Name: Andrew Trinh
From: San Jose, CA
The Stress and Anxiety within Addiction
Addiction is one of the most prevalent problems in our society today. Addiction has been there since the beginning of time. When people think of addiction, they think of addiction to drugs such as marijuana, nicotine, heroine, etc. However, addiction can be to anything. One can be addicted to a person, place, feeling, experience, etc. It is not what everyone thinks it is, and it comes in the most subtle ways.
Almost everyone has an addiction. It formulates itself in little things and it’s usually to something that provides a sense of “peace” or “wholeness” to the person. Many people are addicted to nicotine, because they enjoy the high that they get from inhaling it. A lot of people are addicted to marijuana, because they like the feeling of calmness they get. “It helps me sleep,” is what a lot of people like to say when they smoke marijuana often. Other addictions don’t come as noticeable. Someone can be addicted to their significant other, where they feel like they need to be in contact with them at all times or they need to control their lives. There are many addictions and they come to each individual due to their past experiences and what they feel they are personally missing in their lives.
I am struggling with experiences of addiction as well. My father happens to be addicted to both nicotine and alcohol, and I am starting to understand why it started. He originally started smoking and drinking because it looked “cool” and it was a thing to do with his friends. He started when he was in high school and through college. Now, as he is in his late 50s, he can’t go a day without either of the two. This addiction started early, and if he doesn’t have it, he will start feeling sick and weak. This is one of the strongest signs of addiction. I see my dad and I see how he feels when he doesn’t have his addiction satisfied. He gets very emotional and he has a lot of highs and lows with his emotions. His body starts to tremble. So much more happens, and to put it quite frankly, it is scary to see and experience. Seeing my dad going through this, I swore to never have a drug addiction and have physically forced myself to stay away from those things.
Addictions have become more prevalent in my generation. The addiction to nicotine has definitely become more apparent due to the easy access to nicotine devices like juuls, puffs, or vapes. It doesn’t make me happy to see my friends and colleagues do this because I know how it will turn out in the long run, as per my experience with my father. Younger people, even in high school or middle school, are starting this addiction already. It all sources from “looking cool” and matching with their friends. However, addiction could also start with the emotions and feelings of the younger generations. Younger generations are now all electronic, and people tend to be meaner and more opinionated when they are online. These kids have no way of expressing their emotions because all they do is stare at a screen, so they bottle up everything. Nicotine is what they turn to because it gives them a high and a feeling of excitement. This addiction stems from their feelings.
Me as a person, whenever I see an addiction to nicotine/alcohol starting to happen, I make it known. As a society, we need more awareness with our peers and colleagues and to care more. Most people don’t care enough to help make their peers better. As a society, we need to be more collectivistic and learn that, we will only succeed in the world if we do it together. Calling people out before the addiction starts or finding help for those that already have the addiction is our first step in becoming a better society.