This title is obviously loaded. It implies that all hippies from the sixties were in fact a population that struggled with drugs and alcohol. It also implies that there is something to “recover from”, and depending on your point of view that might be addiction or it might be from being a hippie! (Sarcasm emphasized.)
Let’s start with some facts:
We know that many hippies did in fact like their drugs, and many certainly enjoyed the altered state of mind that came with ingesting them. Just as many, didn’t use drugs heavily. So for the purposes of this article, we will address the population of hippies that were dedicated to their habit of ingesting substances. As far as “recovering from being a hippie”, well, I’m not sure a true hippie ever fully moves past a heavy love of liberalism once they emotionally become dedicated to that ethos, and that’s as it should be in a free society.
On a more serious note, no one, not a hippie or otherwise, “recovers” from addiction, but not because it is a disease that is incurable – but rather just the opposite; because it is not a disease, is a choice, and recovering from choice is a nonsensical statement. Simply put – choices, in and of themselves, are not things from which to “recover from.”
I’m not a hippie. I was born in ’70 and have lived my life as a republican that veres from party lines on a regular basis. I think the war on drugs is a devastating counterproductive mess, and that all drugs should be legalized. From that narrow statement you can certainly surmise that I drift from party lines when common sense is on the line. Because I went through a tough time with both booze and drugs, I get the attraction to drugs and alcohol for their “escape value.” I also know many people who came from the original hippie era, and while I’m not a liberal, I certainly understand that culture.
Most hippies grew up and moved on. Does that mean they changed party lines? No. It means they stopped using drugs heavily, found value in other preferences, and remained liberals in the process. Based on this single trend, one can surmise that one (being a hippie) is not necessarily tied to drug use (being an addict or alcoholic). The stats prove this. More than 90% of those who once were, or could have been, diagnosed with substance use disorder (SUD) eventually abstained from their use when age is factored in. in other words, as we grow up, more than 9 out of 10 “addicts” stop being “addicts.” This holds true whether they go to treatment or not – and the vast majority don’t. This then proves treatment’s uselessness, and the real value of gaining in life experience.
The good news is the following:
- Hippies tend to remain self-described hippies (but the title tends to shift from “hippie” to just “liberal”).
- Hippies tend to grow up and stop taking drugs to the same degree as the population at large (at least 9 out of 10 do so).
- Hippies tend to remain liberal leaning (7 out of 10 remain tied to a liberal party, 3 out of 10 don’t).
- And, there is no disease of addiction, which means, there is nothing to recover from – just choices to be made and personal preferences checked and adjusted.