Marriage and Addiction Relief Part 4

Marriage & Addiction
Monkeys
Part 4

Causes of Addiction

When you feel good your brain releases a neurotransmitter that reaches a receptor. This is what tells you to feel good. The limbic system is the center where our feelings originate. It is activated by our brains. Drugs that affect the brain are called psycho active because they are mood altering. This is why one refers to being under the influence as being “high!” However after prolonged use the brain chemistry becomes altered and adjusts. It gradually takes more in order to achieve a “high!” The more one uses, the more they begin to crave, the more they use. Guess what? This begins the perilous road to addiction. So now we have a vicious self-destructive cycle that needs to be broken!

Addiction affects not only the mind but the body and spirit as well. Addiction takes on many forms. When addiction involves, overeating, caffeine, nicotine, gambling, promiscuity, shopping, workaholic, cultish religion, exercise and hobbies. Society has a tendency to accept the above addictions a tad more. An addiction can also be of a sexual nature. There are serious consequences when one becomes addicted! The addiction itself is a symptom of an underlying unresolved issue. Which is really “A plea for help!”

Emotional pain that is suppressed and has not been properly addressed is often the root cause. One who has low self-esteem lacking coping skill will sometimes turn to drugs. Someone who has been abused or molested will turn to drugs. Domestic violence can cause someone to turn to drugs. Someone who has been abandoned will turn to drugs. Someone who is grieving a loss or grieving may turn to drugs. One who may have been injured in a fall or accident and is prescribed pain medication can also become addicted! They often use the injury to rationalize the addiction. There is a plethora of reasons for addiction…

Finding better ways to cope is crucial. One must come out of denial and take ownership of their behavior. When an addiction becomes full-blown it affects everyone involved. For instance cigarette smoke impacts others as they breathe in the secondary smoke. It also results in low birth weight in babies whose mother’s continue to smoke. It has now become clear that cigarette smoking causes cancer therefore smoking has been banned in many public buildings, restaurants and places… After many years of smoking cigarettes it can result in health complications as well as cancer that can eventually cause death. What is so very interesting the number of people who continue to smoke anyway knowing that smoking is not good for their health! This is also due to the fact that smoking has been socially accepted to a large degree making it easier for the addiction to persist!

Drugs usually makes one feel good. This in itself makes it hard for the addict to simply just say “NO!” Their feelings dictate their behavior and mental acuity. Due to their lack of self-discipline they usually succumb! The addictive drug user seeks the euphoria that the drugs or smoking provides over all else at the expense of their health and wellbeing. Momentarily they are able to escape and numb their inner pain.

Addiction affects, mind, body and soul. The reasons why people become addicted are complex, vast and each individual is different. Addiction is being out of control and accompanied with compulsive behaviors. Addiction does not mean that the person is bad. It is important to separate their behavior from who they are. Next we will discuss; some of the ways drugs affect you body!

Part 5

Marriage and Addiction Relief Part 3

Marriage & Addiction

Monkeys

Part 3

Marriage & Addiction

Step 3 Regular Usage

When addiction progresses it requires a regular fix. The substance abuser will now use others in their attempt to satisfy their addiction. This often leads to a multiplicity of dysfunction on many levels. Satisfying the addiction is often done in secrecy as well as with others. The frequency in which they do so has now escalated and impedes on their day-to-day life. The addiction can still go undetected because they cleverly camouflage or conceal their addiction of choice! As one looks closely the signs are all there. A spouse may not be aware because they can appear normal to a degree. A multiplicity of excuses is rendered when they are questioned? Deception comes along with addiction it can destroy your marriage and other relationships as well

Truth and intimacy are important components in building a good strong marriage!

Step 4 full-blown

Day in and day out the addiction has now taken over. The addict will now do whatever to satisfy his or her obsession that has completely taken control. Their life cycle is getting, using, doing drugs, alcohol or whatever the addiction is… They are now compulsively spiraling increasingly downhill… For many it takes hitting rock bottom before they will admit they need help!

They have indulged themselves to the point that their brain chemistry has changed! To attempt to stop means that they will go through a period of painful withdrawal! The high that they used to receive is now an insatiable voracious uncontrollable craving! A mere ferocious “monkey on their back!” They cannot feel normal unless they are under the influence or indulging in the activity! Their family, friends, job, talents, resources are all being destroyed by their inability to control their compulsive need for a fix!

How interesting that they so paradoxically “Need a fix!” What really needs to be fixed is their deep cavernous inner pain… Addiction is a vicious cycle. If your spouse is in any of these stages it is important to confront them in love. Redemptive confrontation is a way to begin to address whatever the addiction is. If not confronted your love one’s life will spiral out of control if in fact that is not the case already.

