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Am I too dangerous?
By Dangerous
2/28/2013 11:54:30 PM
Confessed to my Bishop on Feb 26th after holding back for a long time because he is a friend. It took everything I had to go into that meeting. I left pretty bummed out, very different from previous confessions, because he introduced me to the 12 step program and told me to go weekly. So I read the first 5 sections and attended my first meeting this morning - super embarrassed. I saw people I knew from my ward and even past wards - I am p&m, but some of these guys are adulterers and sex addicts that sleep with prostitutes - holy crap! Some of these guys are reaching out and while I appreciate that, I dont really want to bond over this. Did the lepers that were healed by Jesus come back together on a regular basis because they bonded over leprosy...I dont think so?
So while I think the 12 step is a good programs as I understand it so far, I have heard of many people being unsuccessful in the AA 12-step. Is this better because it involves the Lord? I mean seriously opening up my secret to let go means it better freakin work this time. I get it, I get it the Lord will heal me, but wait a second. Couldnt he heal me after I first discovered it in my youth, before I got older and struggled? Is this my cross to bear in this life to prove I wont put enmity (hate for God) in my life - similar test to Job (except I am not a prophet.) Is this really about healing? If it is then I need a miracle. I feel like I need more...a multi-faceted approach. I had a pretty screwed up childhood...do I need to deep dive with a psychologiest or psychiatrist to get to the true root cause of my acting out? If you had a heart attack, would you just drop to your knees and pray for a miracle (ie 12 step program) or would you head to the emergency room + pray.
I am afraid if I challenge my Bishop to ask for some serious psychological help he will view it as rebellion/resisting and my road/penence will be longer. Or do I just go with the flow, work through the process and hope I dont slip like the many others that have slipped before me.
I was mum for my first meeting, because if I ask these questions in there I could really knock them off their path.
I am hoping someone can give me some seriously hardcore straight answers and not the hope and pray stuff.
Sunday Update: Really negatively anxious to go to church today as I was aware that some setting aparts were going to take place in the Aaronic priesthood that I would be called upon to participate in - I didnt want to encounter the awkward, public embarrassment. Considered ditching all together or at least third hour. Went to church anyway with the hope/faith all would work out and if the awkward moment came then it came, but with the help of my wife I was able to catch the Bishop and get clearance to participate. Found myself crying several times afterwards, not just tears welling up in my eyes, but streaming down my face immediately after I got the clearance and during touching spiritual moments during the remainder of church. Quite a day! My conversations with my wife this week have been very positive and theraputic to the start of my healing process.

Comments:

so what exactly is your beef?    
"Welcome! I'm glad you're here.

You seem disappointed to be on the path your Bishop set you on. Why? Are you afraid it won't work, or are you afraid it will? I can't tell from your post."
posted at 00:07:51 on March 1, 2013 by beclean
Maybe you need humility    
"I'm not gonna lie you sound pretty arrogant about the whole thing. I say that as an arrogant man myself. I've found what ever method we use for healing its all for naught if we're not humble.

By the way, King David committed adultery. Art thou greater than he? Sampson slept with a harlot art thou greater than he? Jesus got together with sinners on a regular basis... art thou greater than he?

The thing I find ironic about your post is you admit the need for healing but act as if you're completely blind to being sick. I think seeing that is the first step. Maybe then decide what method of healing will work best for you. That's just my opinion after one read through. I'll re read it again later, maybe have different thoughts. Good luck man. What ever you choose (psycho therapy, 12 steps, whatever)."
posted at 08:52:14 on March 1, 2013 by they_speak
A few thoughts    
"Hey man, thanks for the honesty - I just had a few thoughts as I was reading.

1) The 12 step program is as deep as you make it. Much more than pray and read your scriptures. I've been going to group weekly for almost 3 years and just started step 11. It's yielded great results, and was different from the "just pray" method.

2) It seems you're letting your embarrassment get in the way of things. The fact that you saw people you know at group, that the bishop is your friend, that you don't want to bond with anyone/open up to anyone else about this. It's an important part of healing to be willing to do that - try to let go of the embarrassment and pride and allow yourself to talk to and rely on others with this.

