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A rational response to trauma

The news about Matthew Perry is really sad. I am frequently unnerved when someone close to me in age passes away. My heart goes out to the people who loved him and wanted him to live and be okay. Addiction is so difficult. The well-known physician and author Gabor Maté completely changed my views on addiction, saying that addiction is a rational response to trauma. Since then, I have felt only compassion for people wrestling with addiction.

From his website:

“Dr. Maté, renowned addiction expert, calls for a compassionate approach toward addiction, whether in ourselves or in others. Gabor believes that the source of addictions is not to be found in genes, but in childhood trauma and in stress and social dislocation endemic to systems of inequality and injustice. In The Realm Of Hungry Ghosts, one of his best-selling books, draws on cutting-edge science and real-life stories to show that all addictions originate in trauma and emotional loss.”

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, Al-Anon and Alcoholics Anonymous offer support in almost every area, often with multiple meetings a day. Go to or to find a meeting near you.

These authors also offer support through their books, websites, podcasts and webinars: Tara Brach, Sharon Salzberg, Deb Dana, Thomas Hübl, Jack Kornfield, and many more. Help and support – and most importantly, compassion – are out there.

Photo by Aarón Blanco Tejedor on Unsplash