January 21, 2013
Yesterday I had a long overdue dinner with a friend, who happens to be an alcoholic and addict as well. Among the many topics of our conversation was relationships, particularly relationships with significant others, alcoholics and non-alcoholics.
My friend happens to be in an on-again, off-again relationship with a non-alcoholic, that is both volatile and loving.
When the two first became a couple, more than two years ago, my friend was about 2 years sober, and had not really learned to establish boundaries yet. Therefore, his girlfriend took the lead and kind of treated him not so nice.
In fact, although she is not an alcoholic, she is a few years younger than my friend, and she drank quite a bit. The fact of the matter is that she drank like a person of her age and behaved like a person of her age….immaturely.
Fast forward, two years later, and my friend is more than 4 years sober, has learned to establish boundaries, engages in esteemable acts, and respects himself more. He is a full-time student, works an impressive program and is of service.
Ironically, my friend is the one who is now acting out against his well-behaved girlfriend, who happens to be a lot more mature, does not drink as much and really respects my friend.
With that said, my friend is still resentful of the way that his girlfriend treated him in the early stages of the relationship. In many ways, he wants "to get back at her", he says.
We discussed his part. He admitted that he allowed her to treat him that way. He was lonely and wanted a girlfriend so bad that he tolerated the way she treated him. Today he says,"I would never let anyone treat me that way."
"I guess I am really angry at myself for allowing her to treat me that way. I just did not know how to stand up for myself the way that I do now. I have learned how to love and respect myself…..I still am."
He then prayed a simple prayer - "God, divorce me from anger toward my girlfriend. Help me to set appropriate boundaries so that people treat me how I determine that I want to be treated. Therefore, I will not have resentments and feel regret. Amen"
Weigh in on this tenth step and let us know what you think.
Also, if you like to see a particular scenario discussed, let us know.
Let's take 100% responsibility for our emotions.
If you or someone that you love is struggling with drug addiction or alcoholism, please call or text us. We would like to help you.