Sexual Addiction Recovery Affects the Entire Family

On Saturday, October 13th, S.A. Lifeline Foundation will be hosting a Family Fun Run. We hope you will join us in beautiful Mapleton at 9:30 am for an easy-paced 5k for the entire family.  There will be fun prizes and awards that are worth your time!

Why is it important to us to host a Family-centered event?  Because sexual addiction recovery affects the entire family.

At S.A. Lifeline, our mission and mantra is “Recovering Individuals. Healing Families.”  We know all too well from our own experience that Addiction & Trauma affect the entire family system.  We have seen our children suffer from our lack of emotional availability, our trauma-triggered reactions, and our overall inability to manage our daily lives as we hit rock bottom.

Not to mention the ways they have suffered at the hands of the addict in our lives.

The underlying tension and fear that exists where addiction is present inevitably affects every aspect of the home.  It is a silent poison that everyone is blindly breathing in, skewing their perspective on life and their ability to trust human beings and make authentic connections with people.

Today I can reflect back on the incessant background static of tension and anger in our home for over a decade and see that I was constantly swimming upstream trying to manage and control it, oblivious to the role that addiction was playing in the constant pull.  I see in my mind the face of my 10-year old son with terrified tears rolling down his cheeks as he stood in the hallway witnessing the chaos and rage in the aftermath of my husband’s initial disclosure.  I can feel his heart beating wildly in his chest as I lay with him in his bed that night until he finally fell asleep, promising that everything would be okay, even though I did not believe a word that was coming out of my mouth, my mind spinning frantically to make sense of my new reality.

Have my children been affected by Addiction and Trauma?  Absolutely.  Everything about the way my husband and I did everything was tainted with our pain.

But don’t despair!  Recovery trickles down just as powerfully.

Recovery has had the miraculous power to not only change my own heart and mind, but to change the entire environment of my home.

What once felt like tension and darkness can feel open and light.  One Day at a Time.

What once felt full of blame and justification can feel humble and accountable.  One Day at a Time.

What once felt like isolation and hiding can now feel honest and transparent.  One Day at a Time.

What once felt like fear and powerlessness can feel like trust and deep Assurance.  One Day at a Time.

I came to Recovery not to save my family, but because I knew I had to save myself.  I wanted to die. I was desperate for anything that would bring sanity back to my life, that would somehow fix me.

But bringing the light of recovery into my home as I focused on working my own Steps was the best thing I ever did for my children.  It’s like Eckhart Tolle says, “It is not my job to fix the world.  It is my job to awaken to the presence of God that is within me.”  Or in S-Anon terms: “We realize that we cannot find serenity for ourselves if we continue to focus on someone else’s recovery, so we commit ourselves to our own recovery.”

Recovery has unexpectedly become a family endeavor, and it continues to pay dividends in every aspect of the way I interact with my children and my husband.  While some of those benefits come from direct conversations about Recovery Tools like Boundaries, Surrender, Accountability, and daily Check-ins, the biggest benefit is harder to quantify or pin down.  It is in the underlying background of honesty, compassion, accountability, safety, and peace that are the inevitable fruits of recovery work, that lay the foundation for healthy living and a healthy environment where little human beings, and big ones, can flourish.

We would love to hear about the ways you have seen your own Recovery bring healing into your family.  Please share in the comments below!

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

* Attention: your comments will be viewed by other people in our community and potentially by the world wide web. If you'd like to remain anonymous, please only put your first name and last initial.

Your email may also pull up a picture of you depending on how you've set things up with your email provider. Unless you want to receive notifications of comments via email, you are welcome to put [email protected] Thanks for your participation in the community.