An American Addiction Centers Resource

New to the DrugAbuse.com Forums?Join or

Does a drug addict ever go back to living a normal life?

Discussion in 'General Substance Abuse Discussion' started by richfootfastfate, Jul 2, 2015.

  1. Boyfriend is into drugs and been in and out of jail. He lies and doesn't care about his life. I've tried just about all I can to get him to change. Ever so often he shows signs that it might be possible to get better and well. But even if he does, can he ever get his old life back from before he started drugs?
  2. MyDigitalpoint

    MyDigitalpoint Community Champion

    Hard to tell @richfootfastfate!

    First off, you may want with all your heart and soul to get your boyfriend changing and stop doing drugs, but this isn't enough. He is the one who needs to feel a sincerest wish to change and quit drugs.

    Now, let's assume he makes the decision based on the invaluable fact of having you believing in him and helping as much you can to get him clean and sober.

    Yes, it can be possible, as possible is that he makes a shift to a sober lifestyle... or that he steps back and relapse.

    Again, it's all about him wanting what he may feel is the best option for him, kind of game of chance for you.
  3. Winterybella

    Winterybella Community Champion

    I think getting back an old life is almost never possible, but I am one who believes that addicts do recover and move forward never to return to that way of life. I just know from every thing I have read and seen that it's not usually an easy ride particularly in the early stages but certainly not an impossibility.

    Do what you can to help while safeguarding yourself. Welcome to the forum.
  4. Totalarmordestine

    Totalarmordestine Senior Contributor

    He will probably never be 'normal,' but people are unique. If he changes his ways, then he can be a good person, but will never see things the same way as a person who has a different history. To answer your question, I think he can be a worthwhile person if he chooses to change and gets the support he needs to do so.
    Rosyrain likes this.
  5. thepieeatingjay

    thepieeatingjay Senior Contributor

    I am a recovering addict. I have gone to rehab twice. From a personal point of view life can never be the way it was before I became an addict. I have been off the drug for 11 months now, and even though I'm not using, I Still feel like an addict. Its a tough call about your boyfriend. I have my children, my husband and my church supporting me but still its soo hard. Addiction is a chronic relapsing disease. Those are the facts, you make the choice.
  6. tarverten

    tarverten Senior Contributor

    From experience you can go back to a normal life, but it all depends greatly on if that person wants to change! There have been so many that go to re-hab, jail or loose all they have ever worked for and yet still no changes then again there are others that can flip a switch and see where there life is and could be if they were to get off the drugs and they change. Just give them the benefit of the doubt at first, its a long, hard, struggling process but if that person wants to...then they will and can!
  7. MrsJones

    MrsJones Community Listener Community Listener

    Welcome richfootfastfate. Thank you for sharing such a good question. I agree with Winterbella's response. Going back to an old life is almost never possible. There are so many things to take into account. Take for instance the age when one started using. If a young age, then their life really wasn't yet established; if at a young adult, say college age, their goals at that time may be different once in recovery.

    I say this because I saw my husband's life change right before my eyes when he began his recovery. He tried to continue in a career he had when we first met but found it very difficult because of his past. He tried several different areas of employment but either got let go or quit. Through all of this he realized and accepted that he couldn't go back to the life he once knew.
  8. blastguardgear

    blastguardgear Senior Contributor

    It is just like any other addiction. YES, you CAN go back to living a normal life, and a GREAT life. You can get your family back, have them tell you they love you & are glad they have you & your love again. Get a good job & good friends etc. BUT, the addict has to want it more than anything. Has to get straight & want to stay straight, join a group & work the program. I mean realize that it's life or death eventually, because that's what it's going to end up being. Be it drugs, alcohol or any other life threatening addiction. Until they reach their bottom, NOTHING/NO ONE is going to be able to do a thing about it. Only THEY can do it. Honestly, don't be around to have your heart broken time after time again. Why would you subject yourself to just getting hurt when you have to be the strong one & remove yourself from it. YOU are NOT going to change him, no matter what you say, how hard you want it, HE has to do it himself. You take control of YOUR life & go for a better life for yourself. One where you can be happy, one where you won't know what he's doing in the future. Please get out now for YOUR sake! Let him hit his bottom & don't enable him in any way. Be free for once, you deserve it & only you can make it happen for YOU. I wish you ALL the best, be strong for YOU...
    Mari likes this.
  9. shadowsupernature

    shadowsupernature Senior Contributor

    Once a person truly wants to live a sober life...they can. I am doing it because I truly want it. That is the only way that they will be able to make it work.

