12 Step Planet - Heart Ache
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Stories about addiction and recovery, Clean and Sober life styles
written by "Mark G."


It has taken me more than a few failures to reflect on the heart ache that relationships have led me to while I've been in recovery. I'd love to be able to say that I wasn't part of the problem or that my partner was at fault, but that wouldn't be anywhere close to the truth. In fact, after a lot of soul searching, I am to blame for each of the "lessons" that have come my way. Today, through a lot of self-examination and the help of my support group, I finally realize this.  

Being single is be a tough spot to be in. I have a phone with five hundred numbers in it and just about everyone would be willing to talk with me day or night, but there are times that I still feel completely alone. It's not about the men in my support group - it's about the lack of one special woman in my life. I am always hoping that the "right" one comes along and sweeps me off of my feet. I've come to the conclusion that I haven't been ready for a healthy, happy r...elationship and that some of my character defects have stood in the way.  

I have abandonment and trust issues, almost all stemming from an abusive childhood. I've always been overly anxious, never enjoying the moment, on guard for signs withdrawal, seeking constant reassurance. I take things personally, over analyze things (my own mind is my worst enemy), and am quick to make assumptions. Then, when I start to feel close to someone, I push them away. I get attached to people quickly, pulling out my "emotional suction cups." I'm a master at sabotaging relationships, especially when they seem like they have potential and are going well. I've heard it said that it's much easier to reject someone before being rejected, and I'm guilty as charged.  

Today, I am only beginning to heal the wounds from deep in my past. Recently, I chose to reach out for additional help in twelve-step fellowship which allows me to focus on my role on difficulties that I have with others. I am open and honest with my sponsor and my support group. And, I'm not praying for the right woman to come into my life any more, but I am becoming the best man that I can be. When the right person finally shows up, I will be the kind of man that she wants - and deserves to have - in her life. I'm finally realizing that this isn't going to happen on my time, no matter how hard that I try to reach out.  

I owe thanks to a few people that have helped me to see what I could do differently in relationships and that have helped me to grow as a human being. No one held anything back or tried to spare my feelings, but were objective and brutally honest with me. They held a mirror up for me to see who I really was. It wasn't a lot of fun, but it wouldn't have been possible without them. My words could never express how thankful I am for their help.