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Overcoming addiction is extremely difficult for anyone caught in its trap, whether it's for cannabis or any other substance. Yet, in most cases, the same pattern can be observed.  There are many ways to break free from addiction and they all share the same goal: helping people return to a happy, productive life.

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The addiction cycle and how to break it

Addiction to something, whether it be to cigarettes, alcohol, other drugs, or to certain behaviours (shopping, gambling, pornography, etc.), is hardly ever experienced as something pleasurable by a person who suffers from addiction, but rather, as a form of enslavement. Consuming substances, or chronically repeating a behaviour, is no longer a choice that can be controlled through willpower.

As soon as a person has entered into an addiction cycle, they feel incapable of breaking free, without really knowing why.

From Pot Smoker to Lamplighter

I was fourteen when I smoked my first joint. I lived in an outlying region and it was our way of having fun among friends on the weekend. During the week, I studied hard, I got good grades, I was into sports and I had a good social life.

Five years later, I decided to pack up and head to Montreal. I did all sorts of small jobs, and though I had few opportunities to play sports, I had more and more opportunities to smoke pot. At the time, I thought pot helped me relax and it quickly became a daily routine. And, of course, the people I hung out with with were regular smokers too.

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Seven Ways to Start Talking About Drugs With a Teenager

It’s not easy for parents to start a conversation about drugs with their children. But youths become vulnerable targets as soon as they set foot in school, where they quickly meet people who use drugs. That’s why parents must take the time to discuss this matter with their children.

Sure, drug use is sometimes a taboo and difficult subject, but keep in mind that your child has probably already been in contact with people who use drugs, to varying degrees of severity.

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About Portage

Portage is a Canadian non-profit organisation that helps people suffering from substance abuse-related problems to overcome their dependencies and live healthy, happy, and productive lives.

Since it was established in 1970, Portage has helped tens of thousands of people to take back control of their lives with its specialised drug rehabilitation programs for adolescents, adults, pregnant women and mothers with children, the aboriginal community, adults with mental health issues, and individuals referred by the justice system.

Portage Blog

Addiction Services: Have 18 to 21-Year-Olds Emerged From Their Adolescence?

04-16-2021

Recent questions about caring for young adults battling drug and alcohol addiction are changing mindsets about where these young people belong in social and health services. Portage considered this matter and has now extended its adolescent program in Eastern Quebec to cater to young adults aged 18 to 21 as of March 2021. The New… Read more »

Mental Health and Addiction: Access Services in Dire Straits

01-27-2021

There is a strong connection between addiction and mental health disorders and the two are often mutually sustaining. People with this dual diagnosis often have to contend with a lack of available resources, a slow-moving system, and isolation. An Overstretched System On March 3, 2020, the Ontario Health Minister announced an unprecedented 25-million-dollar investment to… Read more »

We All Have a Journey to Share… This is Caroline’s

01-18-2021

Stories like Caroline’s are at the core of what we do at Portage. We are proud to share her story and to encourage other residents to share theirs. *Names are fictional for privacy. What lead you to start taking drugs and drinking, and why? I started drugs by wanting to escape my emotions from being… Read more »

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