The othe day, when discussing the post I'm A Loser the subject of people who suffer a traumatic experience like rape and get almost addicted to the trauma and pain was discussed briefly. A good friend brought it up and it is a valid...a very valid and relevant subject to think about and discuss. The statement from an email from a friend read as follows:
"The only danger (I have seen it happen) is that some people hold onto the pain because it has been part of their identity, and they feel that if they lose it, they will lose themselves. This ends up hindering their identity with Christ."
I too have see this happen and it is quite relevant and unfortunately, occurs more often then one would think. The author of the statement is a friend and a minister and we were discussing this within the realm our relationship with our Creator.
I do see how it can literally form a block, preventing access to GOD. And we were specifically talking about whether I may be holding onto the pain, thankfully he hadn't seen any signs that I had been doing this but I'll admit it was reassuring to here him say he felt I was doing OK in this area of my life.
These truly are concerns when you are dealing with people who are in recovery, working through emotional or psychological trauma such as rape or any kind of psychological illness or issue. I see people hold onto the anger and hurt in recovery circles all the time. They become what I refer to as a "professional victim". Often it becomes a huge issue with their physician because they use the ongoing problems as an excuse to get prescriptions...often getting addicted to pain or psych medications.
I know that as I sobered up and started to live my life, one day at a time without drugs, booze or any of the old ways of doing stuff I often felt completely lost and out of my comfort zone by many a mile. So I would agree that there is a likelihood of this kind of thing occurring in people who are asked to make a major change in how they live their lives...
It is also the perfect example of the reason I use my friends to double check my behaviors and intentions when I do stuff like write a raw, traumatic and difficult post such as I'm a Loser. It physically and emotionally HURTS me to write such a thing, honestly that is how INTENSE reliving that whole experience can be for me.
It shows me very vividly that I could very easily slip into that mode where I become the VICTIM, always playing the sympathy card, always needing attention, love and comfort. Hey a lot of us didn't have that kind of positive affirmation for years so when we discover a way to actually cultivate that kind of attention, I know from my own experience that it can be addictive.
Ultimately, I really appreciate my friend Shayne for being upfront & honest enough with me to let me know that he has seen that type of reaction in people before. I am also quite grateful he related to me that he sees no warning signs what so ever that I have fallen into a similar pattern because I do have concerns about such things happening. I know that I am not immune.
Human beings react in odd ways when pushed into difficult positions emotionally and psychologically. We human beings defend and protect ourselves in a wide variety of ways...which could include adapting a psychological persona to become something we are not. You can't hurt me when I am not really there, type of thing.
So this whole experience reinforces my need to remain vigilant and aware as I continue to live my life on a daily basis. Things here are going well these days and I'd like them to continue to go well so this is one way in which I've learned how to make it work. So we just keep plugging along, remain open, honest and willing to share those difficult experiences with others so I never have to repeat them again myself.