- This topic has 11 replies, 12 voices, and was last updated 7 years, 3 months ago by Anonymous.
- September 30, 2013 at 4:54 pm#31137AnonymousInactive
For years I have written about my resentments in daily inventories and various vain Fourth Steps attempts and lengthy morose recovery novels. You know, those nasty, angry and self indulgent feelings that live like bathroom mold in the nocks and crannies of our lives. Psychologists have a million clinical names for the same old story; anger individually packaged and wrapped for reuse, just add _________.
During my first really halfway to three quarters honest Fifth Step, my then Sponsor mentioned that I was the angriest person he had met in years. He went on to say that anger and resentment would most likely kill me. (Of course at the time I thought he was an A**hole for saying the words, let alone speaking to me in such a tone.) Why was I so angry? Why did I have a readymade resentment, justified to the hilt for any situation that would popup during the day? The answer today is relatively simple. I lived in fear! Christ, I was scared of everything, well almost everything, or so I thought. If I was not admittedly scared of it, I bullied it or conned it. Resentments were basically self justified fears made into what I believed to be secure excuses for my past, current or future behavior. “Wouldn’t you be mad if this happened to you?”
So how does anger and that renewable resource; resentment, kill? The best analogy for me is the nurturing and growing of a plant. Without proper light, air and food, a plant will slowly die. Introduction of extremes or poisons such as too much light or bad water will break down the natural defenses and the plant will succumb to any number of tragic ends and die.
Resentments are like a slow acting poison bombarding the personhood of those who jealously harbor them. Like a plant, our nature defenses of common sense and intellect fall away under the constant attacks and the sick emotions take control. When a resentment is fortified with the word RIGHT, we are doomed to relive it over and over again. Being right dooms more people than any earthly disaster.
How do I begin to defeat resentments? First, I no longer do it alone. I need the combined experience, strength and hope of others to see clear the path to sanity. Many of my resentments were based in fact. I was molested as a child, fact. I was adopted as a child, fact. With facts such as these and life lived in the negative rather than the positive, what conclusions would you draw if you were in my shoes? Of course I was RIGHT to condemn pedophiles and homosexuals. Of course, I was RIGHT to blatantly accuse humans of failure who could not marry and raise a child in love and peace. Of course you were WRONG if you didn’t fit neatly into my thinking!!! I was a resentment growing on the justifications of my own emotions. I had to break down the emotional lies and prudent justifications of my life to get to the bottom of the honest truth of powerlessness in each individual resentment.
I had to prepare the way to even have a chance of battling resentment. I needed to be daily committed that I had consumed all of the booze I would ever need in this life. I need to reaffirm my belief in something greater than I daily so that I was never again alone and helpless as I had been in years gone by. I needed to have a core of folks who I could be a part of. I needed direction. Most of all, I needed the willingness and determination to change completely without more shame and guilt. I was now ready to write.
The battle to succeed begins with the pen. If you don’t pick up the pen, the work will never get done. You have to fight for your life. You have to allow the light of truth to open every room and every closet of your existence. As you do, the light brings a certain sanity to your world and the resentments will attempt to flee like the cockroaches they are. Do not allow fear to prevail! Write and write some more. Do not wait for the flowery details; write the truth now for to wait could bring more pain. If you are one of those pathetic perfectionists, like me, don’t stop to correct the spelling! Write! Write like your life depends on this material no less than your next breath. WRITE.
When you are done, get your Sponsor or another recovered person and work the Fifth Step then the Six and Seven immediately. Don’t wait around for anything. Make sure your Sponsor is aware of your request to work these steps now. Keep your Fourth, it will lay the ground work for Eight through Twelve and will be the basis for your new life; nothing less than victory is needed now. Why would anyone come all of this way and procrastinate and then eventually be defeated? Someday you won’t have to fight anymore, that time has not come yet.
I am writing this for my soul and by chance, yours. I am and have been many things in this life, mostly negative. Today, I am aware enough that if I do not add my voice, write my thoughts or commit myself to something I will die inside. I do not want to die. I work in the Cemetery and Funeral industry and I watch folks pass through our Funeral Homes and into our Cemetery daily. They all have one thing in common; they no longer have the ability to help others or themselves. I do not want to be one who no longer has the chance to make something worthwhile today, no matter how small that something is. If you are resentful, find joy, if you are alone, make a friend, if you are drunk, get full. Thank you for my recovery. Ron A.September 30, 2013 at 5:33 pm#164794AnonymousInactive
🙂 Resentments are like taking poison
and expecting another person to die.September 30, 2013 at 5:36 pm#164802AnonymousInactive
Thank you for that post. Very powerful.
