CHRYSTAL meth, or “tik”, has become a widespread problem that is spiraling out of control. It is the most addictive drug in the world with a 95% addiction rate. It causes havoc in the body, killing brain cells faster than alcohol, cocaine or heroine. Tik is readily available and affordable, and although it is an illegal substance in this country, it appears that little is being done by law enforcement to curtail its rapid spread. On the contrary, police officers are often the very people selling the drug. Chrystal meth addiction strikes people of all ages right across the income spectrum. Bright, healthy, happy kids can become addicted. Educated professionals can become addicted. Anyone looking for a quick 'lift' can become addicted. It could even happen to you.
The damage to families is huge. The devastation caused by chrystal meth is not limited to the addict. Children who abuse the drug will often steal from their parents to get money to buy the drug. Families have to live with lies, threats and violence and relapses. The addict's behaviour becomes erratic with wild mood swings. He is often irritable, loses interest in former hobbies and tends to lose weight. Twitches, grunts, and talking too much, too fast and too loudly are common symptoms. If you notice symptoms like these, your child may very well be addicted to chrystal meth. Also, look out for repetitive motions such as drumming of the fingers, forgetting important events, staying out late, suspicious friends, and poor performance at school.
But what can be done?
First and foremost - you need to get on your knees. Addiction to chrystal meth is a very serious problem indeed, and your child needs the Holy Spirit's intervention in order to overcome the addiction. God is ready and willing to step in and help. The road to recovery is never easy, but there are many hands to help you and your child in the right direction. Every single time you pray, the Holy Spirit moves. It may not be noticeable at first, but He is working in the heart of your child. As his heart is changed, so too will his behaviour.
Addiction is a spiritual and a physical problem. Only 6% of chrystal meth addicts are able to get off this drug without help. So, while we as parents need to be praying, we also need to find immediate solutions to the physical problem. The brain damage caused by chrystal meth can be irreversible and it is essential that you do not delay in finding a rehabilitation centre or support group. Going 'cold turkey' to get off tik won't work. Will-power alone won't work either. Rehabilitation will teach your child skills to stay clean and avoid relapses. Relapse will always be a possibility because this is a life-long struggle. Your child will need every mental, emotional and spiritual resource that he has.
Often your child will deny there is a problem and will refuse to accept any form of treatment. The key is to keep praying for God to find a way to touch his heart. Sometimes it takes a face-to-face encounter with the horror of drug-abuse before an addict sees he has a problem. He may be arrested, he may have a frightening hallucination, he may lose relationships and fail in school. It may mean 'learning the hard way' for your child to admit he has a problem. But he will. Prayer never fails. You cannot force someone to be set free. The addict cannot escape the hold of addiction if he is not motivated to do so. The spiritual and physical journey of deliverance takes 12 to 18 months of withdrawal and healing, during which depression and anxiety, poor memory and scattered thoughts will occur. The brain heals slowly from the damage caused by chrystal meth and it is not an easy journey. The addict needs to want to be delivered before he can be set free.
Once your child is ready to enter rehabilitation it is crucial for you to help him to break off all relationships that will tempt him to use drugs again. Any friends and places that will put him in contact with drugs need to be cut off immediately. He needs to develop new relationships to help him stay clean. It is essential that your child joins a support group, such as a church group that knows how to deal with addiction, or Narcotics Anonymous. It is important to see how other drug addicts have been set free in order to have hope that you yourself can be free.
However bad it may seem, no matter how far down the road of addiction your child has gone, there is hope. God has the solution and He will bring your child to freedom. Keep praying, be there for your child, and be ready to offer support and solutions for rehabilitation when he is ready. Any addict can recover if he really wants to.
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