Everyone knows the stereotype of a heroin addict. A slumped over white guy, with little aspiration or hope. But as the opioid epidemic continues to grow, a lot of us are reckoning with an increasingly undeniable truth- that is not actually what opiate addicts look like. Or not most of them, anyways. “When my addiction was the worst, I was doing the best in my career I had ever done.
When people think about barriers to treatment and recovery for opioid addicts, they often consider lack of narcan, emergency services, or first responders. But there is actually something much more insidious that is stopping opiate addicts from getting treatment. And it’s stigma. Despite evidence that verifies addiction as a disease, addiction policy and treatment keeps getting formed on the basis of emotion, which quite often begets stigma. So what