Sunday, November 29, 2015

Why Do Recovering Addicts Judge Other Addicts?

You would think that recovering addicts wouldn't judge other recovering addicts, but unfortunately some of them do. 


With all this hating on the 12 step programs lately I thought it was important to point out that we shouldn't be judging other people's recovery choice. I feel like this should be common sense, however it isn't. If someone is making their life better in any way maybe we should just be happy for them. Since the whole law suit about AA causing someone's death, the hate has only escalated. People posted videos explaining how the 12 steps is a cult and all sorts of other nasty comments about the program. This program does great things for many people. People should stop focusing on all the negatives and look at the positives things this program does.

12 step programs were never my thing, but I never had anything against it until a few 12 step followers ganged up on me and told me I wasn't really in recovery and some other bullshit that's not really important here. When I realized only someone completely ignorant could say something like that I knew I shouldn't hold a grudge against the program and every person who follows it because of a few misguided people. Most people in recovery are open minded and accepting, that includes people in the 12 step programs. Don't let the few bad ones taint your view of the rest.

Even when we don't agree with someone's recovery program it doesn't give us the right to judge them and tell them what we think is wrong with their recovery. Judging someone for their recovery choice is like judging them for their choice of therapy. Just because they felt they had a right to judge my recovery doesn't mean I have to judge theirs. We aren't immune from discriminating just because we've been discriminated against ourselves. It might make us less likely to, but we all do it at some point. Whether we do it consciously or not, we need to actively make an effort to recognize our prejudice and challenge it.

recovery

Some of us might think we have the right to decide that one recovery is better than another because of some false sense of entitlement. Overcoming adversity and achieving recovery doesn't give someone anymore say on how others should live their life, or their recovery. This isn't a contest on which recovery path is the best and who gets to decide. We need a variety of recovery options for the variety of different people struggling with addiction. Most of the time people discriminate because of their own insecurities and this isn't something reserved strictly for the recovery community either. Even people in the LGBT community stigmatize bisexuals.

I've been trying to keep my posts positive lately, but I really wanted to address this issue hoping we could become more aware of our own prejudice and hopefully show kindness where we might want to judge. I know it's not always easy, especially when we do it unconsciously. When someone's judging it doesn't really have anything to do with the person their judging but more to do with them. I know it sounds crazy but its really about their insecurities and how they were raised. If this happens to you don't feel bad, even I get caught up in the nonsense.


Join our Recovery Community and never miss a post again. 
Yours truly,
Chelsie Charmed

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Forgive Yourself for Being an Addict

Recovering Addict Forgiveness

Don't you think it's about time you forgive yourself for being an addict?

The sooner you forgive yourself the better off you'll be. I've met many recovering addicts, like me, who can't seem to forgive themselves for being an addict, even after years in recovery. We become so use to carrying this guilt around that sometimes we don't even know how much it's really affecting our lives. It affects things like our self-worth and what we believe we deserve. Consequently, we pass up many amazing opportunities because we don't think we deserved them. In the end, it keeps us from making the most out of life.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Find Out How Dangerous Beliefs Can Hinder Your Recovery

Can you imagine how difficult it would be to achieve something if you didn't believe you could. 

Quote

Sounds crazy right. How are you suppose to keep trying every day if you don't think it will get you anywhere. How would you stay motivated in the face of adversity if you don't believe it will work out. What's the point, you're just wasting your time. Right? Well to be honest, if you don't believe in your recovery you probably are wasting your time. 

Recovery doesn't just happen by accident.


The key to success in anything starts with the belief you can succeed, anything else is pure luck. I'm not saying if you have doubts you're doomed to fail. Everyone has doubts, it's whether you decide to give in to those doubts or face them and say I CAN DO THIS. When faced with doubts we can either talk ourselves out of going after our goals or we can give ourselves a pep talk. You might not think you can do it at first, but remind yourself of what you've already accomplished.

People just like you succeed every day and so can you. Believing you can achieve recovery will motivate you to keep trying after a relapse and when things get difficult. If you've been having troubles staying in recovery, instead of thinking I can't do this try changing that with I haven't been able to YET, but I will. You can use self-fulfilling prophecies to your advantage or to your demise. It's up to you.

If you choose to believe you can do something your thinking and behavior becomes aligned with that belief. If you believe you can do something you start acting like you can. People who choose to believe are more likely to persevere when their goals get challenging. You find a way to make it happen because you're confident it can happen.

Quote


People are making recovery so much more difficult for themselves when they choose to believe they can't stay drug-free or have a happy life in recovery. They're setting themselves up for failure before they even start. After all our mistakes and bad decisions, it's not always easy to believe we can achieve a happy life in recovery. If we believe history has any indication on our future it's easy to think we'll fail, but it doesn't have to be like that.

