Step 9 Discussed

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Step 9:  MADE DIRECT AMENDS TO SUCH PEOPLE WHENEVER POSSIBLE, EXCEPT WHEN TO DO SO WOULD INJURE THEM OR OTHERS.

As time as gone by in my recovery I have found that my anger is going away.  I find myself dealing with problems more objectively avoiding ‘blame’ and the ‘fog’ of past interpretations.  As a result I can talk with people more openly about my problem and what it did to others.  I can also make amends without trying to diminish the harm I’ve done.

I can no longer accept self abasement from myself but if others have not been able to forgive me I accept it for what it is.  I’ve hurt them.  I still fear going back to my addiction or finding out that I’ve transferred to a new addiction and hurt people again because of poor choices.

I still regret that I procrastinated on my recovery which prevented me from making amends to my mom who passed away.  I started recovery in November of 2007 but my mom died in January of 2007.  There are others who I have ‘over thought’ the process and as a result taken far too long to make amends.  By doing these things my personal problem solving and growth has been hindered.  As much as making amends is for others it is for me more.  By making these amends I am acknowledging my need to do things differently.

I’ve had reasons for not making amends even when the opportunity arose and sometimes they are good but often they are self serving.  Opportunities sometimes arise but it may be that the person is not ready to receive them. Other times I have not been prepared to make the amends even though the opportunity arose.  At this point I need to accept that I may have missed the opportunity but be prepared for it next time.  If it can be done without hurting someone then I might make contact and follow through with making amends while the opportunity is still possible.

I’ve grown through my association with the meetings and can see that continuing this association is good for me and for others.

My own ‘self honesty’ has grown over time and it is important to grow in awareness of myself to grow in recovery.

As I continue in recovery I have found myself changing back to the person I liked and was liked by others.  As a result I continue to seek out ways to improve my personality.

I’ve found myself looking at the why of not making amends and searching for resolutions to my avoidance.  In most cases there is shame in accepting responsibility but there is growth in apologizing as the guilt is released.  I’ve also realized that the fear of consequences may be valid, it is better to face them than avoid as I did with my addiction.

The “Serenity Prayer” is an ever present reminder of my inability to recover on my own. It reminds me that I can’t control everything and sometimes I need help to get things right in my life.

What are your thoughts?

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