There’s a common saying in the rooms of healing recovery that suggests an addict needs to “hit their bottom.” Bottom— or “rockbottom,” is the lowest point a person is willing to allow their lives to go. In movies and television, we see some addicts or alcoholics in cardboard boxes or living on the streets in a state of oblivion; we may or may not think that this is the bottom we need to reach in order to get sober.
The truth is that rockbottom can be any point in time where an addict or an alcoholic decides that they’re done using and drinking. There may be legal consequences, there may be health issues or problems, and there may be any one of a hundred reasons we might decide to sober up. Some of us didn’t need to reach any sort of bottom in order to decide to get sober. Even this can be argued as being our rockbottom.
There’s another misconception in recovery that’s similar to that of hitting rockbottom and that’s the notion that we need to “be done.” Being done suggests that we’ve “hit our bottom,” and will not use again, no matter what. If quitting drugs and alcohol were this easy, nobody would ever relapse. Countless newcomers will talk about “not being done,” as some sort of evidence supporting the argument that they should use or drink again.
The reason that neither concept is particularly important is because they both create a reservation of how bad things need to be in order to get sober. Although it’s both therapeutic and cathartic to talk about how bad things were, it’s equally as important to recognize that not all of us will have the same story. Not all of us will have been homeless, imprisoned, near death, or lost everything. In fact, the more remarkable stories are the ones in which we’d reached a point where we weren’t sure we had a problem, but decided to get help for one regardless. Stories of alcoholics being ordered by the courts to attend a recovery meeting, only to hear something they identified with enough to continue to attend the meetings. Or an addict who attends a meeting to ease their parent’s mind and ends up making friends and taking a long term commitment.
There’s another important, lesser known saying that are said in twelve step meetings: “chances are if you found these rooms, you need these rooms.” In most cases, if your life has gotten to a point where you thought about getting sober enough to attend an AA meeting, or to read this article, then hopefully you’ll continue this journey just a little further.
There’s never a good argument to use drugs and alcohol once you’ve stopped. There’s never a good argument to continue to use drugs and alcohol rather than to stop. The idea of hitting bottom is a comforting thought to those of us who have already reached a bottom, but it isn’t a requirement to get sober, nor is being done. The only requirement is to want to stop. By building upon this desire, you might look back on your active addiction and realize that you had hit your bottom and had even “been done,” long before you had decided to stop.
If you or a beloved one has reached this point, please contact Iris Healing Retreat holistic rehab center by calling (818) 436 2646.