More often than not, step nine will be painful, but also equally freeing. There is no denying that taking step nine takes tremendous courage. When held in the bonds of an addiction, it’s not uncommon for many relationships to feel strain, or to fall apart together. At Augustine Recovery, we understand how addiction affects the family unit. That’s why we designed a unique approach to 12-Step treatment.
Successfully approaching and accomplishing step nine requires the alcoholic in recovery to be willing to go to any lengths to make amends to those individuals whom they have harmed in the past. Apologizing is difficult for many people, and taking responsibility for your actions can be painful as it may remind you of the harm you have caused. However, this provides you with hope and inspiration to become and remain a better person in all future endeavors. The root of many fears and feelings boil down to guilt and shame.
tips for living amends
We do not receive any commission or fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a caller chooses. I am very sorry for stealing money out of your desk in order to fund my drug habit last year. Remembering how I stole from you makes me sad and fills me with shame. While I did these things in active https://ecosoberhouse.com/ addiction, that does not take away from how wrong they were, and the pain and sense of betrayal you must have felt as a result of my actions. Along with reinforcing new behaviors and outlooks, making amends can also reduce stress. Many who lived with addiction have past behaviors they’re not proud of.
- When you make amends, you acknowledge and align your values to your actions by admitting wrongdoing and then living by your principles.
- The goal in making amends is “to freely admit the damage we’ve done and make our apologies,” according to The Big Book.
- If an individual damaged someone else’s home while they were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, direct amends may require that they go to the property owner, apologize and repair damages.
- There are cases in which reaching out to someone, even to apologize and let them know you’ve changed, can cause pain.
- Sometimes he holes up in his apartment to down cases of beer.
Being able to accept responsibility for your actions will go a long way in the remaining three steps of the program. Plus, the benefits of completing Step 9 of AA are numerous. You’ll be able to fully embrace the principles of humility, forgiveness, and love. A 12-step program is designed to encourage long-term sobriety, by fostering a spirituality for recovery.
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions ASL – Step Three
The goal of this step is to find freedom by cleaning up the past to live peacefully in the present. Those in recovery are encouraged to keep an ongoing ninth step in living amends their life by continuing to pay off debts and refraining from lying, stealing, or cheating. The ninth step is very action-oriented and provides a sense of relief.
Once you enter into sobriety, there isn’t a set timeline for working Steps 8 and 9, so you might want to ask your sponsor and recovery support network for their insights about whether you’re ready. In Twelve Step recovery, your pace is your own to determine. No doubt you will experience challenges and setbacks along the way. But by prioritizing your recovery on a daily basis and doing whatever that next right thing might be for you, you will keep moving forward in living a life of good purpose. No matter how much we feel the need to make things right, forcing another to meet with us or hear from us is not part of the Steps.
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions ASL – Step Six
The purpose of Step Nine is to acknowledge the harm caused during active addiction and to make it right with the people involved, as much as possible. Even though they have similarities, living amends are different than making amends. While making amends is apologizing, living amends means living a completely new, sober lifestyle, and being committed to that lifestyle for both yourself and those you’ve harmed in the past. It means that you’re not just using your words to show a change, your actions are proving this change as well. Before completing step nine, the recovering alcoholic needs to be ready to deliver their message with the best intentions, not motivated by false expectations.
- When you make amends, the way you look and feel about situations changes.
- If you find yourself jumping to make things right, that’s a great instinct!
Perhaps, the amends that you wanted to make might not seem right after discussing with a sponsor. State how you are taking personal responsibility for the hurt you’ve caused. Making amends means apologizing but also goes one step further—doing everything in your power to repair the damage, restore the relationship, and/or, replace what you took. If you’re writing a letter, whether sending or sharing it in person, spend some time reflecting on and sharing the actions you’re taking to redress the wrong(s) done.
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions Book
At this time, you can offer whatever restitution you have deemed appropriate. If you are behind on child support payments, for example, you can give the other person a payment (rather than just having the conversation about missing payments). Avoid the temptation to shirk responsibility by casting blame or justifying your actions. Making amends is more than just saying “I’m sorry.” It’s going the extra mile to make things right.
For instance, you may have borrowed money and never paid it back. If this is the case, chances are the person may come back and request repayment. If you deal with these issues head-on and early in your sobriety, there’s no way it can harm you in the future. This process goes a long way to helping you and your loved ones heal from your addiction.