If there was any point in extreme suffering, why would a patients who already know they are 100% terminal still have to suffer horribly in their final hours to the very end? I don't believe there is any "point" at all to suffering- it is what it is. However, I agree that we who do suffer can use it, up to a point, to be stronger, and also to divert ourselves from a vicious cycle of self-pity. But the strengthening argument applies to relatively low grade suffering too, such as studying for tough exams or anything. Brutal, searing suffering of the sort many of us go through with IBD seems completely pointless- as obsolete as the old school of medicine that discouraged the use of painkillers for extreme pain. I recall Christopher Reeve being asked if he thought that, because he inspired so many, there was a "purpose" to what he went through, and he replied almost angrily (rightly so in my view) that no, there was no purpose to it at all, it was simply because he fell off a horse in a bad way, and his inspiring people was not and should not be some sort of "purpose" for his suffering. This is not to belittle anyone or any of us for learning anything from our suffering, or from inspiring others (every time I see a story about
a horribly wounded young Iraq war vet recover through a ton of surgeries and prosthetic limb it inspires me), but we are all as capable of kindness and wisdom without extreme suffering. Or to summarize more crudely: crap happens.
Pancolitis >20 years, allergic to all 5ASAs