Some people are able to use recreational or prescription drugs without ever experiencing negative consequences or addiction. For many others, substance use can cause problems at work, home, school, and in relationships, leaving you feeling isolated, helpless, or ashamed. If you’re worried about your own or a friend or family member’s drug use, it’s important to know that help is available. Learning about the nature of drug abuse and addiction—how it develops, what it looks like, and why it can have such a powerful hold—will give you a better understanding of the problem and how to best deal with it.People experiment with drugs for many different reasons. Many first try drugs out of curiosity, to have a good time, because friends are doing it, or in an effort to improve athletic performance or ease another problem, such as stress, anxiety, or depression. Use doesn’t automatically lead to abuse, and there is no specific level at which drug use moves from casual to problematic. It varies by individual. Drug abuse and addiction is less about the amount of substance consumed or the frequency, and more to do with the consequences of drug use. No matter how often or how little you’re consuming, if your drug use is causing problems in your life—at work, school, home, or in your relationships—you likely have a drug abuse or addiction problem. Why do some drug users become addicted, while others don’t? As with many other conditions and diseases, vulnerability to addiction differs from person to person. Your genes, mental health, family and social environment all play a role in addiction. Risk factors that increase your vulnerability include: family history of addiction, abuse, neglect, or other traumatic experiences in childhood, mental disorders such as depression and anxiety, early use of drugs and method of administration—smoking or injecting a drug may increase its addictive potential. By Lawrence Robinson, Melinda Smith, M.A., and Joanna Saisan, M.S.W.
Imagine trying to live without air.
Now imagine something worse.
The best way to deal with any kind of addiction is to seek the help of a qualified therapist. Neither sex addiction nor porn addiction is considered an official mental disorder, but they are compulsions that can have serious effects on one’s sexuality and can be detrimental to social functioning. Any decent therapist, psychologist or psychiatrist will recognize this and be able to provide you with tools to reduce your dependency on pornography. There is a variety of software available that can filter out certain content from the internet before it gets to your computer. These filters are usually used to prevent explicit content, including pornography, from reaching the innocent eyes of children, but they can have applications for the porn addict too. Of course, it’s easy to disable your own filters, but simply having them in place may provide enough of a deterrent when you’re craving a porn fix. There is also keylogger software that will track every move you make on the internet and even accountability software that will not only track your internet activity, but will also send a weekly report to your “accountability partner” to keep them up to speed on the sites you’re visiting. For most of us, viewing pornography is an occasional guilty pleasure. But for those who are driven to use porn constantly, it can represent a genuine mental, emotional and physical trap. With a combination of therapy, internet filters, affirmations, accountability, and research, it can be overcome. http://www.askmen.com/dating/love_tip_400/404_love_tip.html
of any addict
is to anesthetize
the pain of living
to ease the passage of day
with some purchased relief.
The sexual abuse of children spans all races, ages, ethnic groups and economic backgrounds. Sexual abuse means any kind of unwanted or inappropriate sexual behavior with a child, whether or not there is actual physical contact. Tragically, this kind of abuse is not rare; studies estimate that one in four girls and one in seven boys are sexually abused as children. Abusers can be family members, friends of the family, authority figures or strangers. It is impossible to tell if someone is an abuser by simply looking – they may be someone who is highly respected in society and who has a good reputation. Most child victims knew and trusted the people who abused them. Children are absolutely dependent on adults for their physical and emotional survival, and abusers have many ways of wielding this power over children. Abusers may use threats to coerce children, such as the threat of harm to them or their loved ones and withholding of love and affection. They may tell a child that he or she is special, that the abuse is a way to show love for the child, or that the child is responsible for the abuse. If you are a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, it is important to remember that no matter what you may have been told, the abuse was not your fault and you are not alone. http://www.miamidade.gov/police/victim-adult-victims.asp
Religion has the capacity to silence
critical thinking and create blindness
in entire groups of people.
