The Generational Curse of Addiction Overcome

Written by Laura E.

You bet your sweet bippy generational curses are real and they can be broken by The Holy Spirit.

Yes we have the debate of nature vs nurture and it is valid as we are formed by BOTH.  Nature would be all the genes and hereditary factors that influence who we are—from our physical appearance to our personality characteristics.  Therefore “nature” also means generational curses especially I am referring to addiction.

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Can An Addict Really Quit Drugs On Their Own?

Charlie Sheen states he quit drugs by his own power of thought.

Update: Apparently according to online sources Charlie Seen did stay sober on his own for eleven years until he was diagnosed in 2016-January with H.I.V. Some articles state his sobriety was a farce.  The news of his HIV threw him into a deep state of anxiety and relapse apparently.  Recent information states he detoxed at his father's Malibu home in 2017-April.  Hopefully since then he is finding spiritual help.  Recent info says he is sober now and doing charity work as an HIV solutions advocate.

2011-Charlie Sheen stated that he quit drugs by his own self will.  I must admit I know people sober for long periods of time who have done it on their own.  Granted…this does not allow for any work on the core reasons for the need to numb ones awarness on a regular basis.  Nor does it introduce emotional coping skills that work for many addicts.  The article below is so accurate in my opinion I had to share it with you.  Taken from https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/can-you-cure-yourself-of-addiction/ and written by:   By Nina Bai on March 4, 2011

I am especially impressed with the accuracy of the statement made by: “Scientific American spoke with Sally Satel, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research and lecturer in
psychiatry at the Yale University School of Medicine, about quitting drugs without professional treatment. Satel was formerly a staff psychiatrist at
the Oasis Clinic in Washington, D.C., where she worked with substance abuse patients.”

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Recovery from Addiction

Jails, Institutions, and Near Death

Spring of 2006 I spent 2 months in jail getting sober for the last time. I spent my time locked up reading the Bible, The Big Book, writing ‘Paradise for the Hellbound’, and praying that the judge would sentence me to Bridgehouse. Bridgehouse (B.H.) is a rehab center owned by Meridian Behavioral Healthcare. I had been on the Methadone program there and I sent letters to my doctor to get me into rehab from jail. He was all for it. He himself later landed in rehab. Come to find out the doc was dipping into his own meds .How convenient.
On June 15th 2006 I got transported to B.H. by a Levy County Sheriff to begin my 28-day stay. Twenty-eight days…… twenty-eight days …. (reminiscent sigh). In the spring of 2006 28 days seemed like a very long time. The days were long and the nights were even longer. I had been in my addiction for nearly 35 years.

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What is Addiction Really?

What is Addiction Really?

We do not have to know “why” we became addicts to recover.  If our brains are still prone to obsession it’s understandable that our sponsors suggest to us “don’t ask why”.    For the sake of peace in the first few years we should both “choose our battle’s” wisely and choose our purposes and goals wisely.  “Out of the problem into the solution” is by far one of my most valuable mantras for recovery.

However moving on into a more mature lifestyle I am discovering my truths and who I am.  If I question nothing and never ask “why” I shut myself out to both knowledge and learning.  This flipside of the “why ask why” coin is both dangerous and lacks depth.  A lack of learning is akin to a stagnant mind and stunted emotional growth.  My mind should have moved on into sanity at some point.  If I work the steps and get some good therapy.

First let me tell you this.  I have had long periods of sobriety then relapsed.  My last sober run beginning in 2006 and still going strong.  Oddly the topic of addiction interests me thoroughly even today after years of sobriety.

So what is addiction really?  Is it cunning, baffling and powerful?  At some point we can all agree that “yes” it is.  What does the Big Book tell us?  It’s insidious,  progressive, deadly, destructive and a spiritual sickness or malady of sorts.  Some says it’s inherited and genetic.  Some say it grounded in our environment.

“From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have been spiritually sick. When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically.”  Big Book fourth step.

There’s that contradiction again “spiritually and sick”.  Spirituality is in some ways a replacement drug for addiction.
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Recover-ING or Recover-ED? By Lori Edgar

RECOVERED OR RECOVERING? Click here to read summary

Page 64 Big Book: Our liquor was but a symptom. We HAD TO get down to causes and conditions.

