111: Things We Used to Believe (Sort Of)

We talk about things we used to believe. And not just believe, but things we would argue to the death were right, and now we don’t even believe them anymore. We examine some of the things we have shared in meetings, with people in our network, with sponsees, that we not only don’t believe anymore, but actually think is unhealthy or bad information. We examine ideas like:

  • NA is right for everyone/the only way to recovery
  • If people did what I did, they would get what I got
  • 1 disease means we only need 1 program

Talking about past beliefs we don’t agree with anymore helps us to not be so firmly connected to any of the beliefs we hold today, because some of them will also change as we continue to learn and grow in the recovery process. We don’t need to be so attached to our beliefs at any given moment. Join the conversation by leaving a message, emailing us at RecoverySortOf@gmail.com,  or find us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, or find us on our website at www.recoverysortof.com.

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recovery sort of is a podcast where we discuss recovery topics from the perspective of people living in long-term recovery this podcast does not intend to represent the views of any particular group organization or fellowship the attitudes expressed are solely the opinion of its contributors be advised there may be strong language or topics of an adult nature

welcome back it’s recovery sort of i’m jason a guy who doesn’t have all the answers and i’m billy i’m a person in long-term recovery and we’re going to talk about the idea that they’re we used to know it all we used to be right we used to be ready to argue to the deaf about certain topics ideas concepts theories beliefs and how some of them don’t we don’t even believe anymore not much less the fact that we won’t argue about him to the death but we don’t even believe him yeah not only do i not believe him but i feel like it was terrible things terrible advice terrible opinions that i shared with people that you know would have would have taken to the grave yes yes absolutely so before we get into that i do want to say we have a contact form on our website recoverysordub.com and usually we get people trying to sell us like hey pay us some money and we’ll improve your your search engine optimization or seo as you will or we’ll make your google results on page one and all that good stuff and i you know obviously ignore most of that because i’m not paying anybody because i’m cheap um but we we got one this week that was interesting it’s from estelle and it says estelle sent you one nude pic she’s online and very horny right now thanks for still yeah so we just click there to chat with her apparently sex lovers club is the website no thanks thanks still but no thanks um so yeah getting into this idea billy billy brought this to my attention the other day and i think the hardest part of talking about this is trying to remember all the crazy dumb [ _ ] i used to say because it’s like once you don’t believe it anymore you don’t even remember that that was part of you i know my wife will tell me about things so we’ll have a conversation now and i’ll be like understanding and accepting and like well now i don’t know that that’s true we shouldn’t be so harsh on our kids we should do it this way and she’s like what she’s like you used to run around here telling me this like i i do think at some point i probably told her college was stupid because she had some degrees and i didn’t and uh and now i got a degree and i and i talk about that degree and she’s like what the hell you used to tell me college was dumb right and i noticed i guess i’ve noticed in hitting some different uh we’ve been to some conventions lately and some speaker jams and you hear a myriad of speakers you know from different areas and different phases i guess you’d say in recovery or places in recovery and and there are one of the benefits of being in an autonomous 12-step fellowship is that there are all these opinions and things that people share but some of them are kind of dangerous you know what i mean and some of them or are like say just just bad advice and i have recognized like oh yeah i used to say and you know when i said it i really thought that i was saying it to help someone or save someone’s life or you know guide them in the right direction like you know i really believe that it was the right way to think and the right information to give and now i’m like oof that is so dangerous like it really is bad advice yeah i’ve given out a lot of opinions as facts as an n a sponsor i believe especially you know i wouldn’t say long ago but at least previously i don’t do that as often now even though we were told like hey you just give your experience if you don’t have experience you don’t say anything and i i don’t i i shared other people’s experiences sometimes and that was a herd that was what i was thinking of is like i’m sharing about [ _ ] i have no experience with and now that i’ve gotten in a place where i’ve had some experience my opinion is completely different

absolutely uh so that’s interesting and we talked a little bit right before we started this the idea that like these people these strong recovery people that we used to kind of look up to i again i know nazis is a terrible word but they were always called n a nazis when i got here i guess n a police maybe is the more i guess that’s more politically correct but maybe not because well i always thought they were the p and i never took them to be the old-timers i always thought they were the people with the couple of years clean that were here to like police and save the fellowship you know what i mean to keep everybody in line and i mean it was my experience and it was the old timers that were like you got this all wrong now see i always felt like there was an old timer or two somewhere that had these opinions right and they they were like the uh the n a soldier right and and they would start like these you know platoons of people like they’d get all these sponsees and they’d be giving this information out and like them in like six sponsees would go into a meeting and then pull the home group up after the meeting and tell them how they’re doing it wrong or they’re breaking traditions or that’s the kind of [ _ ] i saw in baltimore yeah and so i don’t think the guy with a little bit of time clean or a couple years clean or whatever it is like i fell into that because the people i want to say above me i know that’s not how it really works but that’s what it felt like the people above me that’s what they were saying so you know i had to get the information from somewhere i didn’t know nothing about traditions was six months clean but hell if i wasn’t running around talking about how people were doing it wrong after the meeting because i heard it and i guess i’ve always been a somewhat of an intellectual person with strong opinions so i’ve always had that that’s nothing new that’s that’s just uneducated opinions because i think i’m smart so i i mean one of the first things that comes to mind when you bring this up i thought n a was right for everybody and like the only way to get clean i thought that was it like when you if you’ve had a drug problem like i had right and you used all day every day and did crazy things to get the money for that there wasn’t any other way to stop that or get any other different life or or what i would call now recovery at that point in time i didn’t even call anything else recovery but none of