You are only as sick as your secrets is a slogan taken from Alcoholics Anonymous. These secrets can be things you are lying or covering up about or they can also be things you are refusing to deal with or even acknowledge. Alcoholics and addicts are masters at not dealing with problems or putting them off for another day that never comes. We also like to entertain the idea that problems will fix themselves with no input from us. After awhile these issues pile up inside us and it becomes like a pressure cooker.
If we continue to deny things we are feeling eventually our bodies have to react in some way. This reaction can come in the form of anxiety or depression or even physical illness such as heart disease or ulcers. Anxiety sits in the pit of your stomach churning making everyday activities difficult. Depression at its worse can make us entertain thoughts of suicide and at its best we have no joy and no reason to get up in the morning. The burden of these bottled up emotions can leave us feeling heavy and tired with no joy in anything. This heaviness can actually feel like we are carrying extra weight around making walking slow and difficult.
For the addict and alcoholic eventually we will probably turn back to our drug of choice opening up another can of worms adding to our burden and it goes on and on. It is imperative that we get this stuff out whether we have a therapist, good friend or even a journal. It helps if we get honest with ourselves and even make a list of things we are not dealing with. It isn’t easy to let these emotions out but in the end we will feel better. As we look at the issues on paper we can begin to deal with them one at a time. In pressure cooker terms the steam is let off slowly so that the chef doesn’t get burned.
Bottled up emotions are not just for the alcoholic and addict, people who do not have addiction problems suffer in the same way. For all of us these emotions have to come out, they will not go away on their own.