Essential Reads

Addiction as a Family Affliction

The addiction of a loved one brings up many difficult questions and may leave you feeling like you are riding an emotional rollercoaster you can’t get off.

What You Need To Know About The Genetics of Mental Disorders

By Allen J Frances M.D. on April 30, 2016 in Saving Normal
The genetics revolution is one of mankind's greatest intellectual achievements- but so far has contributed nothing to patient care and the ridiculous complexity of brain function.

Do I Have a Problem With Alcohol?

If you drink regularly, take this opportunity to evaluate how you are drinking and decide if it is time to make a change.

Why Do So Many Superstars Self-Destruct Like Supernovas?

Why has superstardom caused so many musical icons of the 1980s to die prematurely? This blog post explores the underbelly of fame and the quest for "Holy Grail" peak experiences.

More Posts on Addiction

What Does Alcohol Do to Your Brain?

A review of how alcohol may affect brain functioning.

Are you at risk for addiction?

By Martin Paulus on September 05, 2008 Addiction Science
Is it biology or psychology or both - what puts you at risk for addiction.  The answer is surprisingly complex but here we follow some basic clues.

Did Pattie Boyd require an expert to explain alcoholism?

By Stanton Peele on September 05, 2008 Addiction in Society
Pattie Boyd's memoir, "Wonderful Tonight," describes Boyd's leaving her marriage with Beatle George Harrison after he became morose and uncommunicative, alternating between compulsive chanting and meditation followed by drug and alcohol blasts, to take up with Eric Clapton.

Is Depression a Disease?

By Stephen A. Diamond Ph.D. on September 01, 2008 Evil Deeds
What is depression? Is it a disease? A mental disorder? Biochemical imbalance? A brain dysfunction? A psychological syndrome? An existential or spiritual crisis?

From God's Mouth to Biden's Ear -- Addiction IS a disease, and it's against the law to say otherwise

By Stanton Peele on August 24, 2008 Addiction in Society
I like Joe Biden - and support his selection as Democratic Vice Presidential candidate - but he's an addiction nut who has proposed a law making it illegal to say addiction is not a disease!

How a Hopeful Lover Ends Up a Disappointed Friend

The reasons are more complex than you think, but begin with timing.

Movies and Psychotherapy = Cinematherapy - Part 1

A man in his 30s reads a book and something about how a young college student panics when he learns that a girl he slept with, just once, at a frat party, very quickly, in the corner of the party room, is pregnant. The episode in the book strikes a deep, painful chord.

Will Companies Discriminate Against Children of Single Parents?

By Roy F Baumeister on August 06, 2008 Cultural Animal
Suppose companies find they can increase profits by preferentially hiring people raised by two parents. What should psychology, and society, do?

Internet Sex Addiction: Case Studies and Treatment

By Dan Pollets on August 06, 2008 Mindful Sex
The expanding role of the Internet in everyday life has an interesting side-effect—an increase in cyber-sex addiction.

From Parent-Pleasing to People-Pleasing (Part 3 of 3)

It's understandable that when people-pleasers grow up, they've come to "own" the program that to be seen as good enough they must defer to the wishes and demands of others. . . .

Addiction and Consequences: The Knowing and the Doing

We hit bottom when we stop digging.  Everyone's bottom is different, but it often comes when the motivation for avoidance is no longer more compelling than its consequences.

From Parent-Pleasing to People-Pleasing (Part 1 of 3)

People-pleasers are proficient at pleasing everyone--but themselves. They are master accommodators, intuiting what others want from them and bestowing it upon them while denying...


By Steven Lamm on July 16, 2008
With more than a billion people online these days, it is not surprising that cybersex has become an addiction for some. Cybersex addiction may not fulfill physiologic definitions of addictions. But, make no mistake about it, it can create havoc in your life.

No Thanks, I Need to Smoke

If you take even a quick look at the newspaper, you can see that there are massive public policy efforts aimed to curb smoking. States are raising their cigarette taxes. Cities around the world are banning smoking in restaurants. Even Holland (where it seems like almost every vice is legal) will no longer allow cigarette smoking in restaurants and public places. What makes it so hard to quit smoking?

Internet Addiction: Real or Really Techno-Hysteria - Part 1

The Internet can be lionized or demonized. Some live by it and others die by it? How much time do you spend on it?

The Little Black Book Effect: Trying To Heal Unresolved Emotional Wounds

At whatever chronological point a man decides to examine his life and for whatever reason, he exposes the unresolved emotional wounds that brought him to the place that he is now. Because he does not have the tools to cope with those wounds in the moment, he backtracks emotionally to try to fix the past.  Men choose affairs for reasons that are rather opaque and, for that reason, both appear and are somewhat irrational. Women, in their choice of affairs, seem more to be trying to fill a space or complete a picture, while men are driven to make choices for reasons even they themselves can't get their mind around.

Tiger Wins at a Cost

 I am still marveling at Tiger Wood's incredible victory at the US. Open. His physical and mental toughness is practically unparalleled in professional sports. Yet, I wonder whether his victory was worth the cost.

Are All Memoirs Fiction?

A few years ago Oprah Winfrey famously criticized James Frey for fabricating large parts of his memoir A Million Little Pieces, the story of his recovery from drug addiction. Since then, calling into question how truthful any memoir really is.

Dying of Medicine

Cocaine, methamphetamines, and heroin killed fewer that 1,000 of Florida's 15 million adults in 2007 - less than a third the number killed by tranquilizers and painkillers. Throwing alcohol in with the illicit substances, their death toll was still less than half that from mood medications. Addiction and dangerous drug use are not about illicit substances - they are at the heart of the American experience.

McCain (and Cindy) On Drugs

Anti-drug hawk John McCain's wife, Cindy, stole drugs, about which she has never come clean.

From Self-Indulgence to Self-Nurturing

When we self-indulge, we obtain the object of our desire upfront. But the “bill” for such self-indulgence— i.e., the associated “costs” of our intemperance—invariably comes later.

Drinking around the world

This spring, I have had a chance to observe alcohol consumption in three very distinctive cultural settings - First Nation (Canada), Irish, and Iberian (Portugal/Spain). Alcohol use - and consequences - could not have been more different in these three places.

The Internet and Suicide

If the Internet can be used to promote suicide can it also be used to prevent it?

I'm in Brigadoon--Irish Drinking and Irish Pubs

Reporting from the road about the Irish and alcohol.