There are some people in recovery who judge the recovery of others. They have their criteria for what it means to be “clean” and they expect everyone to embrace that criteria. One popular idea in some recovery circles is that a person isn’t really clean if they are on Suboxone. Roc & Doc tackle the confusion in this episode.
Kolmac Outpatient Recovery Center Counselor Rennie Grant (Roc) and Psychiatrist Dr. Tony Massey (Doc) answer your questions about addiction and recovery.
A Roc & Doc viewer writes in with this question: “I’m on Suboxone. For the past 6 months I’ve not used any heroin. People are telling me I’m not clean. Is that true?”
ROC: “Anything you can do to not use illegal drugs and shoot stuff in your vein is a good idea! If you are in a situation where you’re working with a medical professional and it’s a legitimate drug replacement therapy, then we would say that you are clean. That doesn’t mean you don’t need a program or work steps for your recovery. It doesn’t mean that Suboxone is going to keep you clean forever.”
DOC: “When I think of drug addiction, generally there are behavioral, relational, financial, and health problems. But in a managed environment with Suboxone (and the like), the opposite happens. People become more honest, repair relationships, and get back to becoming productive citizens. If a person is getting their life back in order, then what’s the real issue? The fatal disease is being effectively treated.”
Conclusion: It’s a win-win. Yes, you’re clean.