What are you addicted to?

Most of us have something we just can’t seem to escape. For some it’s work, video games, shopping/spending, food, a mobile phone, or the endless scrolling and swiping through social media. Even excessive amounts of exercise combined with a lack of rest can take a heavy toll on the human body. For others it is the complex involvement of; legal drugs (prescribed/unprescribed) illegal substances, pornography, nicotine (cigarettes, vapes), alcohol or even excessive gambling. For some of us, it’s the whole shebang!

All these things are manageable if you are level headed and receiving genuine satisfaction from the recreational use of them. But are you really in control? A lot of users hide their use/abuse of these addictions from those closest to them. In an excessive users company they’ll often only express the pleasure. Socially, you will see the come up and often enough you wont be around for the come down.

That extends to gambling too. The amount of times I’ve danced around a pub exploding with adrenaline after landing a bet only to blow it all that evening is unaccountable. Why do it? Maybe I don’t even care about the win I just like the chase!

I can’t bet, when I win, before the ‘winnings’ even land in my pocket or bank I have my mind set on where ‘x’ amount of the bookies borrowed cash will be ‘reinvested’. It’s not about the money in the end, I get exhilarated hanging in the balance. Will I, won’t I….

You can’t put a total block on these things just because some of us can’t enjoy them leisurely. Illegal drugs can be accessed by two clicks of a phone. What is the point of the law? Just scrap it. It certainly shouldn’t be clamped down even more, we’re already seeing cases of dealers and smugglers being handed longer sentences than paedophiles. If people want to take, they will find a way. Only unregulated and underground. The alternative of legalisation has never got off the ground in Britain. I can’t be the only one who thinks a secure system of regulated drugs and venues combined with after care support is worth a shot?

There’s not an endless pit of money, but do we really know the impact these addictions are having on ourselves, relationships, wider society and the economy?

Could the country even cope if we lost the reliance on the taxation of the cigarette and gambling industry. An estimated £12 billion through direct tax revenues for the tobacco industry alone. Why not extend the taxation through the regulation of illegal substances and with the money ensure adequate support is in place. Support only has to start with an emergency call line. The current system is not fit for purpose. Jails are full and our NHS is imploding.

Expressing your brain through your mouth and releasing it from the shackles of your skull has worked wonders for me. People just need to talk, some people can’t, some won’t and some are in desperation too.

Over the last few weeks I’ve also relied on a vape and specifically the abuse of an ‘elf bar’. The modern day ‘ciggy’. Look around you and people watch, just for five. The new pandemic, the vape! Why are they vaping? To calm down? From what? Life? Is the wider issue an undiagnosed mental health crisis?

So, what are you addicted to?


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