Professional skateboarder and television personality Bam Margera has left alcohol rehab after ten days, leaving many friends and families to wonder whether or not he is suffering from addiction denial. Margera left a series of notes rationalizing his early departure, claiming, among other things, that he is bored 50 percent of the time in rehab and that he knows exactly what to do in order to stay in recovery. The notes, which Margera posted on Instagram yesterday, also discussed his relapse after being robbed at gunpoint on a trip to Colombia. The former star of MTV “Jackass” claims he left treatment because he doesn’t like to sit stagnant, and that exercise, creative expression and other types of therapy are better for him.
Addiction Denial or Self-Awareness?
Each and every one of us who have experienced addiction in our own lives or within our families are acutely aware of the power of excuses. Sometimes even the most blatant examples of addiction denial can appear as legitimate explanations and sound, lucid and rational thinking. We tell ourselves that we can “handle it”, that we know what’s best for us, that we understand what we have to do in order to maintain our sobriety and recovery. We may even believe these rationalizations and, on some level, they may even be true. Eventually, however, adversity comes along and threatens our peace of mind and emotional equilibrium.
The Need for Treatment…Even When We Don’t Realize It
Drug and alcohol addiction can come for anyone, even the smartest, most talented and charismatic among us; even the people we think can handle anything that comes their way on their own. Treatment is the great equalizer and helps us understand our vulnerabilities, insecurities, strengths and virtues. The very nature of chemical dependency significantly hinders decision-making and judgment. Addiction denial due to inflated self-opinion, fear, guilt, embarrassment or any other malignant emotion can completely derail our long-term recovery. If you or someone you care about is battling substance use disorder (SUD), don’t let denial stop you from getting the help you need and living a better life.