There is no mystery or surprise at this point that drug and alcohol addiction and all of the factors and aspects abounding addiction are on their way up in this country. Drug and alcohol abuse and addiction have been a steadily growing and concerning problem of the very worst kind, one of which needs to be addressed and properly handled. Another issue today is people stereotyping addicts on social media. By stereotyping addicts, individuals only set them back as far as asking for help for their problem.
Drug and Alcohol Addiction
Because drug and alcohol addiction is such a rapidly growing and changing problem, it becomes necessary to effectively do something about it to change it. It has become a known fact that drug and alcohol addiction is a common and prevalent issue, that more people are addicted, and that more people suffer because of substance abuse. What a lot of people do not realize, however, are all of the other factors that come about because substance abuse has grown more common in this country.
Dangers of Stereotyping Addicts
Another problem that has come up with drug and alcohol addiction has been the natural stereotyping of addicts. When addicts are stereotyped, they are made to feel as though they are bad, that they are lowlifes, or that they are somehow bottom of the totem pole people. The problem with stereotyping addicts is that this has a very long-term, dangerous effect on those addicts and harms them greatly.
If you tell a person enough times that they are the scum of the earth then they will begin to believe that they are the scum of the earth. If you tell them enough times that they simply need to get help for their drug and alcohol addiction, they will eventually get help.
Stereotyping Addicts, A Dangerous Practice
The above paragraph leads us into the first of many points on the dangers of stereotyping and why addiction stereotyping is harmful and damaging.
- Stereotyping addiction is harmful because it literally gets nothing done. Stereotyping addicts puts those addicts in a position where nothing positive is happening. Quite literally, when a person stereotypes an addict, they create a situation in which the addicts are simply being hurt further and made to feel even worse than they already do.
- Now, this is not to say that addicts should be mollycoddled, sympathized for, or enabled. But it is to say that there is nothing effective or positive that comes from stereotyping an addict. When one stereotypes an addict, things only get more difficult for him or her. They only begin to feel even worse than they did, and they are actually more likely to keep abusing drugs and alcohol as a result.
- Another danger of stereotyping is it could actually push an addict over the edge and cause an overdose and a death. Being told that they are no good enough times and being stereotyped enough can and often does lead them to believe that their hardship and their heartbreak is instead a result of those around them. This can push them to keep abusing drugs and alcohol and eventually overdose and die.
The Right Thing to Do to Help an Addict
All of the energy that is being wasted in stereotyping drug and alcohol addicts could be more positively spent on helping those addicts to effectively and peacefully gain their freedom and their stability from even the most difficult of substance abuse problems. All of that energy and unnecessary labeling could be more positively and proactively spent on working to get that addict into a treatment center or rehab facility. If you are seeking help for yourself or a loved one who is struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, call A Forever Recovery today.