When many people hear the term “addiction,” they think about illicit drugs and alcohol. However, I had an addiction, and I have never drunk alcohol or used illicit drugs. I had an addiction to Xanax. It was a drug that my doctor prescribed to me to help me manage my anxiety.
When I first started using Xanax, I used it responsibly. I took it exactly the way that my doctor recommended. However, I decided to take matters into my own hands when I felt like it was not working. I started increasing my dosage, and I eventually developed an addiction.
My addiction had a negative impact on every aspect of my life. My health suffered, and I had to be hospitalized several times. I lost my job because I missed days; too many days. My parenting also suffered.
Fortunately, I was able to overcome my addiction. I went to rehab for Xanax addiction, and my life has changed for the better. Every aspect of my life has improved since I got out of rehab, including my parenting. There are several ways that I am a better parent since I stopped using Xanax.
I Spend More Time with My Children
It is entirely possible for a parent to be there physically while being mentally or emotionally checked out. That was my problem. There were times when I would be there with my children, but my mind would be on my addiction. I was always thinking about my addiction. My children could tell that my mind was elsewhere.
I am now there mentally and emotionally. When I spend time with my children, they are my total focus. I don’t have to think about when I am going to take my next dose of Xanax.
I Attend More Events
My children are involved in a lot of events at school. My son plays football. My daughter does ballet. I missed a lot of their events because I was too busy feeding my addiction. I was also too sick to attend the events. I am now able to go to more of their events.
My children always tell me about how much seeing me at their events makes them happy. I am also going to many other events with my children; every Friday we go out for pizza and ice cream.
I Talk to Them More
Communication is an important part of any relationship. The parent-child relationship is no different. There were times when I would go days without speaking to my children because I was so consumed with my addiction. I now talk to them every day. I ask them about how their day went at school. I also tell them that they can talk to me about anything.
My children feel comfortable talking to me about their problems. It is a relief to know that I can now help them with their problems instead of adding to them.
I am Healthier and Happier
I, fruitlessly, tried my best to hide the way that my addiction was affecting me from my children. They could tell that I was extremely ill. They could also tell that I was miserable. Self-care is important if you are a parent. If you do not care for yourself, then your children will also suffer.
I take a lot better care of myself now that I am addiction-free. I make sure that I eat healthy. I also make sure that I exercise every day. My children are better off now that I am a happier and healthier person. Because I am in a better place, they are much better off as well.
about the author…Daniel Factor is a freelance writer from Birmingham. He is passionate about helping those in recovery from addiction, and he occasionally writes for The Recovery Village.