that was possible without this 12-step program that was the only way it worked yeah and i have a slight variation of that i thought that n a or or you know this fellowship was the only one that dealt with addiction like you know these other ones dealt with symptoms and and minor things but if you wanted to you know that what is it one disease one program or it was more that line of thinking not necessarily that these other ones didn’t work but if you went to them you would have to go to like 10 fellowships because you’d have to go to a fellowship for each one of those symptoms whereas we were the fellowship that you know and a was the fellowship that just fixed everything you know dealt with everything so i don’t even know i’m trying to think like when i first got here i didn’t even know about these other places like i knew a a but i didn’t know of any other 12-step plan i did one of my rehabs we went to a couple different a fellowships like what oh there was i want to say it was like csa which was chemically or cba chemically dependence anonymous something like that um and i had heard of like gamblers anonymous and overeaters anonymous like i’d heard of those things that’s fascinating yeah i didn’t even know about that i just thought like if you had drug problems there wasn’t any other way like this was it you either got this or you kept not getting this until you got this yeah or you died like that was it that was your three options um and yeah that’s that’s interesting i didn’t even think there was other places to go to like that’s an interesting take on it that like oh i can do a piecemeal or i can do it all in one place right so i remember going back to this you know one disease one program idea that was a strong opinion in my sponsorship family originally like yeah why would you go anywhere else we deal with everything here we we can the steps work on all of it it’s not just the drug use it’s everything and then i remember going to therapy with like 10 years clean and this lady had like 30 years and she was a therapist and she said that this whole idea that that na is king is a very baltimore location based idea and i found that kind of fascinating she was like look i’m from a place in new york and the n a opinion up there is that if one 12-step program is good many 12-step programs are better and i was like really right blew my mind uh to think that people thought other ways and and like that was one of the ways and look maybe she made that [ _ ] up i don’t know but it convinced me to go to other programs and then from going to other programs i found holy [ _ ] these are really beneficial like there’s a lot to be gained here that i don’t feel like i can get from the narcotics anonymous program itself and some of that might just be the fact that i can share about particular manifestations of obsession and compulsion or you know whatever we would like to call that i hate to say defects a character but like coping mechanisms defense mechanisms whatever you’d like to call it like i’m using these things to cover up something else in my belief now um and so these other places gave me room to talk about that where there was room for that like i i don’t not that you can’t or i can’t go into a a drug focused recovery meeting and talk about you know obsessing over sex or obsessing over food or gambling i think there’s room to talk a little bit about it but if that’s all i go in and talk about and that’s my main issue one i feel like there’s gonna be a lot more shame there because maybe not everybody struggles with the same kind of issue and they might judge me for it but two that newer person that needs to come in and hear how people got off of crack or heroin they’re gonna say god all they talked about was [ _ ] obsessive masturbation in this n a program like that that’s so i don’t feel like it’s appropriate all the time i feel like these other places are good for that and then there’s also just more specific like i don’t know that i could have got the suggestions that i got outside of n a about other types of behaviors from people in n a that either have or haven’t struggled with it but they’re like more specific ideas about how to tackle some of these other behaviors than i think anyone or most people in na would be able to give you yeah i used to really kind of i’ll say push the idea that na could fix all these issues for you if it wasn’t working it was because you were doing something wrong or not willing in those areas you know what i mean but but it could and i don’t know that i 100 disagree with that now um what i would say is i wasn’t recognizing that therapeutic value of someone with a similar issues you know what i mean like i haven’t ever struggled with food i don’t know what that means and it’s very easy for me to like diminish that and be like oh it’s not the same but you know i i can’t relate to a person that has that struggle and with like food or sex like those are things that at least for most people i mean food you can’t give up food for the rest of your life like abstinence isn’t the goal like it can’t be the goal it’s management and i was too naive to recognize i think that you know there’s a big difference between a program that helps you manage something and a program that just says well just don’t do these things and let’s manage your thoughts and ideas around it like you know and then a we just stop you just stop using and that’s where it starts but with food or sex you’re that’s not necessarily the goal right right and and i this might offend some people but and i don’t know that i hold this opinion entirely now but i remember when i first went to some of these other programs what i thought about was something similar to that right like when you’re talking about food and at least in my life when you’re talking about sex because i’m not talking about giving it up forever that’s for sure the idea of recovery is a healthy relationship with food or a healthy relationship with sex it’s not to give it up right and that idea of having i was like well why doesn’t that apply in n a right well i don’t know that we can have a healthy relationship with drugs that’s that’s an interesting concept but my original thought was well god this seems not only harder but like bigger like to the concept of changing internally enough to have a healthy relationship was something i used to struggle with as opposed to like you said just giving it up not that i’m trying to minimize it giving it up was hard giving up drugs was difficult but can you imagine if if the concept was trying to change to have a healthy relationship with dr like that seems way more difficult right and so i was like damn these these are kind of harder than anything right and i don’t know that i have that opinion now but it was an interesting thought to think that like n a might be the easier of the of the other programs because yeah you just stop like that seems way easier than trying to continue the behavior and adjust the way you deal with it right trying to manage it yeah and that multiple fellowships like that’s kind of what prompted this idea of talking about this stuff with me so i had always been i mean gosh and i hadn’t really thought about it in the last couple years but i would always say at least early in my recovery i sponsored some people that had went to multiple fellowships or you know would go to you know more than just n a and i would always say well that’s fine but you can only have one sponsor you can’t have different sponsors in all these different fellowships meaning me i had to be your sponsor and i wasn’t