On my journey back from benzo withdrawal, I came across a lot of information that helped me to understand why so many of us are plagued with the horrible sensitivities we have both during withdrawal and recovery. One of the most helpful things I found was Elaine Aron's work on The Highly Sensitive Person. Her research shows that about 20% of the population have a number of traits that make them much more sensitive overall, to a variety external stimuli that the rest of the population doesn't feel as intensely as they do.
After reading a great deal of her work, I really became acutely aware of why I have had so much trouble dealing with being in the world the way I was told I "should be." I never quite felt like I fit in anywhere, and it all just didn't seem logical to me in any way. The way things functioned just didn't seem to apply to me in at all, and I really didn't want to be any part of it. It always seemed to me that there had to be something better. When I discovered Elaine Aron's work, I finally realized there was something better.
As I began to understand more about my sensitivities, it was easier for me to accept who I was and be okay with who I was in the world without feeling like it was all that unusual. It actually helped me to embrace an even more abundant part of myself that I had really walled off from the rest of the world. Then I discovered how many of other people were experiencing the same thing, and that many of them were also going through the same hell from taking benzos and other psychiatric medications.
It suddenly was becoming very clear to me, that all of us HSP's with these delicately wired nervous systems were, in a way, a barometer for humanity. The canary in the coal mines that could sense things others couldn't about these drugs. Maybe this was some divine plan that we all were going through this at the same time? I think we somehow maybe the messengers to others about the dangers of these drugs. Perhaps even a sign of things to come if something isn't done to stop all of this medication madness.
Directly after my acute withdrawal, the symptoms were so bad that I thought I was going completely insane until I read other people's stories. The world seemed even louder than it had before I went on the benzos, and I wasn't sure that I could make it. I didn't think I could handle the pain I was in. The horrible hissing sounds in my ears made it unbearable to even think.
I was hoping the information I found about HSP's would shed some light on to some connection there might be with benzos and highly sensitive people. I do believe because the world has become a more difficult place to live, those of us that are extremely sensitive are picking up on it to a larger degree than most people. This makes us at greater risk for medication dependency. I know I probably was trying to "numb out" some of my feelings and just wasn't aware of why. Having this knowledge could lead to more effective types of support for those who are coming off of these medications and have to wall themselves off from the world, because they aren't prepared for what the withdrawal will do to them. I know I wasn't.
It's still not clear to me why or how these drugs seem to impact those of us who seemed to have the most problems with them. It does however, make sense that because they impact the nervous system, some of us cannot tolerate the drugs well at all. Our senses are very connected with the ability to feel, think and experience touch. HSP's have a heightened sense of awareness in their wiring system, so when that has been suddenly suppressed for a long duration, and then the drug is removed, it appears that their wiring system just goes haywire. This leaves them even more sensitive to the things that were already difficult for them to process, with their nervous systems vulnerable to literally every slight noise.
I'm certain that more research would need to be studied on the subject, but it's not likely that will happen because Big Pharma is too invested in keeping their drug machines operational. It is entirely possible that this recent onslaught of benzo cases could have the potential to shake things up a bit with them.
In the mean time, for all of you HSP's that have been hit hard with benzo withdrawal, I know it's hard, but try to keep in mind the greater picture here. We are all breaking new ground in a territory where no one has been before now. If we understand more about how we impact the world because of our ability to see it from a much different way, we have a gift that can very much influence the world. There may be hope for humanity if we all speak out and help others understand that if things continue to escalate in a number of areas, and other people could all follow behind us when the intensity hits a level that could at some point get worse for everyone across the board.