Is there a genetic predisposition to addiction or is it lack of self-control? Actually it is both. According to Addictions and Recovery.org, "Addiction is due 50 percent to genetic predisposition and 50 percent to poor coping skills. . . .Although everyone has the potential for addiction, some people are more predisposed to addiction than others. . . . The children of addicts are 8 times more likely to develop an addiction."
I have often wondered why society praises those who have overcome an addiction and doesn't recognize those who have never succumbed to one. I looked up this question on the Internet and found one site where it was discussed. https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index
Multiple questions and answers were addressed. One person wrote, "Having a daughter who is a recovering addict, it is hard to keep up pats on the back for doing what? the right thing that the rest of us were doing all along? The addict is special because they decided to finally get it together and do the right thing?"
Another person commented, " Battling an addiction is a daily struggle. It never goes away - not 10 days, 10 weeks, 10 months or 10 years after an addict gets 'clean.' Giving up an addiction is a difficult process that must be renewed daily. It is all too easy to slip back into the comfort of not having to fight it anymore. I think society praises those who have reversed an addiction as a 'boost' to the recovery process, which is only completed at the end of the life of the addict. It is a manner of support. The rest of society is also special, in that it never had to battle that addiction in the first place, and thus their traverse of life will be easier."
The discussion on this site ranged from supportive and understanding to confusion. The confusion was based on an individual's choice in the addiction process. Can an addiction be compared to cancer? My personal opinion is no. The reasoning behind this is that cancer is not a choice and according to many studies, 50% of addiction is based on poor coping skills.
The Downey family representative stated to CNN, "There is a lot of family support and understanding, and we're all determined to rally behind him and help him become the man he's capable of being. We're grateful to the Sheriff's department for their intervention, and believe Indio can be another recovery success story instead of a cautionary tale."
Revel in the success stories, but remember, "Your genes are not your destiny. The 50% of addiction that is caused by poor coping skills is where you can make a difference. Lots of people have come from addicted families but managed to overcome their family history and live happy lives."--Addictions and Recovery.org