+ (381) 65 221 23 52

Special Hospital for Alcohol and Drug Dependence “ Dr Boro Lazic”

 “Addiction is a preventable, treatable disease, not a moral failing”

“A year ago, when I first found out that my son was doing drugs, I simply had no idea of what to do and who to talk to. I kept asking myself why this was happening to me and to my child. For days I kept analyzing all the things I’ve invested in his growing up. I was wondering what I had done to make my own son choose such a fatal way. There was no answer to these questions, even though I talked to my son while this was still possible.
He was often avoiding conversation or was telling me things he knew would give me comfort. At first he denied being addicted at all; he would say that he only took marijuana a few times and that he had never even thought about trying heroin. I was often on the verge of believing everything he said to me – it is unbelievable how easily a desperate man finds consolation. I was desperate and I needed the kind of truth he was giving me. After some time, he stopped talking to me completely and all I could do was to watch him ruin himself. He was growing thinner and more and more absentminded. He was no longer the child he used to be, he was neither alive, nor dead.
Meanwhile, my wife, his mother, had two nervous breakdowns. She coped with it in her own way, not wanting to hurt me and our son. The two of us didn’t treat her well; he was unable to do so, and I simply didn’t know how.
When I think about all that now, it seems to me that I’ve kept making the same mistake over and over again, the one mistake that’s common for other people, as well. It was hard for me to perceive my son’s drug addiction as an illness, to think of my son as being very ill and to admit that I had been losing precious time accusing him, instead of giving him the help he needed. There were times when I was selfish enough to think that I would have felt relief if someone had told me that my own son was dead.
Now I realize that every drug addict is, in fact, seriously ill, and that their illness is very difficult, although possible to treat, but until we, their parents, understand this – there is no help for them. We, the parents, tend to hide this illness away, because we think it is a disgrace, not for our children, but for us… Nobody thinks that a child suffering from asthma or diabetes is a disgrace, so why should anybody be ashamed to admit that they’re ill, or addicted. Once I understood this, I brought my son to treatment, but things haven’t improved at all until I became actively involved in the program and started learning about this illness. My son is going through the extended phase of treatment now, our communication is better than ever, we hang out together and we are very happy with the fact that we’re successful in coping with this illness.”

           Most people think that nothing can be done to help addicts. They think that even if there is something that can help, families still cannot do anything. Their illness is not officially recognized, other people think that addicts themselves are to blame for their condition and that they can quit using drugs whenever they want, that it only takes to have the will to quit. This is not true. If we calculate all the biological, psychological and social factors which are responsible for the establishing, maintaining and developing of this illness, we’ll understand that addiction is never someone’s choice – it is a complex, serious and chronic brain disease and family plays an important role in the processes of its establishing and maintaining, but also in the healing process.

       Scientists have defined the effects of drugs on the brain and why they are addictive. People usually abuse psychoactive substances because they want to feel their positive effects, a sense of pleasure, or they just want to get rid of the pain they’re feeling. Still, the abuse of psychoactive substances always results in short-term or long-term damage.

         Addiction hadn’t been considered as a brain disorder once, nor had psychiatric (mental) diseases.. The effects of drug addiction to the social system have formed a general opinion that addiction is a primarily social problem and that the people who use drugs are morally weak and prone to crime and delinquency, but not ill.
The word addiction can trigger lots of different associations and strong emotions. We often tend to focus on the wrong aspects of this disease and many efforts which are made in order to do something about this serious problem prove to be wrongly oriented. Addiction is often wrongly defined as being a moral failure. Unfortunately, even physicians tend to view addiction as being a self-induced condition and that’s why addicts sometimes do not get the medical treatment they deserve. This wrong opinion is often shared by addicts’ families, as well as medical staff dealing with addicts.
Most people think that a drug addict or an occasional drug user should be capable of quitting if he/she wants to change his/her behavior.


Addiction is a treatable disease, not a moral failing.

Ordinacija- Beograd

T (+381) 11 380 63 28; (+381) 616 16 26 01;
T (+381) 65 22 123 52;
Email: office@spec-clinic.org


Specijalna bolnica za bolesti zavisnosti

T (+381) 65 221 23 52; T (+387) 65 966 098;
T (+491) 521 568 44 98;
Email: office@spec-clinic.org

Ordinacija - Novi Sad

T (+381) 63 152 04 19;

 Email: office@spec-clinic.org


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