reading Time: 3 minutes
I didn’t realize I’d become an addict until it was too late, and still, I ignored the signs. The only reason I was able to recover was because I became desperate enough to seek help. Truth be told, I wish I had chosen recovery a long time ago.
If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction, it is better to find professional help sooner rather than later.
I Didn’t Think I Needed Help
When I started using drugs, all I thought about was how good it felt and how nice it was to not worry about my responsibilities for a few hours. I didn’t realize the way it was changing me. I started acting differently, forgetting to do things I said I would or making excuses to use instead of going to work or picking up my kids from school.
Whenever someone brought up the fact that my substance abuse was causing issues, I would get angry. I would tell them my job was stressful and I needed a release or that I was able to function in my life even though I was using. I didn’t listen because I didn’t want to. I felt like I had everything completely under control, even though it was my desire to use drugs that was really controlling me.
My Rock Bottom
A lot of addicts talk about hitting rock bottom, but mine was different. I didn’t get arrested or wake up one day without knowing where I was. Instead, my wife came to me and told me she wanted me to get help. I started to say I didn’t need it like I had a thousand times before. But she told me she didn’t care.
“You are using every day now, and I’m worried about the kids. They never see you, and I can’t count on you to help me with them. And the worst thing is, because I never know whether you’re high or not, I can’t trust you with them.”
That’s when it really sank in: my wife was going to leave me and I wouldn’t be able to see her or my kids again if I didn’t stop using drugs. That was my rock bottom.
Desperation Was My Savior
I love my family so much, but I didn’t even want to acknowledge how my substance abuse was hurting them. When I finally realized how much pain it was causing my wife and children, I promised to make a change. I was desperate not to lose them, and through that desperation, I was able to find my salvation.
My wife helped me find a rehab center where I could work on my recovery and still be able to see her and my family. I was desperate to show her I could change, and because of the doctors and nurses who helped me during rehab, I was able to. I used my motivation to stay close to my family as a way to fight my cravings, and in therapy, my doctor taught me how to make that motivation stronger and how to hold onto it.
The only reason I was able to recover from addiction is because I experienced the kind of fear and desperation I wouldn’t wish on anyone else. I never want to think again that I might lose my loved ones because of my substance abuse, and because of that, I know I won’t make the same mistake today. I also know, because I chose recovery over addiction, I am healthier, happier, and more able to provide a good life for myself and my family.