(User’s perspective: The actions, atmosphere and environment which impacted the patients as well as society negatively as a whole )

Wairokpam Luckyson Meitei

Before I began to narrate the ongoing questions inside some particular private de- addiction centre in the state Manipur. I’m knocking down some of my days of how and why I got into treatment. Every user’s has a different gateway to substances (drugs) from a minor to major.

But as we dive deep in , we began to realized and noticed our choices are resulting in consequences. Everyone makes choices all day long. But the choices has moved to the forefront of our mind and we choose it over other things, which isn’t a persons normal routine. It’s negatively impacted our life. We made a choice and with it comes the price we pay or consequence. But, despite all that… We continue to choose. We justify our use to feel better about it. We deny saying things like “that wasn’t caused by me using , it was going to happen regardless.” Because we minimize it, the continues choose and as that progresses so do our negative consequences. And it gets worse and worse. It begins as a choice, sure but , before you realize it you are a full blown.

Then, like clockwork we began to see this domino effect start to happen. Life literally implodes over the course of the disease. It’s inevitable, because a choices changes our brain and re-wires it. Things that were once very important to us are cast aside. Jobs, family, friends, hobbies, none of it matters more than the choices. Simply put, this is the part where the obsessive thoughts and the choices make your life unmanageable.

With no option left, is where I began to seek treatment and I have been in and out for almost a decade. But with the guidance of some former user’s(old timer) I have been clean and sober for a year now.

What I have below is the experiences from my days in treatment centre.

Since the introduction of private de addiction and rehabilitation centre in the state, treatment in people with substances use disorder have changed tremendously. People from the same user’s community has been taking the peer initiation to turn the tide of misery and lead a meaningful life’s and reintegrate into society. Those who have stand up from the user’s community has huge contribution in treating people with SUDs.

Most private de addiction centre treat the patients in the courses of 90 days. And the services include detoxification, yoga and meditation, individual and group counselling, re- educative session, group therapy.

Beginning with the routine, almost all private de addiction centre have similarities in daily routine and process of treatment. Waking up in the morning to the lights off at night. Besides administration, 70 percent are managed by the patients who have completed their de addiction phases which they called Aftercare (AC) or Extended Care (EC). Residential in charge or the staffs are given the role and responsibilities to guide the patients in a better way which they have maintained drug free life’s. Almost all the services provider in the private de addiction centre are from same user’s community who had suffered by this disease (addiction).

But the sad frustrating parts of it is, besides some few private de addiction treatment centre runs the facility sincerely and wholeheartedly. Some runs the facility openly like a illicit racket, some look like fresh ripe fruit from the outside but rotten inside and only intend to fatten up their bank balance. Today I bring you the hinders and cries of many of how they(particular centre) are treating the patients inside their so called treatment facility.

With an eccentric mind and instead of guiding the patients compassionately, the thing in between is mixed up with haywire and dysfunction of rules and regulations, some services provider prey upon the newcomers. Where there’s no rights to express ones feeling and emotions. Patients has to wait weeks to months to talk about their problem. Often verbally abuse during the individual counselling. Taking intake with a stick in hand. Some bring out their monstrous personality and substitute with physical torture, brutally beaten to death inside the treatment facility. Recently, Lukram Ningthou alias Sanjoy Singh (32) son of L Raghumani Singh of Nambol Phoijing was brutally beaten to death on June 2 at the Revive Drug De-Addiction and Rehabilitation Centre, Utlou Chanura Makhong and has been made public in media, well this is not the first and we can’t say this will be the last.

The question, Is Private de addiction centre turning into a torture and killing house? After all this chaos , some narcissist full bellies which considered to be concerned authorities are being entertained. To prevent such chaos, it’s mandatory to formed a apex body to check properly of how private de-addiction centre are treating the patients inside the treatment facility.

Conventionally people who have abstain from substances (drugs) for a few period of years are hired by the centres whether they are qualified/trained or not and given a title ‘COUNSELOR’. Almost all private de-addiction centre infrastructure are poor( you could possibly imagined), untrained staffs. Afraid! I’ve to narrow down self asked questions. So how’s this so called ‘untrained staff’ even function one? What is this words COUNSELOR literally means? This has its overall reason for the ill- treatment of many patients inside the treatment facility.

With no proper training, services provider are unable to deal with the patients. The principles are to be broken, unethical activities are made such in, command were made to the patients to do the personal works of staffs. Like sitting on a King’s throne, everything are pointed towards the patients. Patients are detained without prior concerned. Frustrated by the mental torture like actions of services provider, gave the negative impact on the patients. Which hold a grudge against the people who runs the treatment facility which eventually lead to using the substances again.

Most private de-addiction centre adopted the Therapeutic Community Model (TCM) which I know of, TCM is a model which people from the same user’s community who have maintained their drug free life’s reside and live within the treatment compound and leads the other the ways of drug free life’s as a role model. But given the authority and responsibilities, services provider are likely to exercise the power against the patients inside the treatment facility. This has been experienced in my days in treatment centre.

What I have above is not against any organisation /group, I do not intend to find faults in other and justify the action, I bring here the voices of many who have effected and suffered by this hideous nature. And once again sincerely empath all private as well as funded de addiction centre to treat the patients with respect, dignity, integrity, compassion and love, and ethically.

And I sincerely suggest the concerned authorities to look into the questions and matters seriously inside the private de-addiction centre to prevent in happening such unlawful activities.

(Writer is an ex user’s, an activist for people with substances use disorder SUDs)

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