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June 7, 2016 at 2:13 pm #11892Participant
I am angry at you. I am angry that you lied to me for 35 years about the identity and mortality of my biological father. I am angry that, even after being confronted, you continued to lie. I am angry that for so much of my life I had no choice but to repeat those lies to others, rather than face the humiliation of admitting ignorance. I am angry for not being allowed to know him or my grandparents (who are now deceased) as a child, and I resent having to decide whether or not to tell my own children what you have lied about. Your lie humiliates me. I wish I had been persistent or courageous enough to confront you sooner, but I was always too insecure. I wish that it were not too late to develop a meaningful relationship with him. Even though I cannot ever forget the lie or the petty reason for it, I also cannot judge you for doing what you thought was right at the time. I have to forgive you for it because if I don’t it will poison not just my relationship with you, but also my children’s relationship with you.
June 7, 2016 at 2:37 pm #11893
Day 4/Solution 4 is the toughest! Your Total Truth letter addresses a huge tragedy in your life!
My second “letter”, after the first one to myself, was also to my late mom.
It was helpful for me to write a few sentences for each of the 6 steps, beginning with the phrases suggested on pg 89, 90. Things actually turned up for me that were unexpected. Number 6, after doing 1-5, especially gave me some insights into her pain and fears, and allowed me understanding I never had before. I was able to find true forgiveness for her. In fact I cried.
Hope this helps, and hope you continue to Thrive in Sobriety! Sina
June 16, 2016 at 1:14 pm #12087Participant
Dear Bad Self-
I am angry at you for not loving yourself and continuing to be attracted to people who can’t love or don’t know how to love and then feeling unlovable and unworthy and then not loving yourself. Nice little cycle you keep repeating. Don’t you know that is the definition of insanity? Stop acting insane when you really aren’t.
You’ve got so much going for you. You are smart, mostly healthy (except for that liver that needs a break), you have a job that could at least pay the bills, if you used your money wisely and soberly. You have two great children that need you to not check out every night; they need your full, sober attention. You have shown that you can change your situation, start new things, and learn, and yet for the past 7-10 years, maybe more before having kids, you’ve lied to yourself and others, severely, and you can chalk it up to not facing your fears and emotions soberly. What the hell is wrong with you? Grow up and get ready to feel!
Nice try, but the genes did not skip you, nor did the family breakdown, nor did the legal consequences.
Everyone makes and learns from mistakes, and these are just yours. Own them.
At least you have two grandfathers, two uncles, and one cousin who have figured out how to live sober. Just look how long it took them! You can do it too. Be one of them.
Keep it up and be proud of yourself. You will be able to face everything with a clear mind and even remember what choices you made the next day. You might react emotionally, but it will be a sober emotion.
Eventually, you will find creative ways to express emotions: photography, reading, writing, sharing, giving, dancing, sweating, etc., – all the things you would like to do.
When you do, you will love yourself, and when you love yourself, you will understand what kind of love is most akin to what you are now capable of, and that is the love you will attract.
Hang in there not-so-bad self. xoxo,
June 16, 2016 at 1:44 pm #12088
Superhero, nice work, entertsining, yet no nonsense truth telling! You’re destined to succeed! Sina
June 18, 2016 at 6:50 am #12117Participant
“Get ready to feel”! I was just thinking about this while walking on this beautiful Saturday morning in south Florida. I’m noticing that since I haven’t been drinking I’m using food to stifle any emotions. Awareness is the first step. I will do what it takes to feel those emotions!
June 28, 2016 at 8:36 pm #12318Participant
Hi Aleecat, I am on day 4 and was wondering how you are doing. I used to think I was somewhat in touch with my emotions, at least on the surface, but now after writing my first letter to my Mom I realize I have pushed any type of emotion and pain away for a very long time. So far I do not miss drinking at all which is a huge surprise to me. Unfortunately though, I am doing the same as you. I have been stifling any emotions with lots of food which defeats the whole purpose. I need to feel again and not use another sustance to push the pain away. By now, have you been able to not use food as a bandaid anymore?
