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Does changing the environment help in quitting meth?


Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I wondered if anyone found moving to a different city (4h away in our case), where addict does not know anybody, helpful at all in quitting? Don't get me wrong, I know there's no magic wand, I just wanted to know if it is at all helpful. Were any of you able to quit that way? I have an opportunity to move in January and I talked to my girlfriend who is an addict/user about it.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

Hello again.

In my case, getting the hell out of Dodge was very instrumental in my getting and staying clean. Here's an excerpt from "My Story in a Nutshell" that I posted weeks ago. You can read the whole thing if you like; I think I just found it on page 10. Anyway...
Then I threw some clothes and momentos in the back of my car and drove north on Interstate 5 in California until the United States ended and Canada began. I found a KOA campground that had little campers for rent, so I rented one, and after resting a bit, I found an NA meeting and went to it. From that day forward, I went to NA meetings every day, all day, for 3 straight months.

I lived in a small community in Northern California during my addiction. I could go in 10 different directions on any given day and find meth. I was such a good customer, I could even get it for free if I needed to. Because they knew I'd be back....and it wouldn't be long.

I used very, very heavily the last two years of my addiction. Every day, all throughout the day. I was in bad shape. I knew that I could NOT stay where I was and get clean. Also, my husband had no desire to quit, and I knew I couldn't stay with him and get clean.

So, like I said, I got out of Dodge. It's not the reason my recovery has been successful, but I know that it helped me tremendously. However, if someone doesn't really want to get clean and stay clean, no matter where they go, they will find it. It will find them. That's how it is.

Keep the questions coming. The more you learn, the better equipped you will be to understand this vile addiction.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

Yes, it often helps temporarily.

The advantage is that a few moments of clarity can be embraced.

But if the addict doesn't address the problems that led to addiction in the first place - the problems of addiction will also return.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I have to agree with Nine years I had to get the hell outa Dodge. I was raised in this little town from the time I was 5 years old and i left when I was 30. I can't say I didn't continue in the same pattern with drugs, but I only knew 3 connections here as apposed to 15 where I was and when I finally did make the decision to quit it was easier.
They say that geographical changes don't work. I foound NA/AA and a geographical change would work. I even think about going back to live but after staying with my best friend there for the weekend well that's about all I can stand
Everyone, naad I mean everyone in that town knew me. It was difficult to stay there.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

Yeah, you know I haven't been back since they drove me out of town in a Dept. of Corrections van on my way to prison.

I paroled to Orange County in SoCal, and I've never been back.

Too many bad memories there. I've had opportunities to go for a visit, but I always chicken out.

I don't think I'd be tempted at all, but then, who knows? Once an addict always an addict, heh?


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?


I didn't do a geographic, I stayed right here at home, and faced my problems head on. For me it was the only way.

Foe others, moving si a better way.

I realized I couldn't run away from my own problems, there is nowhere in the world that far away.

le grumps

Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I had to move. It was the only thing that would begin to pry my head out of my arse enough to even /consider/ giving my recovery a shot.

I plan on moving back eventually, but I honestly beleive I would have been much worse off had I stayed.

But I also knew that I needed to change, the move was just a shove in the right direction. If I didn't want to change, I would be high right now - same shyt, different city.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

In the early 90's I had a job where I lived with and traveled with several others, most being addicts. While some would wait until they got home to replenish the stash, one guy wasted no time in getting out and finding contacts. In all honesty, within 24 hours of being in a new place, before any business was taken care of, he had his contacts for that city.

Maybe find some meetings in the new area?


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I think the most important factor is whether the addict wants to get clean.

Moving to a different city has been known to force people to be clean for awhile.. and if you want to be clean it can really help alot.. but the only way it can make a lasting impact is if the addict actually works on their recovery.

If the addict never addresses their use and never makes the active decision not to use.. they will end up using again in the end.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I tried moving, but that didn't work for me because I wasn't ready to quit. I think that if moving is going to help someone at all, they have to want to quit and stay clean. They have to want to put at least as much effort into staying clean as they did into using.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I'm with Abby and Sfj on this one. I didn't move either - I tried that, and was using within a few weeks. I had to do what Sfj did - face it head on and deal with it right here at home. But, like Abby said, if a person wants to stop, moving might be helpful.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

My real first attempt at getting of dope, I had to move. I left California and headed to Texas. I stayed clean a couple of years. The problem was, as sfj stated, was alive and well in me. I went back out. I never addressed the real issue, MY addiction.
You cant run from it or hide. It will come out and resurface again without understanding it and having tools.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

When combined with OTHER TOOLS of recovery and a steadfast decision to stay sober, it can help remove some triggers of using. It can help the recovering addict get thru a craving if they feel that they can't call and get some anyway, so might as well tough it out. However, the recovering addict still needs to learn new ways to cope with life. They found drugs once, they can find them again. They know this.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

A new location and a new job were key to my sobriety. I moved 200 miles away from users and my home. I had already quit the dope however. I had made the decision not to use before I moved. One has to want to quit to do it. In the new city, I only know people from work and church. Not your "let's party" type of people. I have not gone out seeking those situations or people. I have no desire to now. I have grown a lot. I now know why I got high, what the benefits are of living clean are, and how to avoid sticky situatons. It can be a key to a new begining, if one has the mind set to go with the change.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?l

I just hadto respond to your email. relocating to another state or city is not by all means going to keep someone clean. i have tried relocating many times thinking that my disease would simply not follow me. hey guess what??? it does!!! im telling you this from past experiences. please, dont think it wont....


