I had been sober from drugs and alcohol for a couple of years when I realized that I was still unable to grow in areas where I had felt the greatest amount of despair, although my life was changing for the better.
My relationships, at this point in my recovery, were limited and fragile at best. My friendships were usually with people whom I had met at the baths, parks or bookstores while acting out. Ironically they were usually the same people, just in differe
My best friend kept suggesting to me that my relationship issues may have something to do with how and where I was spending the greatest amount of my time. I was unable to hear him and somewhat resentful about his suggestions. I felt that my issues c
ertainly could not involve addictive behaviors, since I was already recovering from drugs and alcohol. I had always judged this friend because it seemed he had to recover from everything through a different 12-Step program. I didn’t want to be that neur
otic about relationships.
That year my employment situation also changed. I received a promotion to Chicago. Although I was scared, I realized that I was sober, I had a program and that Alcoholics Anonymous would provide me with all that I needed to make this transition in my
life. Yet my move opened up a new world of addiction and a very dark world at that. Suddenly my acting out escalated to different places, activities and behaviors than I had experienced in the past. What was particularly upsetting to me was that I was
attending AA meetings, yet still unable to connect with people or make new friends. My life continued to feel pretty empty and seemed to be getting worse.
I remember when the shift finally occurred in my life. I was at the baths and had just finished acting out in a particularly disgusting manner. Suddenly I realized that there had to be another way to relate to people other than the process I had just
completed. No big revelation, just a clear understanding that there had to be something else out there. I wasn’t sure what that method could possibly be, but I was sure that the way I was trying to connect no longer worked.
The next day I resistantly wandered into my first SCA meeting. Ironically enough the chairman of the meeting was someone I recalled acting out with many years prior. This alone peaked my curiosity enough to stay through the whole meeting. Somehow I
kept coming back. At times my sexual recovery has been very difficult and painful. I can remember feeling once, that if I didn’t act out I would die. In fact I once considered suicide as an alternative to the pain I was experiencing. But God’s grace a
the support of other recovering sex addicts helped me through that pain and has continued to provide me with that support time and time again.
Once I decided to ask someone to be my sponsor, wrote out a bottom line, and made a commitment to my home group to attend meetings, I began to experience the relationships I had always hoped for in my life. There were often challenges in these new fri
endships. Frequently I confused my emotional needs with my physical needs. However, by using my sex plan and by discussing my feelings with these individuals and other recovering sex addicts, my relationships were able to grow into healthy friendships.
Today I have been sober and abstinent for two years and nine months. I am currently in the first monogamous relationship of my life (two and a half years). We are planning a commitment ceremony this summer. Relationships and friendships continue to
be constant challenges as well as continuing opportunities for growth in my life. Yet I am very grateful that I am available for these challenges and that I am present to experience my own growth.
There is no doubt in my that while Alcoholics Anonymous saved my life, Sexual Compulsives Anonymous helps me live my life in relationships one day at a time.
Sexual Compulsives Anonymous International Service Organization
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