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Why Are We Afraid of Treatment?

For many of us living with addiction, the solution to our recovery lies in seeking professional treatment so that we can benefit from the guidance, experience and expertise available to us there. We often know that we need rehab, we know it can help us, but we’re resistant to it. We’re hesitant to take the steps to follow through with it. Why are we so afraid of treatment?

Our resistance to treatment can be the result of various fears. We might be afraid of being judged by people, so we’re hesitant to put ourselves in positions where we might be vulnerable, where our weaknesses are exposed, where we’re not in control. We might have experienced being judged, shunned and ostracized in the past, so we instinctively avoid any situations that might bring us similar feelings of rejection and condemnation. We’re accustomed to feeling ashamed of ourselves and belittled by other people, and we associate treatment with being more of the same.

Sometimes we’re afraid of treatment because we fear doing the hard work it will take to recover. We’re afraid of pushing and challenging ourselves. We’re afraid of the changes we’ll need to implement and the sacrifices we’ll need to make. We’re afraid to give up our dependence on the drugs and behaviors that we’ve grown so dependent upon over the years, that we’ve always utilized to cope with all our difficult thoughts and emotions. We’re afraid of the painful withdrawal symptoms. We’re afraid of having to confront ourselves and our unresolved issues without being able to self-medicate, without having anything to numb our pain. We fear the loneliness and emptiness we can feel when we’re finally facing our emotions head on, unfiltered and unmedicated.

Very often our fear of treatment lies in our fear of failure. We fear doing the work to recover and then failing, relapsing and falling back into old patterns. We fear we’ll always be suffering. We fear we’ll never be able to reclaim our power from the addictions that have taken over our lives. Sometimes within our fear of failure is also a fear of success. We’re afraid of what it will mean if we do succeed in our recovery. We’ll have to push ourselves outside of our comfort zones. We’ll have to challenge ourselves. We’ll have to live up to certain difficult expectations, and we’re afraid of disappointing ourselves and the people who believe in us. We’re afraid of the work and the responsibility that come with success, so we avoid the recovery process altogether.

Exploring our fears can take the sting out of them and help ease the burden of them. The more we look at them, the more we see we don’t have to let them overpower us. Our fear of treatment can be transformed into motivation to conquer that fear, to push ourselves to finally commit to our recovery.

The caring, compassionate staff of The Guest House is here to support you as you start your journey to recovery and healing. Call 855-483-7800 today for more information.