going to be usurped by any of these other people i mean i recognize that now it didn’t feel like it then it felt like that was the right thing to say but one i had no experience with that i never went to any other fellowships i just you know i went to a few aaa meetings a few n a meetings i felt more comfortable in n a and that’s where i’ve been ever since i don’t know that i’ve even ever i mean other than outside of like treatment i don’t know that i’ve ever even attended other 12-step fellowship meetings but yet i would tell you that you should not get a sponsor hell yeah go to saa or whatever you know sla and and but i’ll be your sponsor you don’t need a sponsor over there too and yeah and now i’m like that is the worst [ _ ] advice you could ever give anyone i think because like i’ve recently have looked at some other fellowships and been like oh this 12-step fellowship could be beneficial to me in my life and where i’m at right now and i thought well if i wanted to work those steps i would have to get a sponsor in that fellowship to work those steps because my sponsor that’s over here like he doesn’t have that experience with you know right right what the [ _ ] is he gonna tell me about that you know and it’s just interesting it was like wow that is really poor information that i probably gave to some guys that i sponsored thinking wholeheartedly that it was the right thing to do that they would be confused or get contradictory information and you know that i was the one responsible to save their life so interestingly uh i don’t know that anybody specifically said that to me because nobody said you’re allowed to go to other fellowships at all but when i did take my therapist suggestion and went to these other fellowships i felt the same idea which maybe was still holding on to this idea that like okay maybe na is not the end-all be-all in general of programs but i still just need a sponsor that’s there so what i was looking for was a sponsor that was in n a and also in these other fellowships that i was in i wanted somebody i still wanted one sponsor right this idea that this one sponsor idea like i just need one person that has all this for me which is crazy because if you talk about like getting in a relationship with with a partner like a romantic relationship you say don’t put the expectation that this one person can provide all your needs or meet all your needs right like you’d say that’s the most unhealthy thing ever you’d say oh yeah have your partner but then also have these friends that meet different needs that you have so why would we think that one sponsor could meet all these needs of all these different things or that one person is going to match up so well with us they also attend sex and love addicts anonymous and al-anon and acoa because they have the exact brand of problem i have right and i mean that gets back to we did all those episodes on steps you know we went through and talked about all the steps and like now and i mean that was what a year ago like it wasn’t that long this isn’t that long ago so i’m gonna throw myself under the bus here and be like probably even back then i really kind of was like ah the steps are all the same you change a few words here and there when you go to these different fellowships but they’re all the same and i don’t know that i hold that belief today like i feel like yeah you change a few words but there’s some big concepts there and and big you know again i’m going to use the word defects of character and behavior traits and and ideas and beliefs that are you know mired within that that set that’s what makes the need for that other fellowship that’s what makes creates the need for that few changes of a few words that you know those fellowships yeah the general concepts are the same but there are some more specific you know applications of those ideas and principles that are unique to each fellowship well and to think about some of the things i’ve heard and i don’t know that i remember specifically like i did go to overeaters anonymous meeting at one point and like the tips and tricks so to speak right like like if we were talking about hey how not to get high well you know avoid uh people you used to hang out with you know try to eliminate these triggers from your life around getting high which is great but when you go to overuse anonymous like i don’t know that many people in na have come to the idea that like hey these are the thing practices you put in place when you go to the grocery store to avoid buying these certain foods that you know are trigger foods for you or this is how you uh you know managed to portion them out in your house or hide them or keep them at a friend’s house like the other ideas of like how to eat healthier right i don’t know that n a has a lot of those ideas right you know going to to one of the sex addiction programs and having them lay it out as this idea of the three circles right where the inner circle is the acting out behaviors but then there’s also this middle circle of like slippery slope behaviors that can be questionable and you might want to also try to stay out of sight of that and and then maybe the ultimate goal is to be in this outer circle of like these positive behaviors like oh you like playing drums and guitar and you never did that while you were you know masturbating too much or spending too much time online looking at porn well maybe we should change the focus to like playing guitar and drums again right like focusing on how much time you spend like i just think there’s other concepts and ways or people that say oh you like nobody in na was going to give me the idea hey if you look at porn too much you should get like a lockdown blocker browser you know where it’s like a passcode that your partner only has and not you so that you can’t use it for that like that’s something you find in a different fellowship where they’ve dealt with and i will say there are probably individuals within you know na that have had that experience that have that have that information but it’s just not what’s commonly talked about or commonly shared or like openly discussed in meetings and then almost like you mentioned like if that does become the topic of the meeting then you’re gonna have people that don’t identify so you know what i mean like it’s right it is it just explains why we have a need for some of these other places and why it’s good to maybe i shouldn’t say good why it may be better at least for me to encourage people like hey are you struggling with that maybe you should look at some help in those areas like i don’t have that information i can’t just tell you you know what i want to say is well let’s dig into your fifth and sixth step and we’ll figure out why you keep doing that all the time like i don’t have that experience so i don’t know that that’s true and and i almost think at least i guess my opinion at this point would be like if look into other fellowships and just check them out even maybe you’re not even thinking you have a specific problem and i get it it’s hard to get motivated to go do something about a problem you don’t even think you have but like i remember walking into an allen on meeting and thinking holy [ _ ] where has this been all my life like it was such valuable information about acceptance and and ability to interact with other people in my life and a nice view of you know you talk about doing an eighth and ninth step you want a a good picture of what your eighth and ninth step and what you did and to harm people go to an allen meeting and hear about all the people that are