Can You Be Addicted to a Person? | Banyan Mental Health
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Can You Be Addicted to a Person?

Is it addiction, or is it love? If you are wondering if you can be addicted to a person, the short answer is yes. Feelings or symptoms of obsession may convince you to believe that you are in love with an individual. However, addiction comes in various forms. Besides trauma bonding which is when a person is addicted to the highs and lows that abuse in the relationship inflicts, obsessive thoughts may consume a person and cause confusion and anticipation. It is possible to be addicted to a person, but what exactly does this mean?  

Difference Between Love and Addiction 

Understanding the differences between love and addiction may help prevent a long-lasting toxic relationship or future disappointment. The brain plays a vital role in addiction, especially when it comes to relationship addiction. The brain spikes in dopamine and specific neurotransmitters stimulate the reward system the same way drugs do. The brain activity acts very similarly to that of a drug addict.   The physicality's are different from substance abuse in the sense that love or fantasizing about a person is more desirable than feeling the health complications that follow physical dependency on a drug. Attachment theory (how you bond with others) is connected to how you choose or become addicted to a partner. Childhood development, regarding parents and other relationships, formulate the attachment style.   Addiction and relationships seem to go hand-in-hand, but it’s essential to realize the difference between love and dependency. Here are signs of addictive behavior in a relationship:  

  • High expectations  
  • Fear of abandonment  
  • Constant anxiousness 
  • People-pleasing behaviors 
  • Difficulty with authenticity 
  • Intense attraction or cravings  
  • Feeling resentful or unlovable 
  • Making small and large commitments 
  • Clinging to the idea and fantasy of love  
  • Disappointed if expectations are not constantly reached 

Signs of healthy behavior or expression of love include:  

  • Feelings of support 
  • Forming a friendship  
  • Trustworthy and loyal 
  • Agrees to compromise 
  • Increasing attraction overtime 
  • Independent while growing the relationship 
  • Acknowledges and is accepting of differences 
Sex addiction also plays a role in the difference between love and physical dependency. If a person is attached to sex, overthinks about a person in a sexual manner, and grows defensive or angry if sex is not guaranteed when desired, then other issues arise. Although you can be addicted to a person for numerous reasons, sex addiction may be a primary cause.  

How to Break an Addiction to a Person 

Can you be addicted to a person like a drug? Yes, it’s possible. After realizing this fact, learning how to rise above dependency is important so there are fewer emotional scars left over from the relationship. A person who finds themselves addicted rather than in love should practice being more reserved and aware of how they feel. Oftentimes, healing is needed from childhood trauma, and self-esteem is in great need of boosting.   Learning to be assertive, trying a new hobby, support groups, or cognitive-behavioral therapy can help a person who is struggling to discover their strengths and break away from being addicted to a person. Abstaining from sexual relations, ending contact via social media, and communicating thoughts and feelings with friends or a professional are beneficial.  

Recovery at Banyan Treatment Centers Mental Health  

At our residential treatment rehab, we offer unique services like our solution-focused brief therapy and our Faith in Recovery program. We want our patients to be constantly comfortable during the treatment process, which is why we offer different therapeutic methods. Our experienced medical staff provides a clean and secure environment for individuals to achieve their recovery goals.   Don’t hesitate to contact a specialist at Banyan Mental Health today. Call  888-280-4763 to regain your independent mind and take control of your life!   

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Alyssa is Banyan’s Director of Digital Marketing & Technology. After overcoming her own struggles with addiction, she began working in the treatment field in 2012. She graduated from Palm Beach State College in 2016 with additional education in Salesforce University programs. A part of the Banyan team since 2016, Alyssa brings over 5 years of experience in the addiction treatment field.

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