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PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2016 10:26 am 
Recovery Coach

Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:07 pm
Posts: 3899
Location: UK
just a thought, I read
Recovery does not end or claim to be successful until the addict has a future healthy purpose and has built an an independent healthy lifestyle and the confidence to achieve and live it.

On reflection this endorses the fact that recovery is for , about and by the addict

Remember recovery is more than abstinence
Every transition begins with an ending
Do not confuse happiness with seeking pleasure
stay healthy keep safe
Coach Kenzo

PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:22 pm 
General Mentor

Joined: Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:47 pm
Posts: 694
Kenzo wrote:
On reflection this endorses the fact that recovery is for , about and by the addict

Whenever I'm faced with urges/delusional thoughts which normally would trigger some ritual, I hardly ever think of my spouse. Maybe it has something to do with his own betrayal towards me but my guess is that this is how it actually functions and what I experience is normal and very common (my H actually concords that he doesn't think about me either even though Dday was messy and he witnessed my terrible ordeal for about a year or more having to confront doctors in hospitals and so on) No thought about how my spouse would be affected by my actions registers in the height of an urge or ritual. It takes something much more powerful to allow my detachment from the emotions and thus disconnecting the ritual. The only thing that works for me, that empowers me, is my own commitment to myself, to the things that I want for myself. In those moments I'm faced with a choice and I can only choose "selfishly", because I care about myself, I care about the rest of my life, I care about my (mental) health, I care about my capacity to sustain a healthy relationship and many other things, according to my vision. Yes, the relationship component features amongst the main elements in my vision but it has been internalised, it's ultimately what I want for myself, selfishly if you will, but still, for myself. Of course I care deeply about my spouse and I want him to be happy and fulfilled in his life but the truth is that, if my perception would be that his happiness interferes or conflicts with the things I want for myself (my own perceived happiness), there would definitely be no issue choosing myself over him more often than not. I don't think the mechanism changes in recovery as compared to the period of active addiction. Nobody would /could abstain from fulfilling their own perceived needs and desires for long periods of time just to please/not upset someone else (provided there are not other issues at play). This is still the case in recovery. What changes though, is the perceived needs and wants (through building a life vision, becoming aware of one's values and priorities), while the focus is still on the self or "selfish", if you will. That is why the recovery is for, about and by the person in recovery, everything gets filtered through his/her values system, perceived needs and goals. We change the values, needs and goals, not the mechanisms themselves.

Empathy, respect or consideration for others might feature in more for healthier individuals but for people like us unfortunately, these skills/values have not been developed as much as to be role players in decision-making, at least not in early, middle or even late recovery, more probably after recovery if the person commits to pursuing them.

A lot of people struggle to commit to themselves. The commitment potentially grows with each decision in line with your values which provides positive stimulation and might wane with each decision against your values which takes you further and further away from yourself. It's a process. It's good to know and feature this as one of the consequences/costs of acting against one's values. I believe that the commitment is a direct result of how much one invests in oneself. The more you invest, the more committed you are and motivated not to lose your investment.

Be well,

"A wholehearted attention feels like the nurturing presence that I always wished I had in a parent. Now I am free to be there for myself in a way that I assumed I needed from someone else." Tara Bennett-Goleman, Emotional Alchemy

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