As Scott H. Silverman frequently addresses in his public appearances, the stigma surrounding addiction is a major obstacle to addressing the issues that must be dealt with in order for a person to recover.
Tips to Erase the Stigma of Addiction
The Stigma Factor can create a lasting impact on individuals and their families. The single, most powerful word that hits an individual and family is SHAME. Shame is typically a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a community or group of people have about something. If that “something” surrounds the addiction of alcohol and drugs, the taint exists, even though addiction is identified as a disease.
Know that You and Your Family are Not Alone
Studies show with Substance Use Disorders (SUD), one in three families are experiencing some form of crises with one of their family members. Substance Use Disorders and/or mental health issues, especially in today’s environment, have increased. There is help and hope.
It’s Not Your or The Addicted Individual’s Fault.
Addiction is a disease. No one chooses to self-medicate over time with a conscious decision. It is not a moral failing. IT IS A DISEASE! We all need to stop blaming and we need to get “into a solution.” There is help and hope.
Know that addiction is a disease.
As stated above, if we were talking about diabetes, a disease, there
would be no controversy, no stigma, and we wouldn’t be going to funerals.
We would be getting our loved ones support, help, and treatment. There is
help and hope
Embrace the Belief That There is Hope
How do I know that there is hope? Let’s stop asking ourselves that and instead, know that addiction is a disease and is treatable. Why are we not committing ourselves to getting out loved ones the help and support they need? If your child breaks a leg, there is no debate—you get immediate medical support. There is help and hope.
There is a Path to Recovery and to Get Help
The path to recovery is not complicated. It starts with treatment; a commitment to change; a desire to get and feel better; and a willingness to take suggestions and listen to the experts. To reduce the stigma, you must understand and accept this fact: There is help and hope.
Discover Treatment Possibilities.
Substance Use Disorder treatment is a $40 billion a year industry in the US alone. I believe one size does not fit all, but I know there is a treatment modality and/or experts who can help you and your family. There is help and hope.
Do the ASK: “I need help” or “We need help”
I need help … . These three words, I need help, are three of the toughest words, but when expressed out loud, there is usually someone within hearing distance. Once those words are realized, the path to treatment and recovery can begin.
Who can help the addict in some way? Everyone can. Don’t’ wait to becalled on. Don’t wait for it to go away. It won’t. Take the initiative and seek out what the options are.
If nobody knows you or a loved one needs help, they do not know how to help you or someone in your family. Do the ASK. Once those words are realized, once they are verbalized, the path to treatment and recovery can begin. There is help and hope.