Your journey to a happy life in recovery will be filled with what might at first glance appear as failures, but that's not really what they are. They're much-needed lessons. If you learned something from the experience it can't be a complete failure. Mistakes are often the best teachers and the lessons they teach you will not only help you achieve this goal but will help you achieve other goals throughout your life.

Choose to believe in yourself. Just because you haven't been able to do something so far doesn't mean you won't be able to eventually. Visualize your life the way you want it, like it's already happening right now. What would you be doing? What would it look like? What would it feel like? Know you'll have a happy life in recovery and you will. Not by magic, but because belief changes our perspective and actions in such a way that's conductive to achieving our goals.

Life is all about learning and most endeavors have a learning curve. Skills like happiness are cultivated over time and effort. When you believe in something you find a way to make it happen because you don't give up until you find a way. Believing you can achieve something leads to strategizing, seeking out solutions and hard work. People achieve incredible things every day because they believe they can and you can be one of them if you want to be.


Join our Recovery Community and never miss a post again. subscribe here 

Yours truly, 

Chelsie Charmed


PS. Do you think the power of belief is important in recovery? 
      Let me know in the comments.



Sunday, November 08, 2015

Why People Should Date Recovering Addicts

quote: recovering addict are compassionate

Dating a recovering addict is a personal decision, but if you're thinking about dating one stick around. You'll probably want to after you learn the great qualities recovering addicts possess. If being a recovering addict makes you feel like you don't have as much to offer in a relationship read on, you need to hear this. I know the stigma often makes it difficult to date in recovery, but you're a great catch no matter what other people's preconceived notions are.

I Would Rather Date a Recovering Addict (even if they might relapse)

Let me explain.

The majority of recovering addicts have the qualities that are important to me, so it's easier to find someone I'll hit it off with when I'm dating a recovering addict. I've dated regular people of course, but it never developed into anything serious because there was always a part of me they couldn't understand. Only people who have been through addiction know the strength needed to overcome addiction. That's why recovering addicts are so compassionate. They understand their partner's struggles.

Sunday, November 01, 2015

How You Can Use Your Relapse to Stay in Recovery

Addict Quote

I want people to know that a relapse doesn't mean failure. Recovery time has been advertised as one of the most important thing in recovery, but it isn't. Whats important is never giving up and being happy. 

It's not uncommon to feel like giving up after losing all your recovery time, but what I've learned after all this time is each relapse was fundamental to my success in recovery. Its understandable to feel like you failed if you relapse, but if you learned anything at all, it wasnt a failure.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

5 Simple Tips to Help Recovering Addicts Deal With Social Anxiety

Anxiety in Recovering Addicts

Is Social Anxiety keeping you from the life you want?

Most people have dealt with social anxiety at some point in their lives. Public speaking is a great example. Have you ever had a presentation that made you so anxious that you could feel your heart beating out of your chest and feel your mouth get dryer by the second. I think we all have.

Being a college student I've had to do my fair share of presentations in the last couple years. The anxiety gets so bad that it gives me physical symptoms, and it takes me an enormous amount of effort not to talk a million miles an hour. I wish I could tell you the practice has taken away my anxiety, but its hasn't. It's gotten a bit easier, but mostly I've just gotten better at public speaking and dealing with my anxiety.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Why Are So Many Recovering Addicts Suffering From Social Anxiety?

Is it Introversion Or Are We Suffering From Social Anxiety?

Introvert Recovering Addict

I think being an introvert makes it even harder to figure out if I suffer from social anxiety, especially if it isn't severe. Since being in recovery, I've had a hard time committing to social gatherings and I avoid talking on the phone like my life depends on it. However, I still enjoy hanging out with a few friends once in a while.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Are You Avoiding What You Really Want?

Are you settling for less than what you truly want?

Dream Quote

You'll never get what you want if you don't first figure out what you want.

I don't mean the small stuff or in the moment instant gratification stuff. I mean what we want out of life, our jobs, our relationships and what we want from ourselves. Like when I finally realized I wanted a successful career and a better future I knew I would have to quit drugs.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

5 Reasons Addicts Leave Treatment Early – And How to Prevent It


It is common for addiction patients to leave the rehab program without completing it. In order to live a healthy and happy lifestyle it is important that the patient is able to go through the entire treatment process and is able to continue to abstain from drug abuse after the completion of rehab process.

Reluctance

The patient could be resistant to go to rehab in the first place and may fail to achieve the desired result out of the rehab program if they lack motivation and drive to become healthy.

