Search results ({{ }}):

Remaining "An Addict in Recovery"

GYE Corp. Tuesday, 03 April 2012

One of the most frequent causes of failure at actually getting better - is forgetting. It would be quite natural for me to consider myself "fixed up" as soon as I turn my back on the first temptation! "It's been three days - I feel better!! I am better!" You'd think that after a year of not screwing up, all of us would just figure we are OK. In fact, the overwhelming majority of people I have met in recovery rooms over the years use a "revolving door" approach for a while, and then finally disappear. Strangely, the "last gasp" is often when they start giving advice to others in meetings, instead of sharing. I guess it's because they figure they are all better now. They also start to use "you" a lot when sharing, rather than frankly opening up about themselves directly.

Fortunately though, some do not. They retain faith - and it really is exactly that; "faith" - that they are not OK yet. This means, that no matter how long Hashem has helped me be sober:

  • I still cannot expect to act in the same ways I did before (when addicted) and expect to remain sane/healthy.
  • I cannot use lusting behaviors and remain in control of them (or myself).
  • And I cannot lie my head off and stay sane in every (or any) other respect,
  • etc...

In order to actually keep getting better, I need to stay "an addict in recovery". When I share with others, I try to say things like: "when I lose my temper/lie/act out, etc... I do XYZ."

I can't talk like I am all better, lest I actually begin to believe it.

Yes, it sometimes makes others think that I am still doing that stuff, and that I am still just as sick. Too bad. The Gemara puts it most beautifully in the story of Rav Amram (see Chizuk e-mail #275 on this page): "Better I should appear a fool in the eyes of my fellow man for a short time (like a lifetime, for example) than be a fool in the eyes of the Almighty forever".

Hatzlacha and stay in touch,