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No Sympathy for drug addicts?

Discussion in 'General Substance Abuse Discussion' started by showthelifesint, Jun 17, 2015.

  1. MyDigitalpoint

    MyDigitalpoint Community Champion

    So you to know, several weeks ago I spent more time than I had to going downtown the city, and therefore having to get back in a rush aboard the subway, but needing to make a transfer at a given station.

    It was near midnight and not much people as it used to be at rush hours, so the corridor connecting one station with its counterpart in the other line I had to switch was practically desert except for an alcoholic addicted in rags, reflecting his low socioeconomic status and self-abandonment.

    The few people passing by were looking at him with disdain while he was trying to make a supreme effort to remain upright and courteously saying "good evening" to anyone in his way with the attitude of someone looking for acceptation, but being ignored and judged by narrow-minded users of a public transport, that being public is for anyone, not for elitists.

    It was my turn to pass next to this man who equally said "good evening" to me. Obviously I replied to his greeting with a smile and a good evening back and, you would see his face!

    It was like he would suddenly have found a ray of sunshine in the middle of nowhere. He tried to gain strength and began to walk by my side but not so close, probably fearing to be rejected or something, and then began to elaborate why people didn't respond to his greeting being his sincerest wish people would have a good evening in their way back home and sad because he had no home where to go.

    To make a long story short, from the corridor to the train platform, I learned that he was an alcoholic because of this, people showing no sympathy due to the way he looked like and nobody wanting to hear how bad he was feeling for this, nor the much he is trying to recover, but in obvious need of someone's acceptation.

    Once at the platform, he wanted me to give him my blessing as a parent would do, and visibly moved for this action, he walked away to get the opposite platform while throwing a plastic bottle away, a bottle with alcohol he didn't need anymore at least for that night we met.

    This experience confirms that many times is society who contributes to make addicted those persons they disdain rather than understand and help.
    bluedressed likes this.
  2. kjonesm1

    kjonesm1 Community Champion

    I'm so sorry about your situation, but one thing you said stuck out to me. You said you are not strong, but it seems your entire life is a testament to your strength. I pray for you and your baby and wish your situation improves..
  3. serenity

    serenity Community Champion

    Each person has their own background and reason why they got into drugs, so we shouldn't be too harsh with them especially if they're doing everything that they can not to relapse. Maybe they got prescribed pain killers by their doctors, maybe they had no one to talk to that's why they turned to drugs, etc. As long as they aren't a hardened criminal or addict yet then there is hope that they will change.
  4. Zyni

    Zyni Community Champion

    Agreed. It's so easy to judge isn't it? There's a saying.. "There but for the grace of God, go I." Whether or not a person believes in God, the sentiment remains. It can happen to anyone.

    Don't be so quick to look down on others when you haven't walked in their shoes.
    missbishi likes this.
  5. SarahWorksAtHome

    SarahWorksAtHome Community Champion

    Wow that's an incredible story. Thank you for stopping to talk with this man.
  6. missbishi

    missbishi Community Champion

    I got addicted to cocaine. Want to know why? It was because I was trying to forget about five years of abuse from my ex-partner. Including violence and rape. Now, usually I never talk about this to anyone - I have dealt with it and took those emotional garbage sacks to the dump years ago.

    But seing as you just called me ignorant and stupid, I felt compelled to share.
  7. Tremmie

    Tremmie Community Champion

    Of course I do, I am a former addict.... I'd be an hypocrite if I didn't. I think everyone deserve a second chance in life and I am so grateful I did get it. It's none of my business, but you should really learnt not to judge people so harshly... everyone has different backgrounds and stories. You have no idea what those people you see being addicted have gone tru... some have actually ended up hooked on this without even wanting it or even expecting it.

    I don't expect you to see things the way I see them, to be honest I don't care, but for your own good I hope you learn about compassion... life is a dark cruel place without it. And by the way, most drug addicts are not looking for your pity, or anyone's for that matter... most of them are so deep, stuck in an abyss... they can't even get out of. What they need is help and understanding. I got that, I was lucky and that is the reason I am here and not dead.
  8. zplohr

    zplohr Member

    It is understandable that you feel this way. Addiction has been treated as a criminal issue and not the medical issue that it is. People with addiction issues have a chemical imbalance that can be cause by nature (genetics) and nurture (your upbringing). Anxiety and depression are both chemical imbalance as wel, thus in my opinion it is the same issue (an imbalance ).

    In general addicts ARE assholes when using, so it is understandable that one would place a negative connotation behind the term, but in my opinion when you make an addict feel like an outcast, they tend to not be open to help from others.
  9. zplohr

    zplohr Member

    I understand why you feel attacked, but in all fairness this person is reaching out for information, that in itself is nice to see. One could easily think addicts are ignorant... well because we are. I admire that this person reached out for advice from the source rather than perpetuating the negative connotation. Just food for thought. :)
  10. Tremmie

    Tremmie Community Champion

    I agree with you. IMO the second person who commented on this thread is so far the worst. She says she has had a hard life (I've heard of cases that were way worse where I come from, honestly - not like that is relevant) and I do feel sorry for her (like I'd feel for anyone who is dealing with a lot emotional pain as i am) , but this is no place for that kind of comments.