Solution: It is important to understand that the patient might be experiencing emotional turbulence and may feel that they would be isolated at the rehab center. The individual must be taken into confidence that all the changes are temporary and once the treatment is well on course, he will recover to a healthier life.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

How to Cope With Devastating News Without Relapsing

When HepC Turns into Liver Cirrhosis Quote

When I fell in love with a Hep C patient I knew the risk I was taking, but somehow it still wasn't enough to prepare me for the bad news I received last week. My fiance caught Hep C from a blood transfusion for his hemophilia at 10 years old and he's been living with it for 22 years now. We knew liver cirrhosis was a possibility, but we never imagined that it would happen so soon.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

10 Reasons Why Harm Reduction is Better Than Forced Abstinence

Harm reduction quote

Harm Reduction: The Anti-War on Drugs

If you think about it, harm reduction does everything the war on drug does not. It doesn't treat addicts like criminals and incarcerate them, instead it saves lives and promotes an empathetic view of addicts which creates a better quality of life. Harm reduction programs provide a discrimination-free environment that doesn't force abstinence. Some examples of the harm reduction programs are:

Sunday, September 13, 2015

5 Simple Tips on How to be Happy in Recovery

Happiness Quote

Over my 7 years in Recovery I've had many ups and downs. Like everything in our lives, nothing is good, easy or happy all of the time. That would just be weird and not real at all. In Recovery we get better at coping with the struggles and stress in our daily lives because if we don't, a relapse will surely follow. Recovery gets easier with time because we get wiser and stronger with each mistake and struggle we overcome. 

Sunday, September 06, 2015

11 Amazing Reasons Why Recovery Month is Important to Me

addiction recovery quote

In the spirit of Recovery Month I decided to dedicate my first September post to why Recovery is important to me.

Recovery is very personal and unique to each persons individual path. There are so many different ways to achieve recovery its difficult to put it all in one box. However, most recovery journeys begin with the desire for a better life and a recovery plan designed to meet our individual needs.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

The Difference You Need to Know Between Addiction & Dependence

Addiction Quote Dependence

Physical dependence and addiction aren't the same.

Addiction can occur without physical dependence. For example, cocaine or methamphetamine both have little outwardly apparent withdrawal syndrome but addiction to either can devastate lives. Addictions to gambling, sex or the internet also have no physical dependence.

Physical dependence can also occur without addiction. It's common for most chronic pain patients who are able to take their opioid medication as prescribed for pain but don't develop the uncontrollable compulsion and loss of control. A desire to avoid withdrawal is not addiction.



Tuesday, August 25, 2015

3 Things You Should Consider Before Giving up On an Addict

Cutting off an Addict isn't Always the Best Way to Help them Reach Recovery.

Love and Support Quote


Shocking! I know right, many of us have been told that enabling an addict and not cutting them off prevents them from reaching rock bottom and finally deciding they want to quit. However, I was able to get to a place where I decided I had enough while still having my mom's love and support. When my mother tried cutting me off my addiction got  worse. I know most parents love their children but not all children know there parents love them. Its not always easy convincing us we are loved because we often dont love ourselves but once we believe we our loved and supported no matter what the path to recovery becomes easier to envision. 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Why Only Some People Get Addicted?

Addiction Quote

Have you ever wondered why you got addicted from experimenting with drugs while some of your friends didn't?

No they're NOT weak. According to a new study we finally have the answer we've all been waiting for and everything we thought we knew about addiction is wrong.

For as long as I can remember we've believed that people can get addicted after using only once and consequently abstinence was the only way to prevent getting addicted. The experiment that supported this theory was the one where a rat was put in a cage alone with a water bottle and a drugged water bottle and almost always became obsessed with the drugged water until it killed itself. However, today there's a lot of evidence against this. The  obvious one for me is that not everyone who is prescribed painkillers gets addicted.

Sunday, August 09, 2015

5 Great Ways Pets Can Help With Addiction Recovery

Quote Animals and Addiction

Did you know owning a pet can help with Addiction Recovery?

Around the time I decided I wanted to quit using, I saw an ad giving away free lab/huskie puppies. I usually don't read the newspaper but that day I was bored at my grandmother's house and decided to look at the newspaper when I came across the ad giving away free puppies. Right away I knew I wanted a dog, although at the time I had no idea how significant a role she would have in my recovery. They can do great things for someone in addiction recovery and it might just be that little bit of extra help that keeps them on the path to recovery.


However, I can't stress how important it is to be absolutely sure you can take care of them forever. It's very hard on a dog to get rehomed and they do not deserve to be neglected. I'd suggest adopting with someone who can take over if anything should happen. Whether it be a parent or a significant other make sure they're responsible and stable. Other great options are volunteering at a shelter, fostering for a shelter, or babysitting a friends dog. At least this way you can take care of a dog before you decide if its the right decision for you. There's also plenty of different pets to choose from.

