Addiction as Dissociation Model

This model is being developed by Adam O’Brien and Dr. Jamie Marich and it relates how addiction is a manifestation of trauma-related dissociation. To put it simply, because other models (and society at large) do not take into account that the drug use is traumatic, by the body’s standards, that it would produce dissociative aftermath where emotional regulation is impacted, temporal time and space are disrupted, and splits in personality can occur.

Adam O’Brien is a Ph.D. student and currently completing his dissertation research on the state of active addiction, which is an attempt to capture theme of trauma-related symptomology and how the dissociative forces and processes are what we traditionally see as addiction. There is an inverse relationship here as well because addiction presents in trauma-related dissociation as well.

Due to the inverse relationship, this models’ philosophical foundation is based on Mutual Arising, a Daoist concept that states that all things are interdependent because of the dependent relationship that bonds any experiences or objects together.

HERE is more information about this developing and contending model of addiction.

Healing Addiction with EMDR Therapy: A Trauma-Focused Guide (Springer Publishing Company, September 2021)

Dissociation Made Simple: A Stigma-free Guide to Embracing your Dissociative Mind and Navigating Daily Living (North Atlantic, January 2023)