Here’s the thing.  Recovery is a process.  It can be dangerous for a person under approx. 5 to 7 years (w/variables) sober to adapt the “recovered” view point because you know what they might do.  I don’t believe anyone should stop going to meetings until they truly are fully recovered and/or know how to apply the steps in their daily life.

Who is recovered?

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WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE

ACCEPTANCE IS A PROCESS NOT A LIGHT SWITCH

I WAS VERY SICK FOR A LONG TIME

When I got sober after 30 years of drinking, drugging, and sick relationships I was scared to death.  My self-esteem was zero.  I was afraid to make a choice about pretty much anything for fear it would be wrong.  I didn’t trust myself or my choices and hadn’t for a long time, that is unless I was in control-ism mode.  But once I sobered up certain behaviors stopped immediately other habits took some time to develop.

SOBER DREAMS DO COME TRUE

I met a nice guy in AA.  He had seven years sober.  I like him so much but I was scared to death.  That did not stop me from building a relationship.    Well the thing is I was also going through group therapy at the time.  All three of my

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Why Are Addicts in so Much Emotional Pain?

Why Are Addicts in so Much Emotional Pain?

Page 64 Big Book: Our liquor was but a symptom. We HAD TO get down to causes and conditions.

Why do addicts seem to have a proclivity towards self destruction?

Why are addicts so inclined to blame others for their own choices?

And the biggie, why do our sponsors teach us to not ask “why”?

Answer number one:  I was in so much pain that I needed to numb myself due to a life-time of hiding away my true identity.  By hiding intense feelings and thoughts away my pain lived inside me till I finally was taught how to let it all out.

Because of emotional neglect

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You’re Right Where You’re Supposed to Be.

You’re Right Where You’re supposed to be.

Link to Twelve Step Prayers.

Your Right Where Your Supposed to Be

So many times during the first two years of recovery I felt as if I was somehow doing something wrong in my recovery or that something was not right with my progress. I used to feel like my feelings themselves where wrong. Especially if I was sad or fearful, on the edge of depression or angry. I was fortunate to have effective group therapy which when combined with Alcoholics Anonymous kept me and several of my rehab-mates sober for a very long time. We all had sexual abuse in our past and took our addiction to places we were ashamed of. But I learned THERE IS NO WRONG FEELING, EVER.

It’s completely normal to go through an emotional rollercoaster ride in the first couple years of sobriety.

Continue reading “You’re Right Where You’re Supposed to Be.”

Is Resentment the Number One Offender?

Is Resentment the Number One Offender?

What is at the core of your addiction?  I suppose everyone must answer it for themselves.   But I think it’s important to answer it.  For me it was a deep wound.  An emotional constipation.  A deep hurt that I didn’t know how to express  in a way that was healthy and appropriate.  Shame was at the core it surrounded the wound.

So when I finally got the spiritual and emotional laxative (therapy, 12 steps, God)  it took quite some time to cry it all out.  All that’s left now of my malady is a scar and a few old habits that die hard called character flaws.  Many of the character defects I acquired through the years of addiction, like resentment were nothing more than a distraction from my painful shame.   Resentment was a place to lay blame on how a felt.   I needed to lay blame because it was myself I condemned deep in my heart.
No, for me resentment wasn’t the number one offender, shame was. I mustn’t be ashamed and keep secrets. I try to stay clear of shame and be an open book. Writing and sharing…the truth sets me free. Shame….no one wants to admit shame.  People are ashamed of shame because it is perceived as weakness.  It’s a dirty little word.
It wasn’t the wound so much as the shame I blanketed it in that made me so self destructive.

I was taught to be ashamed of who I was, and that my feelings were wrong.   And that basically I didn’t even have a right to be on this earth. That’s a hard one to shake…so I drank.

Resentment is the acceptable blame based emotion that distracts me from my hurt and shame.  I am too ashamed of being hurt cause I see it as weakness.  So I cover it all up in a nice package called “blame” and put a big bow on it called resentment.  And I carry the package around with me never having to look at what is really inside.