3) Whether to go beyond 12-step program is up to you. I know many guys that both attend group and have a therapist of sorts that they meet with regularly. Therapists can help you discover and work through unresolved issues and provide support, but from my experience that is just a part of the healing. True healing requires a reconnection with God as you know Him. And only through that can you really be healed, and the 12 step is the best way. My guess is that your relationship with God has been distorted throughout all of this (because mine was too), and you need to start over anew with it all. Learn how to pray again. Learn how God will answer your prayers. Learn how to reach out to Him and how He will help you.

This is just from my experience - I don't know everything. But I do know that I tried everything I could possibly think of to get out of this for years, and the only thing that really helped is by thoroughly working the steps, learning the roots of my addiction, finding God again, and allowing Him to heal me as I sought Him. It's worked for me.

Good luck!!!"
posted at 09:08:46 on March 1, 2013 by recovery.gdo
kudos    
"Oh, and kudos for being willing to tell your bishop about things, that's a big step! Don't let anything push you back into hiding/isolation."
posted at 09:11:13 on March 1, 2013 by recovery.gdo
sorry    
"You sound angry. I'm angry too. You sound confused. I'm confused too. And right now.... I don't know what to tell you. I really don't. Except that your not alone and we have GOT to stay away from this porn crap!! Keep reaching upward and I will too."
posted at 10:32:07 on March 1, 2013 by itstime
Im one of those adulters and people that frequented prostitutes    
"It started with 15 years of porn and masturbation mixed with a screwed up childhood and poor self image and boundaries.

I never thought I would end up in that category until someone at work showed some interest in me which led to flirting and online sexting. I avoided her but fell the next time around.

So when you see people in THAT category.. They are real people who are hurting. Have some compassion. I know I feel ashamed being in the presence of people that "only did porn".. The thing is, the behavior with my family was just as crappy when I was only porn and mb.

As They Speak said, pick the parts that work for you. Stats show best recovery is group plus talk therapy.

Talk therapy is like getting surgery and drilling to the core problem.
group meetings are like physical therapy to keep you strong and to remind us what happens when we stop recovery.

I find that having a few people to call is extremely valuable so I can talk to someone with a common background to talk to. My Bishop has no idea what Im going through. But guys from the group do. It took me months before I got the courage to call someone up.

good luck.. stay with it.."
posted at 11:05:17 on March 1, 2013 by Anonymous
I think you might be too dangerous.    
"I think you're too good for the 12 Step program. You sound like you aren't really an addict at all. You just had some bad stuff happen to you when you were a kid. You just need some therapy.


Just Kidding! Sorry dude, you're one of us. Put on your aqua man underoos and dig in. Or you can do it the hard way and try every other method first and THEN discover that the 12 Step program is the one that Jesus sent here for people afflicted with addiction."
posted at 11:12:52 on March 1, 2013 by Anonymous
No answers    
"I don't have any answers for you, but I just want to say that you took the leap! And that is huge. Let this be a journey and don't rush it. Accept that it will be confusing and you'll bump into your own anger and faults and sometimes you'll see clearly and sometimes you wont. It is about progress and by simply going you've made progress. That is remarkable all by itself considering what addiction is. Just don't quit. Even when it sucks and even when it doesn't feel like it is working or doing any good. Don't quit."
posted at 12:34:42 on March 1, 2013 by maddy
Replies and more concerns...    
"First of all, I want to thank everyone for there comments...even the sarcastic ones I appreciate.

