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Personal exceptionalism makes it difficult for the addict to seek or accept help for his problems.
Other people, people unlike himself, can and should receive help in overcoming their addictions – but he, precisely because of who he is, should neither need nor obtain such help.
Simple ignorance of addiction and recovery, for example, is in theory easily remediable by exposure to accurate medical information on the topics – but the adjoining and interlinked "forts" of shame and dishonesty serve to limit the amount of understanding the addicted individual can acquire about his real condition.
Similarly, the rectification of the dishonesty and evasiveness that is a central and necessary part of the psychology of addiction is rendered far more difficult by the co-existence of the addict's ignorance of addiction and his resulting shame about his addictive behavior.
Don’t let her hold you back.” Men tell me all the time that this is the kind of advice they are being given. And it can feel like such a relief to hear that her rage and withdrawal and mood swings are not your fault. I say this not to shame you, but to hopefully help make all this a little easier on you. She is doubting everything because you gave her reason to. Ask her how you can help her feel safer about your recovery. Instead of being frustrated that she is not where you would like her to be in her healing process, consider how blessed you are that she is still here at all!
She needs to work her program and let you work yours. ” Considering the unstable state your wife may appear to be in, or the stonewalling you may be having to endure, the advice mentioned above might seem to make a lot of sense. But no matter how you look at it, with rare exception, your actions are the reason she is feeling what she is feeling now. Does she deserve to be told to butt out and wait for you to be ready to be there for her? Your wife can clue you in to what she needs to know.
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The price of such personal exceptionalism, however, can be quiet steep: when he keeps bruising himself against the stubborn facts of the case, the addict experiences intense shame and humiliation.
Precisely because he is an exception, he is "not supposed to be like that." His personal grandiosity merely makes him a bigger target for "the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune." Every time he tries to walk on water he gets wet, an unpleasant and embarrassing experience that requires the assistance of the neighboring "fort" of dishonesty to explain away(the water was too cold, he wasn't in the right frame of mind, onlookers were making too much noise, &etc.).