Hit bottom and rise up!

addiction, health & wellness, meditation, mindfulness, Social Trends, thoughts for living, Uncategorized

break open

My spiritual director/psychotherapist always thought it was a moment for celebration when someone appeared at his doorway in their lowest moment.

“When you hit bottom,” he would say, “then you can break open.”

As difficult and harrowing the journey to the bottom can be, hitting an emotional bottom is a moment of celebration. When a series of unhealthy choices finally shoves your ego off the cliff of a fantasy life, then you have a chance to break free and fully assess where you might go next. And at your most emotionally and mentally battered, you may be more open to the belief that choices you make on your own behalf will lead you to a pathway of peace and security.

Once you hit the valley and the shell of a fantasy existence has cracked open, you will be able to soak in the oxygen of a world who wants you as you are.

Love and light,
The Being Place

Love can be tough and blind

addiction, health & wellness, holidays, thoughts for living, Trends, Uncategorized

m-scott-peck

Love is blind. This is somewhat true, but more realistically people can be blind to love, especially when others make a tough decision to step back to allow the natural order of things to occur.

Families oftentimes are placed in double (love) blind experiences when they are trying to find their way in helping someone recover from a drug addiction. The first function of a family is to support its children in learning skills, morals, and values. When addiction strikes a family member, normal approaches to building a thriving family unit can be affected. Oftentimes, a family member’s addiction will drive the individual to decisions which do not fall within the societal norms of morals or values.

Unknowingly, non addicted family members can be caught up in a perpetuation of fueling the addiction through co-dependent choices. A family member needs a ride somewhere and what caring family member wouldn’t give one? Or can they borrow a few bucks until they get paid? Saying no to simple requests seems petty and punitive. But within the illness of addiction, keeping the affected individual comfortable may literally be “loving them to death.”  People are only as sick as their own and other people’s secrets, and addiction is sneaky and secretive. People don’t know what they don’t know.

Before families realize what is happening, the constant conflict and anxiety created by addiction, has begun to break down the family unit. Substance abuse is a leading reason married couples seek divorces. When a child is the one suffering from addiction, families frequently cope with a degree of grief and anguish that only other families battling life-threatening diseases, such as cancer, can understand.

Consequently, all family members become blind to love. Underneath the person suffering from addiction is the valuable human being God created. But the manipulation and deceit of addiction destroys trust. In periods of sobriety, the restored family member resurfaces and others within the family welcome them but are confused themselves as to how they can so harshly judge a relative.

tough-loveEventually, family members may begin to see that trying to fix the consequences for their loved one’s addiction is making it worse for them and the addict. Yet, it is scary to relinquish control. The illusion for the non addict family member is they make better decisions because they are sober. However, if  consequences of some bad choices aren’t allowed to be experienced by an addict, then no motivation exists to change.

Addiction can and does kill and it can’t be cured. But it can be managed. Just as a family wouldn’t treat a loved one’s cancer, family’s ought not endeavor to manage another’s addiction. Working with professionals is as important for the family members who don’t suffer from addiction as it is for those with the illness.

When a family suffers from an illness, love is tough. Tough love may be the highest form of love one can offer another.

And when a family sees this, then addiction can no longer blind people to love.

 

 

 

What to do when you’re not getting it

addiction, health & wellness, meditation, mindfulness, thoughts for living, Uncategorized

patrick__i_don__t_get_it__by_legolasgimli-d4xjxq4

Ever have one of those periods when you have a desire to be better than you are but you seem to be missing a key piece of the instructions and you just can’t seem to get it?

You know you’ve done the work: journaling, talking to trusted people, going to church or support groups. But you’re just not getting it.  And from your point of view it feels like it’s getting worse.

Then, the next thing you know, your mood, mind, and heart are flipped over in the ditch in the journey known as life.

In relationships affected by addiction, it’s common to crash. You keep moving toward them and their addiction moves them away. It’s easy—and dangerous—to be tripped up on the invisible ice that builds from being powerless over another’s life threatening compulsion.

Then, when we find ourselves in the ditch, we’re tempted to spin our wheels because at least that is doing something. Instead of moving us forward, though, it digs us in deeper. It’s frustrating, discouraging and daunting.

So, what to do? Where’s the tow truck? Call Triple A. acceptanceAwareness. Acceptance. Action.

When your efforts to improve yourself seem to be getting you nowhere or you keep slipping back into old patterns despite your good intentions to stop, then the best thing you can do is sit there and do nothing.

Wait. What?

Yes. As counter as that is to this create a to-do list, fill in your planner, complete a bullet journal culture, when it comes to relationships affected by the illness of addiction, sometimes the best thing to do is wait.

And meditate.

So, what’s happening while you’re meditating? Many, many powerful things are occurring.

  • You will grow in awareness of yourself and how you have been affected by others’ actions.
  • You will process what is happening and not what you want it to be.
  • You can dig through your glove box and make sure you have proof of insurance and registration in case the police arrive before the tow truck.

And, then, once all your things are in order, then you will be prepared to move on.

Resentments will stop building and disappear.

Love and compassion for the person affected by an illness will begin to grow.

Addiction takes up a lot of room in a family’s life and sometimes members need their space from others to heal.

And, that’s okay. While you’re waiting for the Triple A tow truck to get you out of the ditch, you can use the time to look at life from a different perspective and rid yourself of things that are tripping you up.

After all, that’s what ditches are for.

For more information about addiction, visit www.thebeingplace.net

Let the truth set you free

Uncategorized

the-truth-will-set-you-free

I want to detest Donald Trump for the crass ways he communicates his points of view. Then, I read an interview about why he’s a teetotaler, something I am, too. His brother died from alcoholism. My family of origin has suffered from the ravages of addiction. At our core, Mr. Trump and I suffer from similar pain over the ultimate powerlessness we have over others’ choices and illnesses and the consequences of them.

Addiction is a family disease with a genetic link. Mr. Trump’s brother died from the consequences of untreated alcoholism. Addiction possibly manifests for Mr. Trump in his sexual appetite. Mine manifests in my appetite, which I treat and manage on a daily basis. He and I are both workaholics. I use work as a socially appropriate escape mechanism to avoid discussing how addiction has affected me.  I don’t talk about the elephant in the room because I’m rarely in the living room. Out of sight, out of mind.

Mr. Trump says what’s on his mind and he has a crew who cleans up the psychological wreckage when he doesn’t speak the truth with kindness. In a moment of unrestraint, I spouted off on Facebook about the election.  I have no crew to clean up my messes. I have to clean up my own. The American people overlooked Mr. Trump’s verbosity for which he doesn’t apologize. I will take a cue from him and not apologize, either. And my Facebook friends can either overlook it or protest.

Speaking the truth with kindness or harshness doesn’t change the essential nature of truth. The after effect, though, is people may steer away from cruel messengers or retaliate. It takes a strong person to receive harsh or kind criticism and to accept the kernels of truth in it.

Mr. Trump and a majority of the American people want us to uphold the rule of law, based on the Constitution. A judgement has to be made as to whether a law was broken. A judgement has to be made as to whether a particular law should even exist and how it impedes upholding the Constitution.

I sped in a school zone a few weeks ago and was pulled over by the officer who fulfilled the duty he agreed to uphold. I accepted my ticket and as is the nature of American people was offered choices as to how I could make my amends for the harm I had committed towards society. I chose the deferred judgement in return for a hefty fine and an opportunity to prove myself a responsible driver.

In the same vein, I am deferring judgement on President-elect Trump and allowing him the opportunity to prove himself a responsible leader. There’s no them and only US in USA.