View all:  Voices of Recovery

February 18

“Although our experiences are different, certain aspects are common to many of us.”

Sex Addicts Anonymous, page 59

My first impression of Twelve-Step programs was of cookie-cutter, superficial recipes for what I considered a very serious problem. Elsewhere, I had heard gurus and self-appointed experts lay out their simplistic solutions, and I was wary. Instead, I found the Twelve Steps to be a powerful tool for digging deeply into the individual essence of my addiction—the beliefs, actions, and consequences that were making my life unmanageable.

I learned that this is a life-long, life-changing, spiritual program. I emphasize spiritual because part of my life experience included an abusive religious background. Accepting what others called God was a big challenge for me. Being asked and allowed to discover my own Higher Power helped me accept the differences between me and others in the program. Through the steps, my sponsor, my group, and my readings, I found my Higher Power. Sharing my inventory with my sponsor helped me discover and accept myself, warts and all. I began to see new possibilities and make healthier choices.

In looking at the true nature of my addiction and the solution, I found common ground and fellowship with other program members. I learned to set aside superficial differences and focus on the profound, common message of healing through a fellowship of people with similar struggles and a common solution.

May I continue to look for similarities, knowing that we are all on the same journey.