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Abstienence versus Moderation

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CF Ambassador
Jan 11, 2020
Abstinence versus Moderation

This is where the battle lines are drawn in the world of treating addiction. There are those who believe you can train yourself to fight an addiction through moderation, and then there are those who believe you can never engage in certain mood-altering experiences without risking relapse.

Even some 12-Step programs are divided on this issue. In Alcoholics Anonymous any alcohol consumption at all is a relapse, while in Overeaters Anonymous people believe you may have to give up certain “trigger” foods forever, but when it comes to food in general you continue to eat in moderation

It is not just a matter of substance abuse versus behavioral addictions because morphine in a narcotic and yet people dying of cancer need it. And some people, in the early stages of alcoholism, can drink in moderation.

To tell the difference you must be honest with yourself. If moderation does not work then try abstinence. The exception would be food.

For the most part, “different strokes for different folks.” We each, through trial and error, must find the treatment program that works for us. However, whatever form of treatment an addict seeks, he is well advised to realize that he or she may have an addictive personality and can easily relapse.

Remember: “To know oneself makes for power, self-control and success." "To thy own self be true." "Know thyself."
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