That is until  I got sober nearly Ten years ago.  But for the Grace of God, But for the Grace of God.

THE CURE FOR MY  ADDICTION IS WRITTEN IN PART 1 OF THIS TWO ARTICLE SERIES-RESENTMENT THE NUMBER ONE OFFENDER.  http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.net/resentment-number-offender/

Is Resentment the Number One Offender?

What does it mean and who said it?  “Resentment is the number one offender”

Bill Wilson co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous wrote the phrase “resentment is the number one offender” in the Big Book.

Resentment is the “number one” offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have been spiritually sick. When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically. In dealing with resentments, we set them on paper. We listed people, institutions or principles with whom we were angry. We asked ourselves why we were angry. In most cases it was found that our self-esteem, our pocketbooks, our ambitions, our personal relationships (including sex) were hurt or threatened. So we were sore. We were “burned up.”

On our grudge list we set opposite each name our injuries. Was it our self-esteem, our security, our ambitions, our personal, or sex relations, which had been interfered with?

It means that if we hold onto resentments then we will relapse and resentment is the cause of our relapse.  But really how true is that?  Well at face value it appears that resentment toward others and anger is the cause of our relapse.  It seems to be the most dominant emotion addicts have when going back out.

However, I am not so sure the resentment for others has taken the relaps-er back out.  I rather think anger and blame in the form of resentment is the survival skill which helps us live with ourselves when we step back into a life we know will kill us.  There is actually only one resentment that sends us back out if you look deeper into our hearts, which is a resentment toward self.

But what lies underneath our self loathing?  Our self loathing is at the core of all our other resentments.  Ask any addict in the midst of a relapse and he will most likely deny to you his self-hate.  Addicts carry much shame and shame is at the core of our deception to self and others.   Un-processed shame, and hurt are at the core of our addiction.  These are the feelings stuck in our crawl.  These are what carries us to the dope man.

Addicts suffer from emotional constipation and Shame is truly at the core of that stuck place.  Shame is my #1 Offender Resentment springs from Shame to cover it up.  SHAME SUCKED MY LIFE FORCE AND LIED TO ME FOR YEARS

Bill W. touched on it when he mentions “emotional disorder” he just didn’t elaborate or realize that emotional constipation which is disorder was at the core of most addictions. (At least that’s my theory.)

Hurt transforms into anger and we can’t cope with hating ourselves so we bury the hate into a thing called blame.  We are constantly on the look-out for new people, places and things to blame for the way we feel deep inside.  We deceive us and others.  We must resent people and blame them to deal with and cover up the way we actually feel about ourselves.  The only true resentment that sends us back out is the resentment toward ourselves.

Why do people claim they have a cure for addiction?  Why are some people cured and others sign on to the belief “once an addict always an addict”.  Simply because they don’t know the cure.  Or they have done one part of the cure and left off another.

What is the cure?

Find the core issues of the original hurt and pain, usually stemming from a very early age, and emotionally process them. (cry, scream, write, share).  Transcendental meditation will show us our core issues.  While at the same time we must develop new routines, new habits, new people, places, and things.  Find new goals and a new purpose for life that is healthy.  Work the twelves steps and learn how to use the steps when needed including the fear list and steps three, four, eleven, and twelve.  Work step twelve for several years or some kind of service work to build self-esteem.  And the big one (included in the steps) get a Higher Power by seeking with your heart and stay in contact with that Higher power as much as possible.

That all sounds like allot.  Isn’t there an easier softer way?  YES AS A MATTER OF FACT THERE IS AN ‘EASIER SOFTER WAY’.  But it’s not something you can buy or special order.  You can put yourself in a position to get it but there are no guarantees if you do get it how long it will last as your only source of recovery.    The white light experience straight from God is the only easier softer way.  Usually people who receive white light experiences go on to carry the message of Jesus Christ or God while not doing any of the 12 step work on their character flaws.  And why would they?  They are riding a pink cloud.  But pink clouds don’t last.  God will remove some flaws during this experience but seldom, well I have never ever seen God make anybody perfect…ever.  So usually these people fall into some flavor of character flaw.  Most likely they delve into judging others, get their resentment back and relapse.  Then they really hate themselves even more because now they are turning their back on a God they know exists.

