10 Things I Learned About Addiction and Recovery from The Anonymous People

  1. Addiction is a chronic disease, not a moral failing.
  2. Addiction affects ⅔ of American families, with over 23 million families living in long-term recovery.
  3. We must change public perception in order to change public policy and receive proper funding for health systems/recovery resources. Ex: Those who are relapsing are not treated the same as those who are diabetic and need help from the ER.
  4. People are often punished and incarcerated for drug use/possession, rather than provided resources for treatment.
  5. Persons in recovery are silent about their condition due to social stigma, discrimination, and negative mass media depictions.
  6. Speaking with others who are also in recovery is a helpful treatment approach.
  7. There are only seven colleges in the United States that offer sober living dorms for students in recovery.
  8. You can still talk about recovery while following the guidelines and traditions of anonymity.
  9. People in recovery are labeled with derogatory names like drunks, junkies, crackheads, dope fiends, etc. The language used creates a negative mental picture for most people, and assumes that those in recovery are not more than those names suggest.
  10. The media and public should focus more so on recovery and not the addiction itself.  

About the author

Marianna Sann

Marianna Sann is a junior studying journalism at Temple University. Her passion for sharing experiences of people with real-life situations and untold stories, has led her to pursue a career in documentary storytelling. She co-hosted Temple Pulse, a radio show part of Temple’s student run radio station, WHIP. Contact Marianna at tuf54653@temple.edu.

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By Marianna Sann