For those of you who have lived with or near a loved one who struggles with addiction whether it’s friend or family, you may not be able to conceive of ever forgiving that person. You may want to forgive but may not be able to do so inside your heart and soul. If this sounds like you, not to worry – you are among many, many people who feel this way.
Another issue might be that you still harbor resentment, perhaps even after that loved one has passed away. (Hopefully this is not the case.) At the Hazeldon Betty Ford Foundation, they teach that “forgiveness is the art of releasing resentment … [it] is not forgetting or denying the effects of a wrongdoing.” This, too, is not that unusual.
Forgiveness does not make what has happened go away in your memory. We still remember – how can we forget?! So being able to release or drop those feelings from actively feeling them is the real challenge. Forgiveness can mean that you no longer hold it against that person, not that you allow what he or she has done to repeat itself in your life.
This brings it back to you, the wronged one, the person who loves and tries to help the addict. Maybe you have realized that your love for that person and your influence over that person’s choices do not have the intended and desired effect. But realize that’s not your fault. You have not been insufficient in any way. In fact, even if some of your behavior ended up in substance abuse as a coping mechanism in your loved one – guess what? You still didn’t cause it! (Even so, a little self-forgiveness may be in order…for your own well-being more than anything else.)
In fact, recovering addicts often have a hard time with forgiveness, too. Hear Jeremy Grabauskas’ story here on forgiving. It might be helpful to understand what leads a person into addiction; in other words, it might help you understand the path to addiction more by learning about the backstory. This then can help you learn to forgive the addicted person without enabling that individual.
Being able to let go of resentment, etc., can have all kinds of possible benefits for you, the forgiver. Read here an article called Understanding the Relationship Between State Forgiveness and Psychological Wellbeing: A Qualitative Study, by Akhtar, Dolan, and Barlow which was published in 2017. This deals with real-life experiences in relation to being forgiving, as opposed to theoretical concepts of it. So – please understand that if you do not let go of your negative feelings you could be hurting yourself more than anyone else.
I would like to introduce a new course to you – Treating Heroin Addiction Naturally. You will learn about some new and innovative approaches within the holistic, natural domain which are showing wonderful results in helping people get off drugs, and in particular, heroin.
For example, negative behavior can be caused by faultily functioning brain chemistry. While prescription drugs can provide some symptom relief (although they create many new problems), amino acid and supplement therapy, administered correctly, can actually repair the brain’s chemistry. That means healing is taking place.
You may be wondering what this has to do with forgiveness, yes?! When you see your addicted loved one getting healed through such holistic help, feeling, thinking, and behavioral choices can be made more easily. This can help you understand that addiction can be seen as a disease of the physical body, which impacts feelings, thoughts, behavioral choices, and one’s spirituality, as well as learned behavior. It can help you let down and start letting go of your resentments, or anything else that is holding you back from getting the healing release that goes hand-in-hand with forgiveness. Remember – education is POWER. Use that power to help both yourself and your loved one.
For more information on holistic, healthy lifestyle choices, please visit Health and Wellness Online, LLC. Have a holistically, healthy day!