Animals in Recovery
Maggie opening her Christmas gift

 The 5 ways my dog Maggie helped with my addiction recovery:


1. My dog eased my stress and anxiety

Spending time with an animal has shown to reduce stress. This is important to recovery because stress and anxiety are some of the most common triggers that lead to using. Petting Maggie helped my body release tension which eased that feeling of pressure that stress can have. It feels similar to meditation in some ways. I became more relaxed and I was able to think more clearly. 



2. My dog taught me responsibility

Pets depend on us for their survival. If we don't feed them they won't eat. There's a strong bond that forms when we are responsible for someone's survival. Being responsible for Maggies survival brought out strength in me I didn't know we had. I had to think about someone else besides myself and budget money for her food every month.



3. My dog helped me keep a routine


Stability and some kind of routine is important in recovery. It helps create a sense of safety and helps reduce stress. If I didn't take her out to do her business she would do it in the house so I had to have some kind of routine with her as to when I took her out. I wouldn't have been able to train her not to go in the house if I didn't take her out regularly and I couldn't just leave for long periods at a time without her.


Pets in Recovery Quote
4. My dog gave me unconditional love

Animals don't judge or discriminate. They don't care that you were an addict or that you did things you're ashamed of in the past. They don't care how you look or if you're poor all they want is your attention and some food. They will always be happy to see you. Unconditional love like that helped heal things I didn't even know were broken. It helped me start loving myself again.

5. My dog gave me companionship 

Addiction can sometimes make us feel alone, like no one understands us. It was difficult to open up to people but not my dog. She was always there for me. Never too busy for a cuddle or to listen to me talked. She helped me get out of the house and go on walks. She helped me have fun and enjoy the smaller things around me. She was a great dog and I miss her so much.


Animals in Recovery Quote

Yours truly,
Charmed


Sunday, August 02, 2015

How I Became an Addict


I believe it started when my parents separated. Being such a daddy’s girl back then, it really shook me up when he wasn’t in my life as much. My mom moved me and my brother five hours away and I felt like my whole world came crashing down. Angry at my mom I started rebelling for the first time. I was around 11 when I started not listening to anyone and getting angry easily. No one saw the pain. I was just a spoiled brat with a mother who wasn’t disciplining me enough, which didn’t help because I actually felt the opposite of spoiled. I just had my dad, aka my whole world, taken from me. Seriously I use to follow my dad everywhere. He was the person I admired the most. People kept telling my mom she needed to be stricter with me but it honestly didn’t matter what she did I wasn’t listening. She could ground me or whatever but unless she was ready to physically fight me I wasn't listening. I didn’t do anything to crazy besides stay out late, skip class, smoke cigarettes and hanging out with the wrong people, especially boys.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

How Can a Pregnant Teacher Dismiss Postpartum Struggles

Recovery Quote
Some people just won’t take mental illness seriously! Surprisingly one of those people ended up being my psychology professor. You would think a pregnant psychology professor would be more sympathetic towards a new mom suffering from a mild case of postpartum depression, but no, not even a doctor’s note would make her sympathetic to my situation.

Being a new mom in recovery, I wasn’t going to self-medicate to make myself feel better just to keep up with her demands. What’s even more disturbing is that she continually made things harder for me and graded my work like she had a grudge against me. To this day I can only speculate as to what was going through her mind.

Was she thinking that postpartum depression was only temporary and common so it wasn’t that serious? Was she thinking the Doctor only had my word on how I was feeling and what I was experiencing so it was too subjective for her to take seriously? Maybe she thought I was exaggerating the situation or that I didn’t seem ill so it couldn't be that bad.

I guess some people think postpartum depression and other mental illnesses aren’t real. I don't understand why. Everyone's struggle is real for them. Sometimes we don't even know what's going on in our own minds so how are we supposed to explain it to someone else. I didn’t want to share my past with her and explain to her that I was a recovering addict and that made things all the more difficult for me. I seriously thought a doctor’s note would suffice.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Guest Post: Sober Meaning

Guest Post by Bren Murphy 

Silent, they were spread out, their legs splayed across the seats, eyes closed and the sunlight flashing across their faces as the train bore through the countryside.  The two older ladies across the aisle smiled and kept an eye on them as I let my ear on my shoulder and closed my eyes.  Lunchtime. Asleep on the train.

We have just spent the morning in Sydney, visiting the Museum of Contemporary Art and trying to make sense of the installations and being told not to stand too close or touch the artworks.  And then being reminded again.  And even followed by the staff for a while to make sure we got the message.  But it's like that when you're 6 and 8 and in the big city with your dad.  You just want to reach out and touch.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

A Letter to My Younger Self Before I Was an Addict

strength quote

I was told that writing a letter my younger self  can be a therapeutic way to put things into perspective and move on. Anyone with a tough childhood could probably benefit from this and having dealt with addiction and being a child of an addict I thought this was perfect for me. However, I changed things up a little bit and decided to write a letter to myself before I became an addict.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

How Falling in Love with a Hep C Patient Changed My Life

dont judge quote

I recently had a baby with a wonderful man suffering from hepatitis C, but not too long ago I was one of those people on the outside looking in. There’s a lot of stigma surrounding hep C patients. Even I stigmatized people with hep C without ever realizing it. Depending on the situation, I think most of us probably stigmatize people who are different from us and who don't fit in with the norm. When we don’t belong to a group and we don’t understand something it's easy to make assumptions or agree with society's view.