June 29, 2016 at 9:01 pm #12358Participant
I too felt that over eating was defeating the whole purpose of the program so I took some action. I figured if I was going to love myself I wasn’t going to do it halfway. So I started doing some research and came across the books “it starts with food” and “whole 30”. Whole 30 guides you in transforming your relationship with food in 30 days. It appeals to me because I like the format of “the 30 day sobriety solution”. I haven’t started the program yet but I am able to read a lot about both books online for free. I am so inspired that I am already getting a grip on my eating. im also using discipline and a lot of self love. We’re worth it. Congratulations on your day 5 now!
July 8, 2016 at 8:17 am #12477Participant
Hope it’s all right to post this in here….
Dear Empty Self –
I know how you feel. You don’t love yourself deep down because you feel like you’ve failed. The ideas of your youth – where you’d be, what you’d be, still haunt every step you take and drive you to drink to get over an antiquated ideal that isn’t practical anymore… especially while you’re drinking.
I’m not saying that it isn’t right to dream. Those goals of your youth are still possible – but remember to look at your life in terms of what you have, not what could be.
You’re a great father (in spite of the alcohol.)
You’re a loving husband (in spite of the alcohol & your compulsive behavior.
You’ve got a comfortable home, enough to eat, and no health issues to speak of.
It’s time to get real, though.
I hate how you’ve let me down with your drinking. You’ve stolen time. You’ve stolen joy. You’ve stolen happiness, money, and have SERIOUSLY tampered with what was a pretty healthy sex drive. You’ve almost gotten into positions to cheat on your loving wife & betray your family. Your compulsiveness – your decision to drive drunk on more than one occasion – has put everything in jeopardy… not just yourself, but innocent people, too.
And let’s talk about your friends… remember that we reflect who we surround ourselves with. As you recover – which I sincerely hope you do – you might have to re-evaluate your social circle. That one guy? Not really a good fit for us.
But I forgive you. You’ve had disappointments. You’ve internalized a lot of your pain. But it’s time to let it go. It’s time to thrive. This isn’t some test run. This is your life. And if you continue down this drunken path, you’ve got – on the outside – maybe 10-20 miserable years left…. That’s if you don’t kill yourself, or someone else…
Think about losing your family. Think about destroying what you’ve made or taking it all from someone else.
We still have big dreams, you and I. Let’s focus on our sobriety this month, then get back to the business of living and loving the life we have & the potential of what’s to come.
The Full Self
August 3, 2016 at 8:52 am #12897Participant
Newsflash: you basically f*cked up my entire adult life.
Remember that night we hooked up, my senior year in high school yeah.. 10 days later I was diagnosed with herpes. I was still a virgin and never even had been to the gynecologist before. what a lovely first visit. NOT! And when I confronted you two weeks later, you denied it. and that was the beginning of my depression.
Even though I didn’t drink in College, my depression made me an easy target for self-destructive behavior. And having grown up with two alcoholic grandmothers and an uncle who drank himself to death, I was keenly aware of my drinking when I did start. But dont forget I’ve also got a sober cousin, brother-in-law, and aunt who are doing just fine.
Years of therapy showed me that when you denied it and failed to take responsibility for it, I internalized it. I carried the guilt and shame. I have struggled feeling like damaged goods ever since, not worthy of being loved. Whenever I told a potential new boyfriend, they ran- which only reaffirmed in my head that I’m damaged goods. My sexuality and my heart were locked up & protected, in a steel cage. That was the only place I felt safe.
But I’m turning over a new leaf, like Samuel L. Jackson’s character in the diner scene of Pulp Fiction. I’m trying real hard. I get it now. You had your reputation to maintain, a fragile ego, and insecurities. You had your own gremlins to deal with. The shame I carried for the both of us was very heavy. (I’m using the past tense on purpose. ;))
20 years later, I’m dating a great guy now. He was mature, kind, and loving when I disclosed my health status to him 2 years ago. I consider this the first real relationship I’ve ever been in.
Now, my heart is protected with pride and love, like an eagle is standing on my shoulder.
