Essential Reads

The Pain Mess

Treatment of chronic pain is a scandal

Are We Finally Ready to Invest in People, Not Prisons?

For the addict - and for all of us - prison reform can’t come soon enough.

3 Kinds of Motivation for Addiction Recovery

How to know you have done all you can

Living in the Candy Store

How to Detox a Motivationally Toxic World

Recent Posts on Addiction

Addicted to Lies

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on February 01, 2012 in Shadow Boxing
We're often surprised when people lie easily and persistently, even when it's clear they'll be exposed. Casey Anthony gained as much attention for this behavior as for her status as an alleged child-killer. What's behind it?

The Meaning of Recovery Has Changed, You Just Don't Know It

By Stanton Peele on February 01, 2012 in Addiction in Society
Do you think recovery equates to abstinence? According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, recovery is "A process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to reach their full potential." A bit different from the 12 steps version of recovery, wouldn't you say?

"Casual Sex" You Say?

By Lynn Phillips on January 31, 2012 in Dream On
The phrase “casual sex” turns out to be a most treacherously roomy category. It can include good sex, bad sex, safe sex, risky sex, sex alone or with others, sex with friends or strangers, sex with partners older or younger. But few who use the term seem to notice.

Is Anorexia a Disease, a Series of Bad Decisions, or Both?

By Emily T. Troscianko on January 31, 2012 in A Hunger Artist
Genetic and environmental factors in the development of anorexia, along with the feedback loops between the physiological and the psychological in its progression, make anorexia a difficult condition to recover from. However, everyday decisions also play a role, not only in becoming ill but also in bringing about recovery.

Can Facebook Boost Your Social Brain?

Social networks exist not only in the virtual world, but also in our brains. There’s evidence that the two might even be linked. Regions of the brain involved in social relationships seem to be larger in people with larger and more complex social networks.

Post-Dahmer Stress Disorder?

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on January 30, 2012 in Shadow Boxing
Just because we've endured intense stress doesn't mean we now have license to harm others. No matter what an attorney might argue, PTSD does not erase the awareness of right and wrong.

Negative Self-Talk and Addiction Recovery

By Adi Jaffe Ph.D. on January 29, 2012 in All About Addiction
Negative self talk finds its way into many people's heads and is very common in early recovery. So what is one to do?

Don’t Believe Everything Your Mind Says

By Shawn T. Smith Psy.D. on January 28, 2012 in Ironshrink
The mind is always looking out for our safety, but we don’t have to believe everything that it says.

Are You an Addict?

By Lisa Firestone Ph.D. on January 27, 2012 in Compassion Matters
Addictive behaviors are appealing because they offer immediate relief from psychological pain and anxiety. However, the relief is only temporary, never providing a lasting solution to our problems. When we "sober up," we find that our emotional pain is still there.

Lessons from Thumbsucking, the Earliest Addiction

What helps kids to cease sucking their fingers or thumbs? These same principles can prove useful for grownups who want to overcome mistaken-things-we-put-in-our-mouths like excessive food, alcohol and drugs, or cigarettes.

Sex Differences Along the Seven Deadly Sins: The Vatican Report

By Gad Saad Ph.D. on January 25, 2012 in Homo Consumericus
Do men and women succumb to the seven deadly sins in similar ways? A study conducted by a priest reveals some interesting findings.

A Possible Cure For Pornography Addiction—In an Essay

By Ravi Chandra M.D. on January 24, 2012 in The Pacific Heart
David Mura’s classic essay is an absolute must read for anyone interested in how male sexuality interacts with pornography and other sexual addictions. The essay goes right to the heart, and makes it possible to “cure” pornography addiction in about 10,000 words that stimulate deep reflection and maturation.

Declaration of Co-dependency: Face it, We're Addicted Through Love

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on January 24, 2012 in Ambigamy
Set aside positive and negative connotations, the dynamical behavior underlying love and addiction are the same. In both cases we lose an ability to do something for ourselves and become dependent on someone or something else. The right question is simply who and what to love and be addicted to?

The American Dream: A Replay

By Peter Corning Ph.D. on January 24, 2012 in The Fair Society
A popular theme in science fiction and Hollywood movies is the idea of a do-over in life. What if income had been distributed in this country over the past 30 years the same way it was in the 1950s and 1960s? It would be a very different country.

My Week with Marilyn: A Portrait of Mental Illness

By Goal Auzeen Saedi Ph.D. on January 23, 2012 in Millennial Media
Marilyn Monroe is synonymous with sexy blonde bombshell. She was at times a controversial figure, both for the scandals that followed her, and the objectification she brought to womanhood. But what was she like behind the scenes? A new film shares an intimate portrait of illness and self-doubt that shines a new light on the film star.

Are You Addicted to Doomed Relationships?

By Lisa Firestone Ph.D. on January 23, 2012 in Compassion Matters
Given the variety and diversity of people in the world, one is often left to wonder: So why do I keep winding up with the same type of partner? Why, no matter how many new criteria I mentally create, do I seem to be addicted to the same not-so-great relationship?

Intervene This

By Stanton Peele on January 23, 2012 in Addiction in Society
What if a wildly popular program masquerading as therapeutic pushes a technique that is demonstrably ineffective, and probably counterproductive? Well, that's "Intervention."

Borderline Personality: The Promiscuous Diagnosis

Promiscuous Borderline Personality hangs out with many other diagnoses.

When Doing the Best You Can Becomes a Compulsion

By Mel Schwartz L.C.S.W. on January 19, 2012 in A Shift of Mind
It is generally agreed that we should always try to do the best we can. Yet, if we really examine this assumption we find that it may lead to an unhealthy compulsion. When taken to the extreme, the need to be your very best can derail your ability to live a more balanced life.

Rubber-Band Addiction Recovery: No Shame

By Adi Jaffe Ph.D. on January 18, 2012 in All About Addiction
Recovery with no shame usually involves understanding. That's why I've put together my Rubber-band recovery framework, which explain all the ups and downs.

Substance Abuse and Borderlines, Narcissists

By Randi Kreger on January 18, 2012 in Stop Walking on Eggshells
Human beings have remarkably inventive ways to rid themselves from painful feelings. The more agonizing the emotion, the more resourceful one has to be. People with borderline and narcissistic disorders experience may experience a great deal of pain, so they get pretty savvy.

Thin Mint Addiction: Symptoms & How to Kick It

You know the Thin Mint. Oh yes, you do. The two of you have been in cahoots for a while now. But is your Thin Mint addiction stopping you from having the life you deserve? Learn how to conquer the cookie. The Thin Mint is not the boss of you. Don't give it the power.

Two Fallacies Invalidate the DSM-5 Field Trials

By Allen J Frances M.D. on January 16, 2012 in DSM5 in Distress
The designer of the DSM-5 field trials has just written a telling commentary in the American Journal of Psychiatry. She makes two very basic errors that reveal the fundamental worthlessness of these field trials and their inability to provide any information that will be useful for DSM-5 decision making.