Tag Archive: forgiveness

  1. How To Forgive The Recovering Addict In Your Life

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    How To Forgive The Recovering Addict In Your LifeHow Do You Forgive An Addict?

    Drug relapse and recovery may be connected, and failure may be the key to success, but the cycle of addiction is so draining, and so disheartening, it can be hard to accept all that. After all of the lies and betrayal, we have a difficult time forgiving, or even wanting to try. How can you truly forgive someone, anyway? Forgiveness feels like saying “No problem, you didn’t do anything wrong.”

     

    What Forgiveness Is Not

    Forgiveness doesn’t mean excusing bad behavior, denying your emotions, or sparing the addict from the consequences of their actions. You don’t have to abandon your pride to forgive. The process of forgiveness may seem difficult in the face of everything you and your family have suffered; however, it’s a vital step for recovery. In order to heal, adolescents must learn to forgive themselves, while adults must learn to forgive them. Otherwise, all that fear, anger, and resentment will keep us stuck in the same destructive loop.

     

    Forgive But Don’t Forget

    Even after adolescents accept the physical, emotional, and financial damage they cause, a dark cloud can loom overhead for the friends and family who tried so desperately, for so long, to put them back on track. If you’re holding onto these bitter feelings, try to understand that they will only hinder your ability to have a full and healthy life. You don’t have to forget the past, nor should you. What you can do is learn the lessons available, set boundaries, and hold to them.  Forgiveness means letting go of the anger inside of you so that you can find inner peace.

    After someone hurts you, it’s natural to want to hold onto that pain as if it’s evidence. You want to show that person how much you’re suffering. But why allow an outside force to dictate how you feel within your own skin? It only hurts yourself.

     

    Forgiveness Is A Journey

    Resentment is not only a waste of time, but a major obstacle to overcome if you wish to achieve your goals. Once you quit enabling an addict’s disease and control your actions and thoughts, your path to freedom will become clearer and more attainable. Just don’t put unrealistic expectations on yourself. If you find yourself holding onto a grudge, at least you’re aware of it and working on it. Resentment is just stale pain; it’s time for it to go.

     

    Interested in family counseling sessions? It’s never a bad idea. Check out our website to get a sense of our available programs and give us a call.  We’ve got solutions for adolescents who are ready to get back into the world after rehabilitation.

  2. Learning How to Forgive

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    Learning How to ForgiveThe theme of forgiveness runs throughout traditional 12-step addiction recovery programs. Adolescents and young adults who are recovering from substance abuse are suggested to reach out to the people in their lives who may have been hurt by their addiction. As important as it is to seek forgiveness and to make amends with others, it is equally important for a recovering addict to extend their own forgiveness to the people who may have hurt them. Lingering anger and resentment interferes with long-term recovery trapping us in the negative thought processes which greatly helped foster addiction in the first place.

    Human nature tends more toward vengeance than atonement. Reaching out to make amends or offer forgiveness is counter-intuitive. When a person feels that somebody else has hurt him, his first instinct is usually to try to get even. Learning to forgive requires stepping outside of ourselves and seeing things from the perspective of another person. Humans in general but especially those with addiction, operate from a selfish center. However, forgiveness is more about us than it is about the person we are forgiving or who is forgiving.

    Forgiveness is more than just forgetting about past transgressions. Forgiveness is about releasing the tight grip on anger and punishment. When we forgive others and ask others to forgive us, we end the cycle of punishment. One spiritual sentiment relates that anger is the poison we drink while intending to harm another.

     

    Ways of Forgiving and Making Amends

    • Repay debts
    • Give back stolen items
    • Volunteer to resurrect damaged property
    • Adopt new behaviors for “living amends”, such as showing up on time, obeying curfew, helping with chores, and participating in family activities
    • Sustaining long term sobriety

     

    True recovery from addiction will include looking for deeper meaning in life, going beyond the superficial and temporary euphoria previously found in drugs and alcohol. That deeper meaning involves living in the present and overcoming past pain and negativity. Forgiveness is a critical piece of the process that helps a recovering addict to find and develop that deeper meaning.