BECLEAN - Prior to the 12 step program I would say the church didnt really have any tools for us - now they have one tool. A broadbrush approach to problem solving usually falls short for some and is overkill for others. He mentioned in my meeting that I have a long journey (could be short or long depending on the person, right?) and he basically acknowledged that I will slip. Well the slips is what I am trying to stop. Im not doing this daily, or weekly, but months go by between struggles. I just didnt get the powerboost of strength I have after past confessions. The 12-step program requires discipline and strength. If I had those attributes I would have control over my acting out. Yes, I was disappointed. ON a side note, this whole calling myself an addict seems to be the wrong word. Like I said my struggle has months, and in the past years - does this make me an addict? Does a person who only watches TV every couple of months call themselves a TV addict? Or is this just a way that the 12-step program strips us down (similar to the military in bootcamp) to humble (humiliate) us, so in the future we can all wear our scarlett letter proudly. That is what it is...a Scarlett Letter. If this is the approach, then whey do we come out only to our group and not just bare all in testimony meeting, why do we keep it SECRET in our groups?
THEY SPEAK - Arrogant?? Maybe, I sure didnt feel too arrogant setting up my Bishop appt or literally moving one step in front of the other to his office, pushing each word out of my mouth when confessing. I think I am more jaded...I think I have come to the realization that this is my cross to bear and endurance to the end w/o slips and w/o enmity is the goal. Is healed = no more struggle or slips possible, when people acknowledge slips will occur only a 70%-80% success rate, as my Bishop did, I think I am more jaded and this is why I was asking if I needed to identify a deeper root cause. Do I have anxiety problems or OCD problems? Is my love compass all messed up that I will never be fulfilled in my marriage. The 12-step is an introspection, self guided journey, but if I could self guide I wouldnt be here today. I think you missed the point on the bonding point...I am most certainly not Jesus Christ, King David or Sampson...I would equate this to the Bishop meeting with the sinner. My concern is exposure and bonding to brothers with more serious histories may become a justification for more extreme issues in the future. The next time I slip and am beating myself up, doing my justifications, will they come to mind where I say he was a good person and slipped in that area, I am a good person so maybe I can slip in that area too? I am worried to hear about it. This is why I pointed to the leper bonding with the leper, maybe they bonded in their affliction, but not during the healing process. Thanks for your comments...you made some good points.
RECOVERY.GDO - Deep is what I need and will commit to, but the 3 year thing scares me...I can be very hard on myself and this mental flogging will drive me further into depression, which means now I have two major issues. Embarrassed - sure, was anyone not embarrassed during their first meeting?
Anonymous #1- Not judging, just dont want to get in a sponsor or role model type relationship where it will become justification for future acting out. If I am asking too much, then why are the porn groups seperated from the regular addiction? You mention stats on talk therapy...do you really have stats? I am not messing with you on this point...stats will help me. It just seems people always cite data, but it doesnt really exist. I will talk to my wife when I am struggling before calling some guy when I am all crazy, but your right I dont think my Bishop can relate. BTW...get a login.
Anonymous #2 - Cracked me up...lol. I can appreciate the sarcasim. I take one issue with your comments...Jesus sent us the 12 step program? Really? So its been around since the dawn of man? Why does he need to send a 12 step program to us when we can be healed through the ATONEMENT program? We live in a Telestial world in a imperfect body and are expected to be Celestial? Only Christ pulled this off...AMAZING. If Christ sent the 12-step program then it should be 100% successful, because it is perfect. Do you really believe that? You need to get a login too.
MADDY & ITS TIME - Thanks for the encouraging words. MADDY's hit me right between the eyes in acknowledging that we dont have all the answers, but we need to just keep pressing forward.
Some additional thoughts...
I am concerned about starting a Christ centered 12 step recovery program that doesnt come with the same guarantee as the Atonement program. In support of my Bishop and his position I will commit whole heartedly. I do think some additional therapy is needed. I am struggling to decide if I do LDS family services or go to a real Dr. like a Psychiatrist. My acting out is definitely tied to what is going on in life...distance from my wife, both physical and emotional can trigger, stress at work or life in general can trigger, loneliness, and depression can trigger. I know that I would be a bigger mess if I wasnt in the church...Heaven knows I have resisted most of my other exposures to drugs, alcohol, etc. The bottom line is Satan's plan is a plan of force, whereas Christs plan is a plan of Choice. It has got to be a choice we make or the healing will never happen, not the choice of my Bishop. These are dangerous times...I cannot slip again...ever, ever or my soul will be lost forever...forever."
posted at 09:49:17 on March 2, 2013 by Dangerous
I didn't read your notes to everyone else yet...    
"My struggle has almost always been very similar to yours in frequency. Lately, I go years between mess-ups...and my mess ups involve just a few minutes of porn before I get up, shut off the computer and immediately tell my wife. Am I still an addict?

Let me ask you this: can you stop right now forever and never return to your sin if you want to? If so, you probably aren't an addict. If you have tried to stop for good and you can't seem to do it, despite your knowing that you shouldn't do it, then why not call yourself addicted?

Step one: "Admit that you, of yourself, are powerless to overcome your addictions and that your life has become unmanageable."

In some ways, I think that's the hardest step.

