"Prince of Tides."
"I don't know when my parents began their war against each other, but I do know the only prisoners they took were their children. When (we) needed to escape, we developed a ritual --- we found a silent soothing world where there was no pain, a world without mothers and fathers. But that was a long time ago, before I chose not to have a memory."
That silent, soothing world is what a addictive disorder may represent to many of us.
Often, the attraction to addictive behaviors was that they served to mediate our inner pain. For so many in recovery, abstaining from our addiction(s) results in experiencing something we have strived for and in much of our life, to stay away from --- our feelings.
In early recovery, it is the fear of feeling that will send many of us back to our addictive behaviors.
The ability to express and feel safe with feelings is something that is most often impeded at an early age. Many addicts grew up in dysfunctional or abusive homes where it was not safe to express feelings. As a result, we live with much fear, disappointment, sadness, and embarrassment. We may have witnessed anger, rage, and pain. It was a lonely time. If we showed any feelings at all, we often were rejected. We were given shame based messages as, "Big boys or girls don't cry." "Don't be a sissy." How about this one, "I will really give you something to cry about."
A show of feeling was frequently met with disapproval, rejection, or even punishment.
The message, whether delivered overly or covertly was very clear...
"It is not okay to be your own person with individual feelings, desires or needs.
Feelings need to be avoided at all costs."
Taken from "A Hole in the Sidewalk" Claudia Black