I wasn't down with a forever thing either, and fortunately most 12 step programs stress the just for today or one day at a time principle. Something we may not be able to see as a plus to not using chemicals for our happiness and well being, is that there are so many other great enhancements to happiness and well being. While we may come up with solutions on our own that work, the range of solutions we can learn about in 12 step meetings is far larger than an individuals imagination can come up with. Now I find that instead of wanting this or that thing to make me feel good, I have a sort of internal system of practices that have eliminated the idea that I need to "GET" something in order to feel good. Society is very focused on getting stuff that makes us feel good, and has little focus on the deeper well being that is not product or service/ event based. Even in med tech, Doctors have given up expecting us to take care of ourselves and offer pills for all our ills. Even the gym is a replacement for getting out and doing stuff, though not a bad replacement. I do know plenty of people who got addicted to working out, and need that until it stops working, at which point their lives and emotions go to crap. The flaw I see in using things outside ourselves to make our insides feel good, is that eventually we will get bored with the fixes, or one way or another they stop working, we need more and more, they are not longer available etc. Usually many different life affirming practices end up being what really lasts and keeps the formerly substance dependent individual happy in the long term. Then there is really no need to or interest in going back to dulling the brain with chemicals!