You're an impulsive sinner that can't stop sinning. We all are. Welcome to the club that we call life. Why do you feel you have to protect yourself from being seen as "one of them," one of the sinners? one of the addicts? one of those people at the meeting? What's wrong with being one of them? There they sit, humbly beating their chests saying, "Lord, have mercy on me, a sinner." While you look on saying, "Thank you, Lord, that at least I'm not like that."

The truth is, you ARE like that. You need the Savior every bit as much as they do. You may be in a worse state, in fact, since you don't even realize your state, as they do. The Savior said the publican would enter heaven before the Pharisee.

Sorry, that may have been harsh. Everything I'm saying is what I've said to myself in the past. Anyway, I don't think you should be ashamed to acknowledge that you are not perfect, that you sin regularly, that you are destined for hell, unless you can surrender to God and tell him that you are truly NOTHING without him. We are all nothing without him. Once we realize that, we are finally able to humbly do whatever he or his servants (it is the same) direct.

It is that humility, that acknowledgement of our worthless state, that truth, which sets us free. EVERYONE must come to that point, addict or not. It is the antidote to pride.

Now I read everything else you said.

By the way, if you slip again, your soul will not be lost forever. I know you want to tell yourself that so that you can keep yourself far from the edge. But, Satan wants you to believe that. He wants you to believe there is a point of no return. As President Uchtdorf said, there is no such point as long as you are alive.

Oh, and Maddy is possibly the wisest among us. Just keep moving forward. Each of us is building a boat to cross the great waters (like Nephi, Noah, and the brother of Jared) to the promised land. It takes years to build; it isn't done overnight. It is built one board and one peg at a time. Use all the wood and tools you can find."
posted at 11:37:48 on March 2, 2013 by BeClean
Well Beclean is always a hard act to follow    
"...I don't know why I bother adding anything at the risk of ruining a good thing (other peoples comments). But, arrogant. Yes. I'm glad people followed up after my post though. Because they were right in their emphasis. You have taken a big step and that's a big deal. Also, the embarrassment that you've dealt with was touched on and it made me think. I realized that a lot of pride and arrogance and feelings of jadedness (is that a word?) at their root are just fear (embarrassment) run a muck. Or as Beclean put it a need to protect ones self. Totally understandable. I do it constantly.

You're not alone. I'm not judging you. I once used to sit in 12 step meetings as a new guy (almost a decade ago). LDS ones. It was calm. Quaint. Just good old fashioned porn pervs for the most part. But every so often in would chime one of the real sinners. Completely upsetting the status quo! He'd mention excommunication and it was like the air got sucked out of the room. He'd mention strip clubs and you'd think he was talking about barbecuing a baby. He'd say "affair" and it was like no one had ever thought of that. Culture shock! At least that was my take on it as I sat quietly and observed. And every time one of these beggars pipped up and mentioned the truly abominable I'd think "well,..at least that's not in me to do" or "I'd rather die than be that guy" or "God, please I'm begging you with all my soul to KILL me before I would ever do those things" or "Thank you God I've never done/will never do that". And I meant every word. I really believed it wasn't in me to do and that I would rather die than be guilty of such crimes...sometimes I still wish he would've answered my prayers. I dramatically digress.

I don't see it as bonding with fellow sick people and trading sickness. I see it as mourning with them that mourn. Getting together oft to fast and to pray for those that know not God (are still out there - IN addiction). It is one or two poor is spirit gathered in His name. Rejoicing over the prodigal. Receiving mercy. Hungering in meekness after righteousness. Exchanging faith, hope and charity. Not death, hell, triggers and the grave. I believe based on scripture (Matthew 9:10-12) and from my own experience in 12 step meetings that Christ did not only act among the sinners as if in the capacity of a bishop during an interview. He was among them as a friend. And He still is today.

I think the problem is that you see these adulterers and whore mongers, many of whom are probably further along with God than yourself, as lepers. I'm sorry but I feel your take on it is superficial and petty. And if you use the history of the brothers in meeting as an excuse...then you just weren't paying attention to the scriptures (i.e. plenty of wild men with wild histories in there)...you would have found an excuse anyway.

