Name: Aniston Cheung
From: Longmont, Colorado
People of every age today are facing new and difficult trials that we are ill equipped to handle. As we become overwhelmed, there are so many unhealthy options of coping with ours struggles. Substituting addiction for confronting our issues has led to an addiction crisis nationwide. As I look at my peers, I realize how out of our league we are when faced with problems. We have isolated ourselves with the technology so readily at hand that we have crippled our ability to handle our issues. We, also, must deal with the negative impacts social media and bullying have on our mental health. Often, we struggle with our emotions and it can lead to self-medicating in a disastrous form.
Addiction ruins the lives of not only those addicted, but also anyone around who cares about them. It is painful to go through and painful to watch. There are so many people addicted who continually hurt the individuals who care enough to stay. For those who are addicted long enough, it becomes a lonely existence. There is nothing more to focus on than their addiction and when they can next satisfy their need. Addiction prevents people from being contributing members of society.
Looking forward, the only way we can help people with addictions is to show them the love and support they need to make the choice themselves to work through it. Forcing people out of their addiction will never work. It needs to be a personal and individual choice. The most we can do is be there for people who are struggling. We must be ready to support them and love them through their struggles. At a societal level, we need to be more understanding and helpful. There need to resources available for anyone who wants it. No one should ever fall back into addiction or never get out of it because they cannot afford it, or it is not available for them. We need to be good siblings, parents, friends, and peers to each other. We need to be good humans.