Models used: Addictive Personality and the Twelve Step Program
Areas of Growth: Relationships; Spiritual, Emotional, Mental
Areas of Concern: Dishonesty, Relapse, Community
Scenario: Asking one person out on a date, when in truth there is no attraction to this person. There is however an attraction to another who is unavailable.
One must have a basic understanding of the twelve step program and the model of addictive personality to truly gain from this article or my views here in this post. Craig Nikkon has written books that are fabulous and short for understanding the addictive personality model, and the Big Book of Alcoholics Anyomous can be found online very easily.
I like to integrate these two models as they flow so well together. The addictive personality outlines the basic problem while the big book’s twelve steps shows one how make changes to heal the problems within and create a deep personal change in ones life.
As stated in the addictive personality model, addiction is basically having a relationship and intimacy with an object, void of human in interaction. This relationship is in fact a secret,, a hiding of oneself from others. I relate to it as a withdrawal from life vs. going out word towards life. The object being alcohol, substances, porno, etc… One begins to have an intimate relationship with an object instead of a human being.
Craig Nikkon goes farther with this relationship based on manipulation vs. negotiation. With a human being, there is a back and forth, give and take interaction, where with an object, it is all a one sided affair, the addict uses an object to gain a specific feeling from it.
Okay so heres the situation that happened. See if you can relate this scenario to your own life, and see how the addictive personality and relapse is in play throughout the scenario and then how to heal this entire situation of personal betrayal through the twelve steps.
Bob has been attracted to Susan for awhile, but Susan is in a relationship with Harry. Bob has recently been involved with a married woman, and that relationship did not work out. He is not drinking, and still working out the issues from the previous relationship. He is feeling lonely, confuse, and angry. Anyway, here comes Susan, and Rhonda.
Now Rhonda is a nice enough woman, who crossed paths with our Bob, and found him attractive, and wanted to date him. She is the pursuer in this scenario. Bob is not really attracted to her, he has kissed her and doesn’t really like the way she kisses, and he thinks and fantasizes about Susan while he is with Rhonda. A date gets set up and Bob becomes nervous, begins believing they will have intimacy on this date.
The date begins, and is set in a bar. Bob shows up and right away explains that he drinks on occassion, even though he is in a program. She claims hey, whatever your alright with! He orders drinks for himself, and the away he goes. He believes his relapse happens then at that moment.
I believe it happened perhaps months ago in his relationship with the married woman, if he had any sobriety at all. Sobriety is not just the not using the original substance, it is the stepping away from the addictive personality all together and healing relationships with others and with the God of your understanding.
Here we go, lets pick out where things went wrong.
Bob was dishonest is this entire scenario. He in fact had full knowledge that he was not attracted to Rhonda, but did not reveal this to Rhonda. He hid from her his true self. Thus he was pretending to be or feel something other than what was true for him.
His soul knows this, her soul picks up vibes, both are betrayed on a deep spiritual level.
Manipulation occurs here as well, when Bob manipulates the situation in secret, getting his needs met for intimacy-the intimacy he really wanted from Susan. Thus he uses Rhonda like an object to get his needs met. Problem again, this is a lie for both him, and Rhonda, and Susan. Now he has caused harm to both women on a spiritual level. Neither know exactly what happened, yet both women can feel affected spiritually, or intuitively. both women, because of not really knowing for sure what happened, can be feeling confused. All are injured, even if they are not aware of their injury.
Bob in carrying this entire betrayal around with him. He is the knower of the dishonesty. His soul is affected, no amount of drugs or alcohol can hide the betrayal his soul feels. It may numb it for periods of time, but it can not heal it. Bob’s betrayal and dishonesty to him self and these woman may manifest itself in many ways. Anxiety, restlessness, insecurities within himself that are then masked by a whole slew of behaviors, the list can go on and on. Are you all still with me?
Now for Bob to begin to heal this betrayal, he must first see what has occurred. By seeing this, I mean he must come to understand it. To step back and look at it. Step four of the twelve steps has him begin to list it. The twelve steps is not the only self help program out there to work through this. There are many that will work just as well to help an addict take a look at their part in their own problems.
This seemingly small issue, that no one knows about, except BOB can cause many many issues for Bob right now if he allows it to slip by as “its no big deal”. For an addict, any lie, dishonest act, is a BIG DEAL no matter how seemingly normal it might appear.
Not only has Bob used Rhonda as an object. He is using Susan as an object as well, by fantasizing about her, without her knowledge of it. He is using her to gain pleasure sexually without her knowledge of it. He is acting for Rhonda, and lying to her, making her believe that she is bringing about his pleasure, when in fact, she is not. Bob is pretending Rhonda is Susan.
Bob, had to take a few drinks to calm his anxiety, to numb out his soul screaming, this is wrong. On some level his body is attempting to help guide Bob to doing the right thing here, by signalling something is not right with this for Bob. Yet Bob choose to ignore himself, and numb out his own knowledge about right and wrong. This is the addictive personality lying to Bob. Bob is betraying Bob!
Bob also lies to Rhonda, about his drinking. We all know that the twelve step program is a program of abstinence. Again the lying and dishonesty is clear. Many an alcoholic will only see this part of the betrayal. This is somehow more apparent to people. For a person to heal deeper, those places of betrayal that only involves thought, are less apparent. Yet all is equally important when attempting to heal oneself, and move into emotional sobriety.
Often we hear about the joy of living, yet many people in recovery never experience it. If you are a person in recovery who has not reached joy in your life, take a deeper look at your forth step. Does it contain and reveal places where you have betrayed yourself and others by dishonesty of the thought and mind? If not, take time to go back and truly uncover the mental manipulation and dishonesty. These are a doorway to gaining emotional sobriety and freedom from your addictive personality.
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