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Admitting the Truth About Ourselves to Another

How do I choose someone to call when something is getting to me and I need help?

GYE Corp. Monday, 19 December 2011

Someone asks:

I'm kind of at a loss who to pick to call, I feel it needs to be someone who knows fully about my addiction, I have to be able to explain exactly what's bothering me at that time and what my issues are and then the guy has to be someone who can talk me around it all and make me see sense and bring me back to reality. Someone who I will trust and believe and listen to.

Dov Replies:

As far as me and most of my recovery buddies are concerned, making the call is not about getting really good advice. It is mainly about shedding light on my secret and removing the 'protective net' I cast on all my lusting. The main 'protective net' is secrecy. It is the main way I manipulate the circumstances to ensure that things will go my way - that is, the way of my lust. Letting that secrecy go is the most real step we can take toward actually letting go of our lust and our acting out.

Just ask the guys who have a horrifying time making that call before they act out - they'll admit it feels just impossible to make that call... I wonder why the stakes are so high.

Of course, there are those fellows who regularly make that call, and act out each time anyway. But that's the topic of another discussion. Most addicts who I know are not like that.

That's why the 1st step reads "We came to admit..." the 'devil' is in the admitting. So the more honestly, openly, and frequently we do it, the freer we generally get. That's the magic of real, live, meetings. It kicks the faker's backside. And we are all fakers, showing the entire world a pretty face while hiding our ugly one. That is ego-driven manipulation and eventually needs to be jettisoned in order that any progress be made.

So we do not really need to be talked down and convinced no to act out... We need to admit the truth about ourselves to another understanding person (of course in order to understand, that person must also be a recovering pervert). If that person truly understands and believes that we have an illness, he will listen and empathize; share a similar situation he had; put a hand on our shoulder and remind us that Hashem will make it OK and take the pain of not having that pleasure away. Faith is what we need, and sometimes we can only get it from other addicts, not from Rabbanim, shrinks, or anyone else.