Friday, January 29, 2021

Escalated Revenge Addiction Behaviors

As with other addictions, more and more of a substance or activity is required to achieve the desired pleasure. This can help explain the escalation of behaviors related to revenge addiction. It may start with a word, a text, an email, a tweet, or a phone call. When they no longer result in the desired “high,” there may be interviews, letters to the editor, public speeches, multiple lawsuit filings, and so on. That can lead to physical violence, committed by the individual or by others that the revenge-addicted individual can motivate or incite to “do the deed for” the addict. Watching the revenge occur—likely due to mirror neurons in the prefrontal cortex of the brain—also triggers the Brain Reward System. The revenge addict tends to provoke problems and conflicts with others as this initially creates a feeling of power and euphoria. Typically, it is followed by anxiety and depression, and even though the behaviors may threaten personal and professional arenas and beyond—the revenge addict seems helpless to stop. Like drug addiction, revenge addiction appears to be spread from person to person. Historically, revenge addiction may explain some “take-overs” of entire countries by a revenge addict and their followers. 

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