Marriage is a wonderful relationship God has created for us to learn how to properly relate to our spouses. It is the ultimate monogamous sacred partner/co-worker relationship! It is through a committed marriage with God as the center one can learn how to overcome their weaknesses. Truly GOD is OMNISCIENT! He is the ultimate source of Godly Wisdom. He knew when we were created that we would need Him in all areas of our lives. In a God Centered Marriage He keeps man and woman joined together for life. Ever growing in His wisdom as they both stay connected to Him. realizing that “we together become one.” “What God has joined together let not man put asunder.” Within the context of a committed marriage there is power and unity! With the Help o the Lord you can whether the storms of life and emerge Victoriously. Marriage to GOD IS SACRED!

Addiction is a weakness. Drugs, alcohol, illicit sex, pornography or whatever; are all used to help one to feel good! However as an addict they have no boundaries and they are constantly seeking more ways to alleviate their uncontrollable desires. This only drives them deeper into despair and uncertainty. With the help of the Lord you can overcome addiction. For with God “All things are possible!”

Marriage was wonderfully designed by God so we could get some of our needs met. There are some needs that can only be met by God! It is important to respect your marriage as well as the marriages of others. God honors marriage. When you honor your marriage you honor God!

A spouse can be a great facilitator in helping the cycle of the dysfunction of addiction being broken! It is difficult because it requires exercising good boundaries. Praying and interceding for your spouse is key.

An intervention is necessary! Once the addiction has been confronted it is important to seek healthier ways to cope. Remember there are many forms of addiction. It can be an addiction to just about anything. Not everyone has a tendency towards addiction. Yet keep in mind that we all are forever becoming. Therefore we all need to work on improving and increasing our own personal disciplines. Be compassionate and have empathy but not to the point you further enable them. Help remembering; addiction is a plea for help! There are healthier ways to fill that inner void.

There is absolutely nothing in your life that God is not aware of! He Loves you! He wants you to reach out to Him! Learning to surrender to HIM is important!

Developing a genuine intimate personal relationship with the Lord will help you begin to better cope! Here one must be careful as well There are those who develop an addiction to religion. They become very religious which also creates a void… It becomes just another escape. This is not the same thing as having a healthy personal relationship with the Lord. It is important to spend time in His Word getting to know Him through His Word. Here you can discover what life is really all about. Here you can discover your purpose and the Freedom God wants for you.

One must seek to discover who they are without the addiction. To nurture the inner child that wants it way at all cost. To learn to better exercise self-control! Now that this is out in the open the addiction is exposed! This is what the road to recovery is all about. One must begin to monitor their feelings to see what triggers their desires. What is the root cause of them losing themselves into addiction? How do I begin to move from the addiction being the center of my life? God does have a better way! There is a way out of addiction. Focusing now on your spouse’s strengths is very important! Giving them encouragement without being controlling or manipulating. Giving them to the Lord. Encouraging them to allow the “JOY of the LORD to be their strength. God wants to be the center of your life. “Jesus came that you might have life and has it to the full.” John 10.

Next we will discuss some of the causes of addiction!
See Part 4

Marriage and Addiction Relief Part 2

Marriage & Addiction

Monkeys

Part 2

Steps To Drug Addiction

Addiction is not a behavior or goal that a person usually sets out to acquire intentionally. Addiction happens when there is an unhealthy dependency formed upon a substance, activity or habit which is gradually developed over a period of time. This time varies for each individual. Addiction is considered a disease by many in the medical profession. Some have a predisposition to being addicted that makes them more susceptible! One then usually seeks to cope with their inner pain depending upon an eternal source, eventually resulting in a dependency on it for an unhealthy comfort. Unknowingly they often compulsively indulge themselves without restraint and become seduced! More and more they gradually enter a world of escape!

Step 1 Experimentation

The first step into addiction is when someone experiments and there becomes a gradual progression. For some it becomes a beloved affair and they readily fall into dependence upon a particular substance or activity! Alcohol and pot are usually where they start? It has been said that cocaine is quite deceptive and after one try many become “hooked!” One will never quite experience that first climactic high! However they will incessantly try again and again to achieve the euphoric exhilarating high! Some have even declared that they have “fallen in love” with rock cocaine only after the very first use!

Addiction can happen faster for a teen because they have not yet developed strong restraints. Their brain and nervous system is still developing. Therefore they can fall into alcoholism, pot smoking, drugs or pornography easier than an adult!

If you don’t experiment; Guess what? You won’t get hooked! Often when someone tries drugs and don’t like them they will not continue. They don’t like how they feel when under the influence.

Food is a hard addiction to overcome because it is vitally necessary to sustain one’s
life. Therefore they must learn how to get their addiction under control and live with it daily! Be encouraged! It is possible to master any addiction!

