DO NOT JUDGE ME UNTIL YOU HAVE WALKED IN MY SHOES:
Addiction has no prejudice.
I have known what I called “normal” people addicted to substances that helped them cope with their troubles – but did they? Are addicts not normal? Why is the word “addict” a stigma? Do you not have an addiction?
Chocolates, food, gambling, sex, regular card games, reading, movies, TV shows, etc.
But some of these are dangerous addictions. Addicts can be individuals who have had surgery and needed those painkillers, individuals who have had a loss in their family – a loss of a child will seek solace in alcohol, an individual who cannot cope with life, someone who is suffering from depression feels good by taking a pill, a young lady who is not popular in school, an individual who cannot find a companion, a young girl who cannot get a date and wants to be “cool”.
DO NOT JUDGE!
But now you can walk with me please – it is time to end the silence. When addiction is in your backyard, you try to hide from all who may judge you, judge your child, judge your parenting skills even if one child does not get influenced by drugs and the other does. For many of us, whose child or loved one has suffered the ill effects brought on by the disease of addiction – we go out of our way to say “I hope this never happens to someone you love. For me at this time, if you do not walk the walk, talk the talk or witness first-hand the devastating effects of this deadly disease, then you cannot judge me – you have not walked in my shoes. The disease of addiction is unlike any other disease. It often starts with a first choice. However, what many fail to understand is a duplicitous doctor often starts the disease by saying “Here take these 3 or 4 times a day as needed for pain. Take these 4 times a day for depression or anxiety. You will feel the effects within 3 to 4 days. If you stick with it, you will feel much better. And by the way this medication is very addictive so be careful” Really?? Is there any wonder the pharmaceutical company who manufactures OxyContin made in excess of $14 billion dollars in sales last year? Just think of how many addicts there are from these sales in America! How did this pass the FDA? Did someone get paid off? How did they manage to convince the doctors this was a safe drug to prescribe? What happens when the patients’ prescription run out? The residual effects are worse than the original diagnosis. Now the trusted doctor is a drug dealer and the source has dried up. What happens to the innocent victim? Now they turn to even more dangerous street drugs. They are now addicts and somehow they will find a “dirty doctor” who for a couple of hundred dollars in cash will provide a prescription. How do we catch these “dirty doctors”? The addicts will never give them away even after sobriety in case they have a need in the future. So my dear friends – judge not that which you do not understand. The person you judge may one day be your loved one – your child – your sibling – your spouse or your parent. The stigma that follows their disease may destroy their life, their career, their home and it will take you and everyone in its path down with it!
SO SPEAK OUT AGAINST THE STIGMA! SPEAK OUT AND MAKE YOUR VOICES HEARD! THE LIFE SAVED BY YOUR VOICE MAY BE THAT OF YOUR OWN CHILD OR A PRECIOUS LOVED ONE!
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