The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog


Dog Poop

Today at a staff meeting for my talented team of co-workers at my new job for Elements Behavioral Health, our CEO- Dr. David  Sack did a dazzling presentation, complete with Power Point. The topic?  Dog poop. He shared the story of the family four-legged, named Charlie who is a basset hound. He was described as loveable, but stubborn and at the onset of the story; according to the vet- overweight. David went through his share of emotions, including guilt that somehow he was a bad doggy dad.  He cut back on the amount of food Charlie was ingesting and in pretty short order, his canine companion became a bit more svelte and had more energy to go on walks, which he had once upon a time been reluctant to do. All good for a little while, until an unexpected side effect showed up. Charlie began eating his own feces as tasty snacks. This became problematic for everyone except Charlie who apparently thought it was  a fair tradeoff for having to forgo crunchier and more societally acceptable sustenance. Just in case you wondered, the technical term for such behavior is ‘coprophagia’.

What David came to realize was that he had co-created this scenario, since he decided to feed Charlie the recommended amount of food AND he could not ultimately prevent him from desiring this alternative to his normal intake. Neither did he need to feel guilty about the pooch’s  choices. He did all he could (including using products designed to prevent this unsavory recycling of waste products) to keep his dog on the straight and narrow. No dice.

As he was speaking, I immediately understood that this was a perfect metaphor for working with or loving someone with an addiction. The adage that no one else caused it, no one else can control it and no one else can cure it is just as true about eating dog poop. While family members and friends may contribute to the dynamics of addiction, they are not ultimately responsible for it occurring or continuing. It seems natural to want to do all we can to stop someone from engaging in dysfunctional behavior and yet, everything we do is a coping skill. Charlie’s actions were his way of coping with reduced caloric intake.

I am learning to relinquish responsibility for anyone else’s perceptions and choices but my own. I can’t stop them from eating symbolic scatological matter. I can offer alternatives, but whether they choose to accept them is totally up to them. It really is a dog’s life.



Previous Posts

For All That We Are
'To be witnessed and embraced for all that we are; the good, bad and ugly; as striving human beings daring to reach for the stars, is a gift beyond measure." These words came to me as I was writing a chapter for a soon to be released co-authored book called Embraced By the Divine: The Emerging W

posted 10:48:42am Oct. 23, 2014 | read full post »

Frozen
Although the movie has been out since last year,  this past week, I climbed up on the sled and took a wild ride with Anna and Kristoff, in the not so wonderful winter-landscape created by Elsa via her out of control emotions.  Frozen (based on the Hans Christian Anderson classic:  The Snow Quee

posted 8:25:25am Oct. 22, 2014 | read full post »

Uncovering My Heart
  I attended a workshop this afternoon that was facilitated by an old friend that I had not actually met hug to hug until today. Her name is Ambika Devi, author of the cosmic journey called Lilith which combines historical teachings, powerful legends, in this case the s/hero's journey, as

posted 9:29:08pm Oct. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Life Smoothie
In conversation with my flight attendant friend Jewelee Landis, about whom I have written many times over the years, we were musing about life being like a smoothie. She, like most of us, wears many hats.  Hers- wife, mom, daughter, granddaughter,  friend, doggy and kitty mom and now grandmom to n

posted 7:07:24pm Oct. 18, 2014 | read full post »

What Does Your Facebook Page Say About You?
What did we ever do before the Phenom of Facebook?  It is where people turn for companionship and to relieve boredom. To learn what is happening in the world, without watching the news. It serves the purpose of entertainment and to gain a different perspective,  as well as to rally the troops for

posted 11:50:22pm Oct. 16, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.