Archives for September, 2012


‘Addicted’ to an Addict? 5 Warning Signs of Codependency

People can become addicted to any number of substances or behaviors, including drugs, gambling, sex and food, but can you become addicted to another person? In some sense, yes – it’s called codependency, and it can be extremely damaging to both individuals.

Codependency can arise in any type of relationship, but we most commonly think of the addict and their highly enmeshed spouse or partner. By denying the existence of a problem, trying to control the addict’s drug use or rescuing them from the consequences of their actions, the partner enables the addiction. The partner feels needed and the addict feels justified in maintaining their drug habit. It’s a win-win that actually ends up being lose-lose.
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Is There Such Thing as Too Much Empathy?

A critical task of addiction recovery is restoring empathy. By sharing stories and reaching out to help others in recovery, addicts gradually repair the empathy deficits caused by drug and alcohol abuse. But is it possible to have too much empathy? When does being “too nice” become a problem?

The Empathy Spectrum

Human beings have an innate capacity for empathy, but because of biology, environment and other factors, we each inhabit our own unique space on the empathy spectrum. People with autism spectrum disorders, for example, may struggle to interpret basic emotions whereas people with certain brain anomalies are hyper-empathetic. For instance, people with a condition known as mirror-touch synesthesia have hyperactive mirror neurons, cells that fire when we see others in pain. So they actually feel physical pain when they see someone else suffering.
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Can You Outsmart Addiction?

Every parent wants to raise a smart kid. It seems logical that intelligence would correlate to better grades, a higher paying job and improved satisfaction with life. Yet studies show that a high IQ can get us into all kinds of trouble. Not only are brainiacs more likely to max out their credit cards and declare bankruptcy, but they’re also at greater risk for substance abuse.

According to the National Longitudinal Study...
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