By the way the church sure isn't "100% successful" (whatever that is) or perfect in my estimation and it was apparently sent to us by Christ. You might consider double checking your logic there. I'm not following it at least. Does not the Book of Mormon plainly tell us whatsoever persuades us to do good and follow Christ is brought forth by the power and gift of Christ? The scriptures tell us to repent. The 12 steps show us how (if we fail to extrapolate them from the scriptures in the first place). Anyway, I'll leave more on that subject for others because I'm sure your going to hear a lot of good stuff.

P.s. you're asking good questions. And that's vital. The opposite of jaded in my opinion. I hope i'm not picking on you to much :)"
posted at 13:22:21 on March 2, 2013 by they_speak
The bishop meeting    
"I had a few confession sessions throughout my struggle and I came out of each with a real resolve to change and I honestly believed and felt that that was it, the moment of truth, the powerboost as you say. I know now that I was not being realistic, but my addicted invisible self. My last confession to my bishop which was my most meaningful saw me walking through the door knowing that I had a long slow road ahead. I was more depressed than boosted with power, I knew what a mess I was in, I had hit rock bottom in every way.

Trust the Lord, the ARP program, trust the Bishop but whatever you do, don't trust yourself.

Also don't over-analyze things, keep it simple.

Good luck"
posted at 20:18:56 on March 2, 2013 by ruggaexpat
Gotta love it when so many of my favorite people contribute to one thread    
"Dangerous, you have a good thread going here, and you are getting great insights from so many people who have been down the road before you. Take the best stuff!"
posted at 22:21:43 on March 2, 2013 by BeClean
Yes, I really do believe Jesus sent the 12 Step program    
"You said,
" Why does he need to send a 12 step program to us when we can be healed through the ATONEMENT program? We live in a Telestial world in a imperfect body and are expected to be Celestial? Only Christ pulled this off...AMAZING. If Christ sent the 12-step program then it should be 100% successful, because it is perfect. Do you really believe that?"

I think the 12 Steps are a specific application of the Atonement...for addicts. It IS 100% successful when followed on a daily basis. Your beef with living a celestial law in a telestial world is a beef with LDS doctrine, not 12 Step principles. Twelve Step programs practice "progress, not perfection."

The real issue written in between the lines of your post seems to be, "Am I an addict?" You are at "the 'step' before Step one". None of us wanted to admit that we were just like other addicts. (Like theyspeak said...) One tool we used to avoid working a program was to compare ourselves to the worst addict in the meetings. An addict will try every OTHER possible way to get clean before trying the 12 Steps.
It is my pride that tells me I am any different than the next sinner. That is a harsh truth that didn't happen overnight. I, too, have never committed adultery or slept with a prostitute. But by working the 12 Steps I discovered that I am an addict. Left to my own will power I cannot keep from lusting. I may last a few months or even a few years but without Divine help, I inevitably fall back into lust.
I am an addict. I accept that moniker, not to put a humiliating label on myself but to remind myself that although Christ has given me an 11 year reprieve from my addiction, I am still susceptible to destroying my life through active addiction. I keep up my end of the bargain and work the program on a daily basis, and He keeps up His end of the deal and provides a 24 hour reprieve from my addiction. To someone starting out, this seems like a dreadful way to live. It's not. It's living with eyes finally opened. It's living in Grace where anything is possible. It's true discipleship.
Men are strange creatures. We can't see our own pride but it is blatantly obvious to other men around us. What if Jesus really DID send the 12 Step program to heal addiction? At the stage you're at, I think each of us would've told Him exactly what you're trying to tell him..."Thanks, anyway but I have a better way to fix my problems." So, you're in good company!"
posted at 11:36:57 on March 3, 2013 by Anonymous
My sponsor,    
"The sponsor that I "bonded" with had been excommunicated and cheated on his wife several times before getting clean. I had done none of those things. He saved my life by walking me through the 12 Steps. Maybe you're a tad bit too discriminating when it comes to other people and who might have something to offer you."
posted at 11:43:57 on March 3, 2013 by Anonymous
A Wife's Perspective    
"I see life in such a different way since not only my husband, but I too went into a recovery program. I was a very obedient church member, but until my coming out of denial crash, I never knew Jesus Chris and his Atonement the way I do now.

My husband, like you never stepped out, never went to a strip club, and never paid for internet porn. It is interesting to read what you are writing because you sound just like him at the beginning of our journey into recovery. Now I see him sponsoring men who are from his meetings. I am not sure who they are or what they have done, but they choose to call him so maybe they just felt that he was someone who could help them.

