Addictions Library


F E A T U R E D    A R T I C L E

Love, Lust or Addiction?

October 9th, 2014
Wonder whether you’re in love or in lust? Whether your obsession about someone is a sign of love or addiction? Whether you’re staying in a troubled relationship because you’re addicted or in love? It’s complicated, and lust and love and addiction don’t always exclude one another. ...

What’s the Best Treatment for Hair-Pulling Disorder?

What's the Best Treatment for Hair-Pulling Disorder?After school, Henry would sit down and watch TV, but one hour later, his mom would discover he had been pulling his eyelashes and eyebrows. It wasn’t that he didn’t want them, he just couldn’t stop plucking them. When his friends ...

How to Spot Manipulation

How to Spot ManipulationWe all want to get our needs met, but manipulators use underhanded methods. Manipulation is a way to covertly influence someone with indirect, deceptive, or abusive tactics. Manipulation may seem benign or even friendly or flattering, as if the person has your highest concern ...

7 Steps to Changing a Bad Habit

7 Steps to Changing a Bad HabitWe all have them -- bad habits that we wish we didn’t have but feel pessimistic about changing. Maybe you know you really have to spend less time on Facebook or playing online games. Or perhaps you’ve tried a dozen ...

Conquering Shame & Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You

BOOK REVIEW.
“I had found the enemy — and it was me.”  So writes Darlene Lancer in Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You. Sometimes there are true external foes that we must fight and defeat. But quite often, when we take a hard look at a situation, we are indeed our own worst enemy. ...

Are You in Denial?

Are You in Denial?We’re all in denial. We’d barely get through the day if we worried that we or people we love could die today. Life is unpredictable, and denial helps us cope and focus on what we must in order to survive. On the other ...

Obsessions and Addiction

Obsessions and Addiction This article isn’t meant to address obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), which is a mental disorder affecting one percent of adults. It starts in childhood and is believed to have a genetic component. OCD may include only obsessions. Usually, the themes are about: Fear of contamination or ...

Focusing in Clinical Practice: The Essence of Change

BOOK REVIEW.
When you can’t put a particularly unsettling feeling into words or have trouble getting to the meat of a problem, try feeling it in your body. That’s the advice of Ann Weiser Cornell, a Ph.D. in linguistics who works as a teacher of and author on the therapeutic technique known as Focusing. As Cornell writes, ...

Book Review: Outside the Lines: A Novel

BOOK REVIEW.
Outside the Lines powerfully encourages readers to reexamine their perspective regarding mental illness. Amy Hatvany intricately explores the world of someone who’s mentally ill, detailing painful repercussions, stigma and societal perceptions. And alongside this narrative, we witness a beautiful, deep-seated love between a father and daughter. As a young girl, Eden observed her artistic ...

Book Review: Best Kept Secret

BOOK REVIEW.
“Cadence didn’t sit down one night and decide that downing two bottles of wine was a brilliant idea.” - Amy Hatvany Amy Hatvany’s Best Kept Secret is a gripping novel that explores the intricacies of a painful truth - the truth of addiction. “Cadence could be you, your neighbor, your friend,” author Kaira ...

Substance Abuse: The Power of Acceptance

The Power of AcceptanceAccepting reality enables us to live in reality. What does this mean? When life pleases us and flows in accordance with our needs and desires, we don’t think about acceptance. But when our will is frustrated or we’re hurt in some way, our displeasure ...

Trouble Is a Gift: A Story of Addiction, Recovery & Hope

BOOK REVIEW.
“But finally, there I was alone in this apartment, sitting in a chair, staring at the radiator waiting for the little guy to crawl out from behind it. Knowing the bottle was going to be empty in another minute. Wondering how I’m going to get money to buy a new one or if I should ...

