Recovery Isn't Black and White, And I'm Tired of People Thinking It is
Health Wellness

Recovery Isn't Black and White, And I'm Tired of People Thinking It is

Whether it's an addiction, self-hate, or a combination of the two, we are fighting and we want you to know that we're trying.

1003
Recovery Isn't Black and White, And I'm Tired of People Thinking It is

I remember one night, it wasn't just any other night. It was the SuperBowl. I don't know who was playing, I don't think that I cared. I was happy that my family and friends were distracted long enough for me to decide whether life was worth living or not. For as long as I could remember, I've been depressed and struggling with my self-image. I've never liked who I am, and it seemed those around me didn't like me either. That night I swore to myself that I would either make it out alive or make it so that my family couldn't (and wouldn't) blame themselves. Let me tell you, staring at a broken razor for hours wondering whether or not that is the answer to your problems is probably the most painful time in a person's life. I didn't even think I had a right to feel the way that I did. I had a family who loved me, I had a cat who adored me and wouldn't ever leave my side, I had such a great group of friends who knew that my mental health wasn't the best. But for some reason that night I felt so alone. So I picked up the razor and you can only guess what happened after that.

For years after that night, I have struggled with trying to never feel the way that I did that night. That night had landed me in LifeStream and had disappointed my entire family. If I thought that I had felt worthless before, it's worse to see your family in pain because you thought you were better off dead. I remember the doctors in the LifeStream asking me if I knew who played the SuperBowl, and she followed it with a chuckle saying, "Oh, of course, you don't. Instead, you decided to mutilate yourself."

I vowed after that I would do my best to recover, if not for me, for those who loved me. But let me tell you first hand, that wasn't the last time that I had picked up a razor. It was far from the last time. My self-harm experiences were me attempting to 'fix' my pain and my imperfections. For years leading up to college, I have struggled with reminding myself that I do matter.

I know that I had disappointed and infuriated so many people because I couldn't just say, "I know this isn't healthy so I'm going to make the right choice and choose life." Because it's never that easy. Yes, we can go to therapy and we can tell everyone we love that we aren't okay. You know how they tell the family members that you can't help someone who doesn't want to be helped? That is so wrong. It's not that we don't want to be helped, we don't feel that we are worthy of anyone's help. Why should I expect any other person on this planet to deal with my constant war of emotions? There are alcoholics that can go decades without a drink, but be pushed over with a simple event. Because recovery isn't black and white, not even gray.

Recovery is the ugliest of neutral colors. Sometimes it's a bright yellow, easy and freeing. But then sometimes it's a crimson red, panic and pain that lead us to fall into old habits. We slip up because we remember how we would feel with our small addictions. Maybe they weren't healthy, but they helped us cope when our head wasn't the best place to be. Sometimes our demons are screaming so loud that we can't drown them out. Sometimes we slip up.

Please remember that if your loved one falls off their recovery path, that it had nothing to do with you or anyone else. If you know someone who is hurting, the worst thing you could do is ask them why. Most times, there isn't a why. It's so stupid for us to dwell on the "why" when the most important part is making sure that they can get over their obstacle safely. Trust me when I say that it hurts us even worse when we can't give you a reason as to why we fell off the wagon because we feel like we owe you at least that much.

Relapse is a part of recovery, and it always will be. So how do you as a loved one help?

1. Be a friend.

If we could do it on our own, do you think we'd be in this position in the first place?

2. Check on your loved ones.

Even if they haven't given you a reason to worry, we don't need to wait until it's too late. You don't have to call someone every day to let them know you care.

3. If they DO relapse, DON'T blame them.

I promise you they are already blaming themselves.

4. If you are worried that a loved one HAS relapsed, contact the CORRECT personnel.

You should know your loved one. I know that when I was in the pain that I was, LifeStream was the last place that I needed to be. These rehab facilities that promise to "fix" your loved one can be a driving point for them to fall back into old, self-destructive habits.

5. Ask how you can help.

As self-explanatory as this is, often we overlook that our loved one may just need someone to sit with them. If we sit within the same four walls our entire lives, sometimes we don't know what life is like beyond the familiar. As unwilling as we are for the help, please keep trying. It means a whole lot more to us than you will ever know.

