To whom it may concern, I find my life increasingly consumed by a number of destructive behaviors. For example, binge drinking, binge eating, self harm and continually lying and stealing from close family for no apparent reason. I don’t mean to do these things, it’s just like something takes over me and these happen. As a result my relationships have suffered and I have an increasingly poor image of myself.

A. Though not apparent to you, something is driving your behavior. Possibilities include depression, feeling empty, boredom, lack of self-control, loneliness, or a strong desire for attention. There are other possibilities but without more psychosocial information about you and your life circumstances, it’s difficult to know what might be wrong.

For instance, it would have been helpful to have included information about the following: how long you’ve been displaying these behaviors, how often you engage in them, and how or if you have tried to stop these behaviors on your own. You might find that keeping a journal about these experiences and specifically documenting how you feel before, during and after these experiences, would help you to better understand them. You may see a pattern emerging.

It would be advantageous for you to consult a mental health professional. A therapist can objectively evaluate your behavior and attempt to understand the root of the problem.

A therapist can also help you acquire the necessary skills to gain control over your behavior. The sooner that you seek help, the better you will feel about your life and relationships. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle
Mental Health & Criminal Justice Blog