Addictive Behavior Isn’t Just for Addicts. We’re All Hooked.
One of the hardest things standing in the way of treatment for addiction is the stigma attached to it. A recent study reported addiction patients feeling dehumanized even during the process of recovery, finding themselves “excluded from the decision-making process, discriminated against, ‘treated unfairly’, and [feeling] powerless when interacting in the heath and dental care systems.” Many view addicts as somehow different and unknowable, weak and morally bankrupt. How interesting, then, that “normal people” engage in so many addictive behaviors themselves.
Rehab Pathway has just published the results of a survey they conducted with 1,000 Americans, using questions based on criteria the American Psychological Association uses to assess substance abuse. Rehab Pathway didn’t ask respondents specifically about “substance abuse,” but rather about “normal” everyday dependencies. Subjects were instructed to answer as honestly as they could.
(All of the infographics below are by Rehab Pathway.)
How Many of Us Are Hooked on at Least Three Everyday Activities
A surprising number of men and women said that they were obsessed with doing at least three of the same things each and every day.
Here’s how that shakes out by gender. Shocking — suspicious — finding: 92.9% of women watch explicit porn while only 78.4% of men do?
And it turns out that no matter what kind of work we do, we’re all pretty much creatures of habit, to put it kindly.
How We Feel About Our Daily Java
So more than half of us think we should drink less coffee, but…nah. Especially that 91% of us who would drive more than 10 miles every day for a cuppa Joe.
No Pain, No Gain
We must be a very fit nation with 91% of us so deeply committed to exercise. We’re not? Hm.
Just, Please, Don’t Disconnect Us
This one is maybe the least surprising. We know we’re addicted to the internet, and we only sometimes care.
Addicted to Love, or Something Like It
Okay, porn. Here are the obsessive everyday deets. Such devotion.
Even though 98.1% of us check our social media accounts first and last thing each day, interestingly, only 31.3% would pay $10 for it.
TV or Not TV. That Is the Question.
The answer? TV. Especially binge-watching, with many of us even willing to lose sleep over it.
Who’s an Addict?
All of these activities are legal, and there’s no risk of going to jail for them, though at times it does seem rehab might be useful. And given how familiar addictive behaviors are to us all, as demonstrated by Rehab Pathway’s data, we can’t really say we don’t understand addiction, even though it’s obviously true that some addictions are more extreme and damaging than others. Looking at ourselves, we can see how dependencies can take hold in any of us, and allowing addiction to remain its stigma — seeing it as something totally foreign to the way we conduct our own lives — isn’t fair, it isn’t kind, and it makes no sense at all.