being harmed by other people right or naranon like it’s a whole different view of like holy [ _ ] you know right you might become aware of some harms you didn’t even know you were causing to people exactly things that they’re thinking of being on the other side of the exactly right there’s a lot of good information out there that i feel like all we have to do is just set ourselves up in a good position and we’ll hear like i i didn’t need to be struggling with anything in particular to go to al and be like oh wow this is crazy like i just kind of checked it out and of course that is one of the principles of our fellowship is is open-mindedness and i i will say like these ideas of you know one disease one fellowship and don’t go anywhere else like those things aren’t in our literature and they aren’t you know it actually in my opinion if you read it carefully it encourages you know going to outside places for outside things you know like we’re a program of addiction and recovery from drug addiction and that’s what we do here and that it’s like the 12-step process is amazing like it really is amazing and it can be used to treat so many different things you know it’s really an interesting introspective you know thing to to go through and you can apply it into so many different areas i think the wording in one of our readings where it says medicine religion and psychiatry were not sufficient for us i think we’ve twisted that instead of being like oh hey medicine religion and psychiatry are great and beneficial for your life they just weren’t quite enough and we needed a little something extra i feel like when i hear that or at least when i’ve heard that previously it has meant [ __ ] medicine religion is psychiatry right they don’t work yeah and i feel like you know we’ve perversely twisted that to be that you shouldn’t do these things like outside help is like a negative right you don’t need outside help we do it all here and it’s that’s very cultish right all right this episode has been brought to you in part by voices of hope inc a non-profit recovery organization made up of people in recovery family members and allies together members strive to protect the dignity of those that use drugs and those in recovery by advocating for treatment harm reduction and support resources and mentoring please visit us at www.voices maryland and consider donating to our calls

so it’s funny one of these interesting beliefs that i’ve heard from other therapists is that people who come to couples counseling right generally when you come to couples counseling you’re not in a good place you’re struggling as a couple and you know probably a good portion of the time that’s not gonna work out by that point but they had said that they had seen over their years and not often but a couple of times they’ve had couples that are new couples come to them to get ideas about how to be a healthy couple before they really embarked on the journey right of coupleship or whatever and they were like that is always an incredible experience to work with them because they are people who are just here to learn how to be a healthy couple and i was like [ _ ] and i was thinking about that and the idea of like sex and love addicts anonymous right and and how a lot of that is based around like what kind of red flags to look for when you’re getting into relationships like when you’re wound rubbing with other people just to connect over you know traumas uh ideas of like how to be healthy and not follow into these attachment styles that we we grow up with with our parents and not reenact those unhealthy behaviors we saw like all these really positive pieces of information but i feel like people only go to sex and love addicts anonymous when they’re like at a at some sort of bottom or a really terrible place and i’m like how many [ _ ] newcomers or any even old-timers i could probably still use it too but how many of us in a drug recovery program really could use relationship or healthy relationship suggestions right and how much could we gain from going somewhere like that before we even start dating yeah well when a lot of people you know relationships become an issue after they get clean like they in using using was the big problem when i put a quote unquote band-aid on that when you’re in a you know recovery or treatment program but then relationships pops up as the next huge issue yeah fills the void it feels it makes you feel whole for a little while or happier or better or completes you right you complete me oh that’s a terrible thing uh so yeah i i think definitely you know there’s a lot around those ideas that i have said to people and that i’ve believed for sure that i do not believe anymore um i used to believe that if and and you’ve said this a few times on here that if people just work the program like i do either they would get what i got or they would be well off right one of those two and i don’t think either of them are true i agree 100 i don’t agree with that either yeah people should definitely not work the program i work with it is ugly at times oh you could do it way better for one than i did because i took an awfully long time that i didn’t need to take so i would recommend that you do it better than me you know now like don’t procrastinate don’t put it off you know just dig in start doing some work it really is beneficial but then like i’ve learned over the years that i don’t believe the role of a sponsor is to teach you what to believe i believe the role of a sponsor is i think like you’ve described like in therapy like it’s to help the person figure out what their beliefs and goals and and all that stuff is i don’t want a bunch of little minion mini me’s running around crazy i used to i used to think well and again it wasn’t for me at that time it wasn’t based out of ego as i mean i didn’t recognize it as that it was based out of hey look how great i’m doing compared to where i was you can be doing this great too if you just do these things and i wanted to give people this sense of freedom and this sense of you know um uh this newfound life that i had found and was convinced if you just did it what i did you would get it too and right that’s not necessarily the case and yet i feel like we still say that if you if you want what i have do what i do and i don’t know that if you do what i do you get what i have like you might need some other so to look at this from a really morbid i guess place i i tend to think that drugs save my life in a way right i tend to think that without them i would have ended up some serious self-harm or or something else like i just did not feel able to tolerate life without the use of drugs it just didn’t seem worth it and so i i will say you know if i had to tell somebody hey you just got to stay clean no matter what no matter what might have been them taking their life like they might not have been in a place where they were ready to tolerate life without the use of something to ease the pain we’ll say right so like just doing what i did like you could have just stopped using drugs and held on for dear life but maybe that doesn’t have this happy ending we always think it does like oh well he white knuckled through it and eventually he got it oh maybe not maybe they didn’t get it maybe they ain’t here no more because they followed this path that i thought was the way to go like and i know that’s an extreme example and maybe everybody doesn’t share that belief but i think that’s a possibility yeah and it i guess for me that falls into a lot of like the harm reduction ideas and things around that it’s like