Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Addiction

Common Misconceptions About Addiction:

Do addicts have a good time? Aren’t they just stupid or lazy? Isn’t their basic problem a lack of willpower? Are 12-Step programs an easy con or a cult? If someone can quit drinking or using drugs intermittently, isn’t that proof they’re not addicted? Don’t addicts have to want help? Isn’t punishment the best way to force them to quit? 

What About Personal Responsibility?

Listening to countless speakers at AA meetings made me question my assumption that drug addicts — starting with me — were only getting what we deserved. No one held a gun to our heads and made us take drugs. We did them voluntarily, enthusiastically. Didn’t we bear the blame for our descent into dereliction? I felt that I did, that I caused my metamorphosis into an incorrigible drunk. But it’s not that simple. Some people are genetically pre-disposed to addiction.

5 Responses to “ FAQs ”

  1. Did you come up with the misconception questions ? try researching more info with addictions, heroin after one use can cause withdrawals and leave u with a strong want too use again but at this point its just a want, 3 weeks of use want turns into “need”. cocain even if user has signs of addiction, with cocain it takes 5-8 years before brain transfers it from want to need or for fun or to feel normal.

  2. Thanks for your comment (and sorry for the delay in responding). Yes, I came up with the misconception questions. I’m interested in what you say, can you refer me to any studies that discuss how long it takes from using drugs for fun to using them addictively?

  3. I’m unaware of any research showing heroin is capable of producing withdrawal after one use. There are numerous myths, misbeliefs and misunderstandings (what I’ve called the 3 Ms of addiction) which are repeated so often many believe they are true. Education regarding the disease model of addiction and research showing effective treatments and ongoing support (including 12 Step meetings) are key for long term sobriety must be shared in order to debunk the erroneous beliefs that addiction is a voluntary condition, can’t be treated, and long term sobriety is impossible.

    I always find it interesting that people who know nothing about 12 Step groups have it all figured out. I’m coming up on my 18th year of sobriety and would have had a difficult time remaining clean and sober without the help of AA and NA.

    Love your site…keep sharing your experience, strength, and hope.

  4. When can one restart drinking, once he has finished the disulfiram course….

  5. Like all questions about medication, the best answer comes from a doctor, preferably the one who prescribed the disulfiram in response to the particular patient’s circumstances, and can provide counsel about the impact of ceasing the medication and re-starting drinking. This is especially true for a medication like disulfiram because the length of time it takes to fully metabolize and “clear” the body depends on the dose and the length of time the drug has been taken. I was told, for example, that it took 2 or 3 days to clear a single dose and the longer I took a daily dose, the longer it would take to clear. After taking disulfiram daily for months, I was told it would take 3 or 4 weeks to clear. So to be safe, one should get advice from a doctor who knows all the circumstances, like the dosage, the length of time it has been taken, etc.

    Having said that, your question raises it’s own question: Why would someone who has been taking disulfiram start drinking again?

Leave a Reply