'We feel that each individual has to answer the question,
Am I an addict?'
We were constantly searching for the answer
—that person, place or thing that would make everything all right. We lacked the ability to cope with daily living. As our addiction progressed, many of us found ourselves in and out of institutions. These experiences indicated that there was something wrong with our lives. We wanted an easy way out. Some of us thought of suicide. Our attempts were usually feeble and only helped to contribute to our feelings of worthlessness. We were trapped in the illusion of “what if,” “if only” and “just one more time.” When we did seek help, we were only looking for the absence of pain.
We had regained good physical health many times, only to lose it by using again. Our track record shows that it is impossible for us to use successfully. No matter how well we may appear to be in control, using drugs always brings us to our knees. Like other incurable diseases, addiction can be arrested.
We agree that there is nothing shameful about being an addict, provided we accept our dilemma honestly and take positive action.
We are willing to admit without reservation that we are allergic to drugs. Common sense tells us that it would be insane to go back to the source of our allergy. Our experience indicates that medicine cannot cure our illness.
Although physical and mental tolerance play a role, many drugs require no extended period of use to trigger allergic reactions.
Our reaction to drugs is what makes us addicts, not how much we use.
Narcotics Anonymous Basic Text, "Who is an Addict"
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