Addiction is one of the most chronic behavioral disease in today’s society. It affects an individual, their families and society in a negative way. The most commonly illicit drugs used are cocaine, cannabis and heroine. These substances are used by persons to feel good and to cope with the stress of life. However, these drugs can be harmful to one’s health and can be very costly to individual families and society. The use of illicit drugs has increased over the years. Hence, in 1953 the Narcotics Anonymous group came into existence to help addicts recover from the effects of addiction through a program called twelve-steps.
On November 7, 2016, I visited the Recovery on the Hill Narcotics Anonymous meeting in Amsterdam Avenue. This was to gain an insight of the behavioral stages and changes of an addict. Everyone was greeted with a hug and smiles. I was nervous at first but the welcome calmed my rocking nerves. The meeting was then called to order by the chairperson and they all recite the prayer of serenity. A member of the group read the definition of addiction, after which they all repeated the twelve-step to recovery. That is the reliance on social support and a higher power to help them recover. Each individual introduce themselves and stated what they are recovering from. The addict that arrest my attention with his experience moved my inner-being. He stated that, “he was robbed and shot five times, two shots to the head, two to the torso and one to the leg.” He went near death and realize, that there is much more to life than being an addict.
The health behavioral change that I observed, was that the addicts conceded to self-re- evaluation, admitted they were addicts and prepared for self-liberation. In other words, they made a personal commitment to themselves, starting by attending the addiction meetings.
There were some similarities of what I read in class and the meeting. Firstly, the reason people use and abuse drugs, secondly, the context the drugs was used in and lastly, no matter the race or culture, anyone can abuse drugs and be addicted. For example one person stated “she started using when she caught her husband cheating.” While on the other hand, an African-American male went partying with friends. Drank a bottle of rum, smoke marijuana never stopped using until he couldn’t resist the substances. Furthermore, I noticed at the meeting, a few of its members were in action and maintenance stages of change but most were in the termination stage, that is no temptation to relapse and is 100% confident they stop using.
After carefully analyzing the meeting, I concluded that being an addict all was not lost. The intervention by the group Narcotics anonymous has a huge impact on its members. They assured and compliment the members for stepping forward on making changes in their lives. However, I believe more funds could be allocated to the group for the development and educational awareness of drug use in our communities.
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