Even the new student intern who was helping the doctor in the maternity ward was making assumptions and stigmatizing my fiancée. She automatically assumed that I had hep C just because he had it. She didn’t understand why I’d want to have a baby with him if I didn’t. Why would I risk contracting the virus? Although Hepatitis C can be transmitted through sexual intercourse, one study found that the virus is only transmitted 1 out of every 190,000 instances of sexual contact. (healthline.com) She made him feel like he was less than human and acted very clearly like he was tainted.

I wasn’t very different from this student at one point in my life I made the same assumptions. I always saw myself as an open minded and accepting person so when I realized I was stigmatizing Hepatitis C patients I was surprised and more than a little embarrassed. Just like addiction, if we've never been touched by it personally it can be difficult to notice when we stigmatize addicts. Seeing it from this perspective has made me realize that when I get stigmatized for being a recovering addict people aren't always being mean. They're probably just ignorant and without knowing any better believe stereotypes or false information.

dont judge quote

Sometimes we don't know how wrong our assumptions are and how much they negatively impact others until we experience it for ourselves. I was an outsider looking in, but once I made the journey from ignorant to sympathetic I was able to practice that in other situations. Having been stigmatized as an addict I became more compassionate but this situation was different because I got to experience both sides. I went from unknowingly stigmatizing them to noticing the stigma someone I loved was going through. I didn't get to experience both sides of the spectrum with addiction because I had parents who struggled with addiction it was always part of my life. Experiencing the shift between being the outsider stigmatizing people and then being the one stigmatized has open my eyes to my prejudice and has made me challenge my everyday assumptions more than ever.

Considering the society we live in my fiancé is very strong and brave for being so open about his illness. When we met it didn’t take long for him to share how he contracted the virus. Being a hemophiliac he got more blood transfusions than most and when the local Blood Drive failed to screen for hepatitis C, even though they had the technology to do so, thousands of people contracted the virus, including him. I know for a fact it's not easy for him to talk about, nevertheless he chooses to be honest.

The struggles he faces are hard enough on their own without having to deal with the discrimination and stigma. People often assume that the hep c had to of been contracted from doing drugs and sharing needles which is often followed by the belief that the addict is to be blame in some way, therefore, less deserving of sympathy. It shouldn't matter how it happened all that matters is that there just like everyone else. No one wants to have an illness, no one's to blame. We should all be treated the same. I understand the contagious part being an issue but just educate yourself if you're not sure of the risk.

Sincerely,
Charmed

Sunday, July 05, 2015

How to Approach a Sponsor

sponsors wanted

Guest Post by Joy Anderson


Find a Sponsor, Get a Sponsor, Call em!  But what the heck does that really mean??

When embarking on this journey of recovery we hear things like, “ find someone who has what you want.”  It takes a minute to find someone you can take the journey with. This is a really big deal,l what you are about to do - take these steps everyone keeps talking about. And trust me they will save your life.  You will be changing  a lot.  A lot of “stuff” is bound to come up.  Your sponsor needs to be someone you can relate to on some level and someone you trust. Sometimes we don’t always find the right sponsor right away.  

Sunday, June 28, 2015

How My Dad Met My Step Mother Through Sex Work

Sex Work Quote

I was around 10 or 11 years old when I first met her. My dad was having a party with his friends in the basement bar, he had the whole set up with a pool table and a dartboard. Being bored, I kept going downstairs to hang out with everyone, but my dad kept telling me to go back upstairs. The escort they had called finally came up to play cards with me which seemed to have impressed my dad since they started talking a bit more seriously after that. She was a very caring person.

She was just like most of us. She had family and friends, she had loved, gotten her heart broken, worked dead-end jobs and had hardships throughout her life. The only difference is she was escorting to support her 3 kids from an old marriage. Her ex-husband had gotten her into escorting and she knew this was the most money she could make working. No other job with her level of education would offer that. Even with more education chances are she would have still made more prostituting.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Poem: Nowhere Left to Turn

depression quote

I didn't get to post my usual weekly post last week because I've been dealing with some stuff. I can't write when my mind won't cooperate. So since I still haven't gotten around to finishing a post I thought I'd share a poem that I've been working on. This is the rough draft, the poem obviously needs some work but it does explain a little bit about what I've been dealing with. 

