Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Personal Reflections on Addictions

I had two previous addictions, both of of which I have happily kicked. This was preIslam ya'll, and I know people say, don't reveal your sins, but that is sins that can make people attack Islam or make one look bad, and these can't anymore. Really, sometimes, I have found, it helps other people to know that one isn't perfect, and you have gone through things they are going through, instead of being this cold, distant, monument of perfection. Which, only an idiot, would have EVER ever ever have maybe for AN INSTANT imagined this of OPNO lol.
a. I used to be a bit of a lush. No one even knew this was a problem for me because I have always been the social butterfly, and no one ever seemed to notice when I was drunk or not because I was the girl who'd always dance and say her mind. Plus my general social environment almost encouraged drinking 24/7. But I admit, I was spending quite alot on expensive liquors, and told myself, that since they were at least classy drinks, I didn't have a problem. If I started drinking crap, then I'd seek help. But since the money never ran out, and people always thoughts I was fun, I didn't have a problem.Due to alcohol being forbidden in Islam, I kind of managed this one cold turkey, with albeit, one minor slip up in the Bengal Lounge where they made champagne icebubes. Hey, if you are going to slip out but only once, you might as well do it royally. I honestly don't miss pork and alchohal at all, since in Oman, they make things that taste like pork porkless (such as pepperoni, jello {who'd of thunk?}, and hawaiian pizza), and the only thing I ever crave is red wine, which, I overcome with Ben&Jerry's and an amazing assortment of fresh fruit juices. My health (and wallet) have never been healthier. The Bengal Lounge was never cheap.
b. I was a bit of a shopoholic. I would lie about how much the things I bought cost. I would hide credit card reciepts. But since I was always relatively well paid this never seemed to effect me at all, unlike Carrie Bradshaw "If I don't stop shopping, I'll end up a bag lady; a Fendi bag lady, but a bag lady..... "-- Carrie from Sex and the City. But it truly was an addiction, as I have come to define an addiction as something one depends on to deal with the bad things in their life, instead of finding a way to get rid of those bad things, or change them to good. In the words of Shopoholic character Rebecca Bloomwood: "When I shop, the world gets better, and the world is better, but then it's not, and I need to do it again." If you feel that way about ANYTHING, you kind of have an addiction.
Addictions can be used in a positive manner. Ie I turned my shopping addiction into a career for a while, and that way, it didn't interfere with my daily life, but then, when I'd dealt with the underlying issues causing me to depend on it as a stress outlet, I got bored, and one could say, better. I still use observing beautiful things and inpration sites as a destressor. We all use our minute addictions to elp us through the grind, but I no longer depend on this visual stimulation and creative expression to solve whatever caused me to be upset in the first place. Here in the Gulf (Oman tends to fare better in general due to Omanis not being as rich and affluent as some of their neighbors per the general population) I see alot of women addicted to shopping. They shop to control their boredom which come from having no role. We get up, we eat, we take care of the kids, we take care of our husband (ie maritial relations), and we have no goals, no aspirations, no hobbbies. THIS CAN DRIVE ONE TO ADDICTION.

A similiar thing happens to alot of expat wives in Oman, and some of them pick up shopping and others alcohol, as the drugs of choice to deal with boredom, lack of personal direction. Just wanted to say to any woman out there going through this, find something that interests you that you can build on, and deal with whatever it is that makes you unhappy, and you're life will get richer.

7 comments:

Umm Aaminah said...

A'salaamu alaikum sistere. I, too, had a serious addiction pre-Islam. It wasn't a chemical addiction but it was very real and had the potential to be very destructive. Its still something I mentally struggle with now and again but alhamdulillah I've came along way in controlling my desires.

Ma salaama....

Mimi said...

I'm waiting for the weekend to go shopping. I can't believe tomorrow is wednesday!!

BTW, were you seated here? ;)

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_nhhhlU3dXSI/TOvSxIXFgnI/AAAAAAAAAXI/D70ry-Ne5FU/s1600/sultan_03.jpg

Matti's Closet said...

Beautiful words of wisdom, sister. Thank you!

Omani Princess (not Omani LOL) said...

Um Aaminah: MashAlllh, whatever it was, I am glad you kicked it.

InshaAllah, may Allah help you to keep it off, ameen:)

Omani Princess (not Omani LOL) said...

Mimi: I went shopping last night:)

I still do indulge, though my salary in Oman is waaaaaaaay less that my salary in [insert nation here]. :)

I'll check out the link.

Omani Princess (not Omani LOL) said...

Mimi: On the first day, yes. Also in two other spots;)

Omani Princess (not Omani LOL) said...

Matti: shukran for thinking so:)