Utah Family Therapy

Even Addicts Need Love

Below is an email correspondence with a client that I wanted to share with you. (All personal information has been removed for confidential reasons.) His statement is in bold red, with my thoughts/answers following in black.

– – – – – – beginning communication – – – –

I can now see that I am using my addiction to fill the void in me, which was created when I was younger. 

Excellent realization, now we need to find the real you.

In my addicted fantasy world, no one puts any pressure on me.

Pressure is part of life, it is one of those things that drives us to greater heights. It drives us to being better but what we need to do is learn how to manage that pressure (stress).

What are the stresses?

Who are the stresses?

Are you creating the stress on yourself?

What can you do to relieve some of this stress?

What is your attitude when you are under this stress?

What can you do to help you relax, without turning to the addiction?

What stresses can you control and which ones can’t you control?

Answer these questions to help you understand yourself better.

Giving in to the addiction gives me a great sense of satisfaction.

True. Giving in does cause the dopamine to erupt like fireworks, which causes a moment of peace, relaxation and satisfaction but this satisfaction and moment of bliss is only momentary and then the cycle starts again.

I would like to hear from you how I can let go of this baggage and move on. 

  1. Arrest the action and get rid of anything that triggers the addiction explicit magazines, videos, audio, alcohol, drugs, etc.
  2. Find the cause (which you have done, the need to feel loved and praised) but are there any more needs?
  3. Now we need to fill this need.

Are you religious?

Do you believe in a higher power?

What does this higher power tell you?

How does he feel about you? (I know He loves YOU!)

How do you feel about it?

I personally believe this higher power is a Godhead of three individuals (A loving Heavenly Father, His Son Jesus Christ and a Holy Ghost (frequently referenced as inner voice, conscience, etc.)) so when I reference Heavenly Father, you can realize that I am referring to the higher power.

I believe Heavenly Father loves each of us and no matter what we have done, he still loves us and wants us to turn to him, through prayer.

I can accept that my addiction creates a lot of fantasy.

Remember the teaching about the brain? When the brain sees visual imagery it views it as reality so it is important to create your own visual picture board (vision board).

It’s like I just want to escape to this place when the going gets tough.

When you were young, you were taught to retreat.

I sense that YOU do not know what the real YOU is like.

You’re still trying to discover who you are, which goes back to your future picture statement.

What do You want to be/do?

How do you want to act?

Where are you emotionally, spiritually, sexually and physically?

What are you doing in your spare time?

What are you doing for a living?

I think one of the greatest things we can do every morning is look in the mirror and tell ourselves,

“I love you and accept you for where you are. I am …
(repeat your 30 second picture statement.)

(example: I am healthy, happy and loving life. I am a problem solver which many individuals come to me for advice. The more advice I give the greater happiness I feel but I don’t need to rely on others to find happiness because I know that God loves me.)

I hope this was some help.

You are a wonderful person who is struggling with an addiction.

We all struggle with different things but that does not make anyone worse than another.

You do have the ability to manage your thoughts and manage your behaviors.

You have many talents and skills which are just waiting to burst forth.

You can accomplish your healthy dreams so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

You can sore like an eagle, even though you may feel like your wings have been clipped.


– – – – – – – end of communication – – – – – – –

No matter what happens you are loved by (God) Your Higher Power.

Believe in your Higher Power and move forward.

I personally believe this Higher Power is God as I expressed above and I know He does love us. He loves each one of us. I am so grateful to know that despite the struggles I have had in my life, I am loved unconditionally.

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Lets face it, who likes to talk about their crap with other people? 

If you’re like most clients, you’re used to being judged despite hearing so many people talk about non judgment and when you do open up, it seems like the more you share, the less likely you are to get compassion. 

We’ve worked our butts off to create a clinic where the unfiltered, real you, can show up and heal, so dammit give therapy a chance

We love the unfiltered real you, let’s heal together. – Utah Family Therapy Team