The Joy of Addiction


If my life was a movie, it would be a dramatic one. I’ve been creating drama since I was young. First it was childish games of make believe, then I moved onto trying to steal friends’ boyfriends. I made up lies about myself to appear more interesting, to be the centre of attention. And beyond my teenage years, I made relationships more complicated than it needed to be, carried on with unsuitable people for longer than was good for me, because the drama fed me.
When my boyfriend and I broke up earlier this year, I started to see I had a problem. I’m addicted to drama. I’ve been living like an addict in recovery since. I don’t want that life anymore, but my mind is still preoccupied with looking for a fix. Sex is an easy source. So is work politics and gossip. Getting involved in a friend’s personal saga also provides a hit. I feel tempted by all these things, but I try to limit my intake of drama to TV shows and books. Because my craving for the dramatic can be really harmful. I’ve hurt myself and others many times in the past through overreacting, manipulating, pretending, and expecting others to act out my projections.
I struggle to let go of my old habits though. I’m used to relating to people over drama. I’m used to having drama in my life. Sometimes I don’t even realize I’m back to my dramatic ways until the next day, when I think about my choices and what would have happened if I’d acted with a clear head, instead.
The addict in me is scared of nothing. Of having nothing to say, nothing to do, nothing to think about. If nothing is happening, then what does that mean for my addiction? It would cease to exist…and what then?
Now I’m off work for a couple of weeks for the holidays, staying in the woods at my parents’ place, and my worst nightmare is happening: nothing. I sit in the silence, wanting to make noise, but when I try, nothing comes. There is nothing to say, nothing to do, nothing to think about. It’s the best feeling in the world.


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