You hear a lot of R words when you decide to get treatment for substance abuse. There’s rehabilitation. There’s recovery. You may hear restitution if you’re involved with the courts, or redemption. People like to talk about religion. There are negative words like relapse. But how about resilience? Whether you’re seeking methadone or Suboxone treatment for substance abuse, it’s time to recognize your own qualities of resilience.
Just What Is Resilience?
Dictionary.com tells us that resilience means that something stretched beyond its usual form has the ability to bounce back, like elastic. It also describes that a person can recover from some kind of adversity, with buoyancy that keeps them afloat. Either of those definitions can apply to a person who chooses methadone or Suboxone treatment for substance abuse. When you’ve been down and out, you learn to bounce back. You learn to keep your head above water.
Going Down the Road to Addiction
Before you can recognize the qualities of resilience that you surely have, you’ve got to realize just what sent you down the road to addiction. What events put you in need of treatment for substance abuse, with Suboxone or some other way?
Many people become addicted to opiates these days quite by accident. They begin taking pain pills prescribed by a doctor. Or they don’t go to a doctor—some helpful friend or family member who knows about their pulled muscle or sprained ankle says, “Hey, take one of these pills. This’ll help you feel better.” Before you know it, whether or not you feel better and you’ve become dependent on the medicine, you find that you need more pills, and the doctor cuts you off. Your friend can’t give you any more. You start talking to people who know a friend of a friend. And then before you know it you’re addicted.
Other people take pain pills or use heroin to conceal some kind of emotional pain. Maybe they have been abused at the hands of a spouse or parent. Maybe the abuse has been physical, verbal, or sexual, but it hurts emotionally. The pills or heroin provide a respite from the pain. But when the drugs wear off, you are still sick at heart.
Whatever sent you into addiction, you have to determine that you are ready for recovery with an abstinence based or medication assisted program such as methadone or Suboxone treatment for opiate abuse. Those are the two most popular and medically approved medications for people who are dependent or addicted to pain pills or heroin. Abstinence based treatment works for some people but not for all.
If you haven’t reached out to find a medication-assisted program that provides methadone or Suboxone treatment for substance abuse, it’s time to get started now. It’s not easy, because the drugs have been providing you with a level of pleasure—even if it’s just the masking of pain—and your body will do everything it can to convince you that you need more of those drugs. Sometimes as you enter the recovery process, you will feel like one faceless soul among countless others, unrecognized, uncared for, and certainly not understood.
But here’s where your resilience kicks in. You’ve got to keep telling yourself that you are a worthwhile person. If you don’t believe it, just keep saying it—because it’s true. You need a good supply of resilience in recovery, because this is where you look deep within yourself for the reasons you became addicted and decide that you’re going to beat them, once and for all.
Methadone or Suboxone Treatment for Substance Abuse
At a center offering treatment for substance abuse with Suboxone or methadone, you will be assigned to your own counselor. Although your counselor cannot become friends with you because of professional ethics, you can be assured that the counselor truly cares about your well-being. People who go into counseling and social work have a natural affinity for other people, and they want to help you to decide what things you should change in your life to have a better outcome.
How to Build Resilience
The American Psychological Association website suggests some basic ways to build up your resilience. The first suggestion they offer is to make connections with others, and that’s why you should take advantage of recovery activities. Attend any groups and go to 12-step meetings. Hang out with like-minded people.
It’s also important to realize that even if you have problems, there is nothing that can’t be fixed. Don’t stay in bed because you feel sorry for yourself. Get up and take some kind of action.
Think about the change that lies ahead of you. Change can be scary, but if you’re in methadone or Suboxone treatment for substance abuse, then you’ve already been in a scary place. Change happens to everybody, whether or not they’re using drugs, so strap on your seatbelt and get ready!
The next two steps are these: Keep moving forward, and take decisive actions. That means you’ve got to keep putting one foot in front of the other. If negative things happen, ask yourself what you could have done to make things better—and then do it.
Examine your own strengths. Make a list of the good qualities you have. Everybody has some! If you believe you have none, then you are humble—and that is a good quality. So start from there. Can you draw or sing? Are you kind to animals? This is where you reach down and pull yourself up by the bootstraps.
Look for opportunities. Look for ways to improve your life. Start out by reading the label on the orange juice carton in your refrigerator. Learn about how and why Suboxone treatment for substance abuse can help you. Pick up the catalog for evening classes at the local college.
Treasure the positive image you’re building. Think about the last time you hugged a child or repaired something. If you have someone in your life who says you’re worthless, tell them you’re not and walk out. Getting into treatment for substance abuse takes strength, and so you obviously have some if you’re reading this.
Be hopeful and keep things in perspective. Don’t let one or even two bad things in a day beat you down. Thinking again about that negative person in your life, remember that their negativity is really their problem. You can’t change that person; you can only change yourself. Your own problem is how to separate yourself from that negativity, and you can work on that. If you have a bad day in court, or you lose your home, sit with someone you trust and figure out a strategy for moving forward. Your counselor can direct you to resources. And trust your instincts.
It might sound hopeless to tell you to stay hopeful in the face of the struggles associated with addiction. But methadone or Suboxone treatment for substance abuse can help you get your head on straight without the cravings or sickening withdrawal symptoms that send most people back to their drugs. You can maintain physical wellness while you get your ducks in a row and straighten out your life.
Nobody can erase the bad things that have happened to you. But the American Psychological Association suggests that you meditate about them or keep a journal of your feelings. Some people resist those kinds of therapies because they sound silly, but they will give you an outlet for your pain. Learn to let go of the pain.
As you slowly learn to practice those things, you can open up the door to hope and recovery. You will realize, with the help of methadone or Suboxone treatment for substance abuse, that you hold a place of value in the world around you. Recovery isn’t easy—but you can do it. Each time you feel discouraged or weak, think of your own resilience. Bounce back and keep your head above water. Full steam ahead!