To Use or to Be Used: The Relationship between Trauma and Substance Use
Substance use and trauma typically manifests metaphorically through to use or to be used. For in once moment, a substance is used to feel happy, numb while in the next a person is used for another to feel happy, numb. In this instance, both the substance and that person become an object. When occurring together they are often mutually reinforcing one another and feed off the reward of instant gratification. This object is simply to use and it became ingrained into the identity, self. Thus, facilitating the illogical disconnect of use and being used to believe that the ones needs are truly fulfilled or perhaps not caring if one it is used. For an example a young woman who works as a prostitute to pay for her substances. She will often share that it does not feel real to her, she had to do what she had to do to get her fix. However, due to this cyclic relationship, the pain gets buried and forms scars.