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To anyone who hasn’t lived with the effects of trauma, an active addiction to drugs and alcohol, an eating disorder, or a mental health disorder, living with suffering doesn’t apply. People who live with active mental illness live in a different world than other people. Addictions and self-harming behaviors are maladaptive forms of coping that we develop to try and deal with our suffering. Eventually, these behaviors cause us more suffering. We suffer the consequences of self-harm, not dealing with our emotions, and avoiding the resolution of our past. We suffer what happens to our mind, our body, and our spirit as the result of our self-harming behaviors. We suffer because we are, in part, addicted to the suffering.

This is one of the most shocking and difficult concepts for us to grasp in our recovery. How could we be addicted to suffering? Why would we want to suffer? What possible payoff could we receive from our suffering? It takes a great amount of willingness, open-mindedness, honesty, and humility to realize that our suffering becomes part of us. Our suffering becomes part of our identity. In order to let go of our suffering and move past it we have to acknowledge and accept that our suffering has become part of who we are and that living in recovery means living without our suffering. Feelings are conflicted as we know, intuitively, letting go of our suffering is what is best for us, yet part of us feels fearful, resistant, or even saddened, about doing so.

For many years, our suffering worked for us in some ways. Our harmful coping behaviors, like our addictions, helped us, even though they ultimately hurt us. The euphoric effects temporarily took us away from a reality we were not equipped to handle. Unfortunately, these behaviors come with an expiration. We have to face the truth of our pasts and our presents in order to determine a different future.

Recovery takes time, patience, and compassion. Everyone has a story that brings them to recovery. Your story deserves to be welcomed with open loving arms by a clinical team certified for excellence. The Guest House Ocala offers private residential treatment programs for recovery from traumas, addictions, and other related mental health issues. Providing concierge-style care, our programs are customized to meet your needs and help you heal. Call us today for information: 1-855-483-7800