An addict is someone who is physiologically or mentally dependant on a drug and has experienced damaging physiological or psychological side effects. A non-addict is somebody who is not physiologically or mentally dependant on a drug and therefore not likely to experience damaging physiological or psychology effects. People are partially identified by the labels applied by self or others, such as the label “addict.”
What is identity? Identity is based on what we believe to be true about ourselves. Identity gives us an idea of who we are and how to relate to others and the world we live in. Identity marks the ways we are the same as others who share that vision, and the way in which we are different from those who do not (Woodward, 1997).
Individuality is the awareness that an individual or group has of being unique and having a unique identity. Take a few minutes now and write down what you thought was unique for you about being an addict. That is, how did it make you feel you were different from those who were not addicts?
Identity includes knowledge, beliefs, memories, expectations, and understanding. Each person’s identity defines them as a unique individual and also as part of a family and other social groups. Your identity defines you and gives meaning to every aspect of your life. It is shaped by how you interpret, remember and regard events in the past, present, and future (Dombeck, 2006). Your identity tells you what you deserve. It provides a measure of your worth both to you and frequently to others.