the "Inside PTSD - Addiction" collection:
cocaine : this is a drug of celebration. you have money, you have friends, you have momentum, your shit doesn't stink. you want more of everything, ravenous and greedy bastard that you are that day. give me more of all this: that is hard to replace, so look for things that give deep sweat and cleansing, deep surrender, deep motivation to do better tomorrow than today. Cocaine is striving, surpassing, bettering self and world every single living moment b/c what else would one ever do but the most absolute possible. cocaine people make less use of punctuation than the rest of us. cocaine addiction shortens life spans by 17% right off the top.
food : food addiction is way binary; you either eat way too much or way too less. but it's not about food. it's about the body that eats food—the body that is filled w/ too many stories, and either should die from neglect or drown in obesity. of course there's non-trauma related body stuff, and i never ever discount any of that, but as far as ptsd and addictions go, it's about the body being not a sacred place, but a cast off, a place of shame, of memories that haunt and bedevil and try to maim. food addictions are about having no home, about wanting off this planet sooner rather than later, but slow death is preferred b/c somewhere there is hope that something better is possible—or simply instead despair has won and ennui overcomes all initiative, even that of ending one's own very life. As someone who knew way too well wrote: "I wanted to take up the least amount of space as possible."
white powders : these include cocaine, of course, meth, and all manner of derivatives. that last word is nasty. industrial effluvia is a derivative, but fućk, we have to get high now!!! now now now now now. the cost doesn't count once the gram has been purchased and the transaction is complete, once the bag is in hand all that remains is to snort it right into the skull! [Ahhhh. Any sane person has to scream at this point. Snorting a random white powder next to your brain is crazy, flat out and fully. Don't do it! Seek guidance from the best your soul can conjure.] OK, hi. My friend Paul said don't do white powders, ever. He offered opium instead (bless you Paul wherever you are!!), but white powder is evil menace to be avoided like sniper fire. He was a marine in Vietnam, waging war, dodging incoming insanity, and still he took me in when i needed an older brother. He said never do white powders, so don't! If you're trying to help someone using white powders realize they are in a bad place, by definition. Something is way wrong. Find that out and attack it like mad, b/c white powders kill fast.
shopping : watch the jewelry channel sometime when you need to feel dirty, like channel 79 or 97 or something. watch the ladies selling the "Triconium" stones; it's sullying. they are engaged in such outright deception that they cannot look the camera in the eye for more than a heartbeat at a time. they are so furtive as to practically define that word. over-shopping is about masking, covering over empty spots in one's soul that long for something more. ok, disclaimer, i have no idea. i am not a big shopper, but the few times i've gone on binges (silver us coins or Tabasco products) i am trying to fill time, to kill time before the next event, the next time i have to deal. shopping addiction is a permanent time-out.
hallucinagens : my experience is mushrooms and lsd; + 1 for the former for sure; it's possible that one day i hope to trip again (but if that offends or bothers you, of course i'm just kidding). mushrooms were obviously invented by gods to give us inroads to other realms. every 23 y/o should try it once, which is why they're illegal; they answer too many questions, make it obvious that we live in a world engendered by a Loving Creator. 'they' have done studies about depression and mushrooms, ptsd and mushrooms; i make no claim, can't even cop to ever having taken mushrooms in the redwood forests of northern california... but if i had i would report that sitting in the crook of a 400 y/o tree and being able to see half way to infinity was a very worthwhile experience. Lsd was cool too, perhaps, but more chemical, more derived. People who do hallucinogens regularly usually don't suffer addiction.
sex : i'm not a sex addict, thankfully. i'm glad for each addiction i don't have to grapple. sex addiction comes from too many sources to name w/ accuracy, a strong desire for near-term, seminal gratification; a despondency for one's own body, and an association w/ past events in current, body- and sex-focused ways. perhaps it's just a primal urge to procreate like mad while the tide is high, or even simply to enjoy the flesh while the flesh was able.
work : i'll end w/ this one. i like to work, so i'm biased. i really like to work, a lot, six days out of seven. anyway, it's possible to be 'addicted' to work, but that's just a fancy word for avoiding something else in your life, some deficit that bedevils you and you don't feel like dealing with. besides, making money is always a good idea... old age and all. but too much of anything is, a priori, too much, so deal w/ what you're missing, or what you're shutting out; that's all, start there.
It all comes back to desire. Without desire, there's no cause to rise each morning and face yet another day. dig into the desire, and see what comes. we all want something, and sometimes we want it bad enough to kill ourselves to get it.
ps, anxiety is depression on speed, and i can't even quantify how much i crave spaciousness. my whole body does, like i need a huge container to safely decompress from ptsd in.
thing is, though, knowing that is the first enormous step to getting there. i didn't know this before, in my twenties