How Do I Tell My Teacher My Addiction Ate My Homework?

student doing homework
My dog ate my homework. It’s the infamous example we use for making up excuses as to why we aren’t on time with an assignment we were expected to turn in. When all else fails, we blame the dog for being mischievous and stealing our homework off the table, only to tear it to shreds. As accountable and responsible adults in recovery, this kind of excuse-making behavior is no longer acceptable. Through our recovery we learn the importance of being honest and transparent with ourselves and others. Addiction and alcoholism in the brain encourage lying, manipulating, and deceit. We experience a great deal of shame, guilt, and remorse which we want to avoid feeling. We also know that we will disappoint other people when we tell them about a relapse or going against our word to stay sober. We live with relentless cravings and physical symptoms of withdrawal that we would do anything to get rid of by using more substances. Once we start living sober, it becomes important to act against these urges and live more honestly. Sometimes, that honesty can feel uncomfortable and difficult to come by.


Going back to school or starting school for the first time is a gift of recovery. Programs like the ones offered at Simple Recovery help us plan our integration of treatment skills to starting a journey through higher education or vocational training. Having completed multiple phases of our treatment, we have the confidence of our clinical staff behind us that we are ready and able to take on the responsibilities as well as the expectations of going back to school. We are ready. We won’t do it perfectly.


Living with mental health is living with mental health. In addition to living sober from drugs and alcohol, we might be living in recovery from a mental health disorder. It is common in our first year of recovery to have difficult days. Up to eighteen months sober we can experience recurring symptoms of withdrawal. Generally, some days are easier than others. There will be days when completing an assignment feels impossible and very may well be. We have to honestly communicate with our professors when addiction and mental health “eats” our homework. Schools are legally required to offer special accommodations for disabilities, which can include an extension on assignments, extra testing time, and the ability to take a test in a private room. Working with the staff at Simple Recovery, you’ll be able to set up your approach to school in a way that works best for you.


Simple Recovery is a multi-tiered transitional treatment program providing care for addiction and co-occurring disorders. Our approach to living sober helps clients chase their dreams by applying real life skills from treatment to recovery. Start your recovery today by calling us at: 888-743-0490