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TRAINSPOTTING Author Discusses the Nature of Heroin Addiction

Irvine Welsh, the author of Trainspotting, a story in which young Scottish men who are adrift turn to heroin, has written a prequel to that novel that was made into a well-known movie. He spoke to NPR about his work and the nature of addiction.

Walsh, who overcame heroin addiction himself, talked about how lack of opportunity leads people to addiction: “It’s a kind of no-brainer, because when there’s no employment and education and opportunities, it’s almost like drugs win by default. There is, literally, nothing else.” He also notes that he doesn’t think people like his characters would get into drugs if it weren’t for the influence of their friends.

Contrary to what some will say (that you need a compelling reason to leave drugs behind) Welsh talked about how he felt that one needs “driving, compelling reasons to stay on drugs.”  While he admits it wasn’t easy, Welsh says that he gave up drugs when addiction became an “inconvenience” that wasn’t offering him much.

There are many approaches to addiction recovery: some people need to see how drugs limit them, while others respond to a different approach. Substance abuse treatment philosophy at Transitions Recovery is based on the belief that all of our patients are unique individuals who hold the ability to lead successful, fulfilling lives. We support the individual and family throughout each stage of the substance abuse treatment and recovery process.