It can infect the minds of followers
so completely as to allow
the most egregious sexual acts
against children and others
to go unchallenged…
The immature personality: Some people never really become mature adults. They may remain unduly close to their parents. They often boast about those few things that they have actually accomplished, are unable to form close relationships with others, and are self-centered.
The anti-social personality: These people are unable to accept frustration. They live for, expect and must have easy and continuous gratification. They often eat a lot, chew sweets and smoke, as well as drink heavily. They drink for two reasons – to reduce the personal discomfort that results from frustration and to provide instant and dependable gratification. They are impulsive and do not learn from their mistakes.
The self-punitive personality: Some outwardly docile people are actually repressing aggressive tendencies. This results in inner tension and alcohol helps to relieve this tension. Often alcohol releases the aggression.
The stressed or anxious personality: Some people find stress more difficult to deal with than others. They may use alcohol in an attempt to cope.
The passive-aggressive personality: This term refers to someone with an outwardly calm and acquiescent shell that hides inner anger. They find it impossible to deal with anger-inducing situations.
Many addicts do not have these personality types, and of course if you recognize yourself above it does not automatically follow that you are at increased risk of addiction. It’s important to remember that no personality is immune to addiction. Proneness to alcoholism is better recognized by examining someone’s existing drinking habits than by assessing their personality. Modern, well-organized studies do not support a role for personality in addiction. Most of the theories outlined above are not well supported by scientific evidence. By Dr. Ciaran Mulholland http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/menshealth/facts/addiction.htm
There are two questions a man
must ask himself: The first is
‘Where am I going?’ the second is
‘Who will go with me?’ If you ever
get these questions in the wrong order
you are in trouble.
There are few disorders which can silently destroy the beauty of our being and gifts of our creation more than the multi-faceted and diverse symptoms of depression. Approximately 1 person in every 5 will become depressed at some point in their lives and one in 20 will be clinically depressed. Statistics suggest that women are more vulnerable to depression, but men generally find it harder to admit to or talk about their experiences. We should never try to dismiss the symptoms of depression and always take them seriously, they are never an inevitable part of growing up or growing old. It is possible to overcome depression, and to prevent its return. If we are suffering from depression it means that our brain and nervous system has reached a point where it has slowed down. In most cases it will do this because it is confronted with too much stress. Stress or imagined stress is very often the trigger for a panic attack. This stress may be related to current issues but far more likely an event has triggered a past experience which we have pushed down deeply within ourselves and which is not in our conscious self. When we are attacked by depression it seems impossible to function and to enjoy life as we should. Hobbies and friends don’t interest us as they used to, we feel exhausted all the time and just getting through the day can be massively overwhelming. Although, when we are depressed, things may feel hopeless, with help and support we can get better. Firstly we need the right tools and learning about depression, recognizing the signs, symptoms and causes, is the first step to beating this enemy. Richard Gosling http://www.counselling-directory.org.uk/counsellor-articles/recognising-and-overcoming-depression
Your pain is the breaking of the shell
that encloses your understanding.
It takes time to overcome lifelong patterns of codependency, and the process often involves “two steps forward, and one step back.” But there are several specific steps you can take to break out of an ingrained codependent style. The first step is to face the problem honestly. Chances are, you have rationalized and justified and even spiritualized your codependent style. Now is the time to face it head-on. For someone who has spent a lifetime using denial to ward off pain, shame, or fear of rejection, this can be a terrifying experience. You will need support from people who can provide safe relationships that allow you to be emotionally honest on your journey. Support groups with other people on a similar road of recovery often provide more support for recovering from codependency than family and friends because members of these groups know what it is like to struggle with these issues. (http://coda.org/) One way to begin breaking through denial is to seriously consider the experiences that have contributed to your codependency. Most often this involves exploring significant aspects of your family history. Because codependents have learned to cope by disconnecting from their inner emotions, this exploration cannot be simply an intellectual exercise. It must involve a process of coming to terms with your actual feelings as a child. It also means being completely honest about your family of origin. Jason T. Li. Ph.D. http://lifecounsel.org/pub_li_overcomingCodependency.html
Stop trying to hold onto your past,
you can’t start the next chapter of your life
if you keep re-reading your last one.
