AS AN ADDICT, WE GET SOMETHING POWERFUL OUT OF USING OUR DRUG OF CHOICE. OTHERWISE, WHAT’S THE POINT?
Rationally, we know it's not a good idea but whatever we get provides a particular kind of power that overrides all logic.
So what do we get?
Let’s call one aspect of this kind of power Nurturance.
Like our bodies need Nurturance to perform all of its functions, the Cycle of Addiction needs Nurturance to perpetuate its existence.
This Nurturance is received during the rituals of using. Over and over again, we develop habits while indulging in our habits. These actions provide their own brand of sustenance - their own form of Nurturance.
What did you receive during your rituals of using?
Did you get to flash your wealth during usage?
Did you provide the drug of choice to others, which gave you the power to distribute as you saw fit?
Did using allow you to elevate your social status? With coworkers? Friends? Family?
Did your usage let others know that you were successful?
Did your usage provide you with a forum to receive attention you would not otherwise have gotten?
Or maybe you went in the opposite direction.
Were you able to receive Isolation with your rituals?
Did this allow you to withdraw from responsibility?
From providing money, power, status, success or attention?
Your answers to these questions identify some of the Nurturance you received from your rituals.
Who you Connected with, or withdrew from, while getting these forms of Nurturance will speak to the nature of your most intimate relationships.
When you were in the midst of your rituals, how did those closest to you perceive you?
How did they react to and participate in this?
Their answers add another, deeper, layer of Nurturance. In fact, this information will directly influence what and who you say you love.
Nurturance is the power you received from the rituals you performed. Unfortunately, this kind of Nurturance feeds your addiction and therefore, is an unhealthy substitute for the real thing.
What is the real thing?
Your connection to the archetypal ideas of Home, Mother and Communion.
And what kind of Nurturance comes from a connection to these?
And so, because the Nurturance from addiction serves as a stand in for this love, it feels like the best an addict can do; it feels like the best love available.
When an addict gets a taste for this feeling, for this brand of love, it provides the particular kind of power that overrides all logic.
…and that’s why we, as addicts, will ignore all factually correct advice and follow the powerful and misguided feeling to jump, once again, headfirst into the Cycle of Addiction.
Randal Lyons helps people struggling with addiction who want long term, holistic care. He uses his own experience in recovery combined with his training as a Doctor of Oriental Medicine through his program, Alchemist Recovery.
If you've got questions about this or any other topic in sobriety, please contact me.