Action has meaning only in relationship and without understanding relationship, action
on any level will only breed conflict. The understanding of relationship is infinitely more
important than the search for any plan of action.
- J. Krishnamurti
To put this quote into the frame of addiction, we need to consider that for the fully addicted
individual, it’s not about the drug and getting high.
It’s about their relationship to the drug and getting
high. In other words, addiction is about escaping difficult emotions we don’t know how to deal with.
In our society, we often condemn addicts as weak or judge them very harshly, but it is fully
human nature to want to take the path of least resistance to feeling better.
Most of us have something that we turn to help us escape the emotions that we can’t seem to process on our own. It can be food, sex, video games, internet addiction, illegal substances or even working out.
Some are healthier than others and some will even land us in jail.
But if using these relationships is the only way for us to feel “normal” (meaning if we don’t have any other coping skills to turn to in order to feel okay in our lives) and we are asked to give up that relationship – how are we then supposed to replace that relationship and feel normal?
As we all know, relationships look very different from the outside than they do from the inside.
It’s easy for family and friends on the outside of a person’s addiction to say, “Why don’t you just quit?"
That stuff is killing you!”
But from the inside, many addicted individuals’ relationship to their substance
of choice feels like the only way they’ve ever been able to find relief from difficult insecurities or
emotions that have plagued them throughout their lifetime.
Giving up that relationship feels like never being able to find contentment and relief again. Often this causes a tighter grip on the drug to keep from facing even greater insecurity.
Addiction is a very complicated relationship. When we can understand it from the aspect of
relationship rather than choice, we can begin to help individuals find equally satisfying alternatives to
cope other than a substance.
Recovery is a process of long-term behavioral change and requires a great deal of support and
understanding for anyone who is looking to overcome addiction.
If you or someone you love is suffering
from the disease of addiction, please reach out and make an appointment to gain support and education and to better understand the disease and recovery process.
Addiction can be overcome, and families and relationships can heal!
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and relationships can heal!