I like metaphors. So I’m going to share one here. My therapist often says that my disease is like the mafia. I didn’t understand his reference at first until he further explained the metaphor: My ISM, like the mafia, is bigger and tougher than me and it offered me insulation and protection from other perceived threats. My gorilla was all, “Oh, that jerk-off hurt your feelings? Have a drink, you ain’t gotta worry about nothin’ We’ll take care a dis!”
I thought it was my friend at first, but then it started asking me for things, and eventually started just taking things. And like mobster movies, my disease was entertaining to watch from the outside but scary to live in. I owed it big time for protecting me, but there were times I coughed up payment when I didn’t want to . I belonged to it, I was afraid of it, but it was too late.
My sister and I realized that the program I’m in, being anonymous and all, is not unlike (love double negatives!) the witness protection program. You enter it, you change your identity and everything about your life in exchange for guaranteed defense against the big, bad mafia. The most obvious similarity is that it’s a seee-cret! Meetings are like safe houses, and I’ll duck into one any time I feel like I’m still being followed.
We are everywhere, like ‘Fight Club’. We hide in plain sight. This is not to be confused with the Witness Relocation Program. That may just be a geographic.