Why Some People Abuse Substances

People influence and are influenced by other people. Because of this influence, it is reasonable to say that people can influence others to use illicit substances. Although that is seemingly an obvious point, there is a deeper meaning to why this influence takes place.

Preserving “Harmonious” Relationships

Since people influence and are influenced by others, the influence can change the capacity of people to exercise their self-control in order to preserve their relationships with others. So when someone is surrounded by others who don’t exercise self-control they become more likely not to exercise their own self-control to “fit in”. The need to be included is very strong and may limit a person’s ability to exercise self-control.

Furthermore, to preserve harmonious relationships, people who might be predisposed to not engaging in self-control behaviors would be more likely to do so if they are surrounded by people who do successfully manage their self-control. This is important because it implies that people who have a difficult time managing their substance addiction may find it much easier to do so when they are surrounded by people who don’t relapse, as opposed to people who do relapse.

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