Addiction? What are you *talking* about??

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Disclosure: I will swear. A lot. 

 

OK wait wait wait wait wait….waaaaaaaaitttttt a minute here…

What is this shit that codependence is an ACTUAL addiction – you know, like need to have it drug…drinking all of the time…or that stuff… but it’s all surrounding a PERSON other than ME?? 

What. The. Fuck. 

No, seriously. This has taken a full 24 hours to hit me square in the gut. HARD. 

So what you’re saying to me is that despite the fact that I don’t drink [I suck at it. Really.] I don’t do drugs. I’m not addicted to eating or shopping or sex. BUT I’M STILL A FUCKING ADDICT?

Who do I punch in the face?? NOW? Right the fuck now! 

***

OK, I’m done with that. Pfew. Exhausting. I’m not much for the anger thing in that way. It seems that I prefer to self-destruct from the inside out. /laughing Not so much, any more. 

Yesterday, a friend of mine lectured me for 1 full hour about the fact that I am an addict and that it is up to me to stop feeding the addiction and find out who the hell I am. um HEEEYEAH…like I didn’t *know* that last part but WHAT? I’m an addict?

You must be shitting me. 

Glenda the Good Witch type of vision: “Now my darling, I would never, ever in a million years shit a girl so wonderful as you!” [bats eyelashes at me as she waves her wand]

I am flying between:

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and

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and

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This was the tipping point: At some point I watched a video on YouTube where the presenter made the point of saying that codependent behaviors are BEYOND the control of that person. No chance. Nada. Not even if they try really, really, really hard. 

WHAT? No control? 

Once again, you shit me. 

But yeah. Apparently, that’s the deal. So OK, now that I’ve got it. Oh my god. This is so much weirder than I thought it all was. I have no idea what I’m feeling right now. what?

 

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9 thoughts on “Addiction? What are you *talking* about??

  1. Labels. Mere labels. Sure, maybe it’s useful to frame codependence with a term like “addict” with some shock value, but I’m not sure how much to swallow of that. I also believe that free will and determination play a role. The I’ve smoked. I had trouble quitting. I still want to smoke. I’m an addict. Just because it’s not heroin doesn’t change the underlying chemical dynamics of addiction. Is there any physiological evidence that early trauma and/or codependent behavior has somehow hard-wired your brain permanently? I believe in redemption too much to accept that at face value. And, the argument that co-dependence is a condition from which one cannot escape smacks of fatalism to me.

    Ideology.

    You mean you can’t even nudge it a little? And if you can nudge it, what’s to stop you from nudging again. And again. And again. You build a brick wall one brick at a time, so I am skeptical unless I saw some peer-reviewed quantifiable studies that document it, more than one.

    • Yes there is evidence; the effects are can be reversible. Look through my blog or search the neuro lit. This is not a disease, it is a condition with dynamics and features that affect the chemistry of the brain in the same way that an addictive substance might. A successful outcome, in my humble opinion, is dependent upon recognizing the potential effects of not seeking treatment in several modalities.

      I do not see it as a condition that one cannot escape and wonder about the credibility of such an argument. I never have really, in fact I saw it as the opposite. There are always individual predispositions and resiliencies in play. Group statistics never generalize to individuals and this area is particularly rife with misunderstandings as to what the literature actually says.

      I also do not accept anything fatalistic because I am an example of someone who perhaps could have never had this final, deep breakdown had conditions not presented at just the right time in just the right place. Because I was predisposed to awakening something dormant, eh, things went to shit, so I rebuild.

      The label points to mind, body, spirit connection. If those things aren’t connected, addictions of many types can occur and someone can be unaware just how deep they are in. I was. That said, to ignore any of the mental, neurobiological, interpersonal and/or psychosocial effects would be to plan to fall short.

      The brain changes as a result of repeated and sustained trauma have been documented in rapidly emerging research. The findings seem to support that change is reversible. The findings also suggest that behavioral change will only go so far, as will medication.

      Some researchers posit that there are those who may be more likely to precipitate risk (e.g., knowingly exposing oneself to damaging/addictive situations) based upon past damage…1) they think they’ll get “relief” from the deep pain and 2) it’s never enough so they seek more and more “relief” from the thing that is actually damaging them. Neurochemistry likely has shifted. *That* is addictive behavior. [Denial is a component of this, lest we forget.]

      Lower the risk, lower the likelihood of chronic problems. Heal the damage (mind, body, spirit). Build up the metaphorical immune system with healthy life skills.

      Setting my scientist aside, I am *all about* free will, believe me. But there has come a time when I need to realize that this is not merely bad choices or bad behavior in play. It’s feeding something I don’t want and I have repeated the same behaviors which have yielded the same outcomes. For years. And despite myself.

      That. Is. ADDICTION.

      That is putting myself into the victim saddle which, now that I know that, I’m *done*. Absolutely done. It’s not hard to look as far back in my family to see the self-destructive, self-sabotaging behavior in lots of forms. Maybe they never were educated to know better – but I am. I feel compassion and empathy, but damn it – shock factor was absolutely necessary.

      It was an autopsy without blame and a damn big eye opener. Yeah, I’m no better than any of the alcoholics or drug addicts in my family: my addiction just can’t be seen. Addicted to self-destructive, self-sabotaging behaviors…addicted to keeping the truth from myself and others and acting out in unhealthy ways to self-soothe – until it was NEVER ENOUGH. Never. I could never feed that monster enough to satisfy it. Not in a million years. My neurochemistry has shifted because of constantly being hypervigilant, which causes a constant barrage of adrenaline and cortisol. My thyroid has been assaulted as well. My digestive system joined the club and protested. Knowing myself well, I would submit to you that most of these things are somatic responses to constant freaking stress which I contribute to perpetuating.

      It stops now.

  2. I can’t even begin to tell you how much this post has thrown me about as I read it. Not for a nanosecond would I describe you as an addictive personality. I wouldn’t hang that particular albatross around your neck in a million years. Relationships and the patterns of behaviour they invoke can produce symptoms similar to addiction, but do I think you’re the sort of woman who deliberately puts herself into a situation because she’s addicted to the end result? Pfft. No. I need to read up on this. In the meantime, I’m back and reading through your recent posts.

    • It’s pretty mind bending really. I think the only way I’ve been able to wrap my head around the comprehensiveness of my situation has to accept the fact that whatever one would call this cluster of problems, those problems must be annihilated.

      As I’ve written several times, I do not have these types of problems in any other relationship whatsoever. Those relationships that were toxic in similar ways have either been greatly reduced or eradicated. Taking those steps was far easier than this one because of the emotional and familial (kids) investments.

    • Awww thank you so much! I’m working down the list of replies as I sort of went underground. I got a wee bit of time but the usual destruction cycle followed. Turns out I’m still breathing 🙂 I really appreciate your checking in! Wow that’s humbling. XO, Dharma

  3. Oh, fucking, yeah… Codependence and Addiction, Baby.
    Change for the better wouldn’t feel this bad if it wasn’t such an insidious issue…

    “self-destructive, self-sabotaging behaviors…addicted to keeping the truth from myself and others and acting out in unhealthy ways to self-soothe – until it was NEVER ENOUGH”

    I’ve had enough too. Fucking addictive physiological shit…

    MWAAaaa~~!

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