• Scientists Say James Bond is a Drunk…  They’re Wrong.

    Posted on December 14, 2018
    By Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. By now most are accustomed to so-called addiction experts purporting hair-brained ideas about substance use.  Examples of hair-brained ideas from addiction experts include but most certainly are not limited to: don’t give an alcoholic drugs, once an addict always an addict, addicts are constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves, there’s only one way to recover…   and the list goes on ad nauseam.  This week addiction experts from down under pushed a click-bait claim, based on "scientific analysis" of all James Bond films, that the man with a golden gun’s alcohol intake is so severe that he might not die another day.  In the spirit of challenging the litany of misinformation about addiction, let us look closely at the claim from Aussie experts...
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  • Is Sugar Addictive?

    Posted on August 17, 2018
    Sugar's Shadow: Is Sugar Addictive? By Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. Cultural conditioning (aka brainwashing) will produce a recoiling, dismissive reaction in many to the idea that sugar not only deserves a seat at the table in the discussion of addiction, but that sugar’s rightful place at the table of addiction is on the throne of rule and dominance.  For those not interested in stepping into the muddy trenches of deconditioned thought it is probably best to cease reading here.  For those who enjoy getting their thoughts a little dirty with the stains that come from the territories outside the boxes of comfort and familiarity, let us openly consider the arguments that refined sugar addiction is the least discussed, most rampant, and most difficult to kick of all addictions.  Is sugar ad...
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  • Changing Addictive Behavior: The Perils and Promise of Perfectionism

    Posted on June 1, 2018
    By Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. For many, perfectionism is a guilty pleasure – we know it isn’t good for us but we can’t seem to let it go.  Well, difficulty in letting something go is almost always a sign of that thing being beneficial in some ways, and perfectionism is no different.  When it comes to changing addictive behavior, perfectionism is not only common, but often demanded.  People are routinely kicked out of treatment for not being perfect, or at least coerced into stepping up to a higher (more expensive) level of care.  Because perfectionism is demanded of people attempting to change addictive behavior, it might be worth exploring the concept a bit further. Perfectionism As a Measure of Success in Changing Addictive Behavior There is arguably no arena in which perfection...
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  • Over Stimulation: The Cultural Doublethink of Amphetamines

    Posted on April 27, 2018
    by Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. Adderall vs. Meth When it comes to amphetamines, our culture seems to want to eat our drugs and have them too.  On one hand, Adderall is marketed with promises of saving marriages or images of smiling children with taglines like, “Finally, schoolwork that matches his intelligence.”  On the other hand, we’re inundated with images of  “meth mouth” and propaganda campaigns with wholesome slogans like, “15 bucks for sex isn’t normal, but on meth it is,” and, “Before meth I had a daughter, now I have a prostitute.”  Well, if tooth decay, cost-effective intimate companionship, and disowning children are normal for meth, we must ask ourselves why meth is still a prescribed medication for ADHD and weight loss. Yes, you read correctly, today, right now, in 2018, y...
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  • 12 Myths of Drug and Alcohol Addiction

    Posted on April 13, 2018
    If you have ever experienced drug and alcohol addiction, whether it was your own substance use or a loved one's, you were likely on the receiving end of opinions from others. US culture and its collective views on addiction are often rooted in shame, degradation, and negativity. More importantly, however, the mainstream conversation is all too often shrouded in myths and misinformation. These myths of drug and alcohol addiction are not only untrue,  they are dangerous for those who are in need of treatment and unsupportive for those in recovery. The misinformation paints a scary uphill battle for those who enter recovery, when, really, recovery is a journey of healing, hope, and self-empowerment. We've collected 12 of the most common myths of drug and alcohol addiction in an attempt ...
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  • A Mirror for The Language of Addiction

    Posted on October 13, 2017
    Using Treatment Jargon to Describe Treatment By Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. The insulting, dehumanizing rhetoric of the addiction ‘treatment’ industry never ceases to amaze and dishearten.  People who are hurting and vulnerable are called manipulative, junkie liars so often that such language is widely accepted and implemented in treatment settings by so-called professionals.  What if we fought fire with fire and the same critical, cruel language used to ‘shame addicts into change’ was mirrored back to describe the addiction treatment industry?  Well, let us indulge the imagination a bit and give the addiction treatment industry a taste of its own medicine… (Note: the following is not intended to be a true representation of addiction treatment, it is merely an imaginative exercise to...
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  • The Goal of Addiction Treatment Completely Misses the Mark

    Posted on October 6, 2017
    The Entire Aim of Addiction Treatment is Off by Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. The goal of nearly the entire field of addiction treatment is to help people stop using substances forever. However, a closer look at the goal of stopping forever reveals fatal flaws. This article aims to expose the flaws in the goal of stopping forever while proposing the broader, more effective goal of changing. The Flawed Goals of Addiction Treatment A goal of stopping substance use forever is problematic in two fundamental ways. The first fundamental flaw in a goal of stopping forever is that the goal is set in negative terms. Effective goals are constructed in a positive framework, which means goals are phrased in terms of what will be done rather than what will be avoided. For example, a goal set as ...
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  • Teen Boot Camps: America's Legacy of Torturing Children

    Posted on September 29, 2017
    by Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. In modern, “sophisticated” society we like to believe in our lofty righteousness.  We are dignified, upstanding examples of integrity.  We parade about in our chrome-wheeled, semi-electric metal boxes. We adorn ourselves in proper fitting attire from a respectable department store. It is a nice, comforting bubble most of us float around in. Meanwhile, those folks who choose methods of consciousness alteration deemed immoral and unrighteous by the moral majority often experience a dark, shameful underbelly of vindictive tribunals and torturous treatment. Teen boot camps are perhaps the most shameful, immoral stain on the dark underbelly of America’s moral majority and its multi-billion dollar “treatment” industry. When it comes to hypocrisy, there’s nothing ...
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  • God's Place: Is A Higher Power in Recovery Necessary?

    Posted on September 15, 2017
    Is a Higher Power in Recovery Necessary? By Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. Most approaches to addiction treatment tout a relationship with a higher power as essential to success. Peddling salvation and threatening damnation are age-old endeavors for humans, rehabs doing so may just be a modern incarnation of indulgences. But what if they’re right? What if a strong connection to a higher power is essential to recovery? This article explores the incorporeal topic of a higher power from the perspective of awe and wonder, and proposes that an attitude of awe is made up of many of the most vital aspects to sustaining success in recovery and to improving wellbeing in general. Awe: The Cornerstone of Religious Experience Awe has been at the heart of religious experience since the dawn of the co...
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  • Drugs Are Medicine

    Posted on September 1, 2017
    Drugs Are Medicine by Thaddeus Camlin, Psy.D. One of the more hypocritical aspects of today’s culture is the distinction between medicine and drugs.  Two weeks ago we explored the power harnessed in a single word.  The stark contrast between the words ‘drugs’ and ‘medicine’ underscores the vastly different connotations that can be elicited by synonyms.  Challenging the social stigma associated with addiction is one of the most important aspects of healing addiction.  In the spirit of challenging the social stigma around addiction, this week’s article highlights the arbitrary distinction between the words ‘drugs’ and ‘medicine’ as a prime example of the double standard and inherent hypocrisy in our culture’s views on substance use. Rarely do two synonyms elicit such distinct emoti...
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