Stop Chasing the Drug, Focus on ACEs


From ACEs Connection: According to Dr. Daniel Sumrok, director of the Center for Addiction Sciences at the University of Tennessee, addiction is a normal response to the trauma of adverse childhood experiences. The solution is to help people heal from trauma, not to eradicate particular drugs.

“Ritualized compulsive comfort-seeking (what traditionalists call addiction) is a normal response to the adversity experienced in childhood, just like bleeding is a normal response to being stabbed.

…The solution to changing the illegal or unhealthy ritualized compulsive comfort-seeking behavior of opioid addiction is to address a person’s adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) individually and in group therapy; treat people with respect; provide medication assistance in the form of buprenorphine, an opioid used to treat opioid addiction; and help them find a ritualized compulsive comfort-seeking behavior that won’t kill them or put them in jail.”

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  1. This article has many good aspects to it in regards to bringing forward the role of trauma in addictions. Unfortunately it still promotes the disease concept of addiction and has not escaped the influences of Biological Psychiatry.

    The following quote reveals how it promotes the same old “disease” based thinking:

    “So, how long does it take before they’re cured? “How long should you take insulin if you have diabetes?” responds Sumrok, making the point that this is a chronic disease, that people should be in treatment for as long as it is necessary, and that some may relapse.”

    And at the end of the article it promotes the new female president elect of the American Psychiatric Association; as if putting a woman in this position is somehow going to change the reactionary and harmful nature of this organization.


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