There are a lot of different kinds of addiction. It would be easy if the only things we could become addicted to were drugs or alcohol. But each of us, I think, is addicted to something that makes the pain stop.
Love, attention, time, food, alcohol, pain killers, sex, lies, and pain. Some of us use our addiction, or our pain, to create something better and bigger than ourselves. But most of the time, the addiction reaches the tipping point and causes more problems than the pain it’s supposed to relieve. I love to say as a creative person, an artist, that half the time it feels like I’m walking around without a layer of skin that most people have. I wear my heart on my sleeve. I think any artist feels everything in this world more than the average person.
Pink, Eminem, Stephen King….amazing, talented artists. And what else do they all have in common? They understand and have fought addiction. But these addictions were connected to things they could eventually walk away from. Drugs, alcohol. Destructive forces. And don’t get me wrong, I have seen addiction up close and personal. You just have to read The Heroin Diaries to see how far down one person can go. But what do you do if the thing you’re addicted to is not something you can just walk away from?
We all have people in our lives (or maybe it’s you) that throw food at their pain. I’m not being judgmental or snarky about this. I was blown away when several different women in my life, who do not know each other, said “I eat my feelings”. Some of them have acknowledged their addiction and are trying to figure how how to handle an addiction to something you can’t walk away from, some are aware but not ready to deal with it yet, and some will eventually be consumed by it.
I believe eating disorders are an addiction, but that’s not the point of this blog. The point of today’s writing is that we are all addicted to something that takes away the pain.