Drug Abuse: Incurable Illness or Hedonistic Choice

I have several friends, including my best friend (formerly an excellent attorney, with a high income, a loving family, and a large number of friends) and a number or relatives who worked hard in college and moved up professionally, only to, in essence, trade all of the fruits of their hard work for a life of depravity, sacrificing everything important to them for an opportunity to score more drugs, requiring higher and higher doses of their drug(s) of choice to reach their “high.” More than one of my friends confiding in me that he had reached the state that he no longer felt high with the massive doses of drugs he was abusing-he now needed that large quantity to feel “normal” ( which I assumed meant avoiding symptoms of withdrawal.

Some of ny relatives/friends simply made the conscious decision to “quit partying” and have now had good jobs for years and apparently no longer “crave” the feeling of being high. I have other friends who hover near the bottom of their potential (professional, social, spiritual and appear to be moving, albeit slowly, toward becoming a productive membe of society again) and just when it seems they have turned the corner, they encounter another relapse, withdraw from (or even pick fights with) those few friends and family members who have not totally lost hope of a successful recovery (however low the odds may be).

As so often happens, I read an article in the excellent digital publication Aeon (which should be required reading by every human on earth) that discussed this very issue in great detail. It is far too well written for me to summarize so I will simply provide the link below:

http://aeon.co/magazine/being-human/hanna-pickard-drug-addiction/?utm_source=Aeon+newsletter&utm_campaign=91b1d1d163-Daily_Newsletter_15_May_20145_15_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_411a82e59d-91b1d1d163-68612141

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