Wednesday, January 23, 2008

worth reading

from Stanton Peele;
Addiction vs Redemption

The same issues underlie people’s ability to overcome addiction. Americans have always approached addiction spiritually. That is, even as HBO and the National Institute on Drug Abuse trumpet a new age of addiction as brain disease, their narratives are of redemption – of people saved from the brink of hell by God, love, revelation, and personal commitment.

This is why the primary therapy for addiction in the United States is the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, with its submission to a higher power (which courts have ruled represents the Christian divinity) and the need to make amends. If there were some medical cure for addiction, there would be no need for AA, despites its own view of addiction as a disease.

But the 12 steps will always be with us – as will addiction. The paradox of addiction is that it provides people with something they find essential, yet that harms them and that they wish to change. And this is the time of year when we struggle most with this paradox. Christmas and New Year’s are holidays that focus on the need for change, at the same time as they call forth addictions to alcohol, food, and medications for depression.

I wish Mr. Peele would open Rehab facilities throughout the U.S.
His comprehensive approach would benefit thousands of addicts and
alcoholics who just don't respond to the "tried and failed" 12 step method.

ODAT Online Recovery Blogs

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