The hardest part of therapy for codependents is getting into it! Denial plays as big a role in codependency as it does in substance abuse. Since codependents are focused on the other person’s behavior, it’s easy for them to believe that their problems will be resolved when the other person changes. While it’s true that another person’s behavior can influence use, codependents have problems of their own. Letting someone else’s behavior affect you to the point that it interferes with you life is the codependent’s – not the other person’s – problem. Learning to let go of the myth that you can control another’s behavior (detach, as Al-Anon puts it) is a big step toward recovery. Building self-esteem is essential for recovering codependents. A good therapist can help you define your own identity and boost your self-worth so that you don’t need another person to create or validate you as a person. Obsession with someone else’s life becomes less appealing when your own is full and rewarding. Additionally, people who feel good about themselves are much less likely to start or stay in relationships that are abusive or otherwise unhealthy. http://www.drshirin.com/codepend.htm
Delay is the deadliest
form of denial.
C. Northcote Parkinson
In a war, soldiers are forced to deny their emotions in order to survive. This emotional denial works to help the soldier survive the war, but later can have devastating delayed consequences. The medical profession has now recognized the trauma and damage that this emotional denial can cause, and have coined a term to describe the effects of this type of denial. That term is “Delayed Stress Syndrome.” Codependence is a form of Delayed Stress Syndrome. Instead of blood and death (although some do experience blood and death literally), what happened to us as children was spiritual death and emotional maiming, mental torture and physical violation. We were forced to grow up denying the reality of what was happening in our homes. We were forced to deny our feelings about what we were experiencing and seeing and sensing. We were forced to deny our selves. We were born into the middle of a war where our sense of self was battered and fractured and broken into pieces. We grew up in the middle of battlefields where our beings were discounted, our perceptions invalidated, and our feelings ignored and nullified. The war we were born into, the battlefield each of us grew up in, was not in some foreign country against some identified “enemy” – it was in the “homes” which were supposed to be our safe haven with our parents whom we Loved and trusted to take care of us. From the book “Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls” by Therapist Robert Burney
Child abuse casts a shadow
the length of a lifetime.
Public truth-telling is a form of recovery, especially when combined with social action. Sharing traumatic experiences with others enables victims to reconstruct repressed memory, mourn loss, and master helplessness, which is trauma’s essential insult. And, by facilitating reconnection to ordinary life, the public testimony helps survivors restore basic trust in a just world and overcome feelings of isolation. But the talking cure is predicated on the existence of a community willing to bear witness. ‘Recovery can take place only within the context of relationships,’ writes Judith Herman. ‘It cannot occur in isolation. Lawrence N. Powell
A lie will easily get you out of a scrape,
and yet, strangely and beautifully,
rapture possesses you when
you have taken the scrape and left out the lie.
Charles Edward Montague
When I was eleven and twelve I prayed to God many times for the abuse from my stepfather to stop. It never did, so I grew up to believe that either there was no God or else He/She/It did not care about me. In adult life, my relationship with a Higher Power have been tenuous at best. My attitude for a long while was “if it is to be, it’s up to me”. I made myself my own God of sorts and felt whatever happened was by my own doing. Many years had to pass and my recovery had to begin before I could even admit the smallest possibility of a power beyond me. Even today I remain skeptical but accept there is something outside of me that is beyond my power to fully grasp and comprehend. Whether it is the power of the Universe, cosmic law or God the Creator does not materially matter to me. What does is believing in the possibility.
The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe.
We are like a little child entering a huge library. The walls
are covered to the ceilings with books in many different
tongues. The child knows that someone must have written
these books. It does not know who or how. It does not
understand the languages in which they are written.
But the child notes a definite plan in the arrangement
of the books, a mysterious order which it does not
comprehend, but only dimly suspects.