Worthy of Love – Episode 148

DSC_0476We will discover that we are both, worthy of love and loving. We will love others without losing ourselves, and will learn to accept love in return.

  • What does this mean to you?
  • If you had read or heard this statement when you had just arrived in Al-Anon, what would you have thought of it?
    • would you have made sense of it at all?
    • would you have believed it could be true for you?
    • Did parts of that statement seem true already? Which parts and why?
  • What does it mean to you
    • To be worthy of love?
    • To be worthy of loving?
    • To love without losing yourself?
    • To accept love?
  • As you have traveled your recovery path, how has your understanding of this statement changed?
    • Are there parts you thought were true that you came to see were not true?
    • Did parts of it start to make sense?
    • Did you find a deeper understanding of parts of it?
    • Did you see that this was true of others in the program, and come to want it for yourself?
  • How do you see this gift coming true in your life today?
  • What progress do you still look forward to?
  • What would you say to a newcomer who can’t believe this could ever come true in their own life?

Upcoming topics include meditation and recovery while traveling. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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So, You Love an Alcoholic – Episode 145

Do you love an alcoholic? Has that love brought you fear, anger, shame, and joy? 3 Al-Anon speakers from a session at the 2015 AA International Convention share their experience, strength, and hope.

A listener emailed with a question about emotional abuse and emotional safety. Have you felt emotionally unsafe? Have you dismissed those feelings because you were physically safe? How has recovery helped you move forward and become emotionally secure? Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.

The meditation Let God was enjoyed by another listener.
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Love and Alcoholism – Episode 142

heartWhat does Love mean to you? Has alcoholism turned your love turned to hate? Or maybe, you feel both at once and it’s tearing you apart.

The ancient Greeks had 4 words for different kinds of love. In English, we have to use adjectives to distinguish them. These include

  • Romantic love
  • Sexual love
  • Parental love
  • Familial love
  • Obsessive love
  • Compassionate love
  • Love of humanity
  • Unconditional love

In an alcoholic relationship, love can become poisoned, eventually turning into dislike or hate. We can feel both of these emotions at once, which is certainly confusing. Our recovery tools can help to detangle this messy web of feelings. By learning about the disease of alcoholism, we can begin to find compassion for our loved one, and to separate the person from the effects of the disease. This can help us to detach with love, and to find a way to live our life with balance and serenity, even while the alcoholic behavior continues.

Fear of consequences to a love one can compel us to try to control their actions and outcomes. As the reading about Step 1 in How Al-Anon Works states,

… many of us have confused love with interference. We don’t know how to show affection or support without giving advice, seeking to sway another’s decisions, or trying to get those we love to do what we think will bring them happiness. We confuse caring with controlling because we don’t know how to allow others the dignity of being themselves.

We can treat our loved ones as helpless babies who must be protected and helped. Such behavior is appropriate for a baby or young child. But we need to let go of doing that for the adults in our lives. As a child grows up, our love demands that we let them learn to do things for themselves and experience consequences, so that they will be able to live independently as adults.

In the suggested Al-Anon closing, we are told that

… though you may not like all of us, you’ll love us in a very special way— the same way we already love you.

It is also said that in recovery, “we love you until you can learn to love yourself.” What does this mean? We have learned to love ourselves as our higher power loves us – unconditionally – strengths, flaws, and all. And thus, we learn to see you as a lovable human being, struggling to recover from the effects of alcoholism or addiction, and we can love you just as you are.

Upcoming topics include recovery in divorce, and the “gifts of Al-Anon”. The first of these states, “We will become mature, responsible individuals with a great capacity for joy, fulfillment, and wonder. Though we may never be perfect, continued spiritual progress will reveal to us our enormous potential.” How is this gift coming true in your life? Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Families – Episode 138

unityAnother conversation about families. What did you learn from your family of origin? How have you found new ways to relate to families in recovery?

Tom joins us, and talks about what his family was like growing up, what he brought from that into his adult life, what he rebelled against, and how he is using his recovery programs to find a more balanced way of living and relating to his families — his family of origin and his recovery family.

As with last week’s conversation, we were guided by these questions:

  • Describe, generally, what kind of family you grew up in.
    • Was there (active) alcoholism or addiction?
    • Was there codepenency?
  • What did you learn in your family of origin?
    • About relating to other people?
    • About keeping secrets?
    • About love?
  • How did these affect your life before recovery?
    • Your relationships?
    • Your ability to take life on life’s terms?
    • Your desire/need to control others and your environment?
    • If you are a parent, what patterns from your parents did you bring into your new family?
    • etc?
  • Alcoholism is described in our literature as a “family illness”. In what ways do you now understand this description?
  • How has alcoholism or addiction affected you and your family (current or family of origin)? How has your perception of this changed in recovery?
  • How has recovery helped you to develop / discover new ways of being in family?
  • How has recovery helped you to be with your family of origin?
  • How do you use the principles of the program (including traditions and concepts) in your family or other relationships today?

An upcoming topic is the first “gift of Al-Anon”.  It says “We will become mature, responsible individuals with a great capacity for joy, fulfillment, and wonder. Though we may never be perfect, continued spiritual progress will reveal to us our enormous potential.” How do you see this gift appearing in your life? Or are you still waiting for it? Another topic I’m thinking about is “We”. What does it mean to you that this is a “we” program? How does hearing the experience of others and sharing your own lead to recovery? To me, this is both the core and the mystery of our program.

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Family – Episode 137

DSC_4706What did you learn from your family of origin? How have you found new ways to relate to your family in recovery?

Spencer and Mara talk about family, guided by these questions.

  • Describe, generally, what kind of family you grew up in.
    • Was there (active) alcoholism or addiction?
    • Was there codepenency?
  • What did you learn in your family of origin?
    • About relating to other people?
    • About keeping secrets?
    • About love?
  • How did these affect your life before recovery?
    • Your relationships?
    • Your ability to take life on life’s terms?
    • Your desire/need to control others and your environment?
    • If you are a parent, what patterns from your parents did you bring into your new family?
    • etc?
  • Alcoholism is described in our literature as a “family illness”. In what ways do you now understand this description?
  • How has alcoholism or addiction affected you and your family (current or family of origin)? How has your perception of this changed in recovery?
  • How has recovery helped you to develop / discover new ways of being in family?
  • How has recovery helped you to be with your family of origin?
  • How do you use the principles of the program (including traditions and concepts) in your family or other relationships today?

 

Upcoming topics include “We”, and the “gifts of Al-Anon.” Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
Continue reading “Family – Episode 137”