I know, sad story…I am talking about myself during my first bout of recovery.  And I have seen this same pattern manifest often in others, usually Christians in recovery.  Never the less it does not mean God fails or Jesus has abandon us somehow.  It just means God clearly WILL NOT TAKE A HUMAN’S SELF-WILL.  He will enlighten us, but it’s up to us to go out and get fulfillment once we are enlightened.  Hence step eleven and why it works, it fulfills us spiritually.  Step twelve builds our self worth, and fulfills us spiritually.  Step Ten, well I have found that Ten really isn’t enough, but instead it’s step four that I need to revisit every six months to a year and do thoroughly.  When fear of relapse slips in, I remember two things, I have turned my life and will over to the care of God.  And the program works, I can turn to the program, work a step.  This is what keeps me sober after countless lapses.  Sure if I rely on me I will fail.  I rely on God, the steps, and the fact that I am being healed and healing by processing core issues.

So can I really call this a cure?  ABSOLUTELY! There are many things that humans have to do to stay well.  Such as eating, sleeping, nurturing and being nurtured.  We do not call ourselves sick because we require food.  why would I call myself sick because I require a spiritual program?

I DO NOT NEED TO CALL MYSELF SICK TO BE RECOVERED.  THAT’S RIDICULOUS!  CALLING MYSELF SICK AND AN ADDICT IS NOT WHAT HEALS OR KEEPS ME SOBER IS IT?

NO.  I WAS AN ADDICT FOR 35 YEARS I KNOW WHAT SICK IS.  I WILL NO LONGER CALL MYSELF SICK UNDER THE ILLUSION AND FEAR THAT IF I SAY I AM HEALED I WILL RELAPSE.  THAT IS A.A. SUPERSTITION AND LORE WHICH IS DERIVED FROM FEAR.

The 12 Steps- every resentment, shame, every guilt, every hate, every prejudice, every intense hurt, every theft. We do this till a light goes off and we then recognize our character defect patterns.  I recommend at least 1 page of writing for each offense. Repeat the process every year and when we get bungled up.

New fellowship either church, AA people, somewhere we can start a new social life.

Therapy honest and thorough, we must go back and feel the pain and process it out in an emotional way.

God-find your God

Set goals

We can change who we are but it takes work.  So what Life is work.

Be Sure to read part 2 “Is Resentment the #1 Offender?”

REJECTION-WHY AM I AN ADDICT?

Suffering Rejection As Children & Adults can be devastating and should not be minimized or invalidated.

Before we can truly heal from emotional pain we must have a chance to express the hurt in a way that is acknowledged and validated.  Crying is one healthy emotion.  Letting go of hurt is a process much like the grieving process.  If we have learned to shut down pain we are omitting the first step to healing.  We must feel to heal.  Then and only then can we move on to “our part” in injuries and neglect suffered as children or resentments that have stemmed from abuse and neglect.  Often the only part we had to play in the core reason for our pain and addiction is that we were not taught a healthy emotional process.  We therefore had to resort to unhealthy solutions.

SOLUTIONS

Rejection should be acknowledged and worked through.   There is much more to recovery than just staying sober.  There is much more to working the Twelve Steps than just writing down resentments and finding our part in it.

We all have a life flow, a Spirit if you will that needs both nurturing and Love.  Nurturing includes a validation of who we are and our right to be ourselves.  When rejected at a young age by caregivers we shut down our life force in shame.  And we hide who we really are.

Rejection can take many forms.  It may be direct and obvious or indirect and subtle.  (“Your brother is doing so well.  Don’t you want to do well too?”)  It may be all encompassing (“You can’t do anything right.”  or focused on certain parts of our personality (“Stop being so curious about everything.”).  It may be depriving (neglect) and distinctly lacking in emotional contact and nurturance or it may be dominating and controlling-suppressing our natural desires and over riding fundamental boundaries.  It may be shaming and create within us a feeling of being “bad” or “defective”.  Regardless of the form of rejection, we quickly learn that simply being ourselves will not get us the Love and acceptance that we so desperately need.

REJECTION-WHY AM I AN ADDICT?