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Stop Stigmatizing Recovering Addicts!!

addiction quoteIt makes me extremely sad to see how much discrimination and stigma recovering addicts have to face. We have to overcome stigma all the time when making friends, at the doctor's office, when having a baby, and even more so in the workplace. How can it be so pervasive in a society where no one is left untouched by addiction? 
Each one of us have been addicted to something or care about someone who has. Whether it be an addiction to alcohol, cigarettes, internet, sex, porn, being in love, eating or anything else. How can we lack compassion and understanding as a society when we are all affected by it one way or another? I don't get it, having been addicted has made me very compassionate and understanding.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Why Alcohol in Grocery Stores is a Stupid Idea

alcohol addiction quote

It was announced recently that beer will be sold in grocery stores where I live. I know this might not seem like a big deal because it's common in a lot of places, but I disagree with it. We already have beer stores and liquor stores to purchase alcohol from, so why do we need alcohol in grocery stores. We never have before so it's not like we are missing the convenience of it. We are used to going to a specific store to purchase alcohol.

It's not like our society doesn't have enough problems with alcohol addiction so lets just make alcohol more accessible because going to the beer store is just darn inconvenient. I'm sorry, but if you want to drink I think you should have to get your butt to the beer store.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Why Addicts Hate Cops


cop quoteI'm not a hateful person and logically I know they're just doing their job, but my instincts tell me to avoid cops like the plague. This dislike has to be a common thing among addicts, right? Whether it be buying or selling drugs, stealing or making bad decisions while under the influence, we often break the law when we're addicted. We don't even trust them enough to call them when we need them because we believe we'll be treated like a criminal.

For me, my dislike of police officers continued even after I got clean over 6 ago. I never felt like I could trust cops. My past experiences and the bad publicity they get in the media certainly doesn't help. There's always a new story about cops doing something wrong lately. Just last week I heard a police station worker in my town was fired for having child porn on his work computer. Fucked up, right and that's just one example out of hundreds, if not thousands.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

5 Reasons Why We Should Give Up this Useless War on Drugs

No More Drug War

I already knew the war on drugs was causing more problems than it was fixing, but I never considered legalizing all drugs as the answer to this problem.  Even though I'm still uncomfortable with the idea of legalizing drugs, this video below made a pretty convincing argument as to why it would make more sense to just legalize drugs. The 5 major arguments I got from this video were:

1. If we can't keep drugs out of jails, we certainly can't keep it off the streets. It's a losing battle. Some places deal out executions for drug offenses, and drug use is still happening in those places. It's just not working.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Really! Powdered Alcohol, Has the World Gone Mad!!

Powdered Alcohol

I heard this rumor going around that powdered alcohol might be for sale in the States this summer. Hmmm, hello? Anyone else here think that sounds like a terrible idea. The Palcohol website went so far as to state that the powder could be snorted, but that people shouldn't snort it. Really? Then why even mention that it can be snorted (number 7 on the picture below). I'm on to you Palcohol people, I'm on to you. Updating your website to remove that tid bit of information to look more professional hasn't fooled me, and apparently hasn't fooled a lot of people.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Pregnant Drug Addicts Should be Treated like Criminals


According to Time.com a woman was charged last year after Tennessee lawmakers passed a bill that allows pregnant women to be criminally charged if drug use harms their babies. The bill says a pregnant woman may be prosecuted for an assaultive offense if her child is born addicted or harmed by the narcotic drug. She can even be charged with homicide if her baby dies because of her drug use. Sadly, this isn’t just happening in Tennessee, it’s also happening in Texas . This law needs to be nipped in the butt before it goes any further.

If a woman uses during her pregnancy she is to be charged and treated as a criminal for harming her baby. Yikes!! Now this isn't going to end well. Does anyone else see an increase in "garbage can babies" because I do? Pregnant drug addicts will refuse care for the fear of getting charged which will only cause the baby more harm. What about fetal alcohol syndrome. That doesn’t count? This law is doing nothing to help addicted mothers or their babies, but will probably increase abortion rates. Not to mention that any mother that gives birth to a child with a birth defect will be put under scrutiny.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Are You a Pill Popper? How Many Pills Do You Take?


Pill Addiction
Our culture has instilled in most of us a need to take pills for anything and everything. Things like preventative cold medicine, vitamins, pain relievers, psychotropic drugs and everything in between have become the way of life. There’s a pill for everything. Most of us probably don’t even pay attention to the amount of pills we take in a month, or even in a week. 

