There’s only one step we have to do perfectly, and that’s Step 1. They should really put a warning sign in front of it, because it’s a doozy!
Step 1: Admitted we were powerless over [gambling, sex and love addiction, another person’s sex addiction, alcoholism, the list goes on and on] addiction.
Ok. Yup. I’m powerless. Woohoo! I’m done! On to step two!
Wait, not so fast. >.<
So I’m doing Step 1 with my SLAA sponsor. I’ve done Step 1 twice before, in GA and my Anon program. While both took work and reflection, they were nothing, NOTHING compared to SLAA.
Basically, I sit down with my sponsor for an hour and a half once a week, and go through my entire life, as best I can remember, and that’s not always chronological. It’s intense. So every Sunday I go through and relive lots of little traumas (my mom’s temper tantrum over not liking her Christmas presents one year) and the big ones, too (Psycho Steve).
It’s triggering, and leaves me feeling incredibly vulnerable. But it’s also cathartic. To share those experiences with another person, and even see an outsider’s perspective, observing common themes.
There have been two big themes for me so far. One is a lack of supervision… I behaved in pretty reckless ways with boys when I was younger, and that might not have happened if I’d had proper supervision. The other is emotional abandonment. Sure, Mom said the words “I love you,” but her actions didn’t really match that. I’ve only just realized that not only was she the most important person to herself when I was growing up (and still is), she was always the most important person to everyone else in the family, too. Both my Dad, and my two brothers. She still is.
My fear of abandonment runs super duper deep. I remember asking Seth nearly every day, “do you love me?” “of course I do!” “no matter what?” “no matter what!” I needed constant validation, and reassurance that he wasn’t going to leave. Little did I know, he’d been emotionally checked out our entire relationship.
I know I’ve talked a lot about Sid, my therapist. I feel like he has helped me so much in the last 6 months or so that we’ve been working together. More than my previous therapist of almost 4 years. He seems to care about me (presumably only to an extent appropriate for a therapist) but more importantly he helps me. He wants to help me. Me. Little old me. This feels like such a new concept for me. I worry that I don’t deserve it. I also worry that I’m going to do something to screw it up, and he’s going to drop me as a client… abandon me.
I don’t deserve his help, so of course I’m going to do something to screw it up.
On some level I know that’s entirely untrue, but it’s such a deep-rooted fear, I’m really having trouble shaking it.
Man. Recovery is hard. Working on myself is hard. But I sure as shit can’t go back to the way things were.