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The opposite of addiction is connection

Old 02-14-2018, 05:49 AM
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The opposite of addiction is connection

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/johan...b_6506936.html

Thoughts? Having a "nice cage" doesn't mean wealth and material trophies.. it's the quality and depth of the connections you have in your life. Which is something I've known from a young age from traveling to "impoverished" countries and noticing how people seemed dare I say... happier.

If I go to meetings (which is rare but I have gone to a few over the last year and would go again if necessary) it's not to hear people evangelizing the 12 steps.. it's to be surrounded by people who make me feel less alone with my problem(s). Just as when I was drinking I could only form lasting connections with others who were addicted. And eventually even that was unappealing.

If the purpose of an AA meeting was "we're lonely and our lives are broken" with no script to read from once there.. who would show up? Just something I've been thinking about since even around here there seems to be a lot of talk about "untreated alcoholism" and how AA is the only path.. gets under my skin a bit.
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Old 02-14-2018, 06:06 AM
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I think that when people find something that works for them, they quite naturally talk it up.

If you find a way to be sober and share it on the boards, your voice will be heard too.

There are many ways to be and stay sober. Some ways are more evangelical and organized and some are more free-form. They are all valid.

I agree that addiction is selfish and isolating, like an abusive relationship. I don't agree that random connections are always a good thing, especially when a person is newly sober and vulnerable. It took me a few months to develop safe boundaries and discernment again after I quit drinking.
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Old 02-14-2018, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Cosima11 View Post
My personal take: That article is the same old stuff, Rat Park, Vietnam vets, Gabor Mate, etc., with no other views discussed because it's all Jonathan Hari's often-recycled opinion. If thinking about things that way helps people, it's all good, but looking objectively it's not a particularly useful way to look at drug use and abuse because it's not predictive or actionable, unless the action is simply "stop using drugs and go make more friends". It's not a correct way to look at addiction, since addiction is chemical dependency that can only come from drug abuse, not from any personal circumstance.

Which isn't to say we aren't largely creatures of nurture, because we are. But that's true of all people, regardless of drug use history. People with many friends and deep connections can become addicts, people with no friends or connections can become addicts, and everyone in between can become an addict too. The only universal common feature is, heavy drug use over a long period of time. The reasons people go there are as varied as the people who go there.

You did ask for thoughts.
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Old 02-14-2018, 07:54 AM
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he's written a book about SSRI's along somewhat similar lines:

Is everything you think you know about depression wrong?

I think it's an interesting (subjective) point of view - as is his addiction stuff - as part of a broader picture, but I don't think it's by any means the whole picture.
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Old 02-14-2018, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by biminiblue View Post
I think that when people find something that works for them, they quite naturally talk it up.

If you find a way to be sober and share it on the boards, your voice will be heard too.

There are many ways to be and stay sober. Some ways are more evangelical and organized and some are more free-form. They are all valid.

I agree that addiction is selfish and isolating, like an abusive relationship. I don't agree that random connections are always a good thing, especially when a person is newly sober and vulnerable. It took me a few months to develop safe boundaries and discernment again after I quit drinking.
I'm at 4 months and am not attempting to make new or random connections. Just find it funny how things have come full circle.. Bond over drinking, lose relationships over drinking, quit.. then find others to bond with over not drinking. I just want to be at the point where drinking isn't even a factor (not to say I want to forget the hell I've been through or ever go back to it).

Originally Posted by JeffreyAK View Post
My personal take: That article is the same old stuff, Rat Park, Vietnam vets, Gabor Mate, etc., with no other views discussed because it's all Jonathan Hari's often-recycled opinion. If thinking about things that way helps people, it's all good, but looking objectively it's not a particularly useful way to look at drug use and abuse because it's not predictive or actionable, unless the action is simply "stop using drugs and go make more friends". It's not a correct way to look at addiction, since addiction is chemical dependency that can only come from drug abuse, not from any personal circumstance.

Which isn't to say we aren't largely creatures of nurture, because we are. But that's true of all people, regardless of drug use history. People with many friends and deep connections can become addicts, people with no friends or connections can become addicts, and everyone in between can become an addict too. The only universal common feature is, heavy drug use over a long period of time. The reasons people go there are as varied as the people who go there.

You did ask for thoughts.
I agree the article is overly simplifying something that's very complex.. But addiction can take many forms, gambling, sex, video games.. many things that do not include substance abuse. I'd go as far as to say people are now growing up in a generation/culture addicted to social media.. and the effects can be pretty isolating.

Quality over quantity
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Old 02-14-2018, 08:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Cosima11 View Post
... and how AA is the only path.. gets under my skin a bit.
only if you read those posts/threads/sub-forums

to steal a bit of AA advice - take what you want/need and leave the rest

there are plenty of people on SR who don't follow a 12-step path, who hang out in this sub-forum.
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Old 02-14-2018, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by andyh View Post
only if you read those posts/threads/sub-forums

to steal a bit of AA advice - take what you want/need and leave the rest

there are plenty of people on SR who don't follow a 12-step path, who hang out in this sub-forum.
Idk it seems like it kind of seeps into a lot of the threads on the main alcoholism forum.. If you're not in a program anything and everything going wrong in your life can probably be attributed to that.

Took me a while to find this sub-forum but I do like what I've seen of the conversations here so far!
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Old 02-14-2018, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Cosima11 View Post
Quality over quantity
True. Good friends will help you grow in your conscious abilities and capacities so that your new abstinent life and way of living can flourish.
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Old 02-14-2018, 09:02 AM
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Yeah, I'm really glad I opted out of 'having' alcoholism, treated or otherwise, I just quit drinking, solved all those alcohol problems. My AV hates it, but who cares
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