Do you take vitamins or preventive cold and flu pills? Do you take something when you get a headache? How many prescriptions do you fill in a year? Do you know the side effects of all the pills you’re taking or which ones have been recalled? Probably not, right? Well don’t feel bad neither did I. It’s just how things are. We take pills not only when we don’t feel well but we even take them to prevent feeling unwell.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Why Are People Trading Coke for Speed


I haven't been in the drug scene for a long time but even I've noticed speed pills growing popularity in my community. People seem to be ditching coke for amphetamines claiming it's cheaper and it last longer. Another major contributing factor to this trend was the bad coke that was being passed around. People eventually got fed up and looked for their high elsewhere.  They believe they know what they're getting when buying a pill because it can't be tampered with as easily as a powdered drug. That kind of thinking is dangerous. 

You can never really know all the ingredients in a pill sold on the streets but some people still believe this type of drug to be safer. If only they knew how similar amphetamine is to crystal meth maybe they wouldn't be so quick to deem it safer than cocaine. The more potent crystal meth breaks down into amphetamine once it gets metabolized in the body. The side effects of using either one of the drugs are dry mouth, dizziness, shakiness, insomnia, rapid heartbeat and can eventually cause mental psychosis.


Despite being less potent, amphetamines still have severe side effects such as becoming hostile, violent, and paranoid. They can also experience fevers, sweating, headaches, blurred vision, chest pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Not to mention amphetamine psychosis which I've recently seen in more than one of my old high school friends. I often wonder if they would have fared better if they would have just stayed with doing coke instead of switching to amphetamines. 

The symptoms of amphetamine psychosis can include hallucinations, paranoia, and bizarre and violent behavior. These symptoms are thought to go away once the person stops using the drug but sadly that isn't always the case. My old high school friends who did quit still experiences the paranoia and the bizarre behavior. Reality seems to be a little blurred for them.

I think it's important to get the severity of these symptoms out there with this growing speed trend things can only get worst. I hope I can share this information with as many people as possible and hopefully raise awareness of the dangers in using speed pills. I've seen the long term effect first hand and they aren't pleasant. Even when they reach sobriety their perceptions are altered and their relationships suffer. 

Let me know in the comments if you've also noticed a rise in amphetamine use or if you know anyone who's suffered long term effects from it.

You can also check out the very personal article I wrote on how I was able to escape addiction even though it runs in my family @ http://www.floridabeachrehab.com/breaking-the-family-cycle-of-addiction#  

Thanks
Charmed

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Where to Turn for Support When A Loved One is Addicted

Author: Alyssa Craig

When it comes to addiction, there is of course a large focus on the addict and helping them to overcome this painful and difficult trial. But you are not the addict. You are their spouse, their partner, their sibling, their parent, or their friend. This addiction has weighed on you heavily since the beginning and has only continued to cause you stress and heartache. Whether or not your loved one is ready to take on the next step of recovery, you can start receiving the help and support you need to persevere. Here are some ways you can attend to your own needs during this turbulent time.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

My Body Wasn't This Messed Up When I Was Doing Drugs

I just had a baby (l know, I know its been 4 months) and my body is falling apart. Besides the few stretch marks on my belly that decided to only appear once I had my baby boy, I'm losing my hair in chunks (you should see the size of the balls of hair blowing around my place), I've lost both pinky toenails and I'm getting cavity after cavity among other health problems. Oh and did I forget to mention I've only lost 8 pounds since having my baby 4 months ago. I know, I know it's my fault. I went on a cookie binge after having the little one which was promptly followed by a cashew binge. Haaa you see I told you, totally my fault I'm not losing the weight. Once an addict always an addict. Well for me anyways, I have an addictive personality and I have a difficult time with moderation when I love something. Although if I put my mind to it kicking my problem with food isn't as bad as it could be. 

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Recovering Addict Mantra: Getting Back up & Chasing the Dream


When you find something that motivates you, grab on to it and don't let it go. It's incredible when life presents us with clear signs to remind us and to set us back on the right path. I feel like the universe is telling me to kick it up a notch.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

How Addiction is Affecting America

Author: Victoria Candland

Addiction is an ever-growing epidemic in the United States. It can destroy relationships, wreak havoc on the economy, and make people miserable and unhealthy. Here are some important facts about addiction in America including the statistics, current drug trends, and the paths we can take toward recovery.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Recovery of the Mind and Soul


When life gets busy and I can barely find time to breath, I tend to forget to keep working on me. I've been working on being happier and at peace by changing my perspective, but it takes constant effort to let go of pride, ego, worry and anxiety. I need to remind myself that I'm in control of my thoughts and I can choose to let them go because they're not who I am.

It's the superficial ego that gets caught up in the daily struggles. I'll feel like I'm drowning and instead of getting stuff done I'll shut down and sleep it off or go into this zombie mode. I can't be the only one who's dealt with this.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Tired of Being Judged Simply For Being a Recovering Addict

Just because I was on drugs over 6 years ago doesn't mean I'm a bad mother and that I need to be checked up on. My baby has everything he could ever need, including all the love and attention he could ever want. So because I did drugs in my teens that gives the right for people to pry into our lives. I think there some serious prejudice going on here.

