Here’s a story: today, I walked into Jurong Point, and I saw Krispy Kreme and you know what I kind of wanted a drink, but I thought to myself, “I ought to save my money”, so I gave it a miss. About a minute later, I saw Starbucks and without a second thought in five minutes I had, in my hand, a grande White Chocolate Mocha. Standard order.
So when I took the first sip, this is what went through my mind – “Oh my God.” Not because of the divine taste of the drink, but because once again, I spent a crazy amount of money on something that can easily be substituted by water.
Then came the deep introspective thought on addiction that entered my distracted mind. So I came to the understanding of other people who have addictions, and I finally truly understand why it’s hard to kick an addiction, no matter how hard it will harm you. Correct me if I’m wrong, but for me, to be addicted is to have an uncontrollable impulse. So strong that when you do it, you don’t realise what you’re doing – it’s not until after that that the regret and the hurt at what you’ve done sets in, and you start to question yourself, and scold yourself for having done it again (that is, if you recognise what you’re doing is harmful in one way or another)
When people ask why “kicking an addiction” is so hard, I’ll finally have an answer.
It’s hard because you don’t know it’s happening. Even if you do, you can’t stop it. The impulse is driving you crazy and you’ve got to do it. Not that trying to kick it is impossible – it isn’t. It definitely isn’t. But it is hard.
For me, at least, I haven’t reached the stage where I miss it yet. That’s another level I’m not keen to experience in order to understand. But at a superficial level, I’d hazard that it’s not unlike a craving – you can’t stand yourself until you have it. It’s like a primal desire.
Of course here, I by no means claim any right to define ‘addiction’. You may condemn me for thinking Starbucks is a suitable substitute to compare the likes of addiction to smoking or alcohol, but I can assure you that it really it me hard on what being addicted to something feels like. An addiction is an addiction. And (for want of a much better word), it sucks.