In 2012, I had lost my job and my back issues reared their ugly head. Alcohol was the only thing that numbed the pain. The opioid epidemic scares the daylights out of me. So, booze it was. The year before surgery, while I was unemployed and looking for work, I was easily drinking a bottle of wine a night.
I want to make some positive change before my life takes a ugly turn. I’m ready. I want to be the best version of me I’ve always known was inside me. I look forward to being healthy, active, pain free, in-tune with my sexuality, and ALIVE!
So I guess I want to say thank you. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t be here now, at the precipice of change and opportunity. How exciting!!! I am taking that first step to an authentic life.
I’ve always thought that courage is the most under-rated value. That the key to life is in the palm of your hand, as long as you have to courage to go after it.
August 3, 2016 at 10:26 am #12900
Hi tomatoesandbasil! What a moving Whole Truth Letter. It sounds as though it was/is cathartic for you! Congratulations on your continuing Sobriety. Please continue posting. I’m cheering you on! Sina
September 8, 2016 at 8:16 am #13584Participant
When I met you, you changed my life. I was in love for the first time at 50 years old. You accepted me for all of me including my customary two glasses of wine a night. That was 14 years ago. I didn’t know at the time that you were a narcissist, didn’t even know what that meant as related to real people. You made me feel like a million dollars. You doted on me and spoiled me like a princes. You gave me a great job where I excelled. I became the CEO of one of your companies. I made 2 million dollars net profit that year. Life was good. You always bought me the best wine you could buy. I drank greedily from the cup of love. Life started ever so slowly to resemble a teeter totter. I drank more wine. You begged me to marry you. I couldn’t do it. So I drank more wine. I did have my limit. You poured from the cup of love and then had affairs. I was silent,I drank the wine. You started verbally abusing me and accusing me of having affairs. I cried and I drank more wine. I always received a great bottle of wine, box of Godiva chocolates, a St.John outfit and a bouquet of flowers, all with price tags still attached, after the explosion and abandonment of 4-5 days after one of your many tirades. I drank more wine. You begged me to marry you. You bought the coral stucco beach house for me and I drank the wine. You bought “THE HOUSE”, a beautiful stucco French Chateau in the gated community. I celebrated with the best French wine. You never drank because you liked to pour. You liked to see my petite body drunk. YOU liked playing around behind my back, you liked that having a secret apartment and phone. I knew all about it. You liked your secrets and you liked me drunk. I drank the wine as if happiness was in a great bottle of wine. Happiness was closing my eyes and not feeling the pain and drinking the wine. You begged me to marry you. The day came when you swept me off my feet with dozens of roses, a beautiful diamond ring and a proposal in front of all of my employees. You embarrassed me and yourself. Everyone was in on the surprise, except me. I was ambushed. If I didn’t say yes all hell would break loose and that narcissistic temper of yours would flare and fire. I said yes out of fear. It was already planned. Two of my employees would be witnesses at the courthouse where you had already reserved the room for our civil ceremony. My dream wedding was no more. We had gotten our marriage license months before; you had them safe and secure, just for this day. I was in a panic, I was getting married at 60 years old. It was done. I was breathless. You were gloating. I willingly let you catch me because I was afraid to say no to you and I was afraid I’d lose it all if I didn’t go along. I even thought that when we were married your jealousy would stop. The honeymoon was magnificent as was the wine. I drank readily from the cup of love. I drowned myself in love. I didn’t move into the mansion for 5 months. You were getting very irritated at me. So, as you would usually do, you bulldozed me into moving in the mansion. You finally brought a team to my farm and forcibly moved me and my pets to the already prepared mansion. My house was abandoned like a fire storm until the day I fled for my life. I remember When you turned the key into the lock at the mansion, the shining began. Thank God for 7000 sq.ft. There were lots of hiding places. I was small so I could hide under the covers in some of the perfectly appointed bedrooms with all the fancy bedding. I hid under the bed in the third floor bedroom on the left. You never saw me, not even when you turned off all the lights, got your giant flashlight and softly called my name saying you wouldn’t hurt me if I came out. You started hunting me down like an English Foxhound on the first hunt of the day. You were exhilarated. You gave me lot of presents for those two months in captivity. The wine flowed. I remember the night I came home from the cancer clinic, it was dark and I was so cold. My key would not turn in the lock. I went to another door, same thing. I went to all the doors; my key would not enter the locks. I got a flashlight to further inspect the keyholes and realized you had super glued all the locks to the mansion except one. We never used that door because it was decorative. I had had a key made for that door and I never told you. I got into the house that night. I changed all the locks the next day and you became more engaged. I know all the things you did to try and provoke me but you couldn’t because i was practicing “No Contact”. I went into our house as a beautiful colorful butterfly and now I