    As for their life being normal...I would say that I focus a lot on my sobriety but it has had positive effects on just about every aspect of my life. So I consider myself to be living a better than normal life.
  10. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    I think it is possible since I knew some and watched some documentaries/stories as well of those who used to be addicted and be able to totally recover. It will be depends on the person like his willingness to really change and totally quit.
  11. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Community Champion

    I believe that everyone deserves a second shot at life, and I know each one of us has the ability to change for the better. There is no hopeless case. As long as someone is willing and determined, nothing is impossible.
  12. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    It's possible for addicts to not only get back to living a normal life but have it even better than before. Only broken relationships could be hard to rebuild but the good thing is that as long as you have a life ahead of you if it's friend you lost, you could get better replacements. All the other things can also be replaced, a lost job with a business which grants the owner more autonomy, etc, etc.

    When you hit rock bottom, there's nowhere to go but up. That's why addicts never should lose hope. Things can only get better when they decide to battle their addictions.
    Bonzer and JonnyMacdonald like this.
  13. JonnyMacdonald

    JonnyMacdonald Community Champion

    Yes they do. They go on to have a better life (because using isn't a good life, it's just not a way to live.)
    I was reading just the other day about Alec Baldwin, who quit drugs/alcohol in 1983 and went on to do amazing things in his career.
    Rainman likes this.
  14. EditorsRHumansToo!

    EditorsRHumansToo! Community Champion

    The change and desire to rehab and healing must come directly from him-- his own choice and decision. The waiting on your part is the most difficult, painful and discouraging. And you would not want him to perish into his own doing and careless demeanor about life.

    Would he have his family come to his aid and help him? Do you know of people in the community, or help-line such as DrugAbuse.com you can arrange to coordinate an accountability partner for him?

    I wish for you and your friend's future hope of a good life of full healing and recovery for him.
  15. L_B

    L_B Community Champion

    I really don't think a person can ever go back to their old life, the way they were before addiction. They can seek help and get clean but they are a changed person forever. Sadly, people's past always seems to follow them no matter what changes they make. There will always be people who don't trust them and remembers them from a time when they were living that life.

    The good news is that they can have a better life. They have lived it and learned from it. They have reached rock bottom and have climbed back up. They are not as naive as they may have been in the past. They know how bad life can be. They know the struggles, they have lived it.

    I wish your boyfriend all the best. I hope he gets the help he need and that his future is bright.
  16. missbishi

    missbishi Community Champion

    Of course they can, it happens to people all the time, both famous and ordinary.

    Of course, it won't be the same life they had - it's a better life, free from addiction. It takes a lot of hard work though and it isn't easy. People have much more success if they attempt to address the reasons behind their substance abuse and unfortunately, the decision to do this has to come from within that person.
    Rosyrain likes this.
  17. jbbarn

    jbbarn Active Contributor

    The same? Probably not, because we become a sum of our life experiences. Perhaps better and wiser? Yes I think so, but only if your boyfriend wants that more than anyone else wants it for him. Personally, I do not believe that addictions should be considered a disease. At the risk of upsetting my friends on here, I have to assume that since we cannot CHOOSE not to have a relapse of cancer, or heart disease, they should not be in the same category. I believe that addiction to anything is just a symptom of an underlying problem. Until that problem is isolated and treated, a person cannot ever be free from addiction.
  18. I think drugs definitely change a person and have long term effects; do they go back to their old, normal life? Probably not but although drugs are not a positive experience, they are an experience that shape us nonetheless. I think it is impossible to lead a normal life. Addiction is more than just drugs, the ease to medicate is something that affects us all. The same can be said about my alcoholism. It used to be that I couldn't have a good time without alcohol and now I have to avoid the social situations altogether. It's just a small example but I am sure everyone has their own example.
  19. pwarbi

    pwarbi Community Champion

    People can change their ways and I'm a big believer in giving people chances, but at the end of the day, it's up to you what you decide. You have to make a decision that's right for you, not the other person and if deep down in your heart you might think they will change, in your head you might not be so sure.

    Look at your situation in two years time? Will things be different or will it be another two years wasted?
  20. CallipygianGamine

    CallipygianGamine Community Champion

    Normal… I think that’s subjective, really. And after an experience like addiction, and the subsequent recovery, life won’t be the same as it was before. Things like that, they change you. But it’s entirely possible to change one’s ways and leave a certain lifestyle behind - if one desires. And it’s not an easy road, partly because the decision to change has to come from one’s own self.