“I sit curled in a ball on the floor of my closet, crying so hard that I feel like I’m going to throw up. How could my family have done this to me? How could my father have cheated on my mom for all of those years, and how could she have ever tried to kill herself? Didn’t they see how much it affected me? Sure I pretended I didn’t care, I pretended to be strong when they were weak, but look at me now, deep in addiction, strung out on dope and crack and booze, and wanting to die. They did this to me, and now they are kicking me out of their lives. This is all their fault and they are going to make it worse again. No wonder I’m like this, the only thing I’m worthy of is being a drug addict, so I’ll show them.”
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Fast forward three years. I’m sober, and I haven’t felt like I wanted to die in a very, very long time. The person that was thinking those thoughts is gone. I couldn’t tell you exactly when she finally left, but I can tell you that the woman I am now wouldn’t even recognize the girl I used to be. My mother and I have a beautiful relationship, and I have forgiven my father for the decisions he made. I live a happy life, even when it isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, and today I am no longer given the luxury of self-justifying my addiction.
Addiction Did Not Just Stop
But I didn’t get this way overnight. It took me two years and six relapses before I finally realized that the only person that was to blame for my addiction was me. Even in those brief periods of sobriety between slip ups, I was not convinced that my mother’s enabling and my father’s infidelities were not the reasons why I used.
However, the time finally came, when I was beaten down because of my own making, that I realized that no one was force feeding me booze, no one had held the crack pipe to my lips or stuck a needle in my arm beside me. I was the one who allowed my life to turn into the endless spiral that it had become. I was the culprit, and could no longer self-justify my actions.
This was the moment that my entire perception changed. I had half-assed worked some steps before this, but for the first time, I came back into the rooms with every intention of absorbing as much as I possibly could to recover. I started seeing a therapist, and I started to truly get better. All I had to do was come to the realization that I was the only person that was in charge of my feelings and my actions.
Disillusioned by My Addiction
It is a commonality among addicts to become disillusioned by their addiction. Drugs and alcohol completely take over and control a person’s ability to differentiate the truth from the false. It turns them into master manipulators and fills them with so much shame and guilt that they often turn the blame onto others.
The truth is, in the beginning, most addicts don’t have any idea why they turned to drugs and booze in the first place. After some sobering up and 12 step work, we are given the tools we need to be able to identify how everything in our life that hurt us was actually of our own making.
This stage of the process is the 4th step in recovery – and it can be the turning point for so many recovering addicts and alcoholics. It lays it out, in our own handwriting, all of the resentments and harms and fears that infiltrate our lives, and allows us to see how these things are all just figments of our own perception. When people harmed us in the past, and we retaliated, or vice versa, we are often left with a self-righteousness that allowed us to validate our using and our behavior.
When we complete our 4th step, we are required to divulge the information to a spiritual person – usually a sponsor or a religious body. This process is meant to show us OUR PART in all of the painful experiences in our lives. We can no longer self-justify our actions, we have to be willing to accept the events and work towards making them right.
Blaming others for our pain and our behaviors is a manipulation tool that many different people are guilty of, however, addicts and alcoholics have to be willing to see their own side if they want to stay sober. Think of it as a humbling of our pride, an admittance of our own faults, and a willingness to perceive the truth although it may be painful or difficult.
When it comes down to brass tax, if we have to choose between rationalizing, explaining, and self-justifying each and every moment of our lives, the small effort that working the steps and staying sober takes is minuscule in comparison.
We can develop healthy relationships with our friends and loved ones. We can become responsible people who live by a code of honesty and integrity. When we were out in the streets, we may have boasted about how good we were, how our word was our bond, when it probably couldn’t have been any farther from the truth. We probably spent hours convincing others to play by our rules and succumbing to our demands.
We brought chaos with us wherever we went, regardless if it was on the outside world or if it was only inside our minds. Today, we have the option to be free of the burdens, of the lies, of the self-justification. The road of honesty isn’t paved with diamonds or easy living, but it much more rewarding and carefree than the life we were used to.
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Freedom From Addiction
If you have found yourself or a loved one suffering from alcoholism or addiction, you are not alone! If you are ready to change your life and live free of addiction, then FindAddictionRehabs.com can help. We give you the jump start to recovery you need. Our holistic program is unique in that it doesn’t just treat the addiction, it treats the whole person. For more information on our program, call 1-877-959-7271 today.