We have been married for 26 years and up until 3 1/2 years ago, he has tried everything to stop his addiction. I can honestly say that there was not a stone left unturned....... except attending 12 step meetings. In fact with all of the Bishops he has visited with over the years, 12 steps was first mentioned 4 years ago. His reaction after his first meeting was exactly like yours. He, like you went months and even one full year without acting out. I would always think he had finally won the battle, but not so. The cycle of pain in our marriage would rear it's ugly head again. We know this cycle well as we had been doing it for 23 years.

What happened after that is hard to put into such a small space, but all of the years of having a part time priesthood leader (that is what addiction reduces it to) in our home came to fruition. Suddenly we were staring down 1 addicted husband, 1 addicted adult son, and 1 addicted teenage child (drugs), and one crazy, brain dead wife who suddenly came fully out of denial, and couldn't cope with the magnitude of what was happening. Did my husband humble himself and run to the next meeting after that? Yes he did, and so did I. We were losing our family to addiction and it was happening fast. At that point he was more humble than I had ever seen him. He was opening his eyes and seeing in a big way what this addiction had cost him and his family. He attended a 3 day intensive with Dr. Weiss, a 23 year sober recovering sex addict, turned psychologist. An amazing man who teaches accountability. He teaches men what it really means to be accountable and be real men of God and teaching them and their wives how to have an amazing life together ( and yes that mean a intimate experience). In essence my husband was willing to do anything to know God, anything. That included understanding that no amount of trying was going to stop his addiction. That included sitting in a room with " THOSE PEOPLE". He finally came to the point where wanted to be the man God wanted him to be more than he wanted what he wanted.

You can read through my history to understand our journey if you are interested, But what happened after that was his ALMA experience, and our lives have not been the same since.

Of course our lives have changed but still things are not perfect, otherwise we would both be Jesus. But I can say that he has grown much closer to his children. He can now connect with them on the same level. we are more connected and in love than either of us could ever have imagined. We are both no longer so judgmental of others. The little secret that those without true sobriety through Christ do not know is that the physical relationship you have within the bounds of marriage is more amazing and mind blowing than any form of fake sex with self sex, porn sex, phone sex,chat sex, prostitute sex, strip clubs, or affairs combined.

Pornography is the demonic realm and leaves the soul bonded with the unreal. And when that soul is bonded with that, reality becomes unclear. That unclear reality damages any intimacy that was reserved by God to bond the married couple. God's intimacy draws us closer together. Satan's porn plan rips the married couple, and the family apart. When we have been deceived into the fake plan, there is hope and healing.

Am I grateful for the 12 steps to the atonement? Oh, you bet I am. We have both learned that the thing we feared ( being one of those people), is the thing we needed the most. We also found that it did not matter if we were attending SA S-Anon or LDS ARP because addiction knows no religion, color, or creed. BTW, community programs are based on God as we know him. Mormons do not have a monopoly on the atonement of Christ. It is available to all who are seekers, and all who are willing to submit and surrender to him no matter the cost. We are no better or different than any addict of any (or no) faith. If there are any differences, they would be that we know better (with the exception of those exposed in their childhood by a perpetrator).

A word about Wives: Pray for your wives. They often became sick through your addictions. I could go into a long list, but it all comes down to the fact that when the Husband is sick with addiction, the wife becomes sick as well. I know that many wives do not feel that they need to attend recovery meetings, but they really do. I started out thinking that it was his problem and if he is sober then everything will be good. This is wrong thinking. The success rate goes way up when wives participate in S-ANON or Family support programs. We learn to see our addicted loved ones equal to ourselves. We are all wounded travelers in need of healing . Our husband's addiction (s), often lead us to our own bad and often crazy behavior. All of us in one way or another end up needing the same sort of help. working the steps also builds understanding and personal responsibility. Many of us feel that it is our job to keep our husbands sober, but nothing could be further from the truth. Actually our " helping" usually makes matters worse. In our own recovery, we learn how to put our trust in the Lord. We learn how to be peaceful even if our husbands continue to act out. Recovery leads us away from crazy thinking and codependent behaviors, and brings us closer to personal revelation and clear thinking.

I would like to respond directly to some of you comments and will do that in another post.

