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This is Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay Click HERE on this line to find essays via Your-Key-Words. {Most frequent wordstarts of each essay will be put here.} ========================================================== %ADDICTION CODEPENDENCE IS A STATE OF MIND 880310 Addiction is a frame of mind, a mind set, a pattern of thought, a set of unchanging attitudes and assumptions. Addiction is a habit of feeling and thinking about self and others. People who are trapped in addictive ways of thinking have similar sincere beliefs about human relationships and attitudes towards relating to others. Their lives are guided by certain convictions about the nature of reality and their place in the scheme of things. They are often intelligent, successful, respected. People who are trapped in addictive ways of thinking do have ideals and values; they are often idealists trying hard to fulfill their ideals. They are usually sincere; i.e., they are usually not consciously and deliberately deceptive and dishonest. However, that is not their whole story. They are not aware of their whole story. People who are trapped in addictive ways of thinking are often anything but honest with themselves. They are trapped in patterns of self deception; perhaps with the help of others who are trapped in the same game of mutual self deception. The British psychiatrist R.D. Laing calls such games of mutual self deception by the name "collusion". By naming the game we can more easily think about and talk about the game, more easily recognize when such a game is being played. Addicts are trapped in collusive games of mutual self deception. They invite others to play their collusive games with them; i.e., to join in the game of mutual self deception. Joining is often both respectable and deadly. Many people who join in the addictive games of mutual self deception do so as codependents; i.e., as people playing the role of helper to the addicts. The codependent helps the addicts play the game by compensating for their inability to cope while actively playing the game of mutual self deception. Slowly the codependent gets into the game of mutual self deception, and codependent upon the addict to help sustain the self deception. Addicts and codependents are mutually codependent upon each other to maintain the self deception. Their interdependence is not healthy, it undermines their integrity---splitting them internally, from each other, and from their community. They disintegrate, and promote communal disintegration. (c) 2005 by Paul A. Smith in (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================