Perfectionism’s Trap: Matthew McConaughey’s Impossible Chase

Perfectionism's Trap: Matthew McConaughey's Impossible ChasePerfectionism is an addiction, meaning we’re repeatedly unable to stop our perfectionist behaviors. Like other addictions, perfectionism varies in severity and can have negative consequences. It harms our self-esteem, makes us unable to accept other people’s differences and their mistakes and ...

Picking up the Pieces After the Betrayal of Cheating

Picking up the Pieces After the Betrayal of CheatingIt must be cellular: Men and women automatically feel humiliated when their partner cheats, even though they themselves have done nothing to be ashamed of. Too often, people feel embarrassed for their partner's behavior, whether it's domestic violence, ...

Rethink Those Failed New Year’s Resolutions

Rethink Those Failed New Year's ResolutionsIt’s not even the middle of January and those New Year’s resolutions are already history. You’ve fallen off the diet, started smoking again or given up on the exercise routine. You feel bad about yourself for not being able to put your good intentions into action for even two weeks. Two weeks! You scold yourself for having no willpower or for failing yet once again. You sigh and give up, perhaps rationalizing away the project. You can always claim no time, too much stress, or peer pressure, right? Wrong. You know you’re rationalizing but oh well. You can take some comfort in knowing that you are not alone. Almost 90 percent of New Year’s resolutions dissolve within a month. The enthusiasm about a new year and a new beginning quickly fades. Life takes over. All the reasons you developed whatever bad habit you wanted to fix are still there. But all is not lost. You can still make that important change, whatever it was. You may just have to rethink how to go about it.

Fathers Reconnecting with Abandoned Kids

Fathers Reconnecting with Abandoned KidsJesse came to therapy with an important project in mind. Mine was not the first office he’d been to. He’d already been in a rehab program where he kicked a 10-year drug habit that had ruined his health, his marriage and his ...

Obsessed: America’s Food Addiction — and My Own

BOOK REVIEW.
Have you ever heard a skinny, super successful, professional woman spouting the horrors of obesity? We all have, and the widespread reaction from anyone who has ever struggled with their weight is along the lines of: “Please shut up.” MSNBC’s Morning Joe’s Mika Brzezinski has been publicly ridiculed and even vilified for doing it. But ...

Book Review: Finding Ultra

BOOK REVIEW.
Recently I read the memoir of an endurance athlete, Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World's Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself. It tells the story of Rich Roll, who, after a promising swimming career, falls victim to alcoholism and unhealthy eating - crippling his relationships, career and health. On the ...

Talking to Your Teen About Alcohol

Talking to Your Teen About AlcoholPartying. Everyone is doing it. Drinking on weekends and getting a buzz on is what being young is all about, right? Wrong. It’s much more complicated than that. It’s true that 75 percent of American teens have given alcohol a try by ...

Adult Children of Dysfunctional Families

Adult Children of Dysfunctional FamiliesCharles L. Whitfield's 1987 book Healing the Child Within is aimed at adult children of dysfunctional families. The ideas he presented synced up with the 12-step recovery movements for families afflicted by alcohol and addiction (Al-Anon, Nar-Anon). It made perfect sense that ...

How to Talk to Your Alcoholic Partner

How to Talk to Your Alcoholic PartnerOne of the many things that addiction takes away is the ability to communicate honestly and directly. It’s not the easiest thing in the world to begin with. But intermarital communication can be even more of a minefield because of the ...

Effective Addiction Treatment: The Minnesota Alternative

BOOK REVIEW.
There are a lot of textbooks and study guides already available in the addictions treatment field. But Paula DeSanto’s book aims to stand out from those by establishing itself as part of an entirely new therapeutic model. The model is said to be based on a holistic, person-centered approach to treatment that draws heavily upon recent ...

Why America’s Addiction Treatment System Is Broken & What You Can Do

Why America's Addiction Treatment System Is Broken & What You Can DoWe know a lot about addiction. We know that addiction is a complex brain disease – not a weakness or lack of willpower. We know its risk factors include “genetic predisposition, structural and functional brain vulnerabilities, ...