There is a common belief that chemical brain imbalances and even brain diseases handed down through one's genetics causes addiction and other mental distress problems. We have been told this repeatedly over the past several decades yet the scientific evidence does not support these propositions.
Why is this the case? This story serves polite society in ignoring taboo topics like child sexual abuse, incest, physical violence, poverty, and terrible neglect which are overwhelmingly common among people who struggle with addiction and other forms of mental distress. These men, women, and children are convinced to keep their stories to themselves because of the upset and disbelief that they create for other people; they are taught to be shameful for the things they have experienced. Polite society cannot accept that these things happen.
Dr. Vincent Felitti and colleagues and subsequent research on the ground-breaking Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) studies have put into the public domain, knowledge that addiction counselors and mental health clinicians have had to keep confidential for decades. Namely, that unbearable secrets are intimately intertwined with addiction and mental distress, NOT messed up biology. Yet, most mental health professionals and addiction programs continue to ignore the ACE research implications.
So, the question: What if you could tell someone your full story in your own words and be taken seriously; your most closely guarded secrets - the embarrassing ones and especially the taboo ones?
John J. Whelan
John J. Whelan, Ph.D., is the author of Going Crazy in the Green Machine, available now on FriesenPress.