i used to think that the only true out for a using addict was abstinence and i don’t think i believe that anymore like i think that that’s what we do at least in narcotics anonymous and i think that that’s the right path for people that choose to be in narcotics anonymous like i would can make that argument but i don’t know that that’s the right path for every person that abstinence is the only true answer to your addiction problem you know for some people it may be different types of medication whether that’s a you know mat or whatever or maybe psychedelic medications or smoking pot you know i don’t know what i know is i hope that you find a way out of whatever hell that you’re in that you can get your life to a place that it’s a life that you want to have you know a life that you know you’re enjoying and having good experiences in like and that may not be abstinence-based right or or it may not be abstinence-based now right whatever whatever you can do to better your life today anything that makes it better today it’s too short to wait till well i’ll just keep doing this [ _ ] that’s miserable for five more years and then i’ll get like no if you’ve got anything that can be better today do that um and i guess in our literature i thought back to what what the the wording that i hear that we read says ah if you want what we have to offer and are willing to make the effort to get it it doesn’t say and you do what we do it says you’re willing to make the effort to get it you know and it’s maybe that effort is a different effort yeah different than what my effort was or maybe you need a little more or a little less i don’t know right right like i could somebody says oh man i want the life you have i want you know a nice job whatever but maybe like our jobs right we i think we both feel successful in our work life for the most part and feel like we make not we’re not rich by any means but we make enough money to like provide for our families or i hate to use that word not provide for our families but just to live a comfortable life right we take vacations we do things i think we’re both pretty happy with that we have very different paths of getting there right like i mean i i ended up doing some other [ _ ] and then going to college later in life and then doing that and like you didn’t go to college correct no right and so like if you if one of us would have told the other that we were doing it wrong like no in order to get this amount of money and be comfortable in life you have to go to college or you don’t have to go like that we did two totally different things we put in similar efforts i think but different ways and different paths and and i don’t know that each other’s path would have worked for each other yeah and who’s to say like why should i want to limit a sponsee’s growth to my limited growth you know what i mean like maybe i can help them to grow beyond what i have that would be great right you know like like hey maybe don’t do what i did maybe do some more [ _ ] maybe i mean like try a little harder i tend to be procrastinating and [ _ ] right right yeah uh pathetic here’s one that i think uh bothers me because i still feel like a lot of the things we say and ideas we have around this when i say we the people that i hear talk about it or some of the sayings or cliches that we have but this idea of not staying clean is some personal failure or lacking or something that people did right that this when we say like uh well you you can’t stay clean because you just haven’t worked the steps like are you you in denial that you need to work the steps or you won’t pick up the steps and that’s why you keep relapsing or you know when somebody passes away like well he just he just wouldn’t surrender or whatever like that just seems like a very point the finger shaming statement towards people and i i don’t necessarily believe that at all anymore like that is far from my truth and interestingly i don’t know that i ever believed that so much i mean i definitely believe that anyone could get it if they would be absent and although telling them like what i used to ask a lot of people you know when they can’t well i guess when i say absent i don’t necessarily mean forever i mean that you can come in and stop using for a short period of time and then figure out which i don’t know how much work and you may know this from a therapy this might be getting a little off this but i don’t know how much work you can do on yourself when you’re still heavily using illegal drugs like how much how much growth and insight can you get i mean maybe a little bit but it’s gonna be hard so i do think at some point you need to stop using you know drugs on a daily basis to try to figure out what work you need to get into whether you can obtain that long term is different but anyway i used to say to people that relapse a lot or that would come in and out a lot like one of the things i would say so you know what what happened last time like what took you out and what do you want to do different this time you know like that is really what was it a girl was it a job was it not working like i don’t know you know better than me what you did or didn’t do i don’t [ _ ] know what you did or didn’t do you know it takes some self-honesty to be able to figure out that change so so that’s fascinating in some ways uh trying to think so there’s no agreed-upon therapy stance on any of this right there’s a lot of different therapy theories i i would say honestly the most informed and best therapist will probably tell you when they say when you ask how does therapy work they probably say i don’t [ _ ] know that’s kind of the truth we don’t completely know right but like just looking at the polyvagal theory that we talked about like they say that there’s no growth from a nervous system that’s in survival mode so once your body you know see cues danger from the environment even if you don’t know that because it’s a subconscious thing you go into survival mode and your prefrontal cortex where all your higher level thinking and meaning making all that shuts the [ _ ] off so there’s no growth there so generally like our first jobs as therapists is to bring people inside this window of tolerance to to get them in a nervous system state where it’s possible to think and re-evaluate their life so i would say on drugs there’s probably not a whole lot of prefrontal cortex action going on either at least on a lot of drugs uh maybe some of the psychedelics i think we’re learning are a little bit different they actually kind of activate or engage that higher level thinking in a different way but i i don’t know that just being abstinent actually does that right because if you’re using drugs to feel safer and more at ease in your body and just taking them away is just going to put you in a nervous system or a bodily state of dysregulation at all times and so there’s definitely not going to be any growth there either so i i guess that’s where learning some of these uh some of the therapy research psychological research that we have uh it kind of contradicts some of my old beliefs in some ways like i don’t just think that you need to just get clean and then it’ll all somehow be figured out like i’m not sure about that we talk about the idea i used to tell people like don’t get in relationships well that’s where you keep [ _ ] up you keep coming around here you keep getting a girl you keep getting a nice car and then you’re out the door again right but honestly what if they’re not gonna what if it’s not possible for them to tolerate life without this girl to bring