Welcome to the Addiction as Dissociation Model (ADM)!

ADM is being developed by Dr. Adam O’Brien and Dr. Jamie Marich. The model details how addiction is a manifestation of trauma-related dissociation and is a transdiagnostic approach to addressing all forms of traumas, dissociations, and addictions – even the ones that haven’t been codified by existing research. 

To put simply, because other addiction models (and society at large) do not take into account that drug use itself is traumatic (by the body’s standards), an unconscious dissociative aftermath is produced, which impacts temporal time and space and can produce splits in personality. Upon completing his dissertation research on the state of active addiction and the intersectionality between trauma, dissociation, and addiction presentations, Adam focused on creating the necessary next steps to establish his research as a dissociative-informed approach. This study aimed to capture the themes of trauma-related symptomology and how dissociative forces and processes are what we traditionally see as addiction. Dr. O’Brien decided to develop the Path of the Wounded Healer (PWH) approach out of his clinical work and what he learn from this doctoral process.

Demystifying dissociation: A clinician’s guide. Addiction Professional. 16(4) (Marich, & O’Brien, (2018). Retrieved from: HERE

Addiction as Dissociation Model by Adam O’Brien and Dr. Jamie Marich (O’Brien & Marich, 2019). Retrieved from: HERE

Healing Addiction with EMDR Therapy: A Trauma-Focused Guide (Springer Publishing Company, September 2021)

Dissociation Made Simple: A Stigma-free Guide to Embracing your Dissociative Mind and Navigating Daily Living (North Atlantic, January 2023) 

Addiction as Trauma-related Dissociation: A Phenomenological Investigation into the Addictive State (O’Brien, 2023)

Path of the Wounded Healer: A Dissociative-Focused Phase Model for Normative and Pathological States of Consciousness (O’Brien, 2023).

Memory Reconsolidation in Psychedelic Therapy (O’Brien, 2023).


*Get FREE access to these three presentations: HERE