Healing Trauma and Addiction through Connection with Andrew Susskind

Episode of: Sex, Love, and Addiction

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May 16, 201933m | se1 : e50
Healing Trauma and Addiction through Connection with Andrew Susskind
May 1633m | se1e50
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Rob is joined with colleague and friend Andrew Susskind in today’s episode to talk about the issues that surround recovery and healing. They discuss what to expect during recovery, and where some may still be stuck even if they are moving forward. Andrew is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, Brainspotting Practitioner and Certified Group Psychotherapist. They also discuss his book It’s Not About the Sex, Andrew’s work with the nervous system, and the resources available to help others understand themselves.



[4:02] Addiction, in general, is typically based in broken-heartedness and feeling unworthy. This could be something from someone’s past or early developmental trauma that gets them into a pattern where they are seeking to fill the “hole in the soul” with addictive compulsive behavior.

[7:39] It’s a double problem between the shame that the addiction brings, and the actual feelings that cause the addiction in the first place.

[10:50] Unless there is real help offered in the early stages, it is common for people to act out what has been done to them. Once there is some kind of abuse or trauma where our nervous system has trouble balancing, it can feel like anxiety, panic, or dissociation.

[14:15] Andrew helps his clients with somatic awareness to understand more about what’s happening in the body including thoughts, memories, and sensations. When he discovered this work, it opened up a whole new level of questions to get down to the core of the information coming from their body.

[18:02] As a social worker, it is Andrew’s job to help people find help and healing despite how much money and time they have.

[21:12] We are biologically hardwired for connection, and true recovery lies in being able to feel loveable, desirable, and worthy of others believing in us.

[22:49] Some of the themes that Andrew addresses in It’s Not About the Sex have to do with grief, shame, narcissism, emotional sobriety, regulating the nervous system, and knowing there will be stumbling and fumbling along the way.

[24:49] Connection is important, but having people that are emotionally dependable who can be there in a meaningful and deep way is crucial.

[29:12] It takes two whole people to come together and make a really meaningful relationship and true emotional contentment.

[30:56] For some it’s about trusting others, and some people may want to feel safe in the world. It comes down to each person experiencing intimacy or a meaningful connection in their life, whatever it means to them.



Sex and Relationship Healing


Sex Addiction 101

Cruise Control: Understanding Sex Addiction in Gay Men

Prodependence: Moving Beyond Codependency


It's Not about the Sex: Moving from Isolation to Intimacy After Sexual Addiction

Seeking Integrity

Westside Therapist




  • “It’s human nature that often what is done to us, we do to others.”
  • “This is an opportunity to learn about yourself, and find ways that work better for you.”
  • “Healing does not take place in isolation, you have to sit with another human being.”

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