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Category contains 2 blog entries contributed to teamblogs

Posted by on in Other Addictions

Hi my name is janique, I am really happy to Blogg at Addiction Land.

I've had one of those crazy lifes of sex, drugs and rock'n roll but my addiction started when I was 11 years old and I thought I killed my mother, you see I told her I hated her, that night she commited suicide. I know today that that isn't the truth but as a 11 year old I didn't. The pain I felt of killing my own mother and not be able to tell anyone was excrutiating. It wasn't until, by misstake, I cut myself ....when I felt the pain on the outside the pain on the inside start faiding away - seeing the blood running down my arm was a relief; now I knew how to escape all the horrible feelings on the inside....this strated years of cutting and self harm.. This is how it all started.....how did it start for you?

 

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Posted by on in Other Addictions

I want to throw a word out to you.  I made it up.  It is called entitlitis.  The definition is an inflammation or exagerration of entitlement.  King Baby may be a term you are familiar with if you are in a 12 step fellowship.  Tantrum is another word you might know if you have a toddler or you catch yourself in a mirror on an off day. "Boo-hoo, I am not getting what I demand!" And, lastlly, dependent is another catch phrase I like which describes the person who denies the existance of All Power in their own life and prefers to wait for other people to do things to improve their life.

What is more insane than denying the existance of All-Power?  The answer to that would be failing to apply the principle of All-Power in your life.  Who might do that?  Well, for one thing, me when I didn't know that All-Power existed.  Before I came into a 12 step fellowing ship, I knew of only one power and that power was will power.  I was taught that if I wanted something to happen in my life, I needed to make it happen.  In addition, I could and should use any tactic available to me, including manipulation and force, when things didn't seem to move in the direction I wanted.

Sure, I was able to make all sorts of things happen but the acid test of how it was working for me was the feeling of anxiety, despair, emptiness and pain I felt inside. If cheating on a test to get a perfect score was good, why did the A leave me feeling empty?  If cheating on my boyfriend to get double the attention was positive, why did it make me feel less attractive?   If my methods were right, why didn't they lead me to a positive sense of self worth?

I've always been a little scientist testing hypotheses to find the merit.  When I came into the 12 step fellowship, I decided to do the same thing with the "suggestions." I would find people who appeared to have the life I hoped for, ask them what they did to get that life, and follow in their footsteps in my own life.  When I was told to get to a meeting a day, I did.  When I was told not to use alcohol or drugs for a 24 hour period, I did.  When I was told to reach out and find a sponsor and get phone numbers and use them, I did. When I was told to work the 12 steps, I worked all twelve of them.

It didn't take but a few days before I noticed an amazing change INSIDE of me. Increase I started to feel hopeful.  I felt less afraid.  I felt less alone.  I felt understood.  In order to connect with real joy in life, I had to earn it and not expect it.  I had to stop waiting for the Prince on the White Horse to gallup in and save me.  I had to stop waiting to win the lottery.  I had to stop waiting for other people to change in order for me to be happy.

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Posted by on in Other Addictions

Someone I love dearly is deteriorating before my eyes due to her addiction.  She quit smoking, but has severe COPD as a result of the years she did smoke.  Because she can't smoke, her addiction has morphed into food addiction.  Her small frame is crumbling under the additional weight and burden of damaged lungs.  She takes a few steps and has to sit down to catch her breath.  She is forced to accept an oxygen tank.

I break down and cry and tell her I am extremely worried about her.  I tell her there is nothing morally wrong with her.  I tell her she suffers from the same addiction I suffer from.  I remind her I once couldnt stop throwing up my food.  I remind her I once couldnt stop doing cocaine and smoking cigarettes.  I remind her that treatment and therapy and 12 step programs work and they will work for her if she accepts some help.

I tell her she is worth it. I urge her to put herself first.  I let her know everyone will be fine if she goes away and concentrates on getting the support she deserves.  I take a deep breath and pray to G-d she is hearing me. I pray to G-d she will be open.  She worries that I am worried and she tries to assure me she is taking steps to help herself.  Unfortunately, I sense that without a Higher Power (namely, a community of liked minded people who can understand and support her), she will have no defense against the first whatever.  She will make a million commitments to "being better this time" and fail. She will swear against the hamburger and fries and wonder how they ended up in her mouth again.

I am not a pessimist. I have faith in G-d, but I also believe a person has to accept the Good in order for it to work in his or her life.  All too often we block our own Good with Ego and negativity.  We say "it won't work for me" or "I am different" or "I should be able to do this on my own."  I hate the fact that I am powerless over the addiction in someone I adore.  I hate the fact that with all the knowledge and resources I have at my disposal and all the connections I can make for her, it is not enough to change her.

