The Nature of Addiction

During a recent road trip my husband and I had a very long conversation (or at least I did a lot of talking and he alot of listening) about an old relationship of mine that troubles us both at times and about the nature of addiction.

His concern is tied to that old saying “once an addict always an addict.”

To anyone that has ever been willingly and blissfully in an unhealthy relationship, you will understand what I mean when I say that during those days of my life I was unaware of the depth of the addiction (and that is the only word for it) that had developed. This person, we’ll call him Johnny, and I had an instant connection, from that first moment the seeds were planted. At the same time the seeds of an entirely different type of addiction were planted which made the damnation complete, but that is a slightly different tale. I felt that he and I existed on a different level of existence and for most of those early days we did. I barely made classes, I stopped talking to my friends, I lost all sense of anything that wasn’t him. He was not cruel or aggressive, but at the same time he freely allowed me to lose myself to his whims. I would have done nearly anything for him, and through that period of my life I did many things that I wouldn’t have thought I would ever do, simply to please him. I left that place, but even distance couldn’t entirely free me of his influence. We fought and separated and it wasn’t until later that I realized how much he enjoyed the pain that he inflicted by taunting me with other partners, with promises that turned my ground to quick sand….

This relationship to me is the heart of addiction.

I lost myself to it. It haunts. I lost friends and time to it. It hurts. To look at it too closely is like admiring a piece of obsidian from a closed fist…it is beautiful enough to distract from the fact that it has razor edges.

I have healed a great deal since the last time I had any dealings with Johnny, and I am grateful to my husband for facilitating that healing process.

While the memories can be looked at from a greater distance now, and the hole that that addiction filled no longer exists, I still prefer not to put myself in any path that would lead to contact. Like an oncoming tornado, there is the chance the oak will stand, but there is also the chance that what will remain will in no way resemble an oak.



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