    She was lucky not to end up into drugs, she really was, she shouldn't look down on others because they did. Differnt lives... different personalities, different situations, different backgrounds that says it all. I'd say... count your blessings!

    This kind of comments wouldn't make me cringe if they weren't in this forum. And by the way, I am also in constant pain and don't use pain meds. I suffer from several health issues... was diagnosed with an angioma last year that might paralyze me (among other motor/neurological problems if it bleeds) sooner or later, yet you don't see me complaining!

    Am sorry, but that kind of comments piss me off so bad... the last thing we need is for the addicts who come here for some help, compassion and understanding is to read that kind of comments. They might think this is not a good place for them to get some info and motivation.
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2015
    deanokat likes this.
  11. E.Mil

    E.Mil Community Champion

    I do feel for people who addicted to drugs. Everyone has a story of how they became addicted and the sad thing is many people who are addicted probably never thought that they would become addicted and probably thought that they could handle it when they first began using. I think that it is wrong to have no sympathy for those who certainly need help because we all will need help in our lives to deal with the things that go in life, everybody deals with things in different ways.
  12. JonnyMacdonald

    JonnyMacdonald Community Champion

    I actually read somewhere that there is a correlation between intelligence and addiction/substance abuse. The more intelligent someone was the HIGHER chances they have of drinking, using drugs or developing an addiction. I know it seems strange you would think it's the other way around.
    So everyone here saying they don't understand how someone could get mixed up or you have no sympathy for them, I think I can guess why.
  13. missbishi

    missbishi Community Champion

    I recently read a similar article concerning artists, writers and musicians. Apparently they too are more susceptible to drug and alcohol problems. I wonder if it's connected with having a certain type of mind? Not an addictive mind as such, maybe more of a creative or an enquiring mind.
  14. j1ckh441

    j1ckh441 Member

    Yeah, I agree with you. I see this as something similar to that with obese people. Obese people can eat uncontrollably, and they can't stop themselves. I think that drug users are no different, or rather the other way around – drug users are just like obese people. They just can't help themselves, even more so than obese people! That's why I don't think that they should be discriminated against, but rather helped.
  15. bluedressed

    bluedressed Community Champion

    I smiled so big reading this and thinking about that man's happiness at finally having someone not denying him his right to be seen as a human, and to have been greeted nicely etc! Really made me feel good and gave me chills.

    I've talked about stuff like this to my partner, and he actually has a surprising number of stories where he just listened to people who were sorta castaways and being told just for that that he was their best friend - which made him feel a bit awkward and sad that this was the most warmth they've had in their life, when he felt he had not done much at all. (I don't have much of those sorts of experience, because I tend to not talk much at all to anybody and to get stressed about social contact with stranger. But if someone greets me or talks to me, I usually greet them nicely back and do not reject them. I wish I could be more outgoing, though. In my heart and mind, I want to -- but then I have have an opportunity and I just cannot. I'm working on that, though. *sigh*)

    But seriously, good on you. I hope you influenced more than just him by acting this way and that others will follow, remembering that basic human respect should not have an on and off switch and all.
    deanokat likes this.
  16. Bonzer

    Bonzer Community Champion

    Well, that's a flawed thinking. You got to take people as they come. No one is perfect in this world and everyone is prone to mistakes. You can't hate people or get judgemental just because someone is addicted, weak, or off the mind. People fall into various addictions out of fun, coercion, peer pressure, or stress. We can only sympathise not scorn at them.
    deanokat likes this.
  17. SarahWorksAtHome

    SarahWorksAtHome Community Champion

    It still confuses me as to why you would even come to post on a forum about substance abuse if you either haven't been an addict, aren't trying to help a loved one with addiction or have no sympathy for addicts. Maybe reading some testimonies or stories before judging or posting about not having sympathy would be a good idea. Try to understand that everyone isn't like you, that it's not a CHOICE to have such a hard life.
    deanokat likes this.
  18. NicCris

    NicCris Member

    Many people don't like drug users and that this dislike hinders the prospects of social integration and future employment for this group. This stigma is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of drug users and the nature of drug use. Problematic drug use often develops as a result of many and complex issues such as childhood abuse, dysfunctional family life, social exclusion and various emotional traumas. Unfortunately, many who become addicted to drugs are self-medicating to deal with this emotional and sometimes physical pain.
    deanokat likes this.
  19. karmaskeeper

    karmaskeeper Community Champion

    People become addicts for different reasons. I feel really bad for people that suffer from substance abuse. It's really super easy to judge. It takes some effort to try, and understand why people are addicts. Addiction is a trap very easy to get into very hard to get out of. Many people are addicts because they simply can't handle life. Some were just having a good time and took it to far. The reasons are endless.
    deanokat likes this.
  20. JonnyMacdonald

    JonnyMacdonald Community Champion

    I have always thought it has to do with frustration. Smarter people tend to expect more from themselves and are more prone to pondering the purpose of their existence or getting caught up in some kind of post-modern existential crisis.
    But reallyGod only knows.