There are many types of addictions such as drugs, eating and smoking. Whatever the addiction is, you feel trapped and see no way out. You can have an addiction and not realize it for what it is. You can try, but the pull of the addiction is strong, so strong that even with the consequences of the addiction, you give in to it. People don’t understand the hold an addiction can have on a person. When you have an addiction and want to stop, it seems like there’s a voice in your head that calls you to it.
I smoke, and every day I say I’m going to quit or at least cut down, but every morning the need is so strong for a cigarette that the thought of quitting goes out the window. I sometimes don’t even realize that I’m opening the box and lighting the cigarette; all I know is that the first inhale seems to calm me, and my resolve is broken just like that. I feel bad that I didn’t put up more of a fight, but my will power seems to have no power over my need for a cigarette.
I’ve started watching ‘My 600-lb Life’, a television show about people with a food addiction. The individuals have no control over their eating, and the amount of food that is eaten is staggering. The amount of weight each of them have is unbelievable. They each feel they’re ready to turn their lives around by getting weight loss surgery. The show takes you through their struggle with weight loss. It’s a battle for each of them, and they each have their own way of finally breaking free from eating. Some of them finally get the will power to overcome the pull of their eating addiction, and for many, it takes therapy to get to the underlining root of what gives them such satisfaction from eating. While at the end of each show, most seem to conquer their demon, I wonder if it lasts.
Relationship addiction is someone who has to be in a relationship. The person jumps into a new relationship as soon as one ends. There’s no time in-between relationships. The person can’t see themselves without someone in their life. The person doesn’t care who the person is, just as long as they have someone. They have no control. The relationship can be obviously wrong but the need to be in a relationship is stronger than knowing who the person is or what their intentions are.
Relationship addiction is no different from any form of addiction. You have a need that you can’t control. You tell yourself over and over that you’re not going to jump from one relationship to another but you can’t help it, and before you know it, you’re in a place you know you shouldn’t be.
No matter the addiction, the only way to stop is understanding the root of it. It takes a whole lot of will power to fight an addiction. Therapy might be the answer for some, but for others, it may be changing your habits. I find I smoke more in the morning while sitting at the kitchen table reading the paper. I’m trying to bypass the kitchen table and go in another room to read the paper. I haven’t quit by doing that, but I’ve cut down. Some people may have enablers, who are people who bring you what you want. An enabler can also be a person who has what you want and makes themselves readily available. Then there’s what you’re addicted to that can be made to draw you to it. The relationship addicted person has an emotional need for another person, so for them, therapy might be their answer. They have to understand the need to be with someone. It could be a dislike about something about themselves or a childhood issue of being alone.
Whatever your addiction, it’s a fight that can be won when your need to be free is stronger than your need to continue. It’s a day-to-day fight, and there might be times you slip but you have to keep trying. I keep trying, and I know one day my desire to be free will be stronger than the call of a cigarette.