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Repressed emotions - when will I cry?

Old 06-07-2015, 04:48 AM
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Repressed emotions - when will I cry?

Greetings all. It took me a long time to finally realize my depression & anxiety was caused due to repressed emotions that I've been avoiding for years (why do such articles never mention this as a cause?), and I've been masking the pain and emptiness through several addictions.

After multiple relapses (if this isn't the hardest thing in the world...) I've finally managed to set myself on the right path, and I'm nearing 60 days, which is a huge milestone compared to all my other attempts (just under a month before a relapsed). Essentially, I've replaced many of my unhealthy habits with healthy ones, focused on my goals, have managed to overcome the urges, and am ready face all the trauma that I've been running away from all these years, welcoming my negative emotions with open arms.

My concern is that they haven't come yet, and I'm nearing 60 days. I remember in the first few weeks, I felt multiple surges of anger, which I acknowledged and felt, and they eventually went away. Ever since then, I haven't felt much. I do believe that recently, I feel a bit of sadness underneath, like I want to cry, but it just won't come out.

So I ask: Is this just a matter of waiting it out, for the emotions to come out 'naturally?' Because mind you, I've tried journaling, counselling, listening to sad music, watching sad movies, and I can't seem to 'force' myself to cry.

I am very sure that I just need to have one very good cathartic cry, to release all the pain that I've repressed, and then I will feel much better, and will be able to begin healing and so forth, and I'm so eager for it to happen, as I'm resolute on living a 'normal' life again, but I'm just worried that maybe I'm missing something.

I appreciate all the help I can get. Any reassurance would mean so much to me. I want nothing more than to face my problems, and move on.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:03 AM
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Crying is just one manifestation of emotions. I wouldn't try to "force" anything. Feelings come when we allow them to flow. Sounds like you are trying to do that, but maybe there is some repression still going on? If you keep working on it, they will come out, one way or another.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:10 AM
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Originally Posted by ArtFriend View Post
Crying is just one manifestation of emotions. I wouldn't try to "force" anything. Feelings come when we allow them to flow. Sounds like you are trying to do that, but maybe there is some repression still going on? If you keep working on it, they will come out, one way or another.
It was more of a one time thing when I tried to force my emotions out. I am indeed opening my heart, and not resisting anything underneath. When I listen to music now, for example, I can enjoy it, and feel something, despite how small it may be, so I assume I'm making progress.

Hmm I'm almost convinced that it's just a matter of time until my emotions will resurface, the floodgates will open and I will have a cathartic cry. I just want to be reassured that I'm heading on the right path, so I guess I'm kinda looking for any similar experiences, where people have been down the same road as me.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:13 AM
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Welcome and congrats on sixty days sober!

Your emotions will come when they are ready. Just continue to live as well as you can and treat yourself well.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:42 AM
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Hi.
You write of many relapses. My question is from what.
I’ve had them from alcohol, smoking, food , over work, over doing many enjoyable things etc.

I’m an admitted addict of many things. My big one and killer is alcohol and I accept I cannot drink in safety one day at a time in a row in safety.

BE WELL
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by least View Post
Welcome and congrats on sixty days sober!

Your emotions will come when they are ready. Just continue to live as well as you can and treat yourself well.
Thanks very much, that is good to know. I will continue to climb this mountain until I reach the top.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:58 AM
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They will come when you least expect it. I am by nature not one to cry. I don't think I did until maybe 3 months and it was over something I did not expect to have that effect. For me I had to deal with the alcoholism first then move on to the underlying reasons.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:04 AM
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Of course you're on the right path. If you need it, the crying will come when it comes. But for now, maybe focus on gratitude instead. Sounds like you've got a lot of things going right for you right now--live in those. Don't punish yourself for doing good by deeming your happiness "hollow." Appreciate that happiness compared to whatever you were suffering while in active addiction.

And, most importantly, welcome to SR, HH! There's a ton of great wisdom and support to be found here. I suggest jumping in with both feet and making this a home away from home.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:08 AM
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Hi HH - I don't have much to add, other than I'm in the same boat as you. I've repressed emotions for years, and actually used alcohol to try and tap into them (strangely enough). I'm still waiting for them to spill out of me, but I figure they'll come when they're ready. *I* need to be ready for them, and giving myself supports and safe persons/places is the only thing I can do right now.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:09 AM
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Smile

Originally Posted by IOAA2 View Post
Hi.
You write of many relapses. My question is from what.
Iíve had them from alcohol, smoking, food , over work, over doing many enjoyable things etc.

Iím an admitted addict of many things. My big one and killer is alcohol and I accept I cannot drink in safety one day at a time in a row in safety.

BE WELL
Mine is primarily from gaming, where I would indulge in it from waking up to sleeping. It's not as popular as other addictions so I thought I probably shouldn't mention it. I also browsed and masturbating to porn obsessively. As of now I'm thinking of using the internet less, because my urges have settled.

You have been addicted to many things. How is that going for you? I've yet to consider myself knowledgeable on the subject, but I imagine quitting them all at once would be excruciatingly difficult to say the least. How goes your progress? I can't relate to alcohol so much, but I do know that all addictions are the same, and that they stem from the same problem: not wanting to face pain, negative emotions, unresolved trauma.