was a tattered, torn brown moth with my wings stuck to the cold marble floor by the thick sweet honey that had you spilled two months before. I was struggling. You struck me on May 10, 2011. You hurled my body through the air like a pitcher throwing the world series. I landed on the cold marble floor of the master bath with the force of an elevator free falling to the ground floor. I was injured. You looked scared for the first time. The police came and you ran away. You called your high powered attorneys and they told you to go back and what to say. The games began. I saw you come back and stand outside laughing with the other police officer. I almost fainted when the officer came inside to tell me you were going to press charges against me IF I filed charges against you. The officer told me if I did file charges we would both go to jail that night. Yes, I am shaking as I write this story that has never been put on paper. I didn’t file charges against you because I was terrified. I did file a restraining order on the 11th of May. I ran by the hospital on my way home to get my results of my mammogram where I learned I had invasive ductal carcinoma. I needed a drink. I went home and drank one of the special bottles of wine that you had bought me for a special occasion and I cried, a lot. I opened another expensive bottle of wine and drank half of it. When I filed for divorce, I enraged you and the bloody bull fight began. You had warned me many times with that fox like smile that I would never leave you. You would always come find me. You told me I was your best friend and we were soul mates for life. When I took a medical leave of absence to fight my breast cancer, I had to fight you too. You took my job, my marriage, my houses, my furniture, my left hip had to be replaced and my right knee had to be repaired all in a three year period. I am still fighting you. I drank a lot of wine. It helped me forget the wickedness of YOU. How could a man I loved so deeply, so freely turn on me with the vengeance of a rabid fox. You had always told me you had a ten to one rule. Now, I literally knew what you meant. How could I have been so naive, so utterly stupid.
You filed lawsuits for everything from the farm tractor to accusing me of embezzling 5 million dollars from the company that I lovingly saved from bankruptcy. You wanted jury trials in all of them. I had 6 attorneys at one time. The wine flowed as fast as the money. You stole all of my furniture from my farm, my original oil collection, you vandalized my farm and let my horses loose and every time I was at the cancer clinic you would do something destructive to let me know you were in charge. You are a big wig and a powerful, political figure and you managed to crush me like a tiny bug, almost. The police report and the pictures of the injuries mysteriously disappeared. You had bought the police and the judge. I gave up everything material for my freedom. It was so worth it. Enjoy all your stolen possessions.I could drink my wine every night with or without my two drinking buddy girlfriends. Everything was better with wine. I woke up one year ago and decided it was time to stop and I did, cold turkey, no problems. My birthday came along three months later and boom like a giant explosion, I was drinking again. This time I became friends with a woman who was married to a narcissist and needed a friend. She drank way more than I did but the race was on. She poured and I drank, willingly. I had concerns but she said we deserved this. I was led like a lamb to the slaughter. I went willingly holding a crystal glass filled with the best wine. My backbone was gone. This once powerful, successful, dynamic career woman was gone. Poof. Disappeared. Drunk up. The realization that life was going to be pretty grim if I continued my somewhat secretive habit was startling. To the outside world, at least according to the many positive comments I would receive, I had my stuff together and was a super woman because what had happened to me hadn’t torn me down. I was still such a positive person. I was positive that if I continued to drink a half to full bottle of wine every night, I would be dead in 5 years. I was now 20 pounds overweight, running out of money, unemployed, disorganized, lonely, depressed and scared to death I was going to become homeless. I drank that wine every night to make the pain go away. Like every addict out there. I drank to cover up the pain but the rebound pain was even worse. The wine was not working anymore. It was not making everything better. I have been alcohol free for about 10 days now. I am beginning to feel again, the good and the not so pleasant. It is freeing to realize the detrimental effects of alcohol on your mental, spiritual and physical life. I was drowning my life light in wine every night. When you drown you cannot breathe and you cannot see. You cannot live. I want to live and I want to shine. I want to be a butterfly again and fly in the currents of life feeling every emotion and living again. I want to be brave and courageous again. I want to let go of you, John. You no longer have any power over me. I fell in love with a lie, a facade of a man. You are a coward and bully. You are an evil person.I know all of your lies but don’t worry I will not tell because it doesn’t matter to me. You are dead in my eyes. You cannot hurt me anymore. I get it now. I love myself too much to let you or anyone else take me down, willingly or unwillingly. I will no longer let what happened to me affect me in a negative way. I don’t need your wine anymore. I also don’t need revenge because that’s not my spirit. You are free to go away forever, in memory and in the flesh. I don’t want you anymore. I deserve so much more. Goodbye and good riddance. I am finally free.
