What Hitting Rock Bottom Means For Those Addicted To Drugs And Alcohol


“Rock Bottom” is defined as someone hitting or reaching their lowest possible point.

For people with a drug or alcohol use disorder (addiction), it often seems like things need to get worse before they can get better. Unfortunately, sometimes things get a lot worse!

This point is often referred to as “hitting or reaching rock bottom.” The bottom is the place that some people with severe drug or alcohol use disorder (addiction) must reach before they are finally ready to admit that they have an addiction and finally reach out for help, support, treatment and therapies to change their life around.

People who have an addiction to drugs or alcohol often feel that they do not have a problem. In their minds, they are just having a good time and are still in control of their alcohol consumption.

Addicts will lie, cheat, steal and try to justify their unjustifiable behaviours in order to continue using or drinking drugs or alcohol.

Because alcohol or drug addiction is a progressive medical disease/condition, there comes a point at which even people with severe addictions decide that there just might be a problem and they need help and support to make positive changes.

Drug and alcohol addiction does not stay in one place. The disorder doesn’t hit a certain stage and then level off. It keeps deepening, worsening and affecting the person physically, mentally, morally and spiritually and also severely impacts those family and friends around them.

No matter where a person is in the progression of the disorder, things continue to decline until the person reaches a point where something must change or they will end up in one of three situations according to Narcotics Anonymous (NA)/Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) in prison, a mental institution or dead.

Here is 6 people’s different experiences with them hitting their rock bottom too.


So… Where Is This Supposed Rock Bottom?

This can vary depending upon the individual and their situation.

For some, getting arrested for shoplifting to gain money for drugs or alcohol, getting locked up, even for a few hours and facing the public humiliation of a court date is for some the only signal they need they have a problem and need to change their life around. This being their “rock bottom”.

For others, however, not even numerous arrests have an effect. Driving without a license and frequent visits to the local police station or prison doesn’t phase them at all.

However for others, the desperation of their marriage or relationship or loss of custody of their children will be their “rock bottom”.

Again for others, something as simple as being scared by developing a physical or mental health condition directly associated with their addiction will be their “rock bottom”.

People with addictions have lost driver’s licenses, jobs, careers, girlfriends, boyfriends, husbands, wives, family, children, money, freedom (incarceration), friends, houses, limbs and even their lives, yet have continued to deny they have a problem with drugs or alcohol.

For many people, there is always a way to excuse or blame their behaviour on other things. It was always somebody else’s fault or because of a situation out of their control. This might involve blaming other people or other situations. Or pinning the behaviour on things like stress or people who just don’t understand. In a previous article, we discussed how addicts justify their behaviours in unjustifiable circumstances. You can view the article here.

Some people with severe addictions go on for many more years or even decades denying their downward spiral into social, economic and moral decline, simply to meet their physical and psychological needs for their continued consumption of drugs and alcohol.

Well known UK Comedian and ex addict Russell Brand is well known for his addictive past and now, he’s been making waves helping others with theirs.


Does The Bottom Look Familiar To You?

If this sounds familiar, there are a few questions that you might want to ask yourself about your own use of alcohol or drugs.

It doesn’t have to get any worse before you can find help, support, treatments, therapies and interventions that can put your life back on track toward a happier, more productive and prosperous life where addicts can become a contributor to their community rather than a drain on local community resources. Once you take the first step, accepting that you have an addiction and need professional help and support to change your life around, things will begin to look up towards the sunshine rather than the darkness that blankets those with an addiction.


Where Can I Get Help & Support For My Addiction?

You can find contact information for a wide variety of groups, charities and organisations who can help you overcome your addiction to drugs and alcohol on our help and support page here.


Want More Like This?…

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  • Recognising And Overcoming Behavioural Addictions
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  • Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome – Babies Born Addicts
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  • How many years are your bad habits shaving off YOUR life? Find Out By Using Our Interactive Addiction Calculator
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Published by Drink ’n’ Drugs

Providing useful, relevant, up to date information and support for those suffering from active addiction or those who are in recovery.

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