Why is Seeking Forgiveness Important in Recovery?
The struggles of addiction affects everyone involved, not just the addict specifically. One person’s addiction may have numerous second-hand effects on immediate family, extended family, coworkers, friends, and anybody else who is a part of that person’s life. If you or a loved one are going through recovery, why is it important that you seek forgiveness from those people?
Admitting Your Faults
The first step to making progress in healing any relationships that were broken during the period of addiction is to admit your faults and ask for their forgiveness. Once your friends and family know that you are genuinely making an effort to recover and that you are truly sorry for the addiction affected them, most should be willing to help keep you encouraged and motivated throughout the recovery process.
Recovery isn’t just about getting away from drugs or alcohol, but also repairing the holes that the substance abuse left in your life. Reconnecting with friends and family members who you may have pushed away during this time is a huge step towards putting your life back together after addiction.
Not only will forgiveness help with your relationships, it will also help you personally. One study by Adler Graduate School showed that forgiveness is a critical factor to long-term recovery from alcohol addiction, and these results can extend to other forms of addiction as well.
The guilt and shame that many addicts feel about their addiction can prevent them from seeking help or making changes long-term, but once they know that they have the forgiveness and support of their loved ones, they may be more willing to embark on this journey of long-term recovery.
There is one more person whose forgiveness you should seek, and that is yourself. There may have been things that you did or said during your period of addiction that you feel ashamed of, but now you are on the path to recovery.
That means it is time to put those things behind you, because there’s nothing else you can do but seek forgiveness of those impacted, as well as forgive yourself. It is extremely important for an addict in recovery to forgive themselves for their past, knowing that they are on the path to a better future, because this allows them to let go of the hold that the substance has on them.
Forgiving yourself does not mean believing that everything you did was fine, but instead knowing that it wasn’t good and you would like to never repeat that time in your life. According to NIDA, during the recovery process you should be honest with yourself and give yourself time to heal.
Forgiving yourself for the past is one step to a better future.
If you or a loved one are suffering from addiction and seeking recovery, simply call 800-683-3270 (Who Answers?) to speak with a caring specialist who can answer any of your questions or concerns. Forgiveness is such a big part of the whole process, and it’s never too early to start seeking the forgiveness of your loved ones.