Addiction is powerful and psychological. No matter how committed a person may be to getting clean, the part of the brain that desperately wants to get drunk or high is stronger. Lasting recovery requires complete and professional rehab. It will be extremely difficult for a gay addict to find the peace of mind necessary to receive this kind of healing, if he or she is still in denial about sexual identity.
Co-occurring Conditions and Addiction
The majority of addicts suffer from at least one underlying mental health issue that may have contributed to the addiction or may complicate recovery efforts. Some of the most common disorders that co-occur with addiction include the following:
- Borderline personality disorder
- Anxiety or panic issues
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Eating disorders
Sexual identity confusion or denial can create significant emotional distress which may feed any of these disorders. Homosexual addicts often self-medicate their anxiety, loneliness, depression or other emotional pain through substance abuse. Recovery from addiction will require significant psychological or emotional healing.
The Power of Denial in Addiction
The reward center of the brain is responsible for managing anxiety, emotions, impulse control, memory and the formation of behaviors and habits. This part of the brain is directly affected by drugs and alcohol and will crave the effects intoxication brings. It will use the following emotional phenomena to ensure that feelings of intoxication or euphoria continue:
No addict can be helped, until he or she understands the reality of the disease of addiction, accepts being addicted and asks for help. Denial keeps millions of people from getting the help they need, and it only prolongs the pain. Adding denial about sexual identity issues to addiction denial ensures no real psychological progress will be made. Emotional energy goes into maintaining masks and keeping up illusions. Lasting freedom from addiction requires a person to be open and honest with him or herself.
Where to Find Gay-friendly Addiction Treatment
If you are ready to end your denial about being gay and addicted, call our toll-free helpline. Our specially trained counselors can answer any questions about addiction treatment and can connect you with treatment programs that understand the unique challenges of life as a recovering gay addict. A bright, healthy future is waiting for you. Don’t put off getting the help you need. We are here 24 hours a day, so call now and let us help you find freedom from addiction.