some sort of or this partner to bring some sort of ease and comfort to them and hopefully while they’re in that place of being more regulated because of this partnership maybe then they can grow like i don’t necessarily think that if you’ve come around and gotten a girl and relapsed 14 times that it’s actually going to work the 15th time if you don’t get the girl like i don’t believe that i think you might actually your body might need something to bring a state of regulation and then hopefully you can do that long enough to grow and learn more about yourself yeah and i guess my reasoning for asking the question is based in that it’s like what what prevented you from working on yourself and growing before you know was it a girl or was it not and that’s where i guess the self-honesty piece comes in like did you get in a relationship and then be like oh [ _ ] it i’m not doing anything anymore i’m good like now i’m fine because i have this relationship or did you because i am a person that got in a relationship and it’s worked out fine and it didn’t you know i don’t know how it affected my recovery maybe i needed it maybe i didn’t but i didn’t stay out of a relationship and it worked out okay for me so i don’t ever tell anybody not to get in a relationship but i do tell them you gotta look at your patterns you know what i mean you gotta look at your patterns and what you’re doing and try to if you keep [ _ ] up then you gotta try to do something different well that brings us to another one that came to my mind that i don’t really buy into our definition of insanity at all times to keep doing the same things and expect different results i don’t know that that’s always the wrong information i mean if you put in five job applications what do you just stop putting them in because why expect something different from the sixth one like that’s not how that works yeah what do you think about that yeah that’s a pretty general like i’ve never loved that either it’s it’s only partially fitting for insanity i mean because i’ve heard them people say oh insanity’s you know doing something and knowing what the results are going to be and then doing it anyway you know i’ve done that kind of [ _ ] too like i know if i call out of work 10 times i’m going to probably get fired and then i do it anyway you know because i’m like [ _ ] it i don’t care um and i’ve been in emotional places where i’ve known the results wouldn’t be good but i don’t really care at the moment about what the results are not necessarily so yeah i i don’t love that definition of insanity i think in general people have this view of trying to oversimplify really complex things you know because it makes for good sound bites and makes for good cliches and well and we talk about you know our society’s ideas we’re very top-down people from the head down and so we just ignore all the bodily sensations and reactions and i think you’re kind of touching on some of this talking well so you talked about the idea of like what have you been doing in your recovery that hasn’t been working and that you keep relapsing and how can we do something different but i’m not always sure that something different is the solution right so that’s i think where i was going with the whole idea of this insanity like maybe it’s not that you need to change it maybe we just need to keep working with it right well we had some success you got 30 days and then you went back out so let’s look at some of the things that you feel like helped maybe you do get in a relationship and keep going back out but that still might not mean that you need to change that and i’m not a proponent look if you feel you need to change it and you feel capable of changing it go for it right but that might not be the reason that you’re you’re using right it might be like oh uh i just feel disregulated after a certain amount of time being around here without the use of anything to help me feel regulated like and yeah the the girl helps me feel regulated enough to last 30 days whereas i’d only last eight if it wasn’t for having a partner right well maybe the insanity is keep coming back to n a and thinking that’s going to work for you it might be it might be it’s just really interesting i i don’t know um the idea of asking the sponsee like what have you been doing that hasn’t been working and i feel like i run into this in therapy a lot of times people who are very disregulated don’t really have touch with their body or their memory right like i’ll ask well how are you feeling well what do you feel like such puts you there and when we look at that polyvagal theory episode this idea that it’s all subconscious it’s all below the level of actually knowing or awareness we don’t know and so it becomes a period of like getting people regulated to be able to look and say oh now i know what gets me dysregulated because now that i’m regulated i’m able to kind of have this prefrontal cortex online to see it happen and i’m looking for it but like just asking somebody like i ask people all the time where did that go wrong or you know what happened there i don’t know like it’s always i don’t know and i’m like well of course you don’t know right and you talked about this this feelings reaction i think that’s more to the point right i didn’t i went to court one time and they were like look i i felt like i i could have got all the charges dismissed if i went to trial like i felt like i had the right evidence in my corner and all that but that would have meant like i had like 45 in my pocket and i was ready to go get high now i was ready to leave court and go and i felt like to take it to trial would have extended that whole process and i knew that was the right thing to do and i knew accepted a probation before judgment i was gonna [ _ ] it up because i wasn’t stopping i was gonna piss dirty and all that right it had nothing to do with what i knew in that moment you said reacting to feelings i say react into a state of dysregulation like i was dysregulated and i needed to get regulated and feel safe at all [ _ ] costs it didn’t matter what came down the line so it wasn’t like i didn’t know it was just knowing didn’t matter it had nothing to do with that yeah and that’s sort of similar to i had a previous sponsor that would say a lot of times and i’d kind of get this a little more now than when he would say it before but he said if i come into a room or a meeting and i say i know what i need to do but i’m not doing it that means i don’t know what the [ _ ] i need to do you know what i mean like because i’m not doing it that means i think i should be doing this but if i’m not doing it then i don’t know that you know and it was i guess where i was going with that was i have come to the personal conclusion that you can tell people to do stuff till you’re blue in the face but until they sort of want to do it for themselves it doesn’t always work you know like you need them to kind of either buy in or be on board or or have some input and say and i’ve noticed at least for myself early on as a sponsor you know people would come in and it would be here’s what you need to do and if you do these steps everything’s going to be okay and you’ve got to go to this many meetings and you’ve got to get a home group and get in service and blah blah blah blah and i don’t know that that’s the same for every person you know some of those people might have done those things and then develop their resentment because they had a wife and kids at home and their life was different and they had different pressures and circumstances that i didn’t understand