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The Psychology of Fishing Addiction


A Groundbreaking, InTheBite Exclusive

Alexandra Stark is a psychotherapist and a certified addictions professional.  InTheBite has contracted Ms. Stark to utilize her clinical skills to break down what many wives, girlfriends, and bosses have often suspected”some amongst us might be addicted to fishing.  While the term addiction gets thrown around pretty loosely these days, Alexandra breaks down the psychology of what motivates fishermen to do what they do.  Using her professional perspective and referencing the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (the book used by mental health professionals to diagnose and classify patients), read this article to learn the steps involved in determining whether you or someone you love is a fishing addict. While you will have to wait for the September  issue of InTheBite for the entire article, here is a selected piece to get you started¦.

¦.Addictions are possible because the limbic system of the human brain seeks pleasure and rewards.  The feeling of pleasure and rewards are a necessary part of survival.    This is the good feeling you get when you get praised for an outstanding project at work, hold your newborn child for the first time, or catch the big one.  When a person first uses a drug or substance of abuse, the brain releases a happy chemical (Serotonin, Dopamine, Oxytocin and Endorphin), which activates the please center (limbic system) of the brain.  Although the drug or substance of abuse is an unnaturally occurring substance, it mimics that of a naturally occurring pleasure producer. Drug and alcohol addiction have potential to cause severe problems in one life.  So much so that sometimes this addiction can lead to death.  While there has never been a reported case of a person dying from their addiction to fishing, it can cause concerns in personal and romantic relationships.  Although a fishing addiction is not recognized by the American Psychological Association and there are no expensive treatment centers in Palm Beach County claiming to cure this disease, there are several reasons to think that you may have taken your love for the open ocean and the fish that live inside of it to the next level.  These reasons are comparable to the only non-substance related disorder in the DSM-V, Gambling Disorder.  If you have done five or more of these things, it is safe to say that you may have a fishing addiction¦.
The tools of the trade for someone preoccupied with fishing...

The tools of the trade for someone preoccupied with fishing…

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