Some of the lessons I am learning at my Nar-Anon meetings are that I cannot control someone else, feel their emotions, hear their thoughts, or change them. These have not been easy lessons for me.
All my life, I have been easy going in order to please other people, especially the addict in my life. I will listen to the addict give his opinions and usually allow him to have his way. It was so much easier not to argue. I felt that I did not matter and that it was important for him to get his way. It seemed that it made him feel good when he thought he had the upper hand and letting him get it would make him happier.
The truth is that deep down inside I was annoyed by the addict’s choices, so I would turn to sarcasm, cause an argument, start yelling and swearing, and then apply the silent treatment for hours, even days if necessary. We were both good at arguing and had learned to use sarcasm as weapons from our families. Eventually this seemed to be the only way that we could communicate. It became harder to have a conversation without hurting each other.
Not until I came to the rooms of Nar-Anon, did I realize that I was hurting and that the addict and I never had any peace. We never took the time to say what we truly had on our minds or listen to each other.
Changing my thoughts and behavior was not easy for me. My growth has been slow. Now when the addict and I touch base and talk with each other, I try to work my program. I am learning to overlook his sarcasm and not feel disgust and anger, but to honestly listen to what he is saying.
Thought for Today: I am realizing it is my thoughts that affect me, not the addict’s, and that I can be at peace and happy today, if I choose.
“Our willingness to do the work to become more conscious is what paves the way for us to recognize the unmistakable touch of grace.” ~ Cheryl Richardson