Coping With Obsessive Thoughts in Recovery

Many of us with histories of addiction deal with obsessive thoughts. During active addiction, we might have channeled them into—or numbed them with—alcohol  or drugs. Not everyone with addiction is obsessive, but I certainly have this trait even nearly six years into recovery. It’s one I share with many of my sober friends. Telling Unfounded…

Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

While May was Mental Health Awareness Month, July is Minority Mental Health Awareness Month. The reason for the specificity is to recognize racism’s enormous impact on mental health. Minority Stress Minority stress is the stress experienced by marginalized groups from repeated discrimination and oppression. Often, many factors compound on one another, making maintaining mental health…

What are Psychotropic Medications?

Psychotropic medication is an umbrella term for meds used to treat mental health disorders. They work by adjusting levels of the brain’s neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. There are several types of psychotropic meds. Some of these are anti-anxiety medications, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors antidepressants(SSRIs), serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor antidepressants (SNRIs), anti-psychotics, and…

Using Things Outside Yourself to Cope With Emotional Pain

I’ve heard addiction described as—among other things—using something outside of yourself to cope with painful feelings. This can happen even after you quit using substances; it’s one of the reasons many people with substance use disorders also struggle with other, behavioral addictions. Looking to things outside yourself to “solve” your emotional pain often leads to…

Recent Seasons of the shows POSE and Feel Good Deliver Honest and Complex Portrayals of Addiction

Attn: Spoilers TW: Sexual Assault, AIDS, Death The most recent seasons of the shows POSE and Feel Good both deal with addiction. While the two are very different, each illuminates the links between trauma and substance use disorders. This last season of POSE, season 3, takes place in 1994; previous seasons were in the late…