Thursday, November 22, 2012

IS or WAS?

Son1, Husband, Son2... showing their toughness

A couple of days ago before work I was doing a flyover on POA blogs, starting with my own.  I jumped to Ron's blog and clicked on his link where he had recently written an article.

As I was getting ready to close out and go to work, I noticed something curious.  With the two tabs open in my browser,  the tab for my blog said "My son is an Addict", and the other one from Ron's article said "My son was an Addict".  Both of our sons, about the same age, clean and sober for a couple years or so... what does that mean?

My Son2 says he IS an addict, in the present tense.  My interpretation of that is that, even though he is sober, he fights for it every day.  For me, I am afraid to put it in the past tense, afraid to think that it is really over.  Don't get me wrong, my son is doing well and I am so proud of him.  I guess I have a lot to think about.  Maybe you will see some changes on my blog soon.  BTW, I would love to hear what Ron thinks about this.

It's hard to move forward from the past sometimes for me.  FOUR years ago today, our Son2 came to us with his heroin addiction.  He's home now actually, for Thanksgiving, just like he was then.  Every Thanksgiving since then, I've brought it up with family members, to mark the day and be thankful for how far we've all come.  I don't know if I will this year, maybe I should leave it behind this time.  But, I will still be thinking of it.  Yesterday, I had a text exchange with K, Son2's former girlfriend.  We are still in touch... it's hard to let go of that too.  I told her how thankful I was she was there to share those years with us, and to be part of our family during that time.  She said she would make all the same choices again... and that she has seen Son2 grow and change and can't see him ever going back.  Time for all of us to move on I guess.

So, I give thanks today ...

Happy Thanksgiving to all.



  1. That was not an article I wrote. It was an interview and the interviewer/writer was the one that titled the article. She is a writer for

  2. So, what do you think, Ron from your point of view? IS or WAS?

  3. I think that with some they may fight every single day and that the IS label never disappears. I believe with some they leave that moniker behind. I do think that they remain highly allergic to certain drugs and any relapse could spiral them quickly back into active addiction.

    A conversation I had with my son about two weeks ago he said that part of his life is behind him and he never thinks bout it or craves to go back. He said all of that is gone from his life and he moves forward only.

    I don't know, do you call that IS or WAS? I really don't make a distinction. In reality it is up to the addict to determine where they are. To me it really isn't important.

    Gives me more to think about. Thinking about other diseases how do we classify someone with other long term diseases? Diabetes comes to mind. If someone controls their diabetes with diet and exercise, no longer has to take insulin is that person referred to, IS an diabetic? Or do you think of them as, WAS and diabetic?

    I think the label is up to the person currently suffering or suffered in the past from the disease.

    I'm just going to accept the WAS can be right and I will accept that IS an addict in recovery too.

  4. The addiction specialists have said they they are always and addict using or not using, kind of like an alcoholic is always an alcoholic even when they are sober. My son tells me that even though he has been clean for quite some time that he will always be an addict meaning that he cannot use drugs not even once like someone who isn't an addict can, nor can they use alcohol either. But I think it is really up to the individual as to what they want to say, I understand not wanting to be labeled. To me my son will always be an addict no matter how many years of clean time he has under his belt. I also feel that they are highly allergic to all drugs including alcohol at least that is what the addiction experts say.

  5. We are and always will be Alcoholics and Addicts. Really they are the same and most likely synonymous. Alcoholics drink(mostly) and use and Addict use (mostly)and drink..It is really not the substance we put in our bodies but what it does to us. Drugs alcohol....anything that alters our state so we can numb our feelings is what makes us slaves of "Addiction". At least in this generation. All of us normal or otherwise on have one day but for the "addict" it takes on a special meaning when we "wake" up. To think we are a "was" or cured is dangerous territory, at least for this Addict/Alcoholic..I choose to love my label so as to help as many people as possible. Enjoy the journey