March 10th, 2011 Posted in Anti-Smoking | No Comments »

Now stop.
Just don’t take any more of the drug. Say ‘No’ to yourself and to your using or drinking friends. It’s as simple as that. Concentrate with every fibre of your being on not taking the next fix, pill, smoke or drink.
Do that NOW.
(Or, if you are on a programme of cutting down tranquillisers, make sure that the next pill is the’ right cut-down dose as part of the programme. Tranquilliser addicts and barbiturate addicts reading this chapter will need to bear in mind that the abrupt stop which all other addicts should be doing does not apply to them. Alcoholics, too, must remember that abruptly stopping, without any medication for withdrawal, can be dangerous.)
The first few hours and days are not going to be easy. However, you will get through them successfully if you practise the skills of Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous. These are truly lifeline mental tricks, designed to keep you clean and sober despite the pain of withdrawal.



February 24th, 2011 Posted in Anti-Smoking | No Comments »

It is a statistical fact that very few addicts or alcoholics manage to give up drugs or alcohol without some kind of support system. Drugs or drink have been so important in their lives that when they stop using them there is a great gap in their way of life. Something has to take its place.
‘I stopped lots of times,’ recalls William, a recovering addict who has been clean and happy for three years. ‘Each time stopping became harder, and the gaps between not using and using became shorter. I found that as the withdrawals got worse, I got more practised at handling them.
‘But it was after the withdrawals – that was the worst. There was a sort of black hole in my life, a feeling of “What the hell’s the point?” I’d get two or three weeks clean of withdrawals and be such a mess as a person that I’d go back to using.’
Addicts or alcoholics who try just to carry on, without putting anything in the place of drugs or alcohol, eventually fail. Sooner or later almost all of them go back to drugs or drinking.
After all, if chemical dependence is an illness, it needs some kind of extra care. If you went into hospital for an appendix removal, it would be madness to discharge yourself directly you came to after the operation. You simply wouldn’t be well enough to plunge straight back into normal life. And besides, it would be crazy to try and take out the stitches yourself.
It is just the same with drug dependence. You are going to need proper after-care.
So if you want to get well, you are going to need help.