Is your life plagued by addiction?

unbiasedman (@AndrewSmandrew) 4 years, 11 months ago

I have always had the wrong interpretation of addiction. I would associate it only with dirty men or women clad with torn clothes and worn boots, scrounging around thinking only of where to find another hit. That is until I realized that I am an addict myself – and it is ruining my life.

Addiction: The fact or condition of being addicted to a particular substance, thing, or activity.

I pay particular attention to the last two nouns in this definition. I was raised in an environment rich with substances. I, to this day, abuse these substances and realize that this is a huge part of the problem. However, I easily disregard the things and the activities that I am addicted to that corrode my quality of life. Gaze upon my short list of fruits I consider to be forbidden.

  • Pornography
  • Television
  • Unhealthy foods
  • Drugs

By forbidden I mean a self imposed ideology that doing these things are bad and being as stubborn as I am, makes you want to do them more. I have been without passion or hobby for a few months now. A void has grown within me over time and I’ve filled it with senseless waste. My list consists of things and activities that satisfy the mind and body momentarily but send you in a downwards spiral of reflection,depression and regret soon after. This creates a vicious cycle, you seek to satisfy youself now and worry about the future when it comes. This is where you sell yourself half truths that you will, for example, finish the drugs now and go cold turkey forever or binge eat only for tonight and hit the gym in the AM and eat broccoli and chicken for a year. 

My current way of living, of indulging what I am addicted to has led me to push away my friends and family in shame of who I’ve become. The past star athlete and honour roll graduate is now self detrimental and insecure. Last christmas I refused to come home and the loneliest and most depressing stretch of my life ensued. As I have often done after realizing I am an addict, I weep as I think to myself how I can change myself for the better; exercise, socialize, eat well and reflect. However, escaping the jaws of addiction have proved to be the most difficult thing I have done in my life. One of the handful of  things keeping me afloat in this sea of dread is the idea of who I can become and who I can help when I get there.

A rat in a cage with nothing to do will choose drugged water over regular water. A rat in a cage with other rats and new places and things to explore will choose the regular water over the drugged water. We are not rats, no, but this experiment by the psychologist Bruce Alexander is blatently relevant to addicts across the globe. To alleviate pressures of addiction we must fill our growing internal voids with activity that promotes self growth. We need to find new past times that require focus, creativity and that, most importantly, challenge us. 

I understand that struggles are relative. I know that compared to others I have had it easy but no matter the social status, people take their own lives due to addiction and depression daily. The rut you may find yourself in is deep yet all can be acheived through hard work. You just have to find the will in the deep recesses of your mind. Survival is, after all, inately ingrained into our brains. 

I wish luck to all addicts across the globe and hope that you shake its grip to become the gem that I know you can be. Similar to the Kubler-Ross stages of grief, the first phase of addiction is often denial. So I ask you again – is your life plagued by addiction?

February 23, 2017 at 1:27 am
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