I am so happy that you are willing to do what your Bishop asks. I know that you do not like the place you find yourself. None of us do. But this is your new normal and one day you will be thanking your Savior for this program because you will come to know him in a way you never had. Hang in there this is just the beginning of a new and fantastic you!!!

You are about to come face to face with the Savior's Grace and it is the most amazing thing you will ever experience."
posted at 20:50:00 on March 3, 2013 by angelmom
Responding to you comments    
"I wanted to address your post in hopes that seeing it through a wife’s perspective might help.

I talked with my husband about your post and I am posting for both him and myself.

Hubby thought that he was less of a sinner than the men who had affairs, prostitutes, but now he see’s them through God's eyes. He sees them as equals. We are all the same no matter our sins. No one is better than anyone else. We all fall short of the glory of God and we cannot save ourselves.

Lepers who have been healed******* I believe that they do feel an obligation to reach back to help those still afflicted. In fact, there is no true healing without doing this. WHEN WE REACH BACK AND HELP OTHERS WHO ARE STILL TRAPPED, WE EXPERIENCE THE TRUE MIRACLE OF SOBRIETY, BROUGHT ON MY THE ATONEMENT. When it is no longer about us and our sobriety, but about those we can serve.

Unsuccessful in the AA 12-step. Is this better because it involves the Lord? *****It works when you work it, and all 12 steps are centered in God. Be it a higher power- Buddha, or Jesus Christ. Addiction begins in selfishness, and thrives in darkness. We must have someone or something beyond ourselves to hold us accountable.

Couldn’t he heal me after I first discovered it in my youth, before I got older and struggled?****Yes he could and does for all who are ready, but he cannot and will not take away agency. We must be completely willing to surrender all. Some are ready in their youth; some have to go around the mountain a few more times. And some finally get it on their death bed.

Is this my cross to bear in this life to prove I won’t put enmity (hate for God) in my life? ****No, but it can be your cross to bear until you surrender all, even your own embarrassment to have Him heal you.

Is this really about healing? If it is then I need a miracle. I feel like I need more. *****Miracles happen every day. That is what God does. If You may need more, but that answer comes through prayer. It varies from person to person.

I had a pretty screwed up childhood *****My hubby did too, but needed very little diving in. The true root behind any addiction is not about the drug of choice it is all about the filling empty holes.

If you had a heart attack – I think you would do all in your power to get every form of help possible, especially prayer. Calling 911 is a great start.


Bishop: ******It’s not about him. He may have sent you to the 12 step program because he felt inspired. Also, Bishops are finally becoming better trained to spot what addiction looks like. If someone has been in many times throughout their life for the same “struggle” That is what we called addiction.

I was mum for my first meeting, because if I ask these questions in there I could really knock them off their path.******* I promise, nothing you have said will knock anyone off their path. They have all said, felt, or heard it before.

The 12-step program requires discipline and strength******: We have found this to be somewhat true. It requires the willingness to attend and do the daily work, but it does not require any personal strength. It only requires humility and willingness to surrender to the Lord.

Military break down comment: *******Not the same at all. But we promise that as you work the steps with complete humility before the Lord, he will rebuild you into something you could have never imagined, and that is something even the US government can’t do.

Deep is what I need and will commit to, but the 3 year thing scares me: ********It scares everyone in the beginning. That is why we take this stuff one day at a time. After a while you will begin thinking that you wished you had this as a teen. Oh and the 3 years thing…actually it is a lifetime thing. Being healed by the Savior is a lifetime thing, and he will expect you to help him heal others just as he has healed you. If everyone left because “they are okay now”, who would be there to help those who come seeking sobriety? Those who desperately need a person to guide them to the Savior will need someone to turn to, and that will one day be you.

Sponsor or role model type relationship where it will become justification for future acting out- ******Not at all, your Sponsor is not your friend; he is your accountability partner. But sometimes they become your friend too.

If I am asking too much, then why are the porn groups separated from the regular addiction?***** So are eating, drugs, alcohol, shopping, gambling, etc. Can you imagine the size of the meetings? The specific connection helps like addicted people understand and relate. Much like support meetings for widows, mental illness, or grief over the loss of a child.