um for me that worked but i also had a spouse that was in recovery that bought into all those ideas so i got less resistance at home to be out at meetings and on service commitments four and five days a week when we had young kids you know so to to say you need to do this as a blanket statement without talking to individuals and saying okay well what’s what feels like it’ll work for you like what are you willing to do what’s what’s good for you and then help you figure out you know all right well maybe you know a meeting every once a month is not so good maybe you can up that a little bit but you know maybe five a week isn’t so good either you know trying to get them to buy into the process and have some say over what’s going to work for them i don’t remember specifically saying this but i can almost guarantee that i’ve told sponsees they’re not hitting enough meetings at different points in time oh i’m sure i’ve said that and i remember having a sponsee later on uh after doing some therapy and stuff and he he was coming to the home group and he’s like dude this is really like all i hit is like the home group every week and i said well look at your life you have a wife and two kids they’re people that you haven’t been around while you’re using like your situation you’re not walking in the door in a recovery house with no kids no partner no nothing like and no responsibilities you’re walking in the door with going to work every day trying to be home for your family like you need to do what’s right for you one meeting a week might be that right if you’re doing a meeting a week you’re calling me like looking at it more as an individual situation like you were just talking about and i remember feeling good about that change in i guess heart or thinking for me that like i don’t need to tell people how many [ _ ] meetings they need to hit like i need to pump people up to feel good about themselves i’m not trying to set them up for anything bad but why are you going to feel guilty when you feel like you’re doing the right thing why am i going to put guilt on you about it and that’s exactly you know what i was thinking when we’re talking about that i can remember being on the other side like being the guy that has young kids and i’m only making it to my home group and some weeks i’m not even making it there and i don’t have a service commitment and i had you know whatever eight 10 12 years clean and almost feeling guilty about that feeling like oh my gosh i don’t have a service commitment i’m just kind of barely showing up for my home group like what the [ _ ] kind of recovery person you know and like feeling bad about myself for being a you know what i’m going to call a good responsible parent you know and there is a good place in trying to balance that stuff out you know what i mean it’s it’s for me it’s not so healthy when i throw out recovery completely because then i become unhealthy but at the same time if i went to five meetings a week or had service commitments and all these other things you know that would take away from my ability to be the type of parent that i want to be so like now in hindsight i look back and i think we’ve talked about it on here it’s like when i look back over that period of my recovery where i wasn’t so involved like i don’t feel guilty about it now i look back and say yeah that was me being a productive person and i should have been doing more to work on myself personally but that doesn’t necessarily mean going to meetings or being of service it means i should have not let go of some of the spiritual practices that helped me be a healthy person you know probably a meditation would have been good to have in my life at that time probably a connection with my sponsor even just to talk and go get coffee and something to eat every couple of weeks to check in like those things are still healthy practices but it’s like just doing those five you know i don’t use i go to meetings i have a service commitment you know yeah those things you know there’s a there’s a real balance there that needs to happen well and i think our recovery information gets limited originally by location right so yeah when i got clean it was hit a meeting at 90 meetings in 90 days right that was a big thing and you should be here all the time and blah blah still think that’s a good idea well yeah but what if you live in an area where there’s one meeting a week right within 100 miles right what if you live in an area like we have that pamphlet the loner staying clean in isolation like there’s places where people get clean there aren’t any meetings yeah we are in one and you don’t maybe they have just pen pals maybe they’re waiting on literal snail mail to come to their house in a response to you know what they’ve been going through and they got to sit on that for two weeks till their sponsor writes them back right like we’re looking at it from a very oh you live in an area with a bunch of meetings you better hit 90 in 90 days like that’s not the only way people recover people recover in a myriad and multitude of ways that don’t look anything like what we think recovery is at least what i thought recovery was and i just think that’s fascinating like when we our minds get open to this idea that like there’s some [ _ ] dude in some bum [ _ ] alaska county that doesn’t have meetings at all and just yeah when we were in southern utah there was no i mean the closest n a meeting to the area we were and i mean this literally was two and a half hours one way to get to the closest n a meeting we started a meeting we went to some meetings some a.a there was a few aaa meetings but there wasn’t even seven a week within an hour drive and even get to the one we started was like 45 minutes one way to get to a town with more than 50 people you know that would would have a meeting in the meetings that we went to even the the aaa meetings or the n a meetings three people five people were at the meeting so we’ve been in those areas in those situations and it definitely was eye-opening we were also in parts of montana where the same people did the aaa meetings and the n a meetings and they said oh yeah we do and they didn’t have five meetings a week either they had i think they had like an n a meeting on tuesday nights and an aaa meeting on thursday nights or something like that and it was basically the same people and they’re like yeah we just caught a different fellowship so that if people are traveling or looking or find the meeting that they find a meeting but we’re really just the recovery community and they i don’t know that looked at either fellowship particularly different you know like we do in this area i mean in this particular area it’s like we’re almost i don’t want to say enemies but it’s like we’re almost completely separate yeah it’s like that’s a whole nother thing over there you want to go be with those people you know or we’re these people and it’s just a little different to see and go to an area where there’s such limited resources and people are totally open to like yeah i don’t give a [ _ ] alcoholic attic we don’t give a [ _ ] what you call yourself we’re having a meeting this night we’re having a meeting this night we use this literature for this one and this for this one and we’re all just trying to get clean and get better but but the idea that people find recovery and all kinds like people find recovery in you know countries where you’re not even allowed to have recovery and they find ways to reach out online and just talk to people through messages and and find like that’s one thing online is amazing it