Step 2 Occasional usage

This is when drugs or alcohol are used in social settings! They allow themselves to be influenced by their peers and opt to go along with the group. There are some users who stay here and do not go on to daily use. There are some who only use alcohol and drugs on the weekend and don’t consider themselves to have an addiction.

Addiction is so widespread in this 21st century that just about everyone has been impacted to some degree. It crosses all socioeconomic boundaries and is in all colors, races and cultures! This is true both inside and outside of God’s Church! Addiction within marriage can go undetected. It really is important to be transparent with your spouse in order to build a safe intimate marriage. It is also important to educate yourself about addiction. It is important to pray for your spouse relative, friend, coworker or love one!

A treatment program can be very expensive. Later on we will discuss outpatient, in patient, and residential programs. Know that having a personal relationship with the Lord makes or can make all the difference in the world! He can work through Christian and non Christians to help you through the recovery process… Keep in mind doctors and therapist treat and practice; God heals!

Next we will discuss advanced steps in addiction

Part 3

Marriage and Addiction Relief Part 1

Marriage and addiction

Monkeys

Part 1

Addiction is something few want to readily discuss. There is reason for alarm when an addiction is apparent. It needs to be addressed. It will at some point impede upon your relationship. Transparency is necessary in order to build intimacy. Addiction will inhibit intimacy within the marriage. Addiction also prohibits you from being transparent. Love, transparency, trust and intimacy are essential components in building a healthy satisfying marriage.

Addiction is a clear indicator that you are hurting. You have simply found an unhealthy way to cope with your deep pain. Your addiction can be alcohol, cocaine, heroin, marijuana, uppers, downers, prescription drugs, gambling, caffeine, illicit sex, people, pornography, food and even shopping! Yes and there are more… Even approval from others. Guess what? You have only found a way to momentarily relieve or somewhat ease your infuriating inner pain; it is still there. The addiction is a flag that something is wrong. You need to seek a healthy resolve.

I say momentarily because while under the influence or indulging in the activity of choice you are able to somewhat escape. However the systemic cause remains because the pain returns whenever you are alone. Often more vehement than ever before. This causes you to each time pursue passionately that which you are addicted to. Addiction of any kind can be life threatening because you are out of control. Your desires consume you and disables your ability to be responsible or demonstrate genuine love. Instead the activity controls you and you will do whatever it takes to get a “quick fix!

How does this impact my marriage? Good question. Marriage is a partnership and when one has an addiction they are not able to fully commit because the addiction is often their main priority. The spouse that is unaware is kept in the dark. Secrets, lies and deception accompany addiction. The addiction is used to fill the insatiable void in the addicted partner’s heart. It instead becomes their companion. This leaves their spouse out in the cold.

A disordered family, peer pressure, cultural influences, abuse, incest, rape, molestation, lack of self-esteem and a weakness to experiment can all contribute to one developing an addiction.

We live in a drug friendly worldly environment. Daily we are bombarded with the invitation to take this pill or that pill. Notice how many television commercials attempt to sell you something to feel better! Notice how the dinner hour has become the prime time for commercial pushers. There are a multiplicity of pushers of all sort. Doctors also oblige patients with tranquilizers, stimulants, pain pills, sleeping pills even pills to wake you up!

Keeping your commitments are important. One thing that needs to be promoted more is a personal relationship with the Lord! Marriage is ordained by God. It was designed to be the ultimate sacred relationship between a man and a woman. It can also help you prioritize life and put all your other relationships into their proper perspective, it can help you develop a healthier living environment.

Building trust is an important part of marriage. As we commit to building healthier home environments we contribute to lessening the number of addictions continuing to escalate. A safe home environment does not exclude addiction; but it does serve to nurture those who are… The possibility to break the generational cycle of dysfunction becomes attainable.

It is important to seek ways to validate one another. To develop and ongoing healthy support system that says I love and sincerely care. This does not mean you support the addiction. No! You separate the behavior from the person. You encourage them to be the best they can be and find ways to help them become who they were created to be.

God created each of us uniquely and we have varying temperaments. Our needs are different when these needs are not met a void is created and therefore one seeks to often erroneously fill that void. Marriage is about working together to find healthier ways to fill some of those voids with a committed partner… There are some voids that can only be filled by God.

Your partner is not responsible for your addiction you are. Both must hold one another accountable for their actions! You both are accountable to God for the vows you made… Remember, “for better or for worse…”

In this 21st century emotional gasoline has flamed the fires of addiction. Pain, grief and stress not dealt with properly are great contributors that drive unhealthy desires. This does not have to be. God’s Holy Spirit His Comforter is more than able.

Addiction is big business therefore it is often rationalized and one can easily find access and support. Addiction does not usually happen overnight it is a gradual process that begins with a series of steps…

Next we will discuss some of those steps;

Part 2

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