This post was originally published in February 2013.
Ah, Valentine’s Day, the fantasy-filled holiday that comes right after we’ve managed to get ourselves through another year of Christmas and New Year’s Eve!
Have you ever wondered whose bright idea it was to have those three holidays in a row? For many people, the 3-month period of December through February can be the most difficult and depressing time of the year, and this is especially true for those whose significant relationships are problematic. For people with addictive behaviours, as well as those who love them, their most important relationships are also often the most troublesome and rocky.
Think about it—first comes Christmas with all its potential addictive pitfalls. It begins right after Halloween when TV ads try to sell us the concept of the perfectly happy family, stores begin putting up their colourful Christmas displays, and we hear those bells start to jingle. Compulsive shoppers spend far over their budgets, people-pleasers agonize over the right gifts to get so that everyone will be happy with them, gamblers worry about that elusive big win that will allow them to provide the fantasy Christmas for their loved ones, to make up for the grief they may have caused them over the rest of the year. Food addictions run rampant as junk food becomes even more plentiful and overeating abounds. And people with substance abuse issues try to hide from it all by getting high or drunk. [Read more…]