Silver Spring Community

Are You Struggling with Love Addiction?

Do you find yourself drifting in and out of relationships. Excited in the first few months but, eventually, it wanes and even boredom sets in. You end up seeking the next person to bring that excitement back. You like the ‘in’ love feeling, almost crave it. A repetitive pattern is never by fluke. It’s trying to tell you something.

This is just one form of love addiction. A lot of us tend to find we repeat relationship patterns. We start afresh with someone new, but it ends up feeling frighteningly familiar to the last relationship. It’s true we can carry baggage from one relationship to the next, but what if it’s deeper than that? What if it’s a deeply held belief you have about yourself?

You may find yourself getting bored easily, maybe running away from something. Maybe closeness or intimacy scares you. You try to end the relationship before getting too attached, saving yourself from the heartache in the long run. Or maybe you’re trying to fill an emptiness you feel inside. And if you don’t manage to fill that void, you’re no longer believing that the person you’re dating is  ‘the one’ and you try to move on quickly.

If you feel incomplete in some way, the only person that can complete you….is you. It’s an outdated notion to expect to find your ‘other half’- the soul mate, the ‘one’. What if you already ARE a complete and whole person. Relationships need to be an ‘addition’ to your life, rather than something that provides a band aid of some sort. How you feel about yourself will always be reflected in the kind of relationships you choose to find yourself in.

A re-learning has to occur. Love is not just a feeling, it’s an ability. Anyone can say ‘I love you’. But to be able to show it is another matter. To learn to love yourself as well as another, you have to go back to basics and ask yourself what do you want in a partner and why? If it’s to feel important or to be needed, where does that come from? By analyzing, you will be able to break the negative patterns and live more authentically and in the now.

Come to talk to one of our expert therapists today to talk more about your romantic relationships and set goals in counseling.

Maryland’s Approach to Chronic Mental Health Issues and Therapy

We work with many individuals and families who live with a family member with chronic mental health issues.  As Maryland residents, there are a variety of different programs to help support and meet the needs of people living with chronic mental health diagnoses.  These include both therapy and rehabilitation elements to help with recovery.  Chronic mental health conditions can include: schizophrenia, schizoaffective, bipolar, and major depressive disorder.  

The Assertive Community Treatment model (ACT) is traditionally used to help best provide services for someone with chronic mental health needs.  This model allows a team approach to provide the best level of care and meet each person where they are in life.  

What program support does Maryland provide funding to in order to provide the best mental healthcare?  Psychiatric Rehabilitation Programs (commonly known as PRP) provides both in-home and community-based rehabilitation counselor visits - occurring at least six times each month.  The team includes a licensed therapist who helps develop a recovery plan with their client along with their case manager’s help.  

Case managers can help provide support in conjunction with a client’s rehabilitation plan both in home, as well as in a group atmosphere at a counseling agency.  Both community group support, along with home support and crucial elements in recovery for chronic mental health issues.  For more information and recommendations about psychiatric rehabilitation programs for you or a loved one, please give us a call at: (301) 960-8991 and we are happy to discuss referral options in the community that will be best for your needs.  

A New Perspective on Addiction: Research Suggests Some People May ‘Grow Out’ Of Addiction Phase

How much do we know about addiction?  And there was an alternate way to view people who are struggling with addiction issues?  Addition has traditionally fallen under the category of ‘disease’ – something that individuals who have will need to work on and face throughout their entire lives. 

But what if there’s a new way to conceptualize addiction?  This year, Maia Szalavitz, offered a new theory that addiction is a development disorder.  In her book, “Unbroken Brain: A Revolution New Way of Understanding Addiction” she posits that our brain chemistry may be constructed in such a way that some individuals are likely to struggle with addiction – and that this brain chemistry may change as we age (Szalavitz, 2016).  

Szalavitz challenges us to view addiction instead as a learning disorder, something that many individuals can overcome by learning disorder.  “Addiction, Szalavitz notices, is, predominantly, a problem of youth. Most addicts get started when they're still kids. And, remarkably, most addicts give up their addiction by the time they reach their 30s. In effect, they age out of their addiction. (NPR, 2016).”

Her research challenges many of the evidence-based practices that clinicians formerly used for addiction treatment.  She encourages people to rethink whether 12-step programs are most effective and instead believes cognitive behavioral therapy and motivational enhancement therapy may serve as best practices when working with addiction. 

At Sun Point, we view people and issues holistically and work with each person to determine how they view addiction in their life.  We use a client-centered motivational approach to determining whether addiction is an issue in your life by using evidence-based practices like cognitive-behavioral therapy and motivational interviewing. 

Here are some questions to ask yourself before starting talk therapy for addictions-related issues:

·      What changes do you want to see in your life? 

·      How are substances impacting your ability to achieve your goals?

·      What are your relationships like with family, loved ones, and friends?  And how do other people in your life describe your substance use impacting you?

·      What has life been like at a different point when you were not using substances?

Feel free to call Sun Point anytime for recommendations on other literature or other substance use treatment.  We’re here for you – and for our community - we work with individuals to achieve their full potential everyday. 

Works Cited:

NPR. (2016). “'Unbroken Brain' Offers New Insights On Addiction” Retrieved from:

Szalavitz, M. (2016). “Unbroken Brain: A Revolutionary New Way of Understanding Addiction”.

De-Stress Recommendations for Our Silver Spring Community

With the changing leaves of fall, we’re reminded it won’t be long before we’re into the winter season.  Many of us are excited for the holidays, but along with them come the added stress of extended family, finances for the holidays, cold weather and less time outdoors as we enter daylight savings time.

What are some ways to de-stress when we start feeling overwhelmed?

  1. Take an Outdoor Break - It’s easy to begin feeling ‘trapped’ indoors as the weather becomes cooler.  If exercise seems to overwhelming, take a quick walk around the block to get some fresh air.  Leave your cell phone at home and allow yourself a chance to be mindful of what you’re experiencing outside.  
  2. Listen to a Guided Meditation - Find a guided meditation on youtube or a song that is calming to you.  Allow yourself a quiet space where you can relax and solely focus on the words or music, attempting to silence other thoughts. 
  3. 5-Minutes of Exercise - Feeling angry and need a quick break?  Try 5-minutes of an intense workout such as - push-ups, jumping rope or sprinting.  
  4. Journal - Get your thoughts, feelings and stress into words by expressing what you’re going through on paper.  At the end of your journal entry, write about something that has been going well for you that you want to shift your focus to instead.
  5. Community - Make plans to connect with your friends or community groups.  Research shows us that people who are more connected in their community have lower levels of stress. 

Need more ways to de-stress?  Check out this article on scientifically backed ways to de-stress. Enjoy the fall season - and cheers to creating your self-care plan so you can enjoy a wonderful holiday season!