11 Myths About Addiction Recovery

group members Lucas and Kylee in a Groups session

At Groups Recover Together, we know all about the stigma around addiction recovery. Some of these myths exist because of fear. Some because they used to be true. In every case, these myths represent a barrier to recovery from addiction.

So let’s break them down.

1. People who work in recovery have no idea what addiction is really like.
It’s true that many people don’t understand. You’ve been down a long, hard road. At Groups, many of our counselors have personal recovery stories. Take Sean for example.

Everyone’s road is different, but our counselors have been through personal struggles or have a loved one who has been through recovery. And they’re here because they truly want to help.

2. Withdrawal has to feel like hell.
When people picture withdrawal, they often imagine it like it is in the movies: sweating and screaming, pain and nausea. That kind of withdrawal — with no support — isn’t what we strive for at Groups.

We prescribe medication that will help you come off drugs without withdrawal. That way, you can focus on learning the skills of your recovery, instead of feeling sick.

3. No one cares what happens to people who are addicted to drugs.
We care. Not just about your recovery, but about you as a person. When you’re a member at Groups, you’ll get access to resources that can help you grow. We have a whole group of people called Care Navigators who help our members solve problems like access to food, housing, and education.

Even if you don’t choose to join Groups, we want you to do well in your recovery. That’s why we made the Recovery Playbook, which you can download with no strings attached.

We also encourage you to call us at (888) 247-5249. Reach out if you’re struggling. We want to help.

4. If you make a mistake in a recovery program, you’ll get kicked out.
We know that some programs, especially in the past, didn’t understand. But we know that recovery is a process. People make mistakes: they miss meetings, and they use drugs… that doesn’t mean the journey is over.

We do ask our members to take scheduled drug tests. But if a test comes back positive, that doesn’t mean you’re out. We know that drug use is a symptom of addiction. We don’t punish people for struggling, and we know there’s no such thing as perfect.

5. You can’t start recovering until you hit rock bottom.
As one of our counselors likes to say, “you’re in recovery when you say you are.” No one else can tell you what recovery looks like for you. Regardless of how it looks to other people, if you need help, it’s time to get help.

6. Treatment can’t work for you.
Some of our members have been in recovery before; some many times before. That doesn’t mean treatment can’t work.

Every time you go into recovery, you’re a different person than you were the time before. You’re trying to get better, learning and growing. Treatment will take time, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth trying.

7. Recovery is expensive.
We all know those luxury clinics that on TV: can be very expensive and not covered by insurance. Groups is a different kind of program.

Groups takes insurance, including Medicaid. Our intake counselors will help you figure out how to manage costs, and see what programs can help you afford treatment. But even if you don’t have any insurance, Groups costs $65 a week; that’s less than $10 a day.

8. The paperwork is overwhelming.
Paperwork STINKS. Especially if you’re feeling sick. That’s why we try to keep our intake to under two hours. We also do everything digitally, which will make things easier (and faster) for you. If things are overwhelming, we can walk through it with you. You don’t have to handle it all on your own.

9. Once you go into recovery, you’ll never be part of normal society again.
We don’t believe that there’s such a thing as “normal” any more than we believe that there’s such a thing as “perfect.” Instead, we like to think that everyone has struggles.

It’s true, drug use carries a lot of stigma. But recovery will only make it easier to manage other areas of your life; it won’t make things harder.

10. Recovery meds will make you too tired to do anything.
The medication we use to help our members is called Suboxone. It has fewer side effects than other withdrawal medicines, and it won’t make you sleepy. So no nodding off at work… at least, not because of recovery.

11. Things can’t get better.
This myth is one that holds so many people back from getting help. And we know, sometimes it really does seem like you’re in a dark and lonely place.

That’s why Groups is here. Because we’ve seen how much better things can get. Not just with your physical health, but with your family, your friends, your job, your whole life. So many of our members have heard all the same myths, and felt all the same frustrations and challenges you’re facing.


Things got better for them. They can get better for you, too.