My name is Laura Edgar. I got sober in 2006 and have stayed sober in AA and with therapy and spirituality for 7 years then I quit going to meetings. That was about five years ago, I am still sober presently and have nearly 12 years with very few meetings in the last five years. Do I recommends this? No. Do I believe you can do the same? Absolutely and here is how.
Firstly, please do not hear what I am not saying. I encourage both detox, therapy, spiritual pursuits, and a 12 step program if you want to recover from addiction. All three aspects are pertinent to quality sobriety. If one does not address core issues then one will be bound to AA for all your life. Why? Because addiction is a symptom of a wounded heart and that heart must be healed and the mind enlightened before the individual can be free of the intense fear and pain they have been feeling.
All fear will never leave us as long as we are human. But when fear turns to anxiety and insecurity turns to panic attack we will do almost anything to STOP THE FEELINGS. Fear is part of the human condition as are anger, hurt, shame, guilt, uncomfortability and more. But the addict feels these things at a level of intensity that “normies” have no concept of. Therefore we addicts are also subject to feeling the pleasant emotions at a deeper level.
A woman on FB stated that codependency is at the core of every addiction and that in effect coda is the actual cause of addiction. I disagree but she has inspired me to write this article.
Codependency is just another manifestation of a yet a deeper cause. Codependency is no deeper in our psyche than drinking is. Trying to control things, fear of losing, fear of not getting what we want…
You could say the “disease” is a character defect but every defect we develop out of fear and pain is a reaction to something else, something deeper in our heart that our intellect does a horrible job subconsciously of
trying to fix.
The disease per say are twisted and dysfunctional solutions to fear. Why do we have fear? Many reasons and they don’t all start in childhood.
For me I was taught by my parents that I was wrong and inferior. That is a hard way to start life. Along with a broken heart by trauma and abuse.
We believe what we are taught in the years we are forming our heart to mind connection and self image. But we can change our heart to mind processes. To find root causes of addiction we must go deeper than symptoms.
We must go to original causes and that means exploring the formation of our self image from the ages of 0-8 years old.
It takes sobriety and lots of meditation to realize who and why we thought we were wrong and inferior, or bad and ashamed from the get go. Why am I pasting these beliefs on all addicts?
Because the symptoms tell the story of what lies in the heart.
Am I self destructive? Then somewhere inside me believes I deserve to be punished. And not only that. That perhaps if I do punish myself THEN I WILL BE GOOD. I WANT TO BE GOOD SO BADLY my heart screams.
These developmental processes precede character defects and the “disease”. Processing those early negative events that marred our self image will not only heal us but will also make addiction a thing of the past. Why?
One reason is there comes a time when we KNOW THAT WE KNOW THAT WE KNOW WE HAVE A CHOICE to use or not. Once that realization sets in…we are not “one arms length away from a drink” Nor are we powerless over alcohol.
We don’t have a compulsion and we don’t need to numb horrible feelings.
Make no mistake, our free will is and always has been with us.
Even when we thought we had no choice except to drink and drug. We believed the lie is all. We had no way to heal our broken heart. We need empathy, validation, clarity, and a progression for years of doing the next
right thing. We need step 12 to build a new identity. Not leaving out our core issue processing.
Once our core heartbreak feelings are realized it’s like a big puzzle finally fitting together. We finally realize why the hell we were in so much pain and self destruction. And then we learn ways to process those core
experiences if and when they surface. This is what I have experienced.
Make no mistake, this isn’t about criticism or self pity, or morbid reflection. On the contrary. We learn solutions for the heartbreak we have suffered as either children.
As I said not all trauma happens in childhood but most does.
I am not leaving out the platform of AA to rebuild our self worth by step 12. If we don’t do step eleven we won’t see our childhood clearly. And if we don’t clear up our wrongs toward others (step 4) and learn humility by
step seven, five, and nine we will not have learned these processes for future emotional health and to keep ego in check.
And what of step 3? We revisit step 3 when fear crops up to remember that, God does have our back.
So where have steps one and two gone? We bury them in the back yard because we now have a choice (after working all this) and we no longer think with the addict mind. We no longer need to punish ourselves to subconsciously
either make us “good” or to continue the dysfunction of punishment we were taught as children.
Please be aware of this, when your a child spanking/beating/whipping/slapping/criticism/labelling and the like are considered discipline done out of Love for our own good. But the minute we are an adult if someone dare
treat us that way it is not only illegal, it’s also called domestic violence, abuse, assault, and battery. What is wrong with this picture? Talk about mixed messages. Talk about being set up for SICK RELATIONSHIPS.
Spankings alone can steer a child into addiction by a broken heart, fear and rejection. Spanking is VIOLENCE with a pretty label and an array of excuses to go along with it. I deserve to be beaten right?
When your taught this as a child it will fuck you up for life.
If we don’t do the work we make life harder and we tend to use dysfunctional solutions for fear of loss and the shame of feelings of inferiority. We put on a show while our ego screams in our head that we are a failure.
Then our voice fights back day and night to prove what our head is telling us is not true. Once our heart believes we are a success/good we no longer need to scream from the roof tops that all those different than me are WRONG.
We no longer have to insist over and over that WE ARE NOT BAD by defending ourselves relentlessly.
What do you think? Look at Recovery Groups on Facebook. Why do people get so angry when someone has DIFFERENT ideas than their own? Why? Because if your way is different than mine then clearly MY WAY HAS TO BE WRONG,
at least that’s my insecure hearts way of perceiving “different”. So I go into defense mode, fighting to show that I am not bad and wrong.
But it’s an illusion because two rights don’t make a wrong. And just because your different than me it is not a statement of my inferiority. This is so common with addicts on FB. Constantly fighting to show people
we are not bad and wrong when they are different than us.