Why does he need to send a 12 step program to us when we can be healed through the ATONEMENT program:******12 step meetings are one of the Lord’s Atonement programs. Funny I though this about Jospeh Smith. I mean why go to some kid when he could appear to everyone at once? God's ways are not our ways. He always surprises us and baffles the mind.

If Christ sent the 12-step program then it should be 100% successful, because it is perfect. Do you really believe that? ******* Yes!!! Jesus set up his true church perfectly, but it and it's membership are obviously very imperfect. Christ set up many perfect things. But people through their "natural man" tendencies often mess things up. But when those natural men humble themselves before Him, and turn to Him, He will make their weaknesses their strengths. The 12 step process is one of those opportunities to have his perfect love heal us, or not. The choice is ours.

I hope I was able to help answer some of your concerns and fears. You are completely normal as this usually how it goes for just about everyone. We all start out in denial because we picture addiction to be the washout in the street with a needle in his arm, or the child molester in prison, or the man who has slept with lots of other women while he is married. But addiction takes on many forms.Addicted people can look like addicted people. Addiction can look like the perfect Priesthood holder who never misses a meeting, an opportunity to serve, and read scriptures. or addiction can look like the man in prison. Addiction can look like a pot smoker, or a strung out meth addict. It does not matter what it looks like. President Uchtdorf receently said " don't judge me because I sin differently than you do". We all need healing, and all need our Savior to heal us.

I count you as one of the amazing men who loves his wife, family, and his God enough to give his best effort. There are many who are not even willing to do that. There are many who are planning to take this to the grave. So kudos to you brother. I am praying for your success because it will literally transform you and in turn, transform your family. That is my testimony of how powerful recovery really can be."
posted at 21:08:33 on March 3, 2013 by angelmom
wiping tear from my eye...    
"Thankyou angelmom. you are awesome.. timeframes are scary for me and I think most addicts. I remember seeing 3-5 years and freaking out.. For me recovery is about learning to hold on to the iron rod and make decisions based on mechanical analysis rather than feelings that merely "fill n a hole" . It is about having faith that things will get better and staying in the marriage long enough to let my wife have a realistic chance at healing. It is about knowing that I cant fix things by myself. It is about learning that I have to rely on someone other than myself (God) to fix things. It is about learning that my addiction is a blessing in disguise because being sane (which I prefer) requires that I live a life of recovery -- have compassion on myself and others, be less selfish, stay close to God.

I second angelMoms comments. "
posted at 09:07:22 on March 5, 2013 by Anonymous
12 step programm    
"It just occurred to me that perhaps your resistance ( and mine as well) is the modern equivalent to the biblical 7 step program. Washing 7 times in the river Jordan is more about obedience and humility than process.

By the way this is directed to myself, sorry if you are just colateral damage."
posted at 15:48:39 on April 15, 2013 by Anonymous
12 Step is worth it    
"I don't know that I have a lot to add, but I want you to know that I would not be where I am in my recovery without 12 steps and counseling. And I'm one of "those people". Hanging out with those like me will not make you do things like me. You are smart enough to know that people do those things and that they're not bad people, so you already have all the justification you need. I do believe that ARP was inspired by GOD as is AA. As someone said, it is the atonement for addicts. Also, my ARP meeting is all addictions. Although the "drug of choice" is different, the thoughts and feelings are the same. An addict is an addict. Our ARP meeting is also men and women (well men and me mostly). I've also found SA meetings to be helpful. I try to go to at least one SA meeting, my ARP meeting, and counseling every week. I plan on going to meetings the rest of my life. As someone who really wants to be sober, I've decided I'm ready to do whatever my bishop or counselor feel would be good for me. I can't risk leaving something not tried. I know that I'm blessed to be alive and that my addiction will kill me if I leave it untreated.

D"
posted at 17:46:20 on April 15, 2013 by dstanley
Dstanley    
"Good to have you back. Glad you're still working at it."
posted at 03:22:58 on April 16, 2013 by Anonymous


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"Each one who resolves to climb that steep road to recovery must gird up for the fight of a lifetime. But a lifetime is a prize well worth the price. This challenge uniquely involves the will, and the will can prevail. Healing doesn’t come after the first dose of any medicine. So the prescription must be followed firmly, bearing in mind that it often takes as long to recover as it did to become ill. But if made consistently and persistently, correct choices can cure. "

— Russell M. Nelson

General Conference, October 1988