Abstinence is only one step up the ladder. As hard as it is, it is only the beginning.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:14 AM
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Uhh wow, you guys are so supportive. I now wish I joined much earlier; fighting the battle alone has been very difficult. It feels really encouraging, I appreciate it. Thank-you all, I'll try to reply to the posts.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Della1968 View Post
They will come when you least expect it. I am by nature not one to cry. I don't think I did until maybe 3 months and it was over something I did not expect to have that effect. For me I had to deal with the alcoholism first then move on to the underlying reasons.
Thanks for sharing your experience. I feel very comforted to know that people have been down the same path as myself.

I definitely agree, there is always something underneath that is causing the pain, and we have to be ready to face it. It took me YEARS and countless relapses to get to where I am now, and even then It's still very hard not to fall off the wagon. The whole process is depressing to me, it takes so much effort to overcome the addiction. I do see the light at the end of the tunnel though, so that gives me hope.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by CaseyW View Post
Of course you're on the right path. If you need it, the crying will come when it comes. But for now, maybe focus on gratitude instead. Sounds like you've got a lot of things going right for you right now--live in those. Don't punish yourself for doing good by deeming your happiness "hollow." Appreciate that happiness compared to whatever you were suffering while in active addiction.

And, most importantly, welcome to SR, HH! There's a ton of great wisdom and support to be found here. I suggest jumping in with both feet and making this a home away from home.
I'm very grateful to hear this, so thank you. I'm doing well for myself. I'm trying to forgive myself, and not be so hard on myself, and think of positive things, as opposed to before, where I would wallow in shame, pity, sadness, and so forth. My self-esteem has been shattered after suffering from depression and anxiety for so long, only to be bullied in highshool - literally adding insult to injury. Nonetheless, I'm not determined more than ever to love myself. I know it's a very slow process, but that's okay. Rome wasn't built in a day.

Forgive me for my username. I usually struggle trying to think of a username, and I try to be witty. It is by no means a reflection of my current life. I'm all too familiar what it feels like to be empty inside, and I'm much more appreciative of what normal people would consider a 'normal life', is that makes sense. So I'm grateful for being alive today. Thank-you for your counsel.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:39 AM
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Originally Posted by midgetcop View Post
Hi HH - I don't have much to add, other than I'm in the same boat as you. I've repressed emotions for years, and actually used alcohol to try and tap into them (strangely enough). I'm still waiting for them to spill out of me, but I figure they'll come when they're ready. *I* need to be ready for them, and giving myself supports and safe persons/places is the only thing I can do right now.
Hello midgetcop. Thanks for sharing, I feel overjoyed that I'm not alone in this. I don't find it strange, in fact I tried that once too. I didn't drink much, but I definitely felt the positive emotions come out, and the temporary surge of confidence and the worries settling, but my negative emotions didn't come out.

After much contemplation, and wisdom from this forum, I have also come firmly to the conclusion that is is natural, and as long as we are accepting of what is to come, it will come, naturally, and perhaps unexpectedly.

May I ask how long you've abstained from your addiction/s? I've been masking my pain for ~5 years, so it would make sense that almost 60 days is too soon to be asking for my emotions to surface. However it depends from person to person and there are so many factors involved. I'm hoping that I can have a catharsis by the 90 day mark.
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Old 06-07-2015, 08:21 AM
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HH,
no, you're not alone.
http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...ml#post5399788

it took me a long time.
i understand the want, the need for cracking open and it not happening .

keep going. things change.
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Old 06-07-2015, 08:28 AM
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Just this week I cried 4 times over people who I lost years ago and I just never really allowed myself to grieve. I just kept pushing it down and pouring drinks on top of it...... and all of a sudden there it was just waiting for me. I haven't cried this much in years. I'm not talking about a few tears but deep down sadness and grief.

It will come when the time is right I guess.
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Old 06-07-2015, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by HollowHappiness View Post
Hello midgetcop. Thanks for sharing, I feel overjoyed that I'm not alone in this. I don't find it strange, in fact I tried that once too. I didn't drink much, but I definitely felt the positive emotions come out, and the temporary surge of confidence and the worries settling, but my negative emotions didn't come out.

After much contemplation, and wisdom from this forum, I have also come firmly to the conclusion that is is natural, and as long as we are accepting of what is to come, it will come, naturally, and perhaps unexpectedly.

May I ask how long you've abstained from your addiction/s? I've been masking my pain for ~5 years, so it would make sense that almost 60 days is too soon to be asking for my emotions to surface. However it depends from person to person and there are so many factors involved. I'm hoping that I can have a catharsis by the 90 day mark.
I've been drinking for almost 20 years, that's my whole adult life and part of my adolescence. I've had lots of long stints of sobriety the past few years, broken up by brief relapses. My last drink was about 1 month ago. I still have a long way to go, but as they say in AA - easy does it.

I wouldn't get hung up on any timeline for your catharsis. It's just one more thing to stress over. Continuing to share here in SR, joining a support group like AA, or finding a therapist (or all of the above!) might help tap into these emotions you want to deal with.
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Old 06-07-2015, 02:54 PM
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Welcome to SR HH
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Old 06-07-2015, 03:10 PM
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Welcome HH

Like others have said, I don't think there's a right answer or a wrong one?
I'm just glad you found us and you're nearing 60 days

D
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Old 06-07-2015, 03:53 PM
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Wow, I really relate. I'm at 67 days (yay us!) and I have found myself coming to tears a few times out of the blue in the past few weeks. Don't force it. Have you tried watching a sad movie? That might push start a good cry? I think it'll happen when it happens; I've also heard journalling helps. Keep us posted 'cause I'm in the same boat!
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