One of the key elements of working a 12 step program is having a sponsor that guides you through the process. Often, sponsees will turn to their sponsors for more than just the steps in order to get direction and life advice. What is the difference then, between a sponsor and a therapist?
I heard the term emotional sobriety a lot when I was new, and recently it was a topic at my home group. It was actually very helpful for me, because at the time I was wondering why I had such an incredibly hard time with my feelings of entitlement, jealousy, and judgment in particular.
Just getting sober is not enough, in the broad scheme of things. There is a huge difference between being sober physically from drugs and alcohol and sober emotionally from the thinking and behaviors that lead us to use in the first place.
I grew up in Orange County with a good family and a great childhood. I lived next door to two guys who were older than me that used and sold drugs who had money, the nice cars and everything else. Right away the lifestyle that I saw they had was attractive to me. I chased that life that I saw them living as I got older. It didn’t take me long at all to start using drugs.
The community involved with New Life House has had a tremendous effect on my life so far in sobriety. The many people who come around the house who have already graduated, as well as all of the guys I live with, are supportive in many ways. As I have lived this way of life in the house I have met many people who I can look to for advice, as well as help in any area of my life.
A MOTHER'S COURAGE TO SAY "NO"
When I first came to Al‑Anon, I felt as though I had finally found a group of people who really understood my struggle. It was such a relief to know they understood my emotional language, not just intellectually, but experientially as well. I felt heard, and never judged. I was encouraged to begin working the Steps and find a Sponsor. It was a great place to start. I felt I had a strong relationship with my Higher Power, and as I began working Step One, that miracle of getting the guidance I needed came to me one day. My daughter, who desperately wanted to come home to live with me after treatment, simply did not understand why my answer was “no.”