Date: 4/23/2005 8:29:09 AM ( 8 y ) ... viewed 2029 times
In junior high and high school, I was terrified of addiction. Compulsive behavior runs rampant in my family, and by that time, I knew I had a problem with food, so I was unwilling to introduce alcohol and drugs into the mix. I was invariably the one at parties with a can of sprite. My abstinence was also probably a bit due to my parents' completely open attitude about drugs and alcohol.
My dad on weed, "If you're at a party and you want to smoke some grass, just go for it--but don't drive home. Just give me a call and I'll pick you up."
My mom on weed, "You know, you might want to try marijuana. It wouldn't kill you to try it. Actually, it would probably help you, it definitely wouldn't hurt you a bit. I think you should do it--it might help you relax."
Seriously, is there anything less cool to a thirteen-year-old than her parents' blessing? I don't think there is anything that could have made intoxication less appealing than my parents wholehearted stamp of approval. I was also worried about becoming addicted though--probably due less to self-awareness than Nancy Regan's "no child says she wants to be a junkie when she grows up" ad campaign, but they were both factors. But now I am aware that my addictions are of a different sort. I do seek comfort in things that give me an artificial sort of "high," but I am way too interested in control to be that enamoured of anything that compromises my sobriety for long stretches of time.
I've had periods in my past (aka college) where I drank too much for too long and developed an unhealthy habit, but it was never very difficult to give it up. I just stopped drinking for a month or so, and problem solved. Now I rarely have more than two drinks, and two drinks is probably a monthly "splurge."
Cigarettes are equally uninteresting. When I was younger, and desperately in love with a chain-smoker, I would smoke maybe one cigarette a day. I usually wouldn't finish it. I've probably bought two packs of cigarettes in my life. In recent years, I've had one or two cigarettes a year, but now even that makes me feel gross.
Drugs are even less of a problem. Weed makes me totally sick psychologically. I feel patently awful when I smoke, so there is zero attraction to smoking for me. God, it is like torture. It's weird that my parents both enjoy it so much--it makes both my brother and me completely miserable. When he was younger and more insecure, I know he spent years pretending to inhale at parties. Mushrooms were more tempting for me-- there was only one two week period where I used too many and became a little dependant. I ran out finally, and problem solved. Cocaine never had any appeal past one night and even ecstasy (which I enjoyed the most) made me feel so awful afterwards that there was little impetus to return any time soon.
Aside from weed, I have to say that I've enjoyed my rare (i.e. once every two years or so) forays into drug use. In controlled circumstances, I've had more than a good time, and I do think I have learned some powerful lessons about myself (and my friends) during these very rare mini-journeys. Always by the end though, I have been counting the minutes back to sobriety. I prefer being sober.
As I just cannot stand to be intoxicated for long periods of time, it is difficult for me to fully empathize with addiction to these things. Food, however, is a totally different story.
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