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I have quit useing meth, it's been allmost a year now. Like others I could get free meth if I wanted. The thing is I still feel sick from my ex methed up S.O..When I see her around town I either want to do meth or put hot lead thrue my heart.

My love for her was stronger than any addiction I have ever had. I even quit smoking cigarettes and pot for her, till I caught her buying meth without me and cheating on me. Then I forgave her for that and let she stabbed me even deeper again and again. Wich opened my eyes so I could see that she was/is a so-called fuktional user, and was so even befor we met.

I'm moveing and selling out, cause it's time for me. It's been a hell of a ride. I did all I set out to do when I started my business 17 years ago. I have new goals now and a new dream.

When I make my move at the end of next summer, I'll say goodby to this board as well. This part of my life will be the end of a good but sad ending book. Because of the people I'm leaving behind. But I'm so tired of taking care them.

It's time for me. I'm changing the enviroment as a tool to start over compleatly. Time to buy a Hog and ride free.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I think moving was important for me just to START to quit. I finished out my semester at the school I was attending, and then moved back home with my parents for the summer. During the summer I went to work, went to individual counseling and NA, and came home. I knew people in the town where my parents lived that could get me drugs, but I changed my cell phone number and didn't keep any of my old numbers. I also just kept away from the clubs, bars, and parties. I knew that partying over the summer would lead me back to where I started. So every day, I went to work, and to counseling and NA, came home, hung out with my family, went to bed, and started it all over again. It was a boring summer for a 21 year old, but it had to be like that. Then, this fall, I transferred to a different school to finish out my degree. The school is 350 miles away from my old one, where I had engaged in all my drug using. I still go to individual counseling and NA, both of which are instrumental in keeping me clean. So, moving and losing my contacts really helped me, but I would say that that only aided in the recovery. You have to have other types of help or you will relapse. I know that any old day I wanted to I could go out and find meth, regardless of whether or not I associate with people who use or deal or not. Its always in the back of my mind that I could get it if i wanted to. The question is do i want to? Right now, NO. And hopefully not ever.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I think that if an addict really wants to quit this could be helpful. But if not .... as addicts we attract our kind. WE can find it any where we go. I think moving and doing a geographical is JUST a start. It will definetly take more than that.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

It worked for me!
...I moved to a sleepy beach town with my mother and father.
......there is no speed here that I know of.
I could'nt stay near it.

there has been times I would have used if I had known where
to find it.

I am absoulutely in AWE of spasemonky, pen, sfj...and those who are strong enough to stay where the memories are.

I go to work,
and come home, I've always been that way....and I don't get in trouble.
I'm 5 months clean.
when I have a year, maybe I can visit atlanta or vegas alone.
but I would'nt dare go without my mom.
she knows how it is with me.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I too am in awe of those who are able to stay put and stay clean. I know it can be done, but for me, living in such a small college town, staying was not possible. The urges to use would have been way too strong for me to not relapse. Not to mention that I was always a very sneaky user and would have stopped at nothing to keep people from finding out that i was an addict. My own boyfriend didn't know (he suspected something was up) until I finally told him. I know I could go out and get drugs whenever I want in my new town, but for me I am very shy and asking around for contacts is just not really an option for me. When I first started using it kind of fell into my lap. I got my drugs from one or two people, that was it. I only used with one other person, my "drug buddy." So now in a new town, I really can't see myself trying to actively seek out drugs. I know someone said that we addicts attract our kind, but moving really helped me in the fact that I won't go and find drugs on my own. If the urge gets really strong, maybe, but thats what I have NA and counseling for...Just my two cents.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?


I realized I couldn't run away from my own problems, there is nowhere in the world that far away.

For sure.

Moving will temporarily halt use - temporary is key word.

In our case, the move helped open the doors for hubby to begin use again.
He met connections and there it was.

He had been clean for 8 years but had never dealt with the issues that were the root cause of his use.
Abstinence is not recovery.

So here he goes again, 10 months clean - and now working on the recovery process.
Slow but steady- maybe this last time will be the last time.

Moving won't solve everything- but it can be a start.
The reasons you use go with you wherever you go.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

Did anyone see the intervention last night? The girl ended up going back to herion a few months later. I think she was in another state away from the family. It was sad, but I would have to say I had the thought of how at least her loved ones didn't have to suffer on a day to day basis. There was also a part where they were sitting outside on fathers day. Her mom confronted her and she acused her mom of starting crap. That hit pretty close to home.


Re: Changing the environment as a tool in quitting?

I have found from watching others that I know, that addicts have a way of finding each other, no matter how far they move. I think that it's best to stay and conquer your addiction right where it happened. Afterall, you won't be able to protect yourself forever by moving away, sooner or later a situation will arise that causes you to want to use, if you face the problem head on to start, you'll be better equipped to deal with things in the future.

See also:

Quitting Crystal Meth / Methamphetamine

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