“The battle to succeed begins with the pen. If you don’t pick up the pen, the work will never get done.”
My sponsor sorta GENTLY SUGGESTED that I write more in my personal experiences while doing my step work. Thank you for the reminder, so true. I’m going to get a journal tomorrow and just try to write in it each day..I’m hoping that this will help me share more as well.
I”m keeping this post…thank you so much.
KarenSeptember 30, 2013 at 6:14 pm#164804AnonymousInactive
man, i get the resentments too, but it’s always been toward others who tell me they wish for me to stop drinking. at times i’ve wanted to actually hit them. and then i’m angry for days on end that they even dared to bring it up. good god i’ve been such a child at times.September 30, 2013 at 6:46 pm#164800AnonymousInactive
i’m not an alcoholic, but the same sort of resentments you describe was how i was before i was introduced to al-anon. living with the effects of alcoholism (my xh), had left me bitter, mean, resentful, ready to fight, angry…..just a plain ole mean beatch!!!!
it took 4 long years of hard work to accept serenity and then i discovered all the gifts that come with it…….it’s been awesome!!!!
i went to al-anon, kicking and screaming, cussing everyone, and throwing the most intense temper tantrums in the rooms you could ever imagine. i was pure poison.
thanks for sharing…..although we have walked different paths, the recovery is much the same, and that is the common thread amongst us.
big hugs to you
jeriSeptember 30, 2013 at 7:33 pm#164797AnonymousInactive
Thank you immensely for writing here. Important housecleaning and soul work.September 30, 2013 at 7:59 pm#164798AnonymousInactive
Thank you for sharing your experience. I am in the middle of my 4th step and I finally have a sponsor now that won’t put up with any of my crap (Thank God). I have done four 4th steps before and have never made it past step 9 (which I have only made it there once before). I am hopeful & determined that I will make it through all 12 steps this time. :danse1b:September 30, 2013 at 9:56 pm#164803AnonymousInactive
Thanks Rufus. Just what I needed. I’m about 2/3 the way through my fourth step. I have a couple of items left to add to my fears list. My resentment list is the longest. I have tried to avoid this for 16 years. So far, and today I am willing to go to any lengths God and my sponsor put before me to recover and become usefully whole. This first 4th step has been a tedious experience. I know I can’t get it “right” like the 1st step, but I want to make sure I cover as much as I can honestly cover. In the event that there are things that come up that I left out, I can always do another one. One thing is for certain, I must get this stuff out, so that I can step out into the sunlight. Resentment and fear impede my spiritual growth. And I know from experience to not do it, dooms me to drink again, eventually. It is inevitable. The Step 1,2,3 dance is a dangerous one, and one that has already taken me down once. Thanks for the reassurance. I led a discussion on “pain and progress” yesterday tying in my experience so far with the 4th step. I got up at 4:00am this morning and started writing some more. I’ve got to finish this thing up this week and get it 5th stepped.October 1, 2013 at 9:02 am#164799AnonymousInactive
Hey brother, I’ve printed that out. I needed to read it just now.October 1, 2013 at 10:14 am#164795AnonymousInactive
that was a way powerful post, thank you very muchOctober 1, 2013 at 10:59 am#164801AnonymousInactive
Rufus that was a fantastic share, the 4th & 5th steps I found to be the beginning of the end of the pain!!!!
This week I will be working with my sponsee on his first 4th & 5th. I am a bit nervous about it simply because I want him to find the freedom I found and the fulfillment of those 5th step promises that I had, I will put it into my HPs hands and let him guide us through it.
BP44 keep in mind that step 10 will allow one to take care of many things that are revealed to us as time passes. My sponsor & I have talked about things I might have missed in my 4th that I simply did not recall at the time I wrote it. He told me that it was up to me, we can do a mini 4th/5th or we can simply take care of them as they pop up using step 10. He said some folks do a mini 4th/5th yearly and others cover it in the 10th, what ever works as long as we are maintaining our spiritual condition.
Rufus that was a great share thanks.October 2, 2013 at 8:53 pm#164796AnonymousInactive
you posted so much
it’s good to get it out
some great comments, too
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