Some home truths.1. Addict/Substance Abuser/Druggie/Individual with a substance abuse problem.
2. People from all Social Economic Statuses (SES) groups can suffer from substance abuse issues, not just those from the lower groups.
3. Alcohol is far more detrimental to society than any other drug, including heroin.
4. People with substance abuse problems are not lazy or unmotivated. There's a theory that they are functioning at a higher level of arousal than non-abusing individuals and the substance use stems not just from physiological and direct psychological addiction, but indirect addiction to the rush of securing funding for a fix, the fix itself as well as the resultant pharmacological effects of the drug.
5. People with serious substance abuse problems are not always consumed by their addiction. They may maintain careers, familial relationships and a façade of normality.
6. There is a correlation between drug use and certain types of criminality. Causation has not been determined. Not all drug users are criminals and not all criminals are drug users.
7. Marijuana does not cause schizophrenia. It can exacerbate existing psychotic symptoms. It can bring about significantly earlier onset of the disease (as indicated by research released only a few weeks ago) in those that have an existing pre-disposition to it. (The problem, of course, is knowing whether or not you have this predisposition. Familial existence of mental illness can be indicative, but is not conclusive).
8. People with substance abuse issues are often marginalised. The notion of addiction is a huge part of the media dialogue but very rarely are people who have suffered from addiction given the opportunity to talk openly and without judgement. They are spoken about more than they are spoken to.
9. Substance abuse is not a question of weakness. It is not a question of not being motivated, or not caring about your family. It's not a question of being stubborn or selfish or lazy.
10. There is nothing wrong with relapse. Relapse happens. Again, this is not a sign of weakness. There is always tomorrow.