Harm Reduction Vs. Stupidity

What is harm reduction anyway? To me, it is simply making advanced and harmconscious decisions that would lessen the negative impact one’s behavior might invite. Wearing a seat belt is harm reduction. Using a condom is harm reduction. Walking to the bar to get drunk, rather than driving, is harm reduction.  Get it?

In the world of drugs, addiction, rehab, and recovery, the consequences to relapse can be devastating and long lasting. One of the dreaded fears regarding relapse, is failing a drug test and being kicked out of the house, be it yours and your husband’s, sober living, or your parents. But on the flip side, we know that relapse is a real part of recovery and may happen more than once along that road. In the harm reduction philosophy we don’t keep sending people back to ‘start.’

I had the chance to meet an amazing woman close to 90, who is now practicing harm reduction in response to her granddaughter  Always a staunch 12 stepper, Grandma recently shared a story about her granddaughter who is in recovery-DOC heroin. Her young adult granddaughter Linda, had recently relapsed, and, in a panic about failing the drug test, left sober living on a family pass and was basically hiding out (sleeping in the car) until she could return to sober living and test clean. The whole plot unfolded when Grandma took Linda to lunch, who showed up high as a kite, and then stole money right out from under Grandma’s noise! A cry for help we both thought, being sooooo obvious and all. Like I said, the Grandmother is quite amazing, quickly got the picture, and in a stunning turn, lied to sober living to cover up for Linda’s absence, so that the door was open for Linda to return in a few days and try again. You see, Grandma has seen Linda homeless and does not see that benefiting her granddaughter again (if it ever did) and chose to lie to avoid grave consequences. Very high drama. So now, let me suggest a remedy for each. For Linda I choose the Bach flower remedy Chestnut Bud- the same mistakes are made again and again because one does not process his experiences really and does not learn enough from it, and also some homeopathic Nux Vomica for the few days of withdrawal. For Grandma I suggest Carob veg for worrying, Ignatia for the sadness she feels for her granddaughter, and also Calc-pic for mental exhaustion. When in doubt, you can always dowse for the modality, or remedy within a modality, that will most benefit the person you are dowsing for, but in this case, there is no question about my picks.

The dilemmas and questions at hand;

homeless1Linda had 9 months clean- to loose her home would surely suggest inevitable relapse.
Lying is modeling poor behavior, yet we all justify exceptions- consider your last lie.
Would being kicked out of sober living benefit Linda and does the punishment fit the crime? I think not.
Should Linda be given a chance to return to sober living? Yes- at least 1 or more chances.
What is a less extreme consequence for relapsing? Anything but becoming homeless.
Did Grandma enable, or did Grandma practice harm reduction? I want to know what you think.harm reduction

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