The repressed emotions do not get dissolved in the exhaled smoke, although it certainly might feel that way. The repressed emotions start to bounce around inside the body and a lot of times get stuck inside muscles that become tense. A bad back is a sign that someone is carrying a heavy emotional burden, literally a backbreaking burden. These emotions will surface again, just for the addictive behaviour to repeat. Repressed emotions pile up inside the body and the mind, and require more of the addictive behaviour and substance to manage. If the tense muscle doesn’t get the chance to release, the tension becomes chronic and will eventually cause body imbalance and disrupt the flow of energy in the body. This in time leads to the need of medical attention, or if the monkey can choose, more cigarettes. Addiction is a progressive disease. Over-simplification: we all can be placed somewhere along an addiction-scale ranging from non-smoker to dead from smoking related disease. Emotions can in the same way be oversimplified into a spectrum, much like the colour spectrum, ranging from hell on earth to heaven on earth. Addiction quickly turns into a complicated, pseudo religious ritual system of emotional management. An obsessive compulsive pseudo religious ritual system of emotional management that works! It works! The emotions are numbed enough not to be felt and everything is “fine”, the monkey gets instant relief from pain and nobody gets hurt. What more can the monkey ask for? The long term effects are negligible in the now and are barely noticed as they pile up over time. It takes a long time from the first cigarette to terminal disease. It takes quite a few years of heavy drinking before the liver gives up. The credit card is not maxed out yet. The casino doesn’t own the house, the car and the dog’s house, not quite yet, there is still plenty of time and space left before rock bottom. Denial is an integral part of addiction. With the power of denial, we can rest assured for a while that rock bottom happens only to other people and that our actions have no negative consequences, only positive.