Addiction And Physical Abuse : Two Peas In A Pod?



In order to spread awareness, we come into terms with acceptance. I know, I know. I’m going to sound unbelievably cliché. Well believe it. The first step to recovery is acceptance. Accept that you have an addiction, accept your traumatic past and accept your traumatizing mistakes. This topic is one I take very seriously and I promptly discuss it in my upcoming book “Fruits Of Addiction: A Pernicious Love” by myself, Jay Orgullo also known as J. Addicted.

When trying to remember my childhood , I recall growing up around abuse, fear and anger. From being forced to watch my father literally beat the earrings off my mothers head, to experiencing his traumatic rage for myself, that fear inevitably evolved into an unbearable hatred that influenced my decisions dramatically.

I recall my father being an addict himself, but unlike me, his addiction has always been alcohol which was eventually traded out for gambling.

– Jay Addicted, Fruits Of Addiction : A Pernicious Love

In order to get answers, you have to ask questions. The exact question I discuss: “Is domestic and child abuse a viable reason as to why those who suffer from it, resort to addiction?” Of course I don’t discuss my opinions from statistical stand point, but from a moral and personal point point of view . During my time at Bridgewater State University, I pursued a background in Psychology and Criminal Justice (for the obvious childish reason, to avenge my mother) with my own concentration of domestic violence, child abuse and the psyche of the abuser. Like any “perfect” mommas boy, the obvious thirst for revenge I developed pushed me to pursue the laws in Massachusetts regarding the issues by learning more about them. My main goal was to understand what other factors, aside from addiction, may have influenced my father to find daily pleasure in beating down his wife and his eldest son.


Why does he hate me so much? Am I really that bad of a son, mami?

“No mijo. You’re not a bad son, papi just needs his rest. He had a stressful day at work. He loves all of us…”

Love? It even sounded like she was trying to believe it herself. As much as she wanted to believe that, she’d hold me trying to keep me as quiet as possible, trembling in fear hoping she doesn’t say anything in a manner that may offend him. My father’s abuse isn’t how I’d define love even being so young all those years of his toxic behavior. That must’ve been some rough 3rd world love from their native country because, as an American myself, I’ve only seen American parents scold their kids just to apologize to them afterwards. Uh yeah, I was unbelievably jealous. But then again it did make me feel as if I was tough because of what I endure.

Obviously years later I learning that abuse in a household was much more common than I thought hence my extensive research at my university.

When I attended NA meetings, a common pattern I’d see is people blaming their addiction on their childhood, or the influence their own parents’ addictions would have on them. Of course it’s hard not to hold grudges, which I did for years but I don’t blame my father’s abuse nor his addictions. I don’t blame my mother when she’d feel no other choice than to spank me as well so that my father doesn’t feel as she’s contradicting him. I don’t blame my culture and I don’t blame my parents’ generation where discipline revolved around spanking wrists with rulers, spanking with belts and bare hands, though I wish that’s the only punishment my mother and I would’ve gotten. I know what my older audience may think, “man up, you millennials complain about everything. When I was your age my father would hit me with a rock.” Okay caveman, calm down. Yeah my father wouldn’t use rocks or whatever the f*ck. Though, sometimes when he’d a strip me naked, throwing me in the shower with freezing cold water and whip me with his belt with a barrage of close handed strikes to the face, head, body, and back. When I was too big for him to do that anymore, he’d stick to strictly punches to the face and head and if I had my shirt off, whips across my chest and back with the occasional shot for the head that I would dodge which resulted it more whips.

Who knew I was closer to understanding and answering my own questions than I thought? My own experiences with domestic and child abuse stems back to my child hood but you know what? I didn’t blame my early exposure to addiction and abuse. If I did then I’d indirectly be blaming my father for my own decisions. Truth is I wasn’t even thinking about my past when I smoked weed for the first time. I wasn’t thinking about my father beating my mother when I transitioned over to opiates. Maybe I did inherit my father’s “addict” gene. Shit I might even have his “gambling every weekend” gene too. Countless studies say that addiction is almost always passed down from parent to child. In my case that seems very likely.

Just so we’re on the same page, drug abuse.gov has it’s own article on this topic so I’ll be referring to their definitions. The article states:

Genetics is the study of genes. Genes are functional units of DNA that make up the human genome.

Genetics and Epigenetics of Addiction, drugabuse.gov

Regarding children who witness/experience abuse/violence of any kind; they are said to be more likely to become addicted to substances. So maybe that’s the reason why I became an addict and followed my father’s footsteps? Is that the reason why I began to treat my wife almost as bad as he treated my mother? And is that why I began to neglect (which is a form of abuse) my kids once I turned all my attention to getting high and making sure I had drugs for when I ran out?

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) report that more than a third of adolescents with a report of abuse or neglect will have a substance use disorder before they reach their 18th birthday.

Silvermist recovery

In a recent study published in the Journal of Drug and Alcohol Dependence, researchers from Columbia University found that domestic abuse drastically increases the likelihood of the onset of chemical dependency.

– Silvermist Recovery

No matter the evidence provided, every addict has their own reasoning. I know very little about my father’a past, but he had a childhood much worse than me and he suffered worse than my mother and I did. Aside from myself, my father fits the statistics but statistics don’t ask questions as to why people do what they do. I’m not just a statistic, I’m not just a decimal of a percentage. I didn’t resort to drug addiction because I’m scarred from my childhood. And unfortunately, just like my father I took out my anger on my wife but his face wasn’t on her head when I’d hurt her or yell at her. I was blind by my love for drugs but I was also completely aware of my actions.

