Addiction Moderation: Real or Myth?
Ideas behind addiction recovery typically advocate total abstinence. But is there another possible moderation? Can an alcoholic possibly drink modestly, or can the problem gambler game controllably? Some people can get engaged in addictive behaviors and not fall for addiction. If you someone eat cake reasonably or take his “narcotic painkillers” as instructed, then indeed others are capable of similar sensibility and control. Why don’t they while recovering?
Some feel that complete abstinence is the only method to stay sober efficiently. AA advocates total abstinence which a lot of people find objectionable, meaning if I want to be a part of any available AA/12-step fellowship I have to abstain from every “mind-altering” substance. Perhaps sober addicted people in the blame it stages are going too far in their revenge on alcohol.
Abstinence may be vital for many or some, but it’s possible to fight addiction by been moderate. A notion that is understandably contrarian among the status quo of the recovery community. It is argued that been reasonable allows the addicted to engaging in their behavior to a modest extent. For instance, a mobile phone addict has their phone for a couple of hours per day, or an alcoholic could indulge in drinking occasionally.
The co-founder of Moderation Management Dr. Adi Jaffe writes, “The number of people who use MM is well-educated and is made up for the majority of “problem drinkers” rather than those who meet full-blown alcohol dependence criteria. The idea is to educate problem drinkers more modest drinking habits so that they don’t engage in all-out alcoholism.” This is a more risky approach, risky than total abstinence, but there’s reward in risk. Just like sailing a boat on the high seas. Some would take the chance, while some will rather stay on dry land.
Different addictions with different dynamics. For instance, some habits challenge “functioning ability” more than others. For example, a mobile phone addict can function highly because they can manage their life using a mobile phone. Or someone addicted to methamphetamine may be working because meth makes a person to be super alert and active, compared to someone glued on pot or alcohol who fights a more tranquilizing substance that often challenges our functioning ability directly.
However, there’s a downside to moderation management. It is failure prone. It’s just like using fire; you can get burned quickly. 12 step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous preach that alcohol can be “cunning, powerful, and baffling.” Suggesting that mind-altering substances have a high risk dynamic of their own. This is very true. Mind altering substances and addictions are risky because they “short-circuit” our brain power. The human brain, like a computer, transfers signals to and fro via bioelectric stimuli. When we take drugs and engage in our addiction, it’s like sending a rouge signal via the brains “circuit board,” which overrides the signals that notify you something’s wrong. One other reason mind-altering substances and addictions are risky is that they can spring a chain reaction, where one drug/drink or dangerous act leads to another. Once starting, it’s difficult to stop. For many addicts, it’s impossible to stop, so the solution is never to start.