Guilt and Grief: Making A Living Amends

If we had not done ourFourthandFifth Steps, we would probably still be so confused about our own personal responsibility, we wouldn’t know specifically what we’re making amends for. If we hadn’t developed humility in theSixthandSeventh Stepswe’d likely approach our amends with self-righteousness, blame or anger. OurEighth Steplist was our practical preparation for working Step Nine. As we go into this step we must remember to stay connected to a higher power and have faith that the previous eight steps have prepared us to work the Ninth Step.

  • Russia trumpeted it as part of a newly robust arsenal of strategic nuclear weapons, though analysts widely believed it to be far from operational.
  • We may even start to think of our past as a gold mine of experiences to share with other people we’re trying to help in recovery, instead of as a period of darkness that we regret.
  • I want to show them how it can’t be that I’ve hurt their feelings because I’m a good person with good intentions.
  • Living amends is a concept linked to addiction recovery and part of the twelve-step program for sober living.
  • I want to the my counselor for caring about my overall welfare.
  • To discern whether to make amends, ask yourself why you’re wanting to contact the person.

Sitting down with someone to own up to your mistakes and apologize takes a lot of courage. Sit down with your sponsor or counselor to come up with a plan for what you will say and how you will respond if things don’t go exactly as planned. Doing this will help you feel more confident as you start working Steps 8 and 9 and making amends. The Native Americans understand that restorative justice was a process of accountability and repair that heals the entire community.

You can find What’s Your Grief? Lists to Help you Through Any Loss wherever you buy books:

Making amends does not undoing the wrongdoing, just as forgiveness doesn’t undo the wrongdoing. Instead, it is an action we take to compensate for what we have done. The FHE Health team is committed to providing accurate information that adheres to the highest standards of writing. This is what is a living amends part of our ongoing commitment to ensure FHE Health is trusted as a leader in mental health and addiction care. Sometimes it can be hard to know what to say when preparing to make amends. There may be so many times we feel we let someone down that it can be hard to know where to begin.

what does living amends mean

As Kessler describes, this woman may decide that her way of making amends is to always answer the phone when someone she loves calls after a fight. Though this cannot undo or directly compensate for the initial mistake, it can serve as living amends that comes through a different way of being in the world. In that act, your actions in their memory make you and the world a better place.

Where Do You Start With Step 9 Aa?

Once you enter into sobriety, there isn’t a set timeline for working Steps 8 and 9, so you might want to ask your sponsor and recovery support network for their insights about whether you’re ready. In Twelve Step recovery, your pace is your own to determine. No doubt you will experience challenges and setbacks along the way. But by prioritizing your recovery on a daily basis and doing whatever that next right thing might be for you, you will keep moving forward in living a life of good purpose. It’s important to note that making amends is for the person we hurt. Yes, we partake in the process to “clean up our side of the street,” but we do not make amends to clear our conscience or undo our feelings of guilt.

  • When a person has died, you can still make amends for your actions.
  • Listen and Validate Be willing to listen to their side of the story, opinions, or thoughts on the matter.
  • When women experience betrayal, emotional abuse, and sexual coercion at the hands of their partner, they experience significant betrayal trauma that can impact their lives in devastating ways.
  • We are seeking accountability for our own actions and holding ourselves to the standards of our own values and our 12 Step program.

Just as you’ll have to work through the 12 Steps of AA (or another recovery program) at your own pace, the time for making amends will depend on your circumstances and when you feel ready. If you’re new to recovery and you’ve never made amends with loved ones before, you might be nervous or uncomfortable. Understandably, you might also be afraid of what the person’s reaction will be, feel very ashamed, or worry that your apology is too late.

Tips on Making Amends With People After Addiction

One of her children is killed crossing the street on their own even after telling their mother that they were afraid to cross the busy street alone. A living amend might include a posthumous promise to the deceased child to, from now on, make it a point to walk their surviving siblings to the bus stop each day. Living Amends – Upon making living amends, we consider how we can display to others that there has been a spiritual and revolutionary change from the person we once were. When you make any amends, it is important to reflect on how you can apply the specific amends into making each one reflect within your living amends. The amends process either directly or indirectly, it reinforces positive behaviors, your willingness to take ownership of your actions, and any resulting consequences.

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The theme of making amends is forgiveness, and although it is one of the steps people may not like, it comes at this point in the AA journey for a reason. There are many profound differences between giving someone an apology and making amends with them. Simply put, an apology is like putting a band aid on a wound; it covers the source of the pain until it eventually disappears. When you make a sincere apology to someone that you’ve hurt, it makes you both feel a little better but it doesn’’t really do anything to correct the situation that you have caused.

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