Brian Mann, NPR, interviewed Drs. John Kelly and David Eddie (Harvard University), who resoundingly stated that there is hope of recovery. They noted that more than 9% of the population live in recovery, and 75% of people who suffer from substance-use disorder eventually recover. Kelly added, “I think it kind of goes against our cultural perception that people never get better. We are literally surrounded by people who are in recovery.” Research suggests that people don’t just survive, but they go forward and thrive. Eddie explained, “They end up achieving things they wouldn’t have achieved if they hadn’t gone through the hell of addiction. So, there is absolutely hope.”
My reflection: My son’s addiction lasted 14 years. During that siege, there was little research available to suggest that most people recover. All I knew was that my son was sick, and I was desperate.
Today’s Promise to consider: There is burgeoning research about substance-use disorder and recovery. We know that addiction is hard to treat. We also know that we need additional and continuing research. This article from NPR states that five or more relapses are often the norm and that it takes eight years or more to achieve long-term remission. If our loved ones can stay alive long enough, the research says that eventually the majority recover. Let’s keep hope alive.4888
This is enormously encouraging, to read, Libby. I wonder if the “eight years or more in recovery” refers to having eight years of attempts at achieving sobriety or eight consecutive years living in recovery without relapse? Thank you always for your words of wisdom. xx
Dear Pamela, I’m thrilled to read your comment. Yes, the research is encouraging. I think the ‘eight years or more in recovery’ means eight consecutive years living in recovery without relapse. The NPR audio recording is only 6 minutes long, if you want to delve into it. xoxo
Thank you for your response, Libby, I certainly will!
thank you! this gives me hope for my son who has been using since he was 13 and is now, 23. he is attempting sobriety at every turn but can’t sustain it.
Dear Rebecca, I understand and, yes, the stats are encouraging. The most helpful stat to me was that five or more relapses are normal. I wish I had known that when my son was sick. Toward the end of my son’s addiction, his beloved therapist told me, “Relapse is one step closer to recovery.” This gave me some peace. I join you in prayer and hope for your son. xo
Amen to that! My son went through the hell of addiction for 14 years too, he has been clean for coming up to 3 years now, unfortunately he is going through a very tough stage in his personal and work life, partly due to the addiction and how it has had an affect on him. I pray every night and day that he will be okay and come through without going back into addiction or worse. It’s an extremely worrying time for me his Mum. All I can do is be here for him, listen to him and support him emotionally.
I do have hope and faith that it will be alright and he will sort it out in his own way. You have to keep that hope and faith alive in yourself, so they can also see that there definitely is hope and a guardian angel by your side every step of the journey.
Dear Angela, I know that place of worry, the constant nag in the belly, and the hurt in the heart. Your son has been clean for almost three years. This is HUGE. My son tells me that even one day in sobriety is cause for celebration. I join in in prayer that your son will continue to be well. I join you in faith that he will be! I join you in trust that his guardian angel will sit on his shoulder with strength. My love to you.