HOW CAN I WORK OUT WHETHER I MIGHT HAVE AN ADDICTION?

If you are wondering whether the course might be for you, this check-list may help. If you are experiencing a number of the following, it may be time to look for help. If none of these factors are present in your life then this course is NOT for you.

1. Preoccupation Spending a lot of time thinking about alcohol, drugs, pornography, food or some other mood-altering pastime; looking forward to using, planning life around using or planning for specific times of abstinence.

2. Using alone Using in private; secretive use; feeling an urgency for the first use of drink/drugs/pornography etc.

3. Using for effect To obtain a lift, feel or buzz to change thoughts, feelings or behaviours.

4. Protecting supply Hiding the alcohol or drugs to ensure a readily available supply; planning money matters carefully in order to buy drink or drugs.

5. Using more than planned No guarantee of what will happen after the first drink or drug. You intended to just have one line of coke, a couple of drinks, spend only fifteen minutes on a porn website, or eat just one chocolate biscuit and then found you could not stop.

6. Feelings of hurt or remorse Feeling bad about your behaviour – the things said or done; the hurt that may have been caused to others.

7. Increased capacity Able to use more than others. Beginning to need more to get the same effect.

8. Memory blackouts Loss of awareness that conversations or events ever took place.

9. Finding excuses to use My partner upset me, the boss is impossible, I have a tough life, I feel down and need cheering up, I feel anxious and stressed, I feel vulnerable.

10. Promises fail Breaking promises to yourself and others that you will drink, use drugs or look at porn less or even stop altogether.

11. Physical escape Believe that a new start; a new job, a new house, a new relationship, a move to a new country, will bring relief and freedom.

12. Avoiding family and friends Particularly while looking for opportunities to use. Progressively avoiding activities that do not include the use of alcohol or drugs.

13. Early morning shakes Needing the alcohol or drugs to function.

14. Tendency to cross addict Using something else compulsively, particularly when trying to control your ‘medication’ of choice.

15. Continuing use Despite progressively damaging consequences and repeated serious concerns of others.

If three or more of these characteristics are in evidence, there may be an addiction problem.