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Do You Believe Someone Who Says They'll "Slowly Cut Back"?

Discussion in 'Questions About Treatment' started by bluedressed, Jan 24, 2015.

  1. Steve Dawson

    Steve Dawson Community Champion

    'Cutting back' is just procrastination if a person is addicted to something. If they could use the substance in moderation then they would have been unlikely to have become addicted to it in the first place. Alcohol and nicoteen are both drugs where complete non-usage is the only real option. Theres a saying I say to people who try to get me to drink now-a-days - 'One is one too many, ten is never enough'. I'd love a beer sometimes, but I know where it will lead, stopping totally is the only real answer.
  2. pspzombie

    pspzombie Member

    I can only speak about my own experience(s). Any time I told someone that I was going to "cut back" it was really code for "Leave me alone - I love drinking - and I don't want to quit." I tried every possible method to NOT give up alcohol. My problem with the "cutting back" technique is that if I was able to cut back a few times, I would tell myself - see you are not an alcoholic and then the next thing you know I would be drinking as much as I ever was. For me it just never worked. There is also a bottom line - when I drink bad things happen to me (legally, medically, and financially). When I finally decided enough was enough I took the necessary action. Fast forward a bit. March 8th, 2016 I will be celebrating my 15th anniversary of being sober one day at a time.
  3. Nergaahl

    Nergaahl Community Champion

    No, I don't believe people who say they will "slowly cut back" anymore. I was there, I tried it as well but no results. In the end all I did was fooling myself that I was healthier, but still being addicted. I think cold turkey it the only effective method, at least it was for me.
  4. doatk22

    doatk22 Community Champion

    I think it depends. If they're truly serious about getting clean and they're on something really bad, then they should cut back slowly so they don't go through terrible withdrawals. But if they're still stuck in their addiction and have no desire to quit, then they're probably just giving excuses.
  5. BayouBilly

    BayouBilly Member

    The propensity to relapse after making that final step off the plateau is much greater than someone who outright quits on the spot. Weaning is never an easy this, when it comes to substance abuse. Our emotions drive us to elevate the amount we use, which eventually turns into perpetual relapse. Cutting back and going back are almost interchangeable.
  6. SLTE

    SLTE Community Champion

    This is more or less my opinion on the subject. It's a matter of personality. I can totally see 'cutting back' as an excuse not to stop period, but not everybody is the same, even when it comes to addictions. Some people need the gradual stepping-back process, because their addiction is, in a twisted way, a source of comfort. Strip that away abruptly and you might inflict more damage than do good.

    This isn't true of everybody, of course. But I think it's better to at least give a person a chance to make a gradual, measurable impact on their life by cutting back, rather than assuming that not immediately going cold turkey on an addiction is tantamount to an excuse.
  7. Adrianna

    Adrianna Community Champion

    Well I think it is a great idea for someone. If it is someone that you know, you should believe them. Give them some support. Negative feed back or thinking they won't do it is not something that will help them. So yes I do believe someone would eventually stop if they started to cut back. Cold turkey is not for everyone.
  8. Ali16

    Ali16 Senior Contributor

    I don't believe it at all. I've heard it too many times from my mom who smokes. She never manages to do it. I feel that people who say that are just trying to placate people.
  9. Damien Lee

    Damien Lee Community Champion

    I believe that many people are sincere when they say this. Unfortunately, they seldom grasp the hard work and dedication it takes to actually quit. Perhaps, they feel that if they simply have one less cigarette or one less drink the following day, that they will eventually cure themselves from their addiction. They don't realize that this is not enough, it will be all too easy for them to fall back on their bad habits even after they've made some progress.
    Rainman likes this.
  10. L_B

    L_B Community Champion

    I believed it for years and he would cut back for a week or two and then it would get worse. Every time he messed up and things got out of hand he would tell me he would cut back. I would stand be side him believing him and then the next outburst would happen. I pushed all family and friends away because they didn't approve of his behaviour. I can't even have my family together on holidays because of his drinking. I never know when he is going to go into a fit of rage. I can't let others see that side of him so I lived it alone. It is a scary situation to be with somebody who is out of control. Not knowing what is going to happen next.
  11. jwmann2

    jwmann2 Member

    No way. "Moderation" is what got them there to begin with. Think about it. Addictions don't just happen overnight. Addiction is a disease which means recovery is an everyday battle.
  12. Gin0710

    Gin0710 Active Contributor

    I've said that to myself so many times and I never do it. I try cutting back to every other day or once a week, but end up caving in whenever tempted. :(
  13. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    I won't believe any addict who tells me they'll be slowly cutting back. They may be considering fighting their addiction but they haven't really fully made up their minds. This ambivalence is what actually makes it pretty hard for most addicts to overcome their addictions because they still can't, for some reasons, let go.

    There are a few people though who can slowly cut back and actually manage to beat their addictions.
  14. Shenwil

    Shenwil Senior Contributor

    If they are truly addicted then there is no way they can cut back. They can try but it will never work. And by trying to cut back they are denying that they are addicted to the substance. They need to get completely clean.
  15. Psyduck

    Psyduck Active Contributor

    While they might sound hard to believe, when you're in some kind of addiction, it is impossible to stop it immediately. It does take time and the key to recover, is to gradually come out of it. Some of the might be bluffing but some might also be sincere when they say they're slowly cutting back.
  16. rz3300@

    rz3300@ Senior Contributor

    Well, I tend to not believe somebody who says that because that person who said that was myself a couple years back, and I know that I really had no intention of following through with it, despite what I said. It is unfortunate, but in my case it took a rather dramatic event to really shock me into changing my ways. It is really just not as easy as it sounds to try and ween yourself off of a substance and if someone plans on doing so it is best to use a routine from a professional place.
  17. Winterybella

    Winterybella Community Champion

    I still believe a lot of people who say they will cut back mean to but often it doesn't happen as they intend. Then there are those who say it because they can and might just be trying to appease us or dismiss us.
  18. L_B

    L_B Community Champion

    I think when they say it they mean it but once they start drinking they can't stop. They are addicted to it so they have no control. Saying it they really believe they can simply cut back but it isn't that easy. I have heard it so many times that as much as I want to believe him I don't set myself up to bring disappointed.
  19. peetbernadis

    peetbernadis Active Contributor

    It should be easy to start the road to addiction all by yourself, but to do so for recovery, you will need help. For by then the willpower and inner resolve will be all but destroyed.
  20. FuZyOn

    FuZyOn Community Champion

    I believe them, actually. I wasn't able to quit cold turkey but after I started to gradually let go of all my addictions I started to notice that I didn't need them anymore. Of course, it's not as easy as it seems and it might take a while, but there are some people like me who can't quit directly.