Relapse

Your Life and It's New Meaning, by guest blogger David Saffold

The following is my final entry in a series about the 12-step spiritual program of recovery.

Step 12:  “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”
 
Step 12 is found in Chapter 7 (Working With Others), page 89 through page 103 of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous.  “Practical experience shows that nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking (relapsing into addiction) as intensive work with other alcoholics (others with like addictions).  This is our 12th suggestion: Carry this message to other alcoholics!  You can help when no one else can.  You can secure their confidence when others fail.  Life will take on new meaning.  To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you – to have a host of friends – this is an experience you must not miss.  We know you will not want to miss it.  Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.”

Admitting Our Wrongs, by guest blogger David Saffold

The following is my fifth entry in a series about the 12-step spiritual program of recovery.

Step 5:  “Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.”

Step 5 is found in Chapter 6 (Into Action) page 72 through page 75 of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous.  In step 4 we discovered the deeper causes in our nature that were creating our problems.  Now we need to start the process of healing by telling them to another person.  We have to stop hiding from life and others, we have to finally find the courage to remove our mask and be entirely honest with another person.  The book gives the reason why this is so important on page 73; “More than most people, the alcoholic leads a double life.  They are very much the actor.  To the outer world they present a stage character.  This is the one they want others to see.”  This mask or “stage character” is the lie that is presented to the world and the alcoholic is terrified that the lie will be discovered.  This makes for a life of constant fear and tension which empowers the addictive behavior.

Restoring Sanity, by guest blogger David Saffold

The following is my second entry in a series about the 12-step spiritual program of recovery.

Step 2:  “Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”

In step 1, discussed previously, we discovered that we were hopelessly powerless to stop using a substance that was destructive to our lives.  We were strangely “insane” in that we couldn't or wouldn't stop using a substance that was poisoning our physical and emotional health and ruining all that we held dear in life.