In any given city or town in the United States, one can find a 12-Step meeting of recovery. Behind the closed doors, recovering addicts and alcoholics form circles and share their experience, strength and hope with one another. They do so anonymously, without fears of judgement or scrutiny. While everyone’s story is unique in its own way, people in recovery share many similarities with one another. There is hardly a thing that can be shared by one that will shock the other people in the circle.
Those who actively work a program find both comfort and strength through a common understanding that we are all in this together. Individual recovery depends upon working together with others who are trudging the road to a happy destiny—free from the vice-like grip of drugs and alcohol. A loose translation of the South African idea known as Ubuntu is as follows, ‘I am, because of you.’ It would seem that the 12-Steps of recovery have a lot in common with the “human-ness” concept of Ubuntu. And, just as all humans are connected through a universal bond, so too are the people who make a choice every day to better their lives in recovery. Only by helping others recover from substance use disorder, can you keep your own recovery.
Addiction Into The Light
The major reason for the anonymous aspect of 12-Step programs is the stigma which has long accompanied addiction. Verily, most people have little knowledge of the nature of addiction. It is an ignorance that perpetuates the need for anonymity. Even in recovery, addicts and alcoholics can be subject to reproach by the peers. Most people struggle to understand why you can’t drink like the rest, or why you would need to sit in a circle for an hour every day in order to abstain from using mind altering substances.
Fortunately, there are people all over the world who have made it their mission to break the stigma of addiction, with the hope that everyone who needs help will seek it. Many addicts and alcoholics prolong their chemical tenure because they do not want to be seen by others as having a problem that is beyond their control. Those working in the field of addiction know all too well that the longer one puts off recovery, the greater the chances that their disease will cut their life short. It is paramount that those who are active in their addiction find encouragement, not just from friends and family, but from society—to seek help and find recovery.
Join The Voices of Recovery
In September we observe National Recovery Month. It is an important time of the year for everyone working a program and working in the field of addiction medicine. For 27 years, the month has been dedicated to raising awareness about addiction and other forms of debilitating mental health disorders. What’s more, National Recovery Month is about breaking the stigma of addiction, letting people know that recovery is possible and how to achieve it.
The theme this year is, Join the Voices for Recovery: Our Families, Our Stories, Our Recovery! Both people working a program and their families are being encouraged to share their story, with the hope that it will inspire millions of people to seek addiction treatment services. Addiction recovery should not have to exist in the shadows any longer, the stakes are too high. If you would like to share your personal story and successes in order to encourage others, please click here.
At Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat, we offer a full continuum of care including: Acute Medical Detoxification, Rehabilitation, Residential, Partial Hospitalization and Recovery Residences.
Please contact Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat 866.273.0868 to begin the journey of recovery.