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Too often addiction treatment programs concentrate almost solely on the eradication of drug use without attacking the reasons the addiction existed in the first place. Simply stopping the use of drugs is not a complete solution to the problems and troubles an addicted person has created.
And because more troubles have sprung up around the addict as a result of using heroin, alcohol, crack or whatever, full recovery has to include not just being able to face life without drugs or drink. It must also include gaining the ability to dig out of the pit of debt, ruined relationships and legal troubles created while stoned or drunk. While on drugs that addict wasn't exactly setting up a future to be proud of, so in a very real sense the recovering addict has to be ready and able to put together an existence which is more in line with the original goals and purposes whatever they may have been.
Strange as it may sound, quitting drugs is often one of the smallest of the problems an addict has. Staying off the drugs is where rehabilitation comes in. Recognizing triggers and avoiding certain people and areas and situations is important. But the strength to actually withstand those temptations and cravings until they can be fully eliminated is where a true drug rehabilitation program can shine.
When an addict quits using drugs or alcohol for a period of time but then falls back and uses again, it occurred because he or she didn't change what needed changing. Switching locations or avoiding former drug buddies can help and are often necessary. But the changes that will make the difference between repeated relapses and keeping confidently on the road to recovery are changes the addict must experience in him or herself.
An increase in capabilities is what is essential for a recovering addict to standardly, time after time refuse to return to drugs or drink. And that is what a truly effective drug rehabilitation program accomplishes in the former addict.
If their ability to survive well and even prosper raises, their likelihood of surviving well and making a good living increases as well. If they had this to begin with, the possibility of their having become dependent on drugs or alcohol would have been extremely low. So the way to fix this is to help the former addict to become that able and dependable person to whom people look up and on whom they rely.
So preparing the former drug user for re-entry into life must include increasing their abilities to function successfully in some viable occupation. And it must be in a reputable and honest line of work.
It's often said that something must have been wrong with the addict before getting hooked on drugs. This can be the truth in many cases. But when someone begins to abuse drugs and a young age, they effectively stop their development in many ways. Learning responsibility, perseverance and choosing ones friends, MANY vital skills which most of us take for granted are gained in the formative years before adulthood.
But if a kid is stoned through this important period, development is halted and you will end up with a 13 year old kid in a 27 year old body, living in Mom's back room, so withdrawn from the world outside for which he is totally unprepared or equipped.
It's folly to think that he or she will be any more prepared after simply getting through the withdrawal period of recovery and then returning to the life they've been living without any fundamental changes.
Choose a program in which the person actually gains abilities needed, where they learn to become honest with themselves and others and emerge ready to face recovery with energy and the spirit of adventure and courage. THEN you'll understand what rehabilitation truly means.