You hear the words "addiction," "rehab," and "relapse;" whether portrayed on your favorite TV show or in real life.
But, what does it mean to truly be addicted to something?
One big misconception is that addiction only included things like alcohol and drugs. But, it can encompass far more than that. One of the difficulties with this mindset is that many addictions go undiagnosed, causing even more trauma in people's lives.
It may be helpful to look at addiction as the place where people default, to not have to exist for awhile; to basically black out all of the things that are too painful or too overwhelming.
Addiction can take forms of overspending, always having to be "right," or even being overly dramatic... anyplace that a person goes to not have to deal with the painful things in life.
However, any form of addiction ultimately limits how a person "shows up" in life, because when you're in that state of addiction, you can't be present or be YOU.
What creates the desire to escape?
So much of it involves the judgements you have about yourself, which can also be reinforced (consciously or unconsciously) by friends, family members, co-workers, etc., as well as culture and society.
These judgements can come from truly traumatic places, such as abuse suffered as a child. But, they can also arise from the feeling of just not "fitting" into what is expected.
What is the difference between primary addiction and secondary addiction?
What you might think of as the primary addiction -- alcohol, drugs, food, sex, etc. -- is actually the secondary addiction. The primary addiction is judgement and wrongness of self. If you can address these underlying thoughts and conclusions of how wrong and bad you are, you can prevent relapse.
Remember, all judgements are entirely arbitrary. You're good, you're bad, you're right, you're wrong... it's just somebody else's point of view. Being different is not wrong.
Tune in as Marilyn Bradford, LCSW, CFMW, joins Andrea and Lisa to share her own story of addiction, as well as how you can better come to understand your own addiction... and overcome it.