Thursday, September 09, 2010

Getting Priorities Straight - Germany

"Parents of addicts call for acceptance" is the headline of a piece in the Aug 2010 issue of Drogenkurier, which bills itself as "the magazine of JES - Junkies, former junkies and those receiving substitution treatment". The head of one of the leading parent groups in Germany is quoted: "Of course we'd prefer to have our children clean. But the first goal must be to secure their survival, not their abstinence." Difficult to comprehend how anyone, regardless of therapeutic philosophy, could argue with that sentiment. The man who is quoted lost a son to "the politics of drugs" 18 years ago, a suicide by hanging after a long period of desperate and unsuccessful attempt to get help.


At 1:39 PM, Anonymous Garrett McGovern said...

The people who demand abstinence of opiate users rarely practice what they preach. Many smoke tobacco and drink alcohol to varying degrees of excess. As this piece states, recovery shouldn't be measured by whether someone takes medication or not to get better. The focus should be on the getting better, however that might be achieved. Unfortunately, the abstinence route to recovery from heroin use is associated with a high risk of harm and death. Those doctors, counsellors, therapists, loved ones etc who push abstinence should remember this.


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