The process of mourning is also important because it enables the addicts to grieve for several losses that could have occurred during the time that they were using drugs. Studies in this regard show that a significant number of addicts mourn for the time they lost with the family, the time lost for establishing and building careers as well as the lost opportunities. This happens after they have identified pitfalls in their progress as compared with the progress of their peers who are not addicts (Kelly, 1996).
Mourning the loss of the drugs enables the addicts to break the barriers and release the negative feelings that they often perceive as human beings. As such they can be in position to establish new and healthy relationships with humans rather than with drugs. Carveth (1994) affirms that the mourning process enables the addicts to appreciate the loss of the drugs with a positive attitude. According to him, this is important because it encourages them to let go of the past practices. The resultant establishment of new alliances with human beings then enhances social cohesion. Through mourning the addicts find a chance to realign their commitments to more sustainable ways of life. In this respect, the ‘death’ of the drugs breaks the commitment of the addicts to the same. As indicated earlier, addicts often share very close relationships with the substances that they are addicted to. According to Tomkins (1991), this removal of the substances from their mentality helps them to find something else to be committed to.
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