Let us first say that the terms “alcoholic” and “addict” are synonymous; they refer more to how the brain operates rather than the drug, liquid or behavior of choice. Recovering individuals may choose to term themselves as an “alcoholic” or an “addict,” but the terms essentially mean the same thing. As a recognized disease by the medical community worldwide, alcoholism is not a by-product of lack of will power, morals, ethics, etc. Additionally, there is no known cure and simply removing the substance or damaging behavior from one’s life is only but a first step toward actual recovery. A common misconception is that all we need to do is simply remove the drugs or alcohol from their daily existence and then everything will be just fine. The reason for this is unless a complete change takes place within the thinking and actions of the patient, they are likely to revert to their old patterns after a period of sobriety. Though there is no known cure for the disease of addiction, millions of successfully recovered individuals around the world have utilized 12-step programs such as AA, NA, CA, etc. as a means of arresting the disease. The 12-step program focuses on creating a complete change of thinking, resulting in actions that are much more conducive to living a responsible and drug free existence. Our instincts don’t necessarily change; it’s our response to those instincts that changes. For instance, the thought of drinking or using will still cross our minds but how we respond to that thought will ultimately change, assuming there is a willingness and capacity to change.