Rejection injures our emotional healing process and our ability to express and release our pain.  Without empathy, this impulse is stifled.  In homes of deprivation, we cry out in vain because nobody is there to listen.  This is nothing short of tragic.  Dominating parents might say “I’ll give you something to cry about!”  Maybe we are allowed to cry alone, but not to show our tears, and certainly not to protest against our parent’s wishes.  Usually we don’t even know that we have been emotionally injured.  Into adulthood we may admit we are addicts but never connect the dots to why we ended up so self-repulsed.

Hearing from our teachers that most of our natural impulsed are bad or wrong, we quickly learn to hide away these aspects of ourselves.  We learn to hide away our pleasure as well as our pain; our thoughts as well as our feelings.    All that brings a negative reaction from our caregivers is hidden away in order to try and get their Love.

Now we are susceptible to sexual molestation, drug addiction, or sick relationships we have not been taught what Love really is.

To survive the overwhelming pain of rejection and un-met childhood need, we shut down our life flow and shut off the pain.  We do this through defense mechanisms that block or divert painful feelings and memories away from conscious awareness.

Defense mechanisms may come in the form of extreme behavior patterns, suck as over-eating, compulsive behavior self-sabotage, crisis creating, people pleasing, leaving before being left, rebellion, etc.  Our defense behaviors serve two basic purposes:  We either struggle to meet our unfulfilled needs through someone or something else or we deny our needs and detach from our pain.

The struggle defense is an unconscious attempt to correct the past.  If we had to struggle to get our parent’s love, approval, help or understanding, we may re-create situations that elicit the same struggle and then strive for a different outcome.  In some cases, we may get into abusive relationships similar to our childhood experience.  Often we project our past feelings toward the care giver onto our partners.

Ever wonder why addicts relationship statistics are so sparse and unhealthy?  We are not bad we just were not taught, shown how to love.

We are now in defense mode not just emotionally but also physically.  We repress our breathing.  Maybe our diaphragm expands when we exhale instead of expanding when  we take breath in.  We start by correcting our breathing.  We learn deep breathing and deeply expand our bellies as we take air in.

PLEASE, we are in recovery, we mustn’t allow self or others to tell us to “get over it, it’s in the past.”  It is not in the past emotional trauma is our core reason for using and needs to be processed.

Solutions to resentment.

THE SOLUTIONS FOR DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY

WHY AM I AN ADDICT?

THE SOLUTIONS FOR DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY

Shame the number one offender-http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.net/resentment-number-offender-2/

CHARACTER ASSASSINATION ON FACEBOOK

FACEBOOK IS A PRIME PLATFORM FOR CHARACTER ASSASSINATION.

So what is the legal definition of defamation of character and who does it really hurt.
Defamation of character occurs when someone makes a false statement about you that causes you some type of harm. The statement must be published like on a Facebook page(meaning some third party must have  heard or seen it).  It must be false, and it must result in harm, usually to the reputation.
Defamation of Character Lawsuits happen all the time.

In recovery, if we are in a 12 step program that means we are trying to live by spiritual principles.  It means that we have put our life in God’s care and we are making an effort to trust God with our well being.  This spiritual recipe for living takes revenge and doing harm to others off the table.  It means that when we are wronged we pray for our enemies and try to understand that when someone trashes us on Facebook they are a sick person and their actions are rooted in fears of various flavors.

WHERE THERE IS A RESENTMENT THERE IS A “MY PART” GETTING TO THAT CORE FEAR IS WHERE I FIND MY SOLUTION TO HATE

So when I see my picture plastered all over someones FB wall with lies and vicious comments and I want to destroy the person I don’t  Furthermore I may want to call their parole officer and report them for this real crime of defamation of character.  But I don’t.  Also this is a man that I have done many good things for.  I helped him in many ways and with charity.  So, I pic up my prayer tool and pray for him.  I ask for  all the blessings of heaven and earth to cover him.  I never argue and engage in defensive strategies.  I call another person in the program and vent my anger.  I write a Step Four resentment grid that might look something like the following.  And remember just because I know that I am right and good in my intellectual mind my feelings have a mind of their own.  My heart does not have to be either logical or reasonable.  To expel the resentment I examine my own core fears.

