Ice Cube Addictions

October 14, 2019

            “My use of ice began many years ago when I saw my mom using.”  “Growing up I was always around ice; mostly my father’s side of the family.” “…I gave it a try and soon enough liked ice with all my beverages. I can’t drink water anymore unless it’s icy.”

            These are a few of the excerpts from a creative writing assignment from Psychology students.  In recent weeks, students were learning about various levels of consciousness and altered states to consciousness, which lead to a discussion about addictions. 

            An addiction is a condition in which a person engages in the use of a substance or in a behavior for which the rewarding effects provide a compelling incentive to repeatedly pursue the behavior despite detrimental consequences. Students examined psychological and biological impacts from addictions but namely looked at substance abuse.

            Students were assigned the task to imagine that their drug of choice was ice cubes (frozen water). They imagined that once they were able to get their fix just from water, but now moved to ice cubes. In addition, ice cubes are considered socially unacceptable and illegal.  Any time they drank any liquid they were asked to put ice in it or imagine that they had to put ice in their drink.   After twenty-four hours they were to write about their experience including how the addiction began, when/where they consumed it; how they acquired and/or hid the ice cubes.

            After the experience and their creative writing reflections, a discussion took place on how influences such as family members or friends made it easier to begin taking the ice cubes.  In addition, accessibility made it easier to start and continue the behavior. Students noted how much time was consumed by thinking about the ice cubes during the experiences, but that recovery is a possibility with one’s own resilient skills and with the help of professionals to assist.