I have to let go and let G-d.  I can work my own program so I can show up for her to understand her and support her.  When I think about what other people could have done to help me turn my own addiction around, I think love and compassion are always a great help.

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Posted by on in Other Addictions


Sometimes, things are first noticed by their absence.  "What happened to the sofa in the living room?"  "It seems awfully quiet in here all of a sudden."  "Didn't the sky used to be blue?" So it is with love addiction.  The first clue that we're addicted to something is generally when we start jonesing for it.  Or him.  It's like the old joke about the little kid who didn't talk for five years, and then all of a sudden complains about his lumpy mashed potatoes.  "Everything was fine up 'til now."   


Withdrawal in love addiction is like withdrawal from any other mind-altering drug: miserable, painful, intense.  Pretty much the only difference between this and withdrawal from heroin is the soundtrack.  Most junkies don’t play Leonard Cohen songs over and over again as they shudder and shake. The weeping and the vomiting are about the same.


It amazes people how physical withdrawal can be.  Who would have thought that simply not picking up the phone would lead to sleeplessness, nausea and headaches?  He cancels a movie date, I get a rash.  WTF?  But brain chemistry is brain chemistry, and whether it’s the dopamine rush from a winning blackjack hand or the touch of His hand, the phenomenon of craving and the symptoms of withdrawal persist.


There’s your mild withdrawal after, say, a couple of dates.  That ache you feel when you don't get the phone call you expected.  You begin to long for the sound of that voice. The relief you feel when you do hear it is what any reasonable drug addict would call a fix. Take that fix away for too long, and someone’s going to be lying on the floor, clutching their stomach, staring at the phone and/or howling at the moon.


Get in too deep, or go too long without the object of your desire, and what I call Affection Deficit Disorder kicks in bigtime. You have no appetite. You cry without warning, quite randomly, and frequently in public. You can’t sleep… or you can’t do anything but sleep.  I did get in terrific shape during one withdrawal, because I couldn’t eat and hitting the heavy bag was the only thing keeping me semi-sane.  But then there was this other time when I couldn’t get out of bed and Ding-Dongs were the only thing keeping me semi-sane….

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Posted by on in Other Addictions

As you either knew or hoped, there is a recovery program for the obsessive-compulsive sex and love patterns we’ve been discussing. As with most addictive behaviors, the 12-step model pioneered by Alcoholics Anonymous is effective both in immediate behavior modification and long-term emotional/spiritual healing. AA begat SA (Sexoholics Anonymous) which begat SAA (Sex Addicts Anonymous) which begat SCA (Sexual Compulsives Anonymous) which begat SLAA (Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous) which begat the small but growing LAA (Love Addicts Anonymous.)

By and large, sex addiction and love addiction have the same social stigma today that alcoholism had in the 1930s and drug addiction did in the 1950s. By the ‘80s, no one really cared that you were a drunk (see Dudley Moore in “Arthur”) or a cokehead (see Al Pacino in “Scarface.”) But stalking your fantasy beloved, or running up six-figure phone-sex bills, are still downright embarrassing. And no one wants to be that person dragged along the floor, clutching someone’s ankle as they’re walking out of the room.

By the 2000s, SLAA had become the most socially acceptable of all these shame-based “S-programs.” Male and female, gay and straight, young and old… homemakers could work their way out of abusive relationships in the same room as rent boys could work their way out of the bathhouse. The gal who couldn’t imagine not earning stares for her low-cut necklines could relate to the flasher who felt powerless unless he was wagging his weenie. It’s all about feeling invisible unless you’re perceived as a sexual being. You’re nobody until somebody loves you, as the song goes. Or at least desires you.

Generally, men are willing to admit they’re sex addicts and loathe to cop to their love obsession. Whereas women will identify as love junkies or romance addicts and not want to embrace their sexual profligacy. What both realize very quickly is that sex and love are two sides of the same coin. Often, sex is the coin women trade for love; words of love are currency that men trade for sex.  

Dear depraved sex addict: As soon as you stop banging everything in sight I guarantee you will fall desperately, adolescently in love with the first stripper who smiles at you. Dear wholesome romance junkie: Erase His number from your phone and take down His pictures, and you will achieve a new personal best in one-night stands. It’s the old game of mental whack-a-mole. Give up smoking and eat yourself fat. Give up drinking and shop yourself broke.

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