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I’m sure you all can agree that there are some very typical things that normies – people who can drink alcohol and even use drugs in a controlled way – are curious about but might hesitate to ask. For those of you in recovery, you’ll probably get a kick out of this listicle and, for any normies reading this, it might answer some of those questions so you don’t have to ask them. Here are 8 things normies want to know about addicts but are too afraid to ask.

#1. You can still drink though, right?

In my experience, normies are often curious as to why people in recovery, especially addicts who didn’t necessarily abuse alcohol in their active addiction, can’t “just have one drink, once in a while.”

I feel like I could be an authority on the subject because I abused many, many different substances but, alcohol was not one of them. I just didn’t like it. I mean, I started out with alcohol back in high school but, by the time I got to treatment – about 14 years later – I hadn’t had a drink in probably the last 2 or 3 years of my addiction. Today, I have no desire to drink. And, I know that I can’t drink or else it’s right back to heroin I go.

Also, it’s sometimes difficult to explain – or for normies to understand – the concept of recovery. The bottom line being that we choose not to consume any mood or mind-altering substance, which includes alcohol.

#2. What drugs did you do?

This is a highly personal question. Those of us in recovery have no problem discussing this subject amongst ourselves however, we are hesitant to tell normies for fear of being judged (see #6). In my experience, normies sense that this is a personal question and are therefore afraid to ask but, eventually they do. They just can’t resist their curiosity.

#3. What was your bottom?

OK, more likely, a normie will ask it like this: what’s the worst thing you’ve ever done? The term “bottom” might not necessarily be in their vocabulary although, the expression “hitting rock bottom” is quite commonly-known. Either way, just like asking what drug or drugs we did, asking what brought us to our knees can be a painful and personal subject.

#4. Did you ever go to jail?

Normies might be afraid to ask this one although, again, in my experience, they will eventually ask it. Unfortunately, and not so surprisingly, addiction and crime, and therefore jail time go hand-in-hand.

#5. Did you ever strip or prostitute?

Eesh. Totally a touchy subject. Anybody with any social couth should be afraid to ask this one.

#6. Did you smoke crack?

…when it comes to board meetings and crack-smoking

Nope, but I shot it. Hahaha. No, actually, I did smoke it and also injected it (see #7). Crack remains to be a lot less socially-accepted (read: not at all socially-accepted) than powder cocaine. The thing is, a lot of people who were abusing drugs at one time have also used and/or abused crack. Despite their background and despite what they look like. I have met several people in recovery who were and are now quite successful executive-types – you know, the type that doesn’t look like a crackhead.

#7. Did you use a needle?

Normies are often afraid to ask if we injected our drugs, as if doing them any other way makes addiction any less worse.

#8. Do you judge people who drink or use?

I think a lot of normies assume that those of us in recovery are judgmental towards them. This really isn’t the case. I mean, I can’t speak for all sober people everywhere but, I know that I don’t really have anything against people who can drink or even use drugs socially. And that’s one of the things I really like about the fellowship. They are not drug nazis. We acknowledge that there are people who can drink and use (normies) and then there’s…us.

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135.

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