My childhood didn’t cross my mind all those times I’d have my fits and tear into the mother of my children. I hadn’t even resorted to this level of domestic violence until I hit “rock bottom” and began making my love of drugs a priority over my family’s happiness. I’m an adult, I had a choice and I was conscious. I knew exactly what I was doing and my childhood isn’t what drove me to violence nor addiction.

Jay Addicted, “Fruits Of Addiction : A Pernicious Love

Again, this is discussed much more in depth in my memoir. Whether I just turned a whole group of readers against me, I am going to be completely honest with my own experiences as well as my opinions. Obviously I’ll also be as respectful as possible, but if I was still the lying junkie I once was then I wouldn’t be able to speak about my flaws honestly. My hope of this post, excerpts from my book and quick study is for readers to understand the perspective of the abused/ abuser and the damage caused to the women who promised to love us.


Sources

https://www.silvermistrecovery.com/blog/2018/september/2019-guide-the-link-between-childhood-trauma-and/

https://archives.drugabuse.gov/news-events/nida-notes/1998/07/exploring-role-child-abuse-in-later-drug-abuse

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/genetics-epigenetics-addiction

First Impressions Are The Most Important

Addiction. Such a sensitive topic. Not only because of the amount of people who suffer from it, but because of the amount of people who ridicule it. I should know, I used to be one of those people. Key words, by the way, “used to.” I’m not here to “preach” nor to glorify my days as an addict, my goal is to one day become a voice in our community who influences positivity for those who are and might one day be addicts themselves.

What makes me think that I can speak on this topic? Well you see… I believe that only those who actually have experience in a chosen field should be the ones who speak upon it. What sense would it make if I started a blog about the female body? Yeah, I know a thing or two, and like few men I know my way around it. But I’m not a woman. I never will be and I don’t face the every day struggles that a women faces. I’ll never have that experience no matter how much research I do. With that being said, would you rather have an actual drug addict give their opinion and input on addiction or someone who’s done “research”? Oops.

I guess I spilled the beans a tad early.

Hi. My name is Jay. I’m an addict. I’d say I’m a “recovering addict” which is true but I don’t know when I’m going to relapse or if I ever will again. I mean, yeah the goal is to stay sober but sometimes I feel like that’s all I’m doing anymore. Is that bad? Absolutely not. Addiction itself is not a crime. Okay yeah, your family and friends may look at you different or talk behind your back. Whatever. They’d do it even if you weren’t. And that’s a fact. People are impossible to please. Sh*t, I’m impossible to please. Sorry, I get sidetracked a lot. Back to addiction. DRUG addiction (something I should’ve mentioned earlier). In my case, DRUG addiction destroyed everything. Actually, let me stop myself right there. It wasn’t DRUG addiction who did the damage, we like to bestow so much power on our addiction as if it was a Godly figure controlling our every movement but it’s not. What destroyed my relationships, my well being and my financial stability were the decisions I made while under addiction’s mesmerizing trance. I’m lucky to say I’m a husband to one, father to two, brother to three and hope to be a voice for all who suffer from this calamitous disease.

Yes, I absolutely acknowledge k I personally ruined my life chasing the euphoric effects of opiates. When suffering from drug addiction you fall in love with every aspect of it. The feeling you get from hearing you dealer say “I’ll be there in 20” to the feeling you get when you hear tires rolling over gravel in your driveway knowing that your 3 hour wait is finally over. The rush itself is sometimes even better than the high. But I’m not here to idolize drugs nor am I here to demonize it. Like I said, we all make our own decisions and it’s those decisions that shape us into the kind of people we’ll become when under the negative influence of drugs. “This is so irrelevant, all junkies lie and steal.” False, though it may have been true for me and for the majority, but I’ve known a few who are fully capable of making an honest living, provide for their family and are still able to fill their veins with their drug of preference. Sometimes one, sometimes all.

Again, my hope is to become the voice for those who are unwilling to speak upon their own experiences, their wishes, goals, desires and failures. We need love and we’re capable of love. Most may think my post is amateur, irrelevant and undesirable. I apologize for taking up your time and I am truly grateful for those who even took the time to read this far. But my posts are mainly directed to those few who need to hear “you’re not alone.” Cliché? Perhaps. Necessary? Absolutely.

“The price of hating other human beings is loving oneself less” – Eldridge Cleaver

One more thing. I’m currently working on somewhat of a “memoir” which, like this blog, is meant to spread awareness and also reach out to potential addicts with the hopes that they use my experiences and opinions as a guide on what not to do. Below is a short excerpt from my book. Again thank you to those who took the time to read this far and not leave behind any hate. Although, for those of you who are interested in the topic or have your own experiences/suffer from addiction, please feel free to leave constructive criticism. I’ll be leaving excerpts on each post relevant to what I speak about and those who are willing to give feed back on the actual chapters please let me know. Thank you again. -Jay

I made many decisions when chasing my demon, trying to grasp her beauty. I reached until I couldn’t anymore, I ran. Ran as fast as I could until I tripped, fell and lost myself in the process. Does that make me less of a person? What am I now? Does my past get replaced by this alter ego possessed by the love for my demon? She’s a part of me, always will be. I can either accept her the way others accept God, or I can deny her and reclaim myself; forge my own path and rise above the devastation she created for me. I’m not another statistic. I’m a man. I’m a survivor. I am more than this addiction and I am more than just a “junkie.” I’m the chosen one. Even if I chose myself. I’m still the chosen one.

– J. Addicted, “Fruits Of Addiction: A Pernicious Love”