Sep 01 2013

Using Step Nine

Published by at 1:03 pm under Using the Steps

“Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

Welcome to Using Al-Anon’s Twelve Steps in Our Personal Lives from Al-Anon Family Groups. This is a series of podcasts to discuss how Al-Anon members use the basic principles of Al-Anon.

Today we’re going to ask Al-Anon members how they used Step┬áNine to help them overcome the impacts of a loved one’s drinking.

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13 comments on “Using Step Nine”

  1. Friend of Lois says:

    I’m currently on this step and this round of amends is probably the most difficult and uncomfortable amends. This podcast help provide clarity and I appricate all the comments people have left. I had the experience of having the other side at first accepted the amends I felt then a month later got a phone where the person was now upset and didn’t think they were amends at all. I read the comment how if the other party does not accept the amends it is their issue. It was hard hearing her what she had to say and went so far has to dictate how I should not make jokes about Al-Anon service in an upcoming performance. The part on step nine where it says “accept when to do so would injure them or others” can be tricky and even when I carefully went over this with my service sponsor over several phone calls I just don’t know how the person will react. I felt free when I made them to the person because I stand by the joke but I don’t need to say names. That’s my changed behavior. I don’t need to say names because the funny is in the experience and yeah, sometimes in my recovery it feels like BS and wonder if denial was really that bad. But once I’m awake and have awareness Spirit tells me to move forward to the best of my ability with my God. As a young person in recovery my joke writing is part of my recovery process and I joke about my recovery. This is new territory for me as it’s taken 8 yrs in Al-Anon to muster the courage to start writing jokes about my recovery and introduce joke writing workshops of turning your pain into punchlines at Al-Anon events.

  2. Kellie says:

    Love how these thoughts allow me to feel solidarity and connection with my program family
    Working on my 9th step letters..anticipating freedom!

  3. Esther says:

    This podcast is enlightening. I just have realized that this is where I am at and is what I need to work on. Thanks for having this good information online!

  4. Nancy says:

    I have made amends to my parents and my brother, but all along knew it was for me.

    Today, I wonder if my marriage has fallen apart. I owe amends for becoming detached to a point of being non physical, but there is more to it than that. He became ill almost immediately after we married and is only getting worse.

    Still, I struggle with balancing caregiving, while what he wants is a caretaker.

    Amends are in order to myself first!

    Then I must figure out my part and what I took on that should have stayed in his court.

  5. pat says:

    I think the hardest aspect of making amends is doing so without expectations. If I change my behavior, but no one appreciates it, does it matter? Yes, it does–to me. Amends are for me, not necessarily someone else. Therefore, I do my best, and if they don’t accept the amends, well, that’s their issue. I’m not looking to be forgiven by others. An amends is for me, to be able to grow beyond my previous behavior.

  6. Don S says:

    I am an adult child of an alcoholic and an alcoholic, but the vast bulk of my amends spring from the habits I learned growing up in a wildly dysfunctional and abusive family. My mother, the co-dependent, was enraged and on a terror 24/7. I have composed a draft letter to my first former wife. I was emotionally isolated during our entire 14 years. She could just as well married a zombie. She deserved much better. I also let my affections stray towards the end of the marriage (I was sexually faithful, but not anywhere close emotionally). For 25 years I thought I was justified in leaving the marriage, but I’ve come to realize that I never joined it in the first place. And for that and my unfaithful emotions I need to take ownership and make amends.

  7. Flinche says:

    I’m so happy to hear these stories. I’m having a very hard time with my alcoholic/drug-addicted family member. I keep listening to all the Steps over & over till I feel that I get them.

    My husband and I went to our first Al-Anon meeting last year and never went back :(. Hoping to find a meeting to join soon. We really need them, especially a sponsor.

  8. holly says:

    My best friend/lover/not sure what to call him at this point is in an outpatient rehab in another state and I’m not sure if he is coming back, if I should be going to meetings to understand, or I just need to move on. No signs are clear at this point.

  9. Sandi C says:

    I have made direct amends to each of my children several times. They are also in the program and I thought they understood. It is sad to me that they do not get the Steps, but I can only take care of my side of the street. I think my daughter understands it more now that she is a mother, but I sometimes wonder if the fences will every be mended.

    So they get to hold their resentments and I get peace, joy, and serenity. Truthfully, I feel sorry for them as I know how much pain resentment can cause your own personal self.

    This program really works for me and I am forever grateful.

  10. Linda B says:

    Doing the 9th Step with my sponsor’s help gave me freedom. It allowed me to forget many slights and hurts that filled my mind so that I could fill it with joy. It allowed me to be more fun for all the people in my life and not expect so much of people outside the program. People like to see me today, which still surprises me and is a true gift of the program.

  11. Ginger says:

    I am chairing a meeting on Step Nine this week and I found the podcast very helpful in the input and new thoughts on that Step. Thank you.

  12. Nancy says:

    I have made amends many times to my children only to find out it made no difference to my daughter. She has disowned me as her mother, leaving me to wonder about our future.

  13. mark says:

    Thank you so much. This is where I’m at in the Steps.

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