“I resent John Doe because he told lies about me on Facebook.  He said I am bad and a liar.  He said that I have stolen from the most innocent and needy of victims.  He said that I am greedy and a pirate thief. ”  I ask myself “what is my core fear behind the resentment?”

FEARS

I am afraid that others will believe the accusations.  This fear is rooted in my own insecurity.  My heart thinks I am not good enough and not as good as other people.  I fear at my core that somehow what this man said about me is true.  (illogical but real and important to recognize).  My carnal reaction is to run to my own defense and argue and send out messages to the people reading the lies.  I fear I am not good enough. I fear that God will not protect me and that certain and sure damage will be done to me by these evil posts.  My society fear kicks in (reputation), my security fear kicks in because he is also crucifying my business websites as being unfair, evil, and dishonest.

Although I have taken no wrong action since I have resentment and want revenge I now have a “my part” that needs addressed before I can let it all go.  So what is my part?  I am not trusting God and I have certain insecurities called “fear of what people think of me”.  This is why the mans sin angers me and I am resentful.  I want this man to be righteous and he isn’t.  So I have some “controlism” in there also.  Please know that at the same time my anger is just and my feelings which want my reputation clear are just as well.  Nevertheless I want the resentment and obsession over it to be gone so I….

KARMA AND POWERFUL LOVE

I ask God to remove my character defects of fear, control and distrust of God. and to replace them with Love and understanding  I DEPLOY LOVE IN DEFENSE OF EVIL AND FEAR.  I ask God to help me trust Him and to give me understanding toward the man.

Jesus said pray for those who despitefully use you.  It is also written In Proverbs that to “return evil for good” is one of the most dangerous sins because of the karmic laws in place.  I helped this man and had good motives and actions toward him.  He took my charity and crushed it under hate and fear.  So me and this man bot have fear it’s the actions which define us, not our fear.  Without fear their is no such thing as courage and overcoming.

Proverbs 17:13

Evil will never leave the house of one who pays back evil for good.

My anger is valid and the proper reaction to being attacked.  But I am responsible for processing my anger.  The man that told the public lies cannot relieve my anger and resentment this I must take action to relieve.    And so I have done the work to fend of bitterness.  I am no longer hurt by the wrong done to me.  However the man that did the deed, unless Grace intervenes to block the karma of “evil will never leave his house” he is majorly squittled.  His hate and wrong actions toward me will never relieve his feelings of fear and wrath.  By his actions he intensifies his short-comings and he works on separating himself from his God.  He is making a spectacle of himself to the people who see through his actions.

NOW THEM BY WHO THEY SHOW YOU THEY ARE, NOT BY WHO THEY TELL YOU THEY ARE

A good and spiritual man will rarely engage in rallying support for the direct punishment of another human being.  Good people know that if we are wronged we pray for that person not trash them on Facebook.  We recognize that if someone is trashing another person on Facebook it is most likely the man doing the trashing who is actually the guilty party.

 

JUST WHERE IS THIS ADDICT GENE?

When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically.” pg.64 Big Book

There are those, too, who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest. pg. 58 BB

http://www.cnn.com/2012/09/13/health/jaffe-addiction-myths/

I myself have enjoyed the prospect of addiction being genetic.  “It’s like having cancer or arthritis, I was the victim.  That was then.  Even in the first several years of recovery I was convinced ‘once an addict always an addict’.  What changed my mind?  Not science, they are trying and have come a long way but bottom line after all my research, they don’t have the answers when it comes to genetics and addiction.  Scientists have theories and they disagree.  Fact is you will decide for yourself the cause of your addiction as have I.  For me it was emotional disorder and fear.  A lack of ability to express and release the emotional pain from childhood trauma and the fears that accompanied that.  “Terror management theory” is one scientists theory on addiction being fear based of which I agree.  I read; genetics are information and what we do with that info is not written in stone.  We are not robots.  Does it not take a load of responsibility, guilt, and shame off the addicts back to claim genetics?  I know it did for me.  When the pain gets too much it’s OK to show it.  Or blow up it’s your choice.  END Lori E_________________________

The following paragraphs are compiled from sources listed in footer.

