The study of escape behaviors has led to making new discoveries about how it works not only mentally but also physically. For example, there are several chemicals released in a sex addicts body. These chemicals include adrenalin, serotonin, dopamine, catecholamine, and oxytocin. These same chemicals are related to the ones released in a heroine addicts brain.
One may assume that these are only released at the act out phase of the pain cycle. However, these chemicals begin to be released before that phase. For example, imagine a man who struggles with sex addiction who has an argument with his wife earlier in the morning. He ruminates on on how much she misunderstands him and is not supportive of him. He makes a decision to escape by concluding he will call his mistress. As soon as he made the decision his body began releasing adrenalin which caused him to experience relief from his emotional pain.
It is not uncommon for men who act out in sex addiction to feel disappointed afterward. So often the chemicals released in the build up to acting out is more exhilarating than the act out itself. Knowing this can be helpful in that sometimes it is not the act out itself but the build up that an addict hungers for.
Jeremiah 2:13 said it well where God tells the Israelites that they left springsof living water for broken cisterns that can hold no water. In other words God is the only place we can get our thirst quenched, but we keep seeking escape behaviors that leave us thirsty. They never fully satisfy and always leave us wanting more. It is never enough. Only by seeking a connection with God will we find peace and spiritual satisfaction. May you find God in your life and a fountain that never runs out of water.
Photo by Ars Electronica on Flickr.