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Is addiction a choice or disease? watch

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    This seems to be a topic that's being brought into the light again, probably down to the publicity due to Demi Lovato and I want to get TSR's opinion. I'm talking about recreational substances (Disclaimer: Not conding any use and everyone should stay away if they get in that position).

    So do you believe an addiction of this sort is a choice or disease?

    (Opinion Inbound)

    Speaking from personal experience, I think that it's a choice and will always be a choice. It's not fair to class it as a disease. However this doesn't mean we should be shunning people that have made this choice, earlier this year when I was in CBT and was extremely depressed with my full time job, I found myself straying to this sort of behaviour day in day out as it was a release. This seemed to give me a new lease of life, however the damage it was causing was ridiculous. As you put it as a priority and start hurting others around you without you even realising.

    However, as soon as I got a new job and my circumstances changed, this behaviour completely stopped and I found myself in a much better (and sober) place.

    After this, I believe that we shouldn't make these people to be scum of the earth and lowlifes, but rather focus on people's lifestyle, and what drives them into wanting to be in a constant state of altered consciousness as this will nearly always be the root cause. Calling it a choice and letting people rot will only make people fall even harder, but calling it a disease and getting treatment as so is unfair to those who have terminal illness's etc that have never put a foot wrong. It needs a whole new approach entirely.

    (Sorry If this topic breaks the rules but it's a hot topic atm)
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    I think both. You might make a choice which leads you into a situation where you are susceptible to a disease. Often once you are mentally unwell it feels as though you are choosing to continue to be unwell, but actually you wouldn’t be able to choose not to be. Your mind won’t let you. My experience with my own and others eating disorders has shown me that sometimes you need help to get out of the disease before you can learn to avoid falling back in.
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    I also think both. Initially it is your choice to pick up whatever drug of choice you choose to do and then once that drug gets a hold of your system and the power of the drug takes over it becomes a disease and you lose that choice of making good decisions on whether you are going to use the drug or not. The drug becomes that choice which is then in my opinion a disease because it is taking control of your mind.
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    I suffer from addiction (not drugs) and I can tell you that its both. I choose to indulge in my addiction but at the same time it takes over your mind and rational thinking to the point you crave it and feel like you will die if you don't. Honestly its horrible.
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    addiction is not a choice. if you're an addict, you'll be an addict for the rest of your life whether you're using or not - it's out of your control. but getting better/seeking help is a choice. the problem is once you're hooked you don't think like a non-addict. you can't rationalise or reason things out when you're not sober, and when you are sober all you can think about is your body screaming at you for more drugs or alcohol, or whatever it is you're addicted to. this is not me speaking from personal experience - i just imagine it would be this way since i suffer from anxiety and depression which is usually associated with drug abuse.
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    It's a choice. You chose to take drugs etc, regardless of the reasons and not taking personal responsibility doesnt help anyone and is likely to result in relapse rates.
    I think its unfair to classify it as a diseases since it started with direct choices you made compared to other diseases.
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    It's a choice.
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    I’d kind of argue both and neither?

    I feel like there must be a word for it that suits it better. I can understand how it’s considered a choice, because you’re actively choosing to take the thing you know you shouldn’t, but I can also see how it’s a mental disease similar (and yet different) to others that can be diagnosed.

    Its a dependency. I’m not sure what word describes it more seriously than a choice and less seriously than a disease 🤔
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    (Original post by BitMel)
    It's a choice. You chose to take drugs etc, regardless of the reasons and not taking personal responsibility doesnt help anyone and is likely to result in relapse rates.
    I think its unfair to classify it as a diseases since it started with direct choices you made compared to other diseases.
    Some used to say (and some still would) that depression or is a choice, and you can choose to be happy or not. But nevertheless many mental issues now are classed as diseases.

    (I’m not saying I neccessarily agree with this - I don’t, but I can see how it’s a bit of a grey area when it comes to the mind)

    Arguably certain mental disorders are promoted by certain life choices 🤔
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    it starts off as a choice(coz you can't get addicted to something you didn't choose to do) then it just turns into a disease.
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    (Original post by BitMel)
    It's a choice. You chose to take drugs etc, regardless of the reasons and not taking personal responsibility doesnt help anyone and is likely to result in relapse rates.
    I think its unfair to classify it as a diseases since it started with direct choices you made compared to other diseases.
    So if people choose to overeat and become obese and suffer diabetes and heart problems are they not diseases? Or if you choose to diet and develop anorexia is that not a disease?

    People who don’t think it’s a disease have clearly never witnessed drug or alcohol dependency first hand.
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    (Original post by del1rious)
    So if people choose to overeat and become obese and suffer diabetes and heart problems are they not diseases? Or if you choose to diet and develop anorexia is that not a disease?

    People who don’t think it’s a disease have clearly never witnessed drug or alcohol dependency first hand.
    as i said direct choices- anorexia is not a direct consequence of dieting and dieting isnt self depreciating behaviour or dangerous behaviour such as sticking a heroin needle into you arm.....
    Same with overeating.
    Dont act like its the same thing and no you would mean being addicted to food, not get diabetes. (which if you get addicted to food, is your fault or your parents as well)
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    (Original post by BitMel)
    It's a choice. You chose to take drugs etc, regardless of the reasons and not taking personal responsibility doesnt help anyone and is likely to result in relapse rates.
    I think its unfair to classify it as a diseases since it started with direct choices you made compared to other diseases.
    I’m not sure that last bits right- what about smoking leading to lung cancer? Or lying in the sun with no sun cream and getting skin cancer?

    With all these things it isn’t a guarantee that the choice will lead to the disease- which is exactly the same as addiction.

    It’s definitely a complex topic! Good one to play a bit of devil's advocate on.

    Side note: anorexia is by no means a choice, however at the beginning of the disease it is possible to pull back (this is how relapses are avoided later) if you stop restricting then. In this society this is incredibly difficult because dieting is a normal thing and it is easy to convince yourself that your extreme measures are normal. After this point you may feel like you are choosing to continue to restrict but in reality you are out of control.
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    (Original post by stimtothesky)
    I’m not sure that last bits right- what about smoking leading to lung cancer? Or lying in the sun with no sun cream and getting skin cancer?

    With all these things it isn’t a guarantee that the choice will lead to the disease- which is exactly the same as addiction.

    It’s definitely a complex topic! Good one to play a bit of devil's advocate on.

    Side note: anorexia is by no means a choice, however at the beginning of the disease it is possible to pull back (this is how relapses are avoided later) if you stop restricting then. In this society this is incredibly difficult because dieting is a normal thing and it is easy to convince yourself that your extreme measures are normal. After this point you may feel like you are choosing to continue to restrict but in reality you are out of control.
    I see anorexia as similar to addiction. Drinking alcohol especially is extremely normalised in society and taking recreational drugs is as well to some extent (most people experiment at the very least). Because drinking is so normalised it’s easy to convince yourself that you don’t have a problem. This is especially dangerous for functioning alcoholics, whose life isn’t necessarily falling apart but they are putting themselves in an early grave nonethelessx
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    I was addicted to energy drinks and had to drink at least four cans a day otherwise I would get a debilitating headache. I didn't know I was addicted until I couldn't afford my drinks one day. I never knew you could even get addicted to energy drinks. It was not a choice.
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    Addiction is a disease that stems from choice. You have total free will whether to pick up a needle, pick up a razor blade, pick up a bottle, pick up a cigarette the first time. Whatever lead to that choice may have been out of your control, but it was definitely a choice.

    Addiction is when you don't have the free will to choose not to anymore.
 
 
 
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