Is it possible that we might cure alcoholism with science some day? Can modern medicine come up with pill that will “fix” the internal chemistry that leads a person to drink to excess?
The answer is probably not. The problem is not so much one of science, but probably more of psychology. Alcoholism is a deeper problem within a person and it is simply manifesting in the form of alcohol abuse and addiction. It could be any number of substances or even addictive behaviors that comes out instead. For example, most alcoholics can quit drinking if they start using other drugs in the place of alcohol. Is this any sort of solution? Of course not. But it does illustrate that the problem is deeper than just addiction to a specific substance.
The only real cure for alcoholism is to create a new life for the individual that is worth living. In other words, the alcoholic has to find passion and purpose in living a sober life. Getting to this point is the tricky part and practically requires the alcoholic push themselves to the brink of self destruction. Anyone can achieve the creative life in recovery and start living a healthy life of again but the transition in getting there is what trips so many alcoholics up. You have to get through several layers of denial, then you have to surrender to your disease and follow that moment up with massive action. This is a tall order for anyone regardless of their situation. Basically they have to reinvent themselves in order to have any kind of shot at a new future.
The cure for addiction is personal growth. If you get into recovery and start living a sober life then you have two choices. You can stagnate in your growth and go back to drinking, or you can push yourself to keep growing as a person. There really is no in between, as they point out in 12 step programs all the time: “You are either working on recovery or you’re working on a relapse.” You have to keep growing in order to recover.
What kind of personal growth should we pursue for this alcoholism cure of ours? The key is holistic growth. If we are growing in many different areas of our life then this becomes much more powerful for our recovery and we increase our chances of staying sober in the long run. Our addiction affected us in many different ways so a path of holistic growth makes the most sense.