Learning Boundaries to Improve Drug and Alcohol Recovery
Recovery Reflections: August 23, 2017
Hello everyone! My name is Bianka, and I would like to give you another warm welcome to Detox to Rehab’s Recovery Reflections. Please join us and listen to the experience, strength and hope shared by Brandon, Megan and Madison.
We will pre-record readings from the book Daily Reflections. We express how this reading has helped our recovery or how it has impacted us. We thank you and hope we can inspire your recovery journey!
August 23, 2017: Bringing the Message Home
Can we bring the same spirit of love and tolerance into our sometimes-deranged family lives that we bring to our A.A. group?
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 111 -112
My family members suffer from the effects of my disease. Loving and accepting them as they are – just as I love and accept A.A. members – fosters a return of love, tolerance and harmony to my life. Using common courtesy and respecting other’s personal boundaries are necessary practices for all areas of my life.
Recovery Is Always Worth It
“The program of Alcoholics Anonymous has taught me how to set boundaries today,” Brandon said.
When I was using drugs, I let others walk all over me and treat me in a way I did not deserve. I felt I was not worthy of sticking up for myself, because, in other people’s eyes, I was just a junkie, and I started to believe that a junkie is all I truly was. So, I didn’t really care how people treated me or made me feel because I was already miserable, so why bother trying to communicate with others on how they make me feel?
When I finally made the decision to get sober and started working the 12-step program, I was taught I needed to set personal boundaries with others, because it is not right for me to feel uncomfortable or harmed by the way others treat me. I have a choice today: I can engage in conversation that may upset me, or I can simply walk away, because I know nothing good is going to come out of it. When I was using, I didn’t understand that walking away was a possibility and thank God today I understand that.
“It’s easy for us to let up on our boundaries when it comes to family because of guilt or shame or trying to make up for past harm,” Madison said.
Although walking away and not engaging in conversation that may cause harm is an option, it is still difficult to do around the ones I love. I was upset and used my family for so long I feel a sort of guilt when I set boundaries, because I feel I might upset them or hurt their feelings and that is the last thing I want to do. However, it only takes two seconds to explain to them my reasoning and I need to remember that. If I am not feeling good about myself or if I am not loving myself, I won’t be present in their lives just like how it was when I was using.
“If I am not taking care of myself, I won’t make it around long enough to help, to give back, to do anything,” Megan said.
If I don’t set the boundaries I need to, my attitude can change due to resentment and fear. When I am living in resentment and fear, I am not a fun person to be around. I become easily agitated and angry which are not good qualities for me to be flaunting. If I don’t speak up on what is bothering me, it is just going to stay with me and manifest inside me until I blow up. When I blow up, it is a possibility I could go back to using Heroin which will hurt my family more than letting them know simple boundaries.
“When I am loving myself, I am able to love people better,” Brandon said.
I can prevent all this anger, resentment and fear if I set up boundaries I am afraid to set. Some people view this as selfish, but in reality, this is me allowing myself to be spiritually fit so I can be present in the lives of others.
For so long, all I wanted was to be in the lives of people I loved but the drug use prevented me from doing that.
“I like the sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous I am,” Megan said.
Because of the boundaries I have set and because of the 12-step program I practice, I can say with honesty, I love who I am today. When I was using, I did not love myself one bit and that effected other people, not just myself.
If you want to learn how to love yourself and quite using drugs and alcohol, give us a call. We are here to help you no matter what. Our number is: (866) 578-7471