The Wisdom of Yoda
Recently I was watching one of the Stars Wars movies and there is a scene where Anakin is explaining to Yoda a recurring nightmare of losing Princess Leia. Yoda listens with intent, takes a breath and replies….
“Careful Young Anakin, the fear of loss is a path to the Dark Side”
As usual Yoda is right. Behind so much addiction, compulsive behavior, and self-medicating is some experience of loss. In many ways addiction is a constant running away from ourselves so that we never have to face the pain of this core loss.
Fear of Loss
What type of loss? That’s the question for each of us to pursue. Maybe it was the loss of security in our family of origin. Maybe our loss was the death of somebody close to us when we were young. It could be from addiction in a parent or in some other form of trauma. Our loss might be have been forcing to stuff our feelings inside because there wasn’t anyone there to listen.
The end result of so many of these losses was an absence of emotional intimacy. We learned first hand people weren’t safe or reliable, so we better figure out other ways to get our needs met. That we did – usually with compulsive, unhealthy behaviors.
Part of what it means to live authentically is to name this loss, embrace it and then do the hard work of moving past it. It means acknowledging that watching internet porn is not a harmless indulgence that “everyone is doing.” Instead, it might be your brain’s way of quelling large reservoirs of pain and unrest that scream for attention.
Life is hard at times – it really is. But numbing out is never the path to true, authentic joy. Taking the longer road of recovery is….well, long. But the rewards will certainly outweigh the cost.
Keep pushing into this community and let go of isolation. This is in part how we heal our own intimacy wounds.
About the author:
Eric Connor, MS, LCPC, CSAT
Eric is a clinical therapist and rTribe advocate with advanced training in trauma resolution, sexual addiction and other compulsive behaviors. He is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT) trained directly under Patrick Carnes and the International Institute for Trauma & Additional Professionals. Eric is the founder and director of Recover Restore Counseling and is a regular speaker on topics related to addiction, shame and codependency. He loves meeting fellow rTribers so please free to connect with him on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/ericconnorlcpc).