I was interrogated by some social worker while I was recuperating from a c section in the hospital but that wasn't enough for them they have to come to my door without notice. What the fuck. I don't think it is in any way fair that my teenage past is following me around like that.

They left me a couple messages on my phone that I hadn't gotten around to returning because I've been busy with a baby and school. They assumed right away when I didn't call them back that I was a bad mother and the security of my child might be at risk. Like come on!!


Sunday, January 18, 2015

The Juggling Act of Being a New Mom in Recovery

Being new mom can be difficult enough by itself but add to that recovery and you got a whole new set of challenges. Trying to manage sleep school and taking care of a baby is no small feat, now forget about trying to keep the house clean. I really enjoy being a mom but this juggling act is overwhelming at times.

I've always had low energy and quitting drugs seem to make it worst, not to mention how being on methadone has also messed with my energy levels. If I don't have at least 10 hours of sleep I cant function properly and this is something I've learned to live with and have worked my schedule around. As you can imagine that's not always possible with a little baby to take care of and I often find myself drained, nodding off and feeling guilty that I'm not getting enough school work done or how messy the house is getting.

I'm lucky for the help that I am getting but I still feel like I'm coming up short with my ever growing to do list. I'm getting worried I won't finish my thesis in time and my teacher seems to think the same. I don't like thinking about it because I usually feel like I'm having a panic attack. I only have one class and my thesis left to graduate after being there 5 years so its extremely important to me to finish and graduate. I've worked so hard for it and I'm really trying to make this work. I'm suppose to be getting more help with the baby in the next few weeks so hopefully I can get on top of things. Its just that when I'm not sleeping I'd rather be spending time with little one. :) Baby cuddles are the best

Charmed

Sunday, January 04, 2015

My Birth Experience Being a Recovering Addict on Methadone

I've been so busy with my newborn baby boy that I haven't gotten the chance to post these last few Sundays. Although I thought about it I just couldn't seem to find the time. Any spare time I did get I just wanted to spend catching up on my sleep that I had definitely been lacking since that first week. The first week was the hardest with having to stay at the hospital with my little one, recovering from a c-section, and only getting about 3 hours of sleep a night, and not 3 consecutive hours either. Thankfully the joy and excitement at finally having my baby gave me the adrenaline to keep me going. It took a while for it to sink in, it didn't seem real at first but once I started realizing the magnitude of this new life in my arms I was in complete awe of him (and still am). He was born absolutely perfect.

My OB scheduled me in to get induced after I went overdue for a few reasons but it turned out unsuccessful. A couple hours after breaking my water and giving me the iv drip I still wasn't having any contractions. My OB who had been talking about having to send me for a c-section because of my pelvis being too small approached me again about going for a c-section saying I'd probably end up there anyways and the baby heart rate dropped a few times. I reluctantly agree. After hearing c-section horror stories I was kind of terrified but off I was to the operating room all by myself. I was disappointed they would only let one person in so my mom wasn't able to be there and they only let the father in after they had set me up with the spinal and had me on the operating table. I wasn't very happy about being alone for the spinal because it was one of the worst parts and when they finally started operating the freezing went up to my lungs which made breathing very hard. I started shaking, yawning and tearing up a lot during the whole thing but at least the freezing was good enough that I only felt some tugging and pressure. I'm also disappointed I didn't get to see him being born, at least the father got to stand up over the curtain and see it.


When I was admitted to the hospital they wanted me to give them all my methadone carries which I was very weary about because I didn't completely trust them not to screw up my dose somehow. I was admitted to the hospital for three days to recover from my c-section which really hurt the first week and only became somewhat bearable the second week. The baby however ended up staying at the hospital for a week so I was put in a room with him in the pediatrics department for the rest of the time he was at the hospital. That's when I find the whole experience became very frustrating and exhausting. I felt terrible the entire time thinking it was my fault my baby was there withdrawing from methadone and some nurses weren't pleasant to deal with at all. They just made the whole situation worst. One in particular kept scoring really high on the withdrawal so we had to stay longer for observation when I felt he wasn't as bad as she was making it out to be and it turned out I was right when a few other nurses examined him later on. She also pretty much took the baby out of my hands at one point when I was changing his diaper because he was crying. Being hormonal with no sleep I was really not having it I demanded not to have her as a nurse again and told the doctors exactly what I thought and we were released the next day.

While I was at the hospital it seemed very difficult but having my baby made me smile every day. Since coming home things got so much easier. My baby was finally sleeping longer periods and being in the comfort of my home without nurses hovering over me made all the difference. Looking back at the time in the hospital I still cherish every moment even though it wasn't what I wanted, it was still the birth of my baby and that's pretty freaking special :) I spent his first month off school for the holidays enjoying some baby cuddles and family.

Charmed