Addiction: Medical Reality Presented by Josh Richardson

Meeting Was Held On -

Sunday, June 9, 2019 12:05 PM

Psychotherapist/ Addiction counsellor Josh Richardson, approaches the subject as a “substance use disorder ‘and he rejects the long held view of addiction as being a moral failing, or lack of will power.

To assure ‘harm reduction’, (i.e.: fewer deaths and permanent disability), we must approach the person, and the subject, with compassion rather than judgement. We discussed whether early trauma plays a role. The book In the Realm of the Hungry Ghosts, by Gabor Mate, was mentioned a number of times.

We should have safe injection sites with no question, free Naloxone, counselling, and community acceptance; all of which are essential elements of harm reduction. Is this enough to support the pain of people who are living precarious lives, perhaps homeless, in poverty, and ill? Is there a sufficient amount of time, effort and funding devoted to trying to eliminate drug dependency? A balanced approach is important.

We talked about Alcoholics Anonymous. Josh acknowledges that AA offers community, hope, structure, and other benefits. At the same time, it is still based on a religious model, and one that suggests moral failing.

Josh said: “Humans have, from very early times, had a desire to ‘get out of their heads”.  Hmmmmm.

If we had had more time this would have made another interesting area to explore. Perhaps another time…..

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