Tag Archives: Changing habits

How to Go Through Post-Election Withdrawal

Politics may be our most wide-spread addiction. With a dealer on every corner, it is always available. Media reporting and commentary provide an endless supply of partisan views.

As soon as someone starts coming down from the last high, a tempting report from CNN, or a Fox News update, or a tweet from the president can draw them right back in. During a general election year, it is possible to remain politically intoxicated for months.

Like other addictions, dosing on politics brings users pleasurable feelings which they then want to repeat. These feelings include the sense of belonging, the gratification of being right, and the heady shot of being in power.

There are deleterious side effects as well. Huffing politics can and often does lead to anger. It leaves one vulnerable to hatred of “the other”. Should one’s side win, it can result in arrogance; lose, and it can result in soul-wounding pride.

During the presidential campaign, I heard stories of how political addictions were destroying families. A pastor friend of mine related the bitter story of a married couple whose adult son warned them that he would disown them if they voted for the wrong candidate. He wasn’t joking.
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