Alcoholism is a Responsibility, not an Excuse

With all of the perspectives, resources and easily accessed information in the world of recovery, I firmly believe that a person who is active in addiction recovery owes it to themselves to explore, learn and discover as much as they can.  From the Big Book, to sponsorship, to AA meetings, to the Grapevine, to self help books, to cognitive behavior therapy, the opportunities are endless.

One resource I often turn to is ‘The Fix‘, which pledges ‘addiction and recovery, straight up’, I find numerous perspectives within the world of recovery.  I recently came across an article by Dustin Dillow, titled ‘Ending My Run From Reality: How I Got Sober’ (it’s worth the read).

Dustin offers great insight to the insanity of the mind that comes to be from a life of selfish abuse, the relationships that are damaged, and the shame that goes along with addiction.  He makes connections that, I would assume, most, if not all alcoholics can relate to.  With the primary realization is that no one can make you sober, other than yourself.  It points to understanding your own version of the truth that is your life, and coming to the foundation of recover, acceptance.

But, one thing really stood out to me.  Maybe because I have used this tactic in my own using life.  The fact that, ‘…alcoholism is a disease, and can be used in an alcoholic’s undying search for that next drink.’

How true this rang for me.  I mean, what would you expect, I’m an alcoholic, why wouldn’t I drink?  It becomes what defines you and becomes another thing that an alcoholic can use to rationalize the actions of our fractured life.

As I read this, I looked at it another way.  Being an alcoholic doesn’t need to be an excuse, but rather it’s a responsibility.  The same way a diabetic is responsible for managing their blood sugar levels, I am ultimately responsible for maintaining by addiction.  I have gone past the physical cravings to drink, so now this is my life’s work, my ultimate responsibility.  I can’t write off selfish actions to a symptom of my disease, but I can be motivated that this powerful responsibility falls on my shoulders.  It’s up to me to manage my recovery, and with great responsibility come great reward.

Just as a Shepard is responsible for his flock, I am responsible to find peace, love and reward in moving forward in my program.

Have any thoughts?  Please share below



One Comment Add yours

  1. Dustin D. says:

    Thank you for the kind words. You hit the nail right on the head, the insanity of the disease is just that, its insane. I never knew life could be as it is. I never knew a real life(besides while I was a kid) without drinking, it was in every culture I was associated with, The Marine Corps, restaurant business, and every day life. Until I was ready to stop, I continued. That is the key. You need to be ready to take the path towards sobriety, some people will never be ready and that is a sad fact. Others, and I include myself in this, were so ready that all they wanted was something better, something worth living for. Sobriety made me want to live again, it made me a better father and a better person. I enjoy life and all that it brings, the good and the bad. Keep on going, live in the moment and be grateful for now.


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