      

    Forgiveness is giving up all hope of a better past. Are you ready to change your future? Start with Sustain Recovery Services in southern California. We offer a comprehensive program for extended care services, catered to young adults and adolescents in recovery. Call 949-407-9052 to learn more about how our unique program can help you achieve long term sobriety.

  3. Healing a Broken Heart

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    Healing a Broken HeartBroken hearts are not just the province of poets and love-sick teenagers. Modern psychotherapy has recognized the traumatizing effects of events that can lead to deep depression and misery, such as the death of a loved one, a job loss, abusive experiences, and the dissolution of a relationship. Some individuals pursue counseling as soon as they experience one of these events. Others will self-medicate with drugs or alcohol to ease the pain that accompanies a heartbreak. If individuals in this latter group devolve into drug or alcohol addiction, breaking that addiction will not be sufficient to heal them completely and to keep them on a long-term path to sobriety. That addict or alcoholic will also need to heal his broken heart.

    A broken heart often leads to resentment, which locks an addict or alcoholic into a pattern of remembering, reliving, and retelling painful events. A person who holds onto festering resentment will use drugs or alcohol to soothe painful memories, rather than confronting and getting past those memories. As those memories embed themselves more deeply into a person’s psyche, he will focus his energy increasingly on his own internal problems.

    Healing a Broken Heart

    An addict who wants to heal a broken heart must learn to let go of the pain. He can do this first by allowing himself to feel and experience that pain fully. Pain that is buried becomes the seed for resentment that holds an addict back. An addict should experience the full amount of anger, rage, disappointment, and any other emotion that the painful event has created. Allowing the pain to come out will also connect the addict with compassionate counselors and therapists who can sympathize with and help him get past his pain.

    Addiction recovery programs often focus on the power of forgiveness. An addict needs to forgive himself and the people who might have hurt him to recover from his addictions. The same holds true to heal a broken heart. As difficult as it can be, an addict should forgive the person who caused his heartbreak. Forgiveness allows an addict to end any blame games and to shed the mantle of victimhood. Recovery programs also encourage addicts to make amends with individuals that they might have hurt themselves. Forgiveness and atonement will go a long way toward healing a broken heart.

    Forgiveness and Mindfulness

    True forgiveness can take time. It will be easier for an addict who live in the present moment to forgive the individuals who hurt him and caused his heartbreak. Meditation and prayer can help an addict to achieve the mindfulness required to live in the moment. Meditation will also help to focus an addict’s mind on the positive elements in his life.

    Lastly, support from family and friends and a healthy lifestyle that contributes to positive physical health will help create a positive mindset to heal a broken heart. Recovering addicts who participate in 12-step recovery programs will have substantial experience with third-party support and healthy living. Individuals who are not in one of those programs can incorporate these elements into their own lives to treat a heartbreak.

     

    A broken heart can cause more pain than a physical injury or serious illness. Drugs and alcohol might mask the pain temporarily, but that pain will come roaring back when the effects of drugs and alcohol wear off.

    Please call Sustain Recovery Services at (949) 407-9052 for more information and suggestions on how you can heal a broken heart in a positive and long-lasting way.

Sustain Recovery changed my life in a way I never considered remotely possible. I arrived in a place where I knew nobody. Sustain Recovery gave me tools so that I never had to be alone again. I learned how to live like an adult and have genuine relationships with other human beings. I gained a sense of self respect, love, and pride from the challenges I was given by staff. I was able to work through the recent loss of my father and I achieved my goal of not taking any psychiatric medication.
I learned that life is an endless balancing act. I have to continually work on myself and my relationships with the people in my life. The staff at Sustain Recovery are all incredibly experienced and spiritual. They were available to me whether I wanted their help or not. Through their efforts and experience, I experienced the inner workings of having an intimate, loving relationship with a loving creator.
Sustain Recovery is “home” for me. I discovered a loving, caring family that helped launch me to a place I would have never dreamed and, if I would have dreamed it, I would never have believed I would be able to accomplish it.

K.C.
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