Why People use Drugs and Alcohol as a Means of Escaping Reality

Why? Because it works! From personal experience I can attest to that fact. We are all born with certain propensities; and unless we are aware of these, they can take over our lives. For example, I’ve known people who will not drink because there is so much alcoholism in their family, they know that they would be creating a problem. What makes one person get high and hate it and another love it? I don’t really think there are any solid answers. In my case, at the age of 17 I was introduced to alcohol and just loved the way it felt to get drunk and have a great time. It was probably six years before it became a real problem and was used (along with drugs) as an escape.

For myself, I feel that addicts are extremely sensitive people who have a hard time dealing with many facets of reality. After having interacted with a huge number of addicts over the years, I can tell you that they are, to a greater or lesser degree, emotional and sensitive people with a lot of baggage. Most of them have alcoholism & addiction (both words interchangeable)in the family which would give credence to the genetic proposition. In interactions with “straight” people, I’ve found a subtle underlying difference. When an addict meets someone who is another addict, something clicks; and when an addict meets a non-addict, it is more difficult to develop a relationship. There seems to be more of an easiness in addicts

However (and it’s a big however), I have not known too many people who do not like to escape in some way, whether it’s shopping or any other addiction. Who wants to suffer? Who wants pain, either physical or emotional). Some people are stoic and others not. Addicts are burdened with the many causes of their addictions; and if they don’t recognize these and deal with them, they can end up taking themselves to the final “escape.”

Life is not easy; and many of us can’t handle it unless we are taught how. What’s probably most important in battling the causes and subsequent addiction are upbringing and education in the real facts of life. Personally, I was totally floored when I was told to live “one day at a time”. Such a simple concept!

So, I really believe it is a combination of genetics, sensitivities, emotionalism, upbringing, life experiences, and life concepts that contribute to people being addicts or alcoholics and unable to deal with life situations.