One thing about being an addict, I always felt like I am living a lie! There wasn’t a time where I could honestly call my feelings authentic. I am not saying that I never had authentic feelings, nor am I saying that I was never authentic in my interactions and experiences. I am just saying that I doubted everything I felt. I couldn’t trust my feelings. couldn’t experience them to their fullest. I always felt like I was acting. when something nice happens I felt the obligation to act happy, then I felt guilty about being happy, cause I don’t deserve to be happy, I am a bad person, and bad people should be miserable. Then when I was truly miserable, I felt that it was all my fault, had I been a good person (i.e. not acting out on my addiction) then I wouldn’t have been miserable and as a result I always felt like I don’t have the right to feel miserable cause it was just me to blame.
Now, in recovery, I am a sex and love addict in recovery. I am a compulsive overeater in recovery. I am happy some of the time, sad some other times, frustrated, angry, ecstatic, pleased and all sort of other emotions some of the time. and regardless of the emotion, there is no judgement (well, most of the time) I just try to experience my feelings and sit with them.
Today something really pleasant happened to my wife, she came and shared it with me. I was so genuinly happy, we connected with each other as we both experienced our feelings without judgement. I was briefly reminded of what it was like before and felt immensely grateful for where I am at today.
Thanks for reading, and if you relate to what I wrote, know you are not alone.