Darren Littlejohn, author of The 12-Step Buddhist, unwittingly pegs himself as a narcissist in his first contribution to the Huffington Post, titled: “The 12 Steps: An Antidote For Celebrities And Other Narcissistic Addicts,” and he does so in the interest of promoting 12-Step recovery to the progressive crowd — those who might thoughtfully reject the Alcoholics Anonymous model, for obvious reasons.
How does this apply to addiction? In our 12-Step literature, it’s said that selfishness and self-centeredness is the root of our problem. Anyone who knows an addict knows how narcissistic we can be. My guess would be that addicts in general would score higher on the NPI than non-addicts. So what’s the solution? I disagree with one of the experts on the Dr. Drew special who claims that other therapies are “just as effective as 12-Step.” Dr. Drew’s expert was I feel somewhat misleading when he made this statement. For that matter, I’d like to see if he could provide some hard empirical data to back up his statement.
I believe that nothing is as effective for cutting through the self-centered, narcissistic ego of the addict as the 12 Step program. As I discuss in the 12-Step Buddhist, however, a comprehensive, multifaceted approach to recovery, which includes individual and group therapy, possibly medication, physical activities, meditation and regular community based service work has been more effective than the 12 Steps alone. At least it has been in my own case and in the cases of those with whom I work to ensure long lasting, spiritual sobriety.
Who, but a narcissist would demand that someone else adhere to a standard of proof that he is not subject to?