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Language of Letting Go - March 27

Old 03-27-2008, 02:20 AM
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Ann
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Language of Letting Go - March 27

You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go

After-Burn


How could I do it? How could I say it? Even though I meant it, I still feel ashamed, guilty, and afraid.

This is common reaction to new, exciting recovery behaviors. Anything to do with owning our power and taking care of ourselves can trigger feelings of shame, guilt, and fear.

We do not have to allow these feelings to control us. They're a backlash. They're after-burn. Let them burn out.

When we start confronting and attacking feelings and messages, we will experience some after-burn. The after-burn is what we allowed to control us all our life -- shame and guilt.

Many of us grew up with shame-based messages that it wasn't okay to take care of ourselves, be honest, be direct, and own our power with people. Many of us grew up with messages that it wasn't okay to be who we were and resolve problems in relationships. Many of us grew up with the message that what we want and need isn't okay.

Let it all burn off. We don't have to take after-burn so seriously. We don't let the after-burn convince us that we are wrong and don't have a right to take care of ourselves and set boundaries.

Do we really have the right to take care of ourselves? Do we really have the right to set boundaries? Do we really have the right to be direct and say what we need to say?

You bet we do.

Today, I will let any after-burn which sets in after I practice a new recovery behavior, burn off. I will not take it so seriously. God, help me let go of my shame and needless fears about what will happen to me if I really start caring for and loving myself.

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie 1990, Hazelden Foundation.
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Old 03-27-2008, 07:08 AM
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Thanks...

I'm so glad that you post these. I can't afford to buy the book right now as I have no job and, therefore, no income (I left my AH a couple of weeks ago). But I have been able to drop by the bookstore when I'm out job searching and read a bit at a time. I am really trying to work on me. Sometimes I feel guilty...like I should be focusin on my AH...or someone else...anyone else. I think it's kind of funny that I thought all this time I was just a caring person. I was...but really only for everyone else! I am soooooooooo thankful that I found this website and for people like you who take the time to post this. I feel like gratefulness is bubbling out of me! I'm going to go and work out and let that after-burn burn off, baby!!
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Old 03-27-2008, 03:54 PM
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Thanks for today's message Ann

This message was especially difficult for me because I have let guilt guide my life often. Sometimes it helped me in ways like staying out of trouble because I didn't want to disappoint my parents. But with my AH it is proving to hold me back. He uses it as a way to keep me here. He'll say things like, 'its easy for you to say you want a divorce isn't it?' or 'its easy for you to walk away" or 'i guess marraige means more to me because I would never divorce you no matter what'. Then he always has to throw the disease word in, because after all it is a disease and what kind of wife would leave her husband when he has a disease or is sick. (He also has bipolar and chronic pain) So yes, I have always felt guilt in leaving.

But the last night, after finding out a few more lies and broken promises with his pain medication, I just couldn't believe it, I still can't. I think I finally started (just started) to detach. When I told him I can't live like this, he said, 'so you're leaving?' and for the first time I felt ok with saying yes. I told him I have made it clear that I do not want to live with someone on and off pills and drugs, that I will not, and that if he chooses to continue, I WILL LEAVE. I also know that it may not happen today or tomorrow or even next week. But the fact that I was able to say that without feeling bad for HIM, made me proud of myself. I told him I was taking steps to make myself feel better, be better. And I feel ok about it all. I am upset still when I think of his choice, but I also know that what I am doing needs to be done for me.

So thanks again, it was good timing to hear that today.
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Old 03-27-2008, 05:09 PM
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Thanks, I think I have made progress since I came to SR! This week I had a facial and a manicure! I DESERVE IT! Oh, yes we all do!
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