People throw the word "addicted" around so loosely nowadays, that I think it diminishes the true meaning. I've been known to say that I am addicted to cheese, addicted to "Burn Notice,", addicted to cuddling, or whatever. But if I absolutely could not have cheese for some reason, I wouldn't steal my husband's last $20 out of his wallet while he slept and walk barefoot 5 miles in the snow to go to La Fondue, so I really don't think that qualifies.
I can't honestly say if I've ever been addicted to anything. I smoked cigarettes for years and tried to quit several times, including a period where I was occasionally smoking on the sly, hiding it from my hubby and my friends. Not quite a betrayal, but borderline. But the final time I quit smoking, I just went cold turkey and never smoked a cigarette again. No patch, no gum, no hypnosis, nothing. I have had absolutely no desire whatsoever to have one ever since. That was five years ago. So I'm not sure that qualifies as an addiction, either.
Maybe it's for this reason that I totally do not relate to behavioral addictions, such as shopping, or sex. I love both of these activities, but I honestly don't understand how someone becomes a shopping addict or a sex addict. I love to shop. I LOVE IT. But there have been many times in my life when I wasn't able to shop because I needed the money for some other thing, like food, or electricity, or rent. Although it sucked big time, I didn't shop. And I didn't have a fit or anything, I just sucked it up and did it. I am even able to go into a shop that I love and look at things and not buy them. Obviously I am not addicted to shopping, although I thoroughly enjoy it.
I think a good judgment of whether you're an addict is if you'd betray the person you love the most for the thing you might be addicted to. What short-circuit causes otherwise normal people to become addicted to something? I have no idea.