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Addictions(including sex) and Trauma(possibly triggering)

Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by LightInTheDarkestNight, Aug 26, 2011.

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  1. LightInTheDarkestNight

    LightInTheDarkestNight Well-Known Member


    This may not be the best sub forum however I'm curious on your guys opinions and this sub forum gets a fair amount of traffic.

    I won't quote the article in here however you guys can read it, I'm curious what your guy's beliefs are on this, how does trauma relate to addiction?

    I've seen quite a few episodes of the show intervention and even with drug addictions it certainly seems when they review the persons childhood or past in general that there are some kinds of traumas involved.

    The addiction in some cases sex is a means of coping with the trauma, similarly to a drug or gambling addiction. Basically these people are seeking pleasure in order to cope with the pain and feel better about themselves in some way. Many victims of sexual abuse will totally avoid sex while others may overindulge almost to the point of obsession in order to cope, the latter seems a bit more strange however it does make sense.
  2. chjones21

    chjones21 Well-Known Member

    I read it but it seemed a bit psycho-babble. It talks about healthy sexual development but never defines what it means by that --- and if we are going to take what society calls the "norm" then that is a monogamous relationship and probably a family from that relationship ---- well, that calls for a whole lot more than simply sexual development, you have to be able to maintain an emotional relationship, a practical relationship, financial competence, a parenting relationship - these are all different skill sets and just as important in supporting the 'norm' of what we have as a monogamous relationship as the sexual development part.

    So I kinda didn't grasp what point it was pushing for... the other side of the argument was can trauma lead to addiction. Well, my great-uncle was interned in a German POW at the age of seventeen until nineteen, I would think that was pretty traumatic but he held down a very responsible job, had a loving wife, had a great sense of humour, never deliberately hurt anyone as far as I know, had great kids .... one who is a top, top, top mathematician and physicist. He was a very kind, very grounded, very intelligent, responsible man. Can trauma lead to addiction well, yes if you are somewhat already pre-disposed to it but not necessarily if you are not. Equally there are those who have had no apparent trauma in their life who end up as addicts (if you see the story of Freddy, the son of Annie Tempest, who died of a heroin addiction aged 18), his life was everything set-out and not much struggle - so again not sure what point it is pushing for there, either....

    Addiction. It is people wanting to get a rush, a high, a lift. Everybody likes pleasure nobody (or very few) like pain. We are somewhat designed to respond positively to pleasure and to seek it and equally to avoid pain and respond negatively toward it. We can override that if we can see that the longterm benefit will be in our favour (going to exercise rather than sitting on the couch all day) we can also override/avoid addiction to pleasurable things if we can see that the longterm it will be harmful for us - taking heroin.

    Trauma seems to me something that produces longterm anxiety and addiction is just a negative coping mechanism to deal with that anxiety - regardless of whether that is sex-addiction or drugs... it is done to relieve anxiety (even temporarily) whereas they might be better off trying to relieve the anxiety in a more direct way? I don't know....
  3. LightInTheDarkestNight

    LightInTheDarkestNight Well-Known Member

    It sounds right you saying trauma does produce long term anxiety and drugs cope with that in the short term however drugs also cause you more anxiety in the long run. Case in point the information I noted above even about marijuana use and kids. Let alone harder drugs like cocaine, crack, meth opiates etc.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 10, 2011
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