September 8, 2016 at 9:39 am #13586
@queenofsheeba, writing your account must have been very painful!!! Hopefully it has been cathartic and will enable you to move forward to Thriving in Sobriety.
The role alcohol plays in our lives is insidious and progressive and leads to bad decisions and self destruction, as your story illustrates.
For many of us, writing a letter of Forgiveness to Ourselves, based on the Total Truth Process, which is fully explained beginning on page 87 in the 30DSS book, is the best starting place.
The Authors don’t leave us in the dark about exactly what comprises this undertaking. On page 89 you will find the 6 steps involved. It has helped many to write several sentences beginning with each of the phrases suggested under the sub headings on pages 89 and 90.
I also found that copying The Forgiveness Affirmation (pg 94 ) into my journal was helpful.
Chapter 4, The Forgiveness Solution, is one of the toughest in the book. You may not be ready now, if Ever, to forgive “John” and that’s ok!
For me, the important thing was to forgive myself, remembering the admonitions in Chapter 1, The 100% Solution, that you must stop all blaming, all complaining, as this won’t serve your purpose.
Please feel free to go to my profile, by tapping on my screen name if you would like to personal message me. I friended you on your profile, which you can access by tapping on the “Where to?” above and scrolling down to it.
Hang tough Sobriety Seeker! Sina
September 8, 2016 at 10:47 am #13588Participant
@queenofsheeba – giving you a big virtual hug! and don’t forget what Winston Churchill said:
“There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.”
as a fellow equestrian and graduate of the 30 day sobriety challenge, I’m looking forward to spending time at the barn with horses instead of drinking a bottle of wine. Horses bring me joy and I’m sure they will help your soul too. I can’t afford a horse right now, but not to worry, I’ve got friends that do! 😉
Best of luck. Chin up. Stand Tall. You are worth it.
September 8, 2016 at 11:48 am #13594Participant
@queenofsheeba, WOW! I can relate to being with a narcissistic person and the roller coaster ride that it is. I used to be engaged to and living with one as well. I was with him off and on for many years. I remember pouring a glass of wine before he got home sometimes because I didn’t know who was coming home. The guy who adored me or the guy who had a long list of what he thought was wrong with me. He has nothing to do with why I think my drinking has picked up over the last few years but thru this process I am clear that my desire to stay single is not actually my true desire. There is still a lot that I want and I am finally ready to believe those things are still possible.
You have had a tremendous amount to overcome. You are a strong woman and I’m so glad you found your way here. I am sure you will find that the processes in this program will help you put your desires for yourself and your life back together.
June 5, 2019 at 6:43 am #122168Participant
There are things you can’t get prepared too. And this can’t be escaped. For example, I didn’t want to have anything in common with writers. And I can’t do it while I am continuing to studying and live an active life. I can’t. Because I need to write resumes, motivation letters and so on. I am glad that there are essay writer and helps time from time. But there is a letter I am writing by myself. Now I want to say thank you to every writer team member.
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