We tend to imagine that we can only become addicted to a few sorts of things. But real addiction is about using something, anything, to keep our real emotions, fears, and hopes at bay. There are many more addicts among us than we think.
“Addiction is a brain disorder characterized by compulsive engagement in rewarding stimuli, despite adverse consequences. Despite the involvement of a number of psychosocial factors, a biological process – one which is induced by repeated exposure to an addictive stimulus – is the core pathology that drives the development and maintenance of an addiction. The two properties that characterize all addictive stimuli are that they are reinforcing (i.e., they increase the likelihood that a person will seek repeated exposure to them) and intrinsically rewarding (i.e., they are perceived as being inherently positive, desirable, and pleasurable).” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Addiction
“We operate with some stock images of the addict: a person with a heroin needle in a park, or who nurses a bottle of gin in a paper bag at nine in the morning or who sneaks off at every opportunity to light up another cylinder of marijuana.
However dramatic and tragic such cases of addiction might be, they are simultaneously hugely reassuring to most of us – because they locate the addict far from ordinary experience, somewhere off-stage, in the land of semi-criminality and outright breakdown…