I am a drug addict.
Never have I said those words out loud or admitted it to myself. I used to always find a way to describe it without having to say these words. But tonight I did. A guy at a work party sat me down and said “you haven’t been looking good the past two weeks, what’s going on?” This guy is a trained psychologist and knows a thing or two about mental health and addiction and knows about my struggle with bipolar disorder, the only person at the entire company that knows, I might add. As a result, I broke down and told him “I am a drug addict and I am really struggling right now”. I told him how a medication I took triggered cravings and that I have been fighting hard to not give in. A stupid mistake really that lead me to this point. The irony in it all really is that I never thought of myself as a drug addict. I partied a lot in my first few years of college which included endless amounts of alcohol and all kinds of drugs. It got to a point where I depended on them to get through the day. It helped me to stop feeling because I was feeling too much. I still am. It turned this brain off that is constantly going on. Until one day my mum pulled me out of the situation and brought me home. An old but new city, none of those party friends and complete oblivion as to where I can find drugs in the city where I grew up, I learned to live without them. I got professional help, got diagnosed with bipolar disorder and started treatment. I never touched drugs again and made it my mission to not know where I could get them no matter where I lived. I tried a heavy painkiller once but immediately got send back to the place in my head that seemed just too familiar.
And now I am in that same place again due to no fault of mine. I am back to dealing with cravings, with the constant thought in my head being where I can get a fix. Back to feeling physical pain and having a heavy body.
I am stronger than giving in to that craving, wanting to feel absolutely nothing but freedom in my head. I am smart enough to know what giving in may do to me and the life I am trying so hard to build. But I also know that I need to give myself and my body a break and let it happen. I can’t force it to be over I just have to get through it because I know that I will.
I may not be the typical person that you would imagine when hearing the word “drug addict” but it doesn’t change the fact that I am, that I am battling a form of addiction. And you know what? That is okay. It is part of my story, part of who I am. It is nothing to be ashamed of but admitting it to myself and another person is a step in the right direction.
If you feel you may be struggling with similar issues to the ones outlined in this blog post, you can start an anonymous chat with one of our trained crisis responders here.