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  • Trauma, addiction and intimacy

    Janae B. Weinhold, PhD, LPC writes in Colunselor Magazine describing the connection between trauma, addiction and intimacy.
    Authentic intimacy reflects an inner journey where couples feel safe to talk about their deepest, personal feelings without judgment, criticism, ridicule or betrayal.

    The question is “why do people have such a problem with intimacy?”

    For thirty-three years the author surveyed and studied couples’ history and came to the conclusion “the flight from intimacy is triggered by
    hidden and unhealed experiences of childhood trauma that emerge when people reach a certain level of safety and closeness in their relationship.
    They concluded that the flight from intimacy originates in the disorganized parental care giving.

    This manifests itself in “downer addictions,” mostly oral in nature. As children mature, pacifiers, bottles and thumb sucking morph into nail biting, food addictions, alcohol, smoking, marijuana, pornography and dependency on other people. for validation.

    Upper addictions come from disorganized care giving; weak mothers and non-supportive fathers cause children to not feel safe enough to explore the world around them. They grow up with mixed feelings about separating from parents and do not explore the world around them. Upper addictions include most addictive substances, running, not eating, hyperactivity, excessive shopping, sexual hookups, exercising, working and other avoidant activities that lead to the flight from intimacy.