“On the other side of every character defect is a character asset.”
Sex Addicts Anonymous, page 42
My sponsor asked me to find the kernel of good in each of the character defects uncovered during my Fourth Step. What could possibly be good about obsession, self-hatred, and seething resentment?
Through work and patience, I learned that most of my character defects are misdirected virtues, attributes designed to help me. At the root of obsession I discovered passion; at the root of self-hatred are awareness and desire to be and do my best; and at the root of many resentments is the need to set healthy boundaries in relationships.
Each defect started as a good seed, designed to grow and bear fruit. As an addict, I neglected the plants. I did not nourish them or prune the branches. Like many fruit bearing plants, if not cared for, my personality traits cease to bear good fruit.
In Step Seven, I’m not asking God to remove a part of me. Instead, I’m asking God to remove the snarled, dead branches. As God prunes, I can watch the virtues emerge and see them bear good fruit in my life. While this is an exciting premise, I must remember that pruning is painful. I need courage, compassion, acceptance, patience, and the loving support of God and the SAA fellowship to undergo this lifelong challenge, one day at a time.
For today, I am willing to endure the pruning that can transform my defects into the fruitful gifts they were designed to be.