Ten years ago science was said to be homing in on the “alcoholism gene.” Could a gene-based cure for addiction be far away?

(sources in footer)

Well, yes it could. It’s very far away, if even possible at all. Researchers now have identified over a thousand genes linked to alcoholism. The genetics of alcoholism mirrors what has become increasingly apparent to geneticists: life is complicated. The way you act or the quality of your health is likely influenced by many genes interacting with each other along with various environmental factors. The concept that a small number of genes are responsible for disease or behavior is obsolete.

What that means, in the case of alcoholics or drug addicts, is that even if your parents were addicted, it’s unlikely that their genes are the deciding factor that will make you an addict.

TWO MYTHS OF ADDICTION:

1.  THERE IS AN ADDICT GENE (from the CNN article)

There is no single gene, or set of genes, that determines whether or
not a person will become an addict. And even if a person’s parents are addicts, it doesn’t mean they will be too.
Why are there genes for addiction?   We all have the genetic predisposition for addiction because there is an evolutionary advantage to that. When an animal eats a certain food that it likes, there is an advantage to associating pleasure with that food so that the animal will look for that food in the future. In other
words the potential for addiction is hardwired into our brain. Everyone has eaten too much of their favorite food even though they knew it wasn’t good for them.

2. “Addiction is for life”

For you Big Book thumpers the word “RECOVERED” appears at least 20 times in the Big Book (http://www.164andmore.com/words/recovered.htm
http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.net/most-common-misconceptions-in-a-a/)

Addiction is a spectrum disorder, like depression, and every person is different.  While there are plenty of cases where addicts struggle for years to overcome a drug addiction,
many more cases reveal the opposite — short-term users who manage to put the past behind them
and lead normal and productive lives.   According to the National
Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse, 75% of alcoholics recover without treatment.

BEGIN LORI E. AUTHOR:

The thing is, when your a child you don’t know what trauma is.  And many addicts I have met, unless they have had therapy or were brutally abused and heinously neglected don’t always know what emotional neglect and verbal abuse look and feel like.  How would they?  They were brought up in a setting that they became accustomed to whether it was nurturing and caring or one of badgering and criticism.  Hurt people hurt people and emotional abuse and neglect (which is even harder to identify as an innocent child) is passed down from generation to generation as a learned behavior.    I just read (from theshoresrecovery.com) some staggering statistics of a recent study that included over 17,000 participants.  The findings revealed that physical abuse, verbal abuse, neglect, domestic violence, loss of a parent, or having a parent who is addicted or mentally ill greatly increased the likelihood of addiction in the individual.

So what then?  Why does the emotional disorder concept offend so many addicts especially in early recovery?  If I subscribe to the genetic theory I don’t have to take responsibility for the past.  If it’s genetic I don’t have to work on my emotional condition.  I won’t be lumped in with the bi-polar and the mentally ill.  If it’s genetic you will understand it’s not my fault.  Oh ya but then, I don’t care what you think do I?  Right, of coarse I care what you think.  Do I fear what you think?  I wouldn’t be writing this for all the world to see if I did.  But I do care, about what you think of me and my writing.  Working on our emotions is not as scary  as it sounds.  Being emotionally constipated wasn’t my fault anyway, I don’t need the genetics excuse.  No one taught me how to feel my feelings and let them flow.  They didn’t allow me to share and cry.  They taught me how to repress and shut the hell up.  They taught me to be ashamed of my emotions and who I was.  The past never leaves us it will always be a part of us but it can change.  The past can change because my perceptions and feelings have changed.  That is my story and I am sticking to it.  Love and kisses.
Sources:
http://www.164andmore.com/words/recovered.htm

Does Childhood Trauma Lead to Addiction?


http://www.cnn.com/2012/09/13/health/jaffe-addiction-myths/
The Myth of an ‘Addict Gene’
By Jeffrey Helm, The Tyee. Posted August 12, 2006.
http://www.alternet.org/drugreporter/40135/
http://www.addictionsandrecovery.org/is-addiction-a-disease.htm

http://www.psmag.com/health-and-behavior/when-it-comes-to-addiction-the-dsm-5-gets-it-right-but-57203