If you are the one who is struggling with the recovery process, please don't ever hesitate to reach out for help. Below are a list of resources if you find that you don't have a trusted person to help you through your crisis.

7 Cups of Tea- Our Mission: 7 Cups of Tea is for anyone who wants to live in a world where the human experience is free from stigma and stereotypes and rich with love and support.

National Suicide Hotline- Call 1-800-273-8255 Available 24 hours every day

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Swoon

119 People Reveal How The Pandemic Has Affected Their Love Lives, And Honestly... Relatable

"I haven't been able to get out of the 'talking phase' with anyone."

The reality is, there's no part of life the pandemic hasn't affected. Whether it's your work life, your home life, your social life, or your love life, coronavirus (COVID-19) is wreaking havoc on just about everything — not to mention people's health.

When it comes to romance, in particular, people are all handling things differently and there's no "right way" of making it through, regardless of your relationship status (single, taken, married, divorced, you name it). So, some of Swoon's creators sought out to hear from various individuals on how exactly their love lives have been affected since quarantine began.

Keep Reading... Show less

We have all been there. Mindlessly scrolling through social media and then we see that post. We see someone we once saw a future with creating it with someone else. However this time it was really different. A lot of times when we say we are happy for someone we don't really mean it.

Keep Reading... Show less
Photo by Samuel Branch on Unsplash

Affirmations affirm beliefs that we are in need of strengthening. They help up to focus on goals that we are striving for or on a powerful part of ourselves that we need a little reminder is within us.

They specifically focus on positive outcomes or belief systems that we're working to solidify, rather than solely focusing action on eradicating something "bad" or "wrong" from your life.

Keep Reading... Show less

About a year ago, I began my own fitness journey. Growing up, I had played soccer and kept busy, but after an injury cut my soccer career short I suddenly became very inactive. It took years of misfires before I finally found a new active passion for weight lifting. Getting started is never easy, and setting up for success is the best plan of action to assist anyone in your life who is thinking about starting their own journey. These are a few items you can gift for the fitness rookie in your life:

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

Nordstrom's Biggest Sale Has The Most Legendary Deals On Luxury Beauty Brands We've Ever Seen

Counting down the days to the Chanel box set gracing my front door.

I oftentimes (excessively) use the excuse of my job as a writer to justify my excessive spending habits.

I needed the new Huda Beauty palette before anyone else in the name of journalistic integrity. It was my job to test out the new Francis Kurkdjian fragrance to make sure I could tell people whether or not it was truly worth the splurge (it was).

Keep Reading... Show less

Some people are so good at downplaying their sadness that even they don't realize how much they do it. When you ask them how they are they will always say that they are good, even when they aren't. They exhaust themselves by plastering an energetic and carefree persona in the spaces that you watch them in because at least to you they can control how they appear. They can pretend to be the happy person they want to be when everyone is telling them how funny and bubbly they are all the time.

Keep Reading... Show less

Mental health is not an easy endeavor. It's not a fad. It's not a bandwagon that you can hop on and off of whenever you want to. Your yearly dose of sadness is not depression. I'm not here to define what depression — or anxiety, or any other type of mental health issue looks like — but I will tell you what it's not.

Keep Reading... Show less
Photo by Sonnie Hiles on Unsplash

Whether it's dealing with a global pandemic or getting fired from your job, the fear of not knowing can become consuming if it isn't controlled. Below are some easy ways to take back control and establish a peace of mind.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

My South Asian Roots Inspire My Future Career As Both A Scientist And Journalist — Here's How

Being born to culturally diverse parents, I feel like I have the best of both worlds!

Erikka Chowdhury

To all of those who don't know me, I'm an American girl with South Asian parents who have carved their own niche as immigrants in the USA.

Keep Reading... Show less

The beaches are starting to open up. At least in Cape Cod, where my family and I were able to vacation this week. Near our house, we have a bit of a private beach, which is great.

Keep Reading... Show less

I sometimes look back at the days when I had anorexia and think to myself what would have happened if I had taken another bite? Nowadays, I spend days dreading over my figure and wondering if the old sundresses and outfits even fit. I tell myself that they do, but I feel like reality holds a different truth.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments