The Day I Realized I Was an Addict

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“I had a good childhood growing up. I wouldn’t say the best, but definitely better than most. I got mostly what I wanted, and thought that I was on top. It was only much later that I realized that I wasn’t even in control of my own life. I let drugs take the wheel while I rode shotgun. This is a short story of what it took for me to realize that I had a problem.

“I started messing around with drugs when I was 14, but once I reached my sophomore year in high school they started to consume my life. You see, I never believed I had a problem even though I was constantly wrecking my vehicle and nodding out everywhere I went. I was always only concerned with being the life of the party. I always believed I was in control and could stop when I wanted to. It never mattered how much trouble I got into, or what I did because my addiction made me believe I was in control.

“My life started taking a turn for the worst right after my daughter’s first birthday. I was high one night and nodded out in my car. I awoke to police pulling me out of my car and arresting me for possession. Even after being arrested the night after my daughter’s birthday, I still believed I had no problem. My family bailed me out of jail and gave me an ultimatum: go to rehab or lose my daughter. I reluctantly accepted and was told I would be leaving next week. So, of course, I decided to get loaded one more time. However, this time would change my thinking.

“I decided to leave my house and go score some drugs.

“I had found an acquaintance who had what I wanted, so I drove to his house and decided it would be a great idea to rob him. This was one of the dumbest decisions I have ever made, and the worst part is I was sober at the time. I didn’t understand how addiction worked. I had no idea what cravings were or anything of the sort because I thought that I didn’t have a problem. The actions that followed changed me for the rest of my life.

“Now at that point my mind was foggy and I was out of control. I decided to go see my daughter thinking that my condition was fine and stable, although I was falling asleep while standing up. She was with her mother at the time, so I drove to her house and then fell asleep in her yard for a few hours. When I finally woke up, I went into the house, stumbling around everywhere, out of my mind and I tried to hold my daughter. After almost dropping her, her mother took her away from me, and her grandfather tried to kick me out of the house. I wasn’t happy about any of this and tried to fight him because once again I didn’t think I was that messed up.

“You would think that someone who did all these horrible things in front of their child would at least remember them, right? Well, unfortunately not me—I was in a blackout and didn’t remember that or the next 5 days. It was only when my mother came to visit me two weeks later at the rehab facility that she told me what I had done. I’ll never forget the look on her face when I told her I didn’t remember anything. I was mortified at what I had learned about my past actions. I had also never seen my mother so upset, and it hurt me deeply. This was the first time I started thinking about my actions, not just those, but all of them. I came to the realization that I did have a problem, and no normal person would do the things that I had been doing. I really believe this realization was a big key in helping save my life, among other things I realized later on.

“I realized that I am not the person that I had been pretending to be. Since then, I’ve been working on my life. I’ve been striving to be a better father, son, and overall person. I won’t let the clutches of addiction control my life and rule me, and I will break this vicious cycle.“

T.B.—Narconon Graduate

(To preserve privacy, the photo does not show an actual Narconon student or graduate.)



Aaron has been writing drug education articles and documenting the success of the Narconon program for over two years.