There is a lot of information out there about the validity of 12 step programs and whether or not they are effective. If you are ready to get help for your excessive drug use and want to know is there evidence that 12 step programs work for drug abuse, here is some information that may offer you some insight to what is available to you.
On the outside 12 step programs have more than 2 million members worldwide, the basis of their program has been around since 1939, and no matter how long you have been away, there is always a seat waiting for you. Their belief structure is based on the idea that drug abuse is a disease and that it can only be treated through surrendering your will to a higher power, attending meetings for the rest of your life and abstaining from drug use. They also believe that the 'drug addict' is powerless over their addiction and that they will relapse at some point.
The idea that the addict is powerless creates the belief that the drug user is not responsible for their use because they cannot help it that they use drugs. This idea further creates a victim mentality that absolves the individual of their personal responsibility for their choices. The truth is that all drug users choose to use drugs and some choose to use drugs even in the face of detrimental consequences.
Some say that 12 step programs work for some individuals, and that they are not successful with everyone that enrolls in them. The fact is that of the more than 2 million enrolled, the dropout rate is 95 percent, which shows the need for incessant recruitment. Also, there is no empirical evidence that proves that there is an addiction gene or that chronic drug use can be compared to diseases such as leukemia or cancer. There further is not true evidence that 12 step programs work for drug abuse because very few program independently verify it's results. Without this proof, any program can give whatever success rate they choose.
It is plausible that you learned to use drugs from someone in your family; but the decision to follow through and to use them was your choice to make. When you use drugs, you get a euphoric and elated sensation and your brain begins to associate the happy feeling to drug use. However, your brain can be retrained to associate the same happy feeling with a different task.
If you are ready to explore a different approach to your addiction problem, there is an alternative to 12 step programs. The St. Jude Program uses cognitive behavioral education to take guests through a comprehensive process involving in depth self assessment and self-directed change. Guests learn they can change themselves from the inside out and take complete control over their thoughts, decisions and behaviors. Guests also learn to develop behaviors and habits that are more in line with their personal goals.
St. Jude Retreats helps people to build self confidence and self esteem by empowering our guests through knowledge and become self aware. Our guests discover that they can have a life that is permanently free from substance use problems and can have long term success without the need of meetings for the rest of their lives