Why Holding on to PTSD Suffering Can Make You Feel Artificially Safe
Suffering can be just as self-indulgent as pleasure. When you live with the aftermath and symptoms of PTSD for a long time it becomes a part of you.
Therefore we adapt, for better or for worse, in order to cope and survive.
Attachment to Post-Trauma Suffering
When you begin working and processing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms you may become aware of the attachment you have to your past and even your symptoms. You might also notice that they have become part of your character structure and give you a sense of self; ultimately giving you a sense of safety, even when it hurts.
This in itself can feel conflictive at times, as part of you wants to get rid of the suffering, while another part of you wants to hold on to the suffering as a sense of control. This is because the ‘unknown’ is perceived as possibly more dangerous than your present ‘known’ state.
Constructive Steps in Healing
Constructive trauma therapy needs to essentially address two parts:
- Processing and working through emotional residue related to past experiences or periods.
- Dealing with the attachment to the ‘known’, by addressing the habit of self-affirmation, which is tied to the necessity to control.
It takes diligently working through emotional residue, restructuring perspective and examining the need and validity of holding onto control, that allows for new possibilities to open up and to live a life that is no longer based on the past.