Chris: Overcoming Co-dependency
You can meet Chris in our video.
AA was my first twelve-step membership. I stayed sober and went to meetings, and when I’d become full of resentments and fears, I’d write them out and share them because that practice seemed to help. However, although I was not drinking or drugging, I was acting out with other addictions.
When I hit bottom with codependency, I didn’t think I’d have to commit suicide, because I thought my pain would kill me. I was at that point without a job, without a home, without an ounce of hope. Hadn’t I done everything correctly up to then? I had gone to AA meetings, done service, worked the steps, not drank or drugged for 13 years. I saw AA as the be-all, end-all of life. I didn’t realize that more growth was necessary. I continued to “live” hanging on by a thread.
The serenity prayer was my mantra for my first AA years, but since being introduced to Dr. Brown’s modified Twelve Steps years ago, they are my mantra. I’ve learned that my life journey is to find ways to be able to live happily, not so much with others, but with me. I’m the person I try to escape from with my addictions. From my sadness, anger, fear, and recognition of the fact that, lover or not, friends or not, I am alone in this world. Before co-dependency recovery, I couldn’t accept that, because I thought I didn’t have the faculties to live without a man.
Through Dr. Brown’s twelve-step process, I’ve been able to learn that the knight in shining armor, the person who is going to rescue me from my life, is me. I am who I was always looking for.
My success can’t be measured financially, but spiritually. I was able to move to an area of the country without friends to support me there, just myself. I recently left a job that I took out of fear, because I know I deserve better. I love to help others, but I have become the most important person in my life. My entire day is not spent trying to ensure that no one is angry with me.