Yesterday afternoon I watched the PBS Newshour, as I do most afternoons. One of the segments was about the recent lawsuit in Oklahoma and some of the details of the settlement. One individual that was interviewed was the Attorney General of one of the States. While I believe he is advocating for more money to be taken from the pharmaceutical company, he made some statements about how the drug company is responsible for the drug epidemic, that the company actually caused the epidemic and is responsible for the damage that has taken place in this country.
It is my opinion that such a statement is so very damaging to an addict or alcoholic, both to someone actively using and someone who is attempting to become clean and sober. The reason why I feel so strongly about his statements were harmful to the recovery process and program is that it clearly and totally shifts responsibility to another person, place or thing, in this case the pharmaceutical company and its owners. When responsibility is negated and another is blamed and believed to be the cause of your condition, victimization is instantly created.
When a person believes and feels like they are a victim, there will be no real change or transformation and their life will remain the same which in this type of situation most likely amounts to continuing to use drugs and alcohol. There will be absolutely no inquiry on the individual's part as to his or her responsibility in the matter. The conversation will not be about responsibility but rather about how my situation and life, my using of drugs and alcohol, was caused by another. Not only will the individual not consider changing but will continue to feel sorry for himself and his life and continue to blame, remaining stuck in his addiction.
"We are each responsible for all of our experiences." Louise Hay, You Can Heal Your Life.
Dr. Harry Henshaw