really has opened up some connections it is it’s but it’s just mind-blowing to think that here i am shaming people that you can’t stay clean going to one meet in a week and like people get recovery all kinds of different ways and i’m you know basing it on a very small one little perspective of that um i definitely believed i was like an n a police at one point in time because when i came around that’s what the people like i said above me quotes uh were but i guess i held to this idea that na needed to be protected like the sanctity of the meeting needed to be protected and if we didn’t follow the traditions or do it the right way it was gonna people were gonna die and like i don’t believe that [ _ ] anymore at all and i would say for myself i maybe it’s just the the mentality that you have or who you gravitate towards i think that happens in recovery because i have always been more of an anti-authoritarian type of person like i’ve never been drawn to people that tell me what i need to do like that is very off-putting for me so i didn’t have as much of those influences in my life but i definitely know there’s some of those personalities i could you know tell you who they are but i wasn’t drawn towards them i was typically drawn or more uh open to the ideas of people that are a little more open-minded a little less authoritarian right i just i guess my belief now is that like you know an n a meeting will be fine right i i don’t need to interfere i don’t need to say anything i don’t need to do nothing like it will be just fine it’s exactly what it needs to be right and and it’s i’m gonna say i struggle saying this a little bit but i get the idea and the premise and i do believe this a lot it’s like the the same people that will try to police the meetings are also the ones that will tell you that you know god’s in charge and that he’s a you know and it’s like all right well god’s got it why don’t you [ __ ] take a seat you know and shut your mouth and let him handle it you know like if there’s a higher power in charge that works through these meetings you know did he give you the stick and tell you to go right right well he works through people

uh another belief i used to have that everything in the literature is right slash true i don’t i don’t know how to say that but it used to be like if it’s in the literature it’s it’s gospel or it’s fact or i don’t believe that anymore like i’ve definitely heard some people say over the years like this is a literature written by a bunch of addicts like it’s flawed and i’ve found some contradictions of itself in it so it’s hard for me to just say oh yeah it’s perfect and if it’s in there it’s right like i don’t know or is it just my interpretation of how it’s written at that time because i can read something now and tell you that i can hear it and interpret it in a very different way than i heard it with a year or two years clean you know now that i have a much deeper understanding of principles and applications not that it you know i don’t know that i hold it to be gospel true or is anything in life really a hundred percent true for a hundred percent of the situations all the time no you know what i mean that just there’s never uh this is what’s going to be all the time in every situation and everyone’s life in every instance this is what’s going to happen if you’re not honest like right no that’s just not reality uh the idea of having to hit a bottom to be ready or something i don’t know that i totally buy into that anymore like oh he went back out i guess he just hadn’t hit his bottom like uh i don’t know like i think you when you find a path that’s acceptable for your body to be regulated that’s when you get it i don’t know when that is i don’t know if there’s some bottom involved but that’s how i see it well and i guess from the i i want to use the word technical standpoint it’s like when i stopped and got clean and since i stayed clean this time that was my bottom like it’s a technicality i don’t know if that was my bottom or not because i didn’t go use anymore maybe i went used and it got better i don’t know right i really can’t say i mean i don’t think that would have happened but it could have i don’t yeah yeah and i only ever was turned on to that even concept of not having a bottom because of this doing this podcast i mean this has been one of the most eye-opening experiences doing this and talking to people outside of you know my immediate whatever what do they call that like my bubble of influence that was just really this one 12-step fellowship and even though we have a you know varied ideas and opinions within that fellowship there are still certain ideas and structures that are there that are in our core and until i looked outside of that and became a little more open-minded to talk to different people like some of these ideas harm reduction ideas you know that was a big one for me it’s like oh it’s just it’s just using it’s keeping people slaves to drugs from the legal drug dealers and that kind of stuff and then hearing some educated and informed people explain that in a different way be like hmm wow okay i get where you’re coming from i don’t necessarily have to like it doesn’t matter if i agree or disagree with that process it’s just i don’t need to have such a negative opinion of suffering addicts right you know these people that are [ _ ] suffering another one that you either are an addict or you aren’t but if you are you are for life like this is a weird concept to me wow like this idea that you know oh well people it’s almost like we find ways to explain away when people do things contrary to our belief system and yeah they’re not exactly right right oh they they stopped coming to meetings and and they did all right and were successful in life and didn’t go back to using crazy they just weren’t an addict to begin with the story’s not all written they’ve been out here for 15 years and their life’s going pretty good you don’t know right right give them another 10. come another 10 years wait till they retire it’ll be all different and that’s interesting i had never really thought much about that you know in that way but i would say yeah i 100 believe that you were either an addict or not an addict and i don’t believe that anymore i don’t either and i’m also really and i don’t know this don’t go out on this information thinking you’re doing the right thing but something i am really examining in my life is am i an addict because of genetics and i was just born this way or my circumstances in childhood led to this yeah i do believe all that is a part of why i got into drug use but i also don’t know that there’s not some healing that can happen like i don’t think addiction is just something that happens i think it’s a response to how i feel internally and i think kind of like through the character defect view of like once i can heal some of these parts of myself i don’t need to act on some of these character defects to feel whole because i’m not empty right i kind of i don’t want to say that it means i can go out and successfully use drugs like i don’t think if i shot heroin today things would be any better for me than they were when i shot heroin before but i do think there’s a like people who end up being able to go out and socially drink again after finding some healing through recovery or whatever i think that’s a thing i i not to say that that’s the thing i want because i don’t personally like alcohol anyway but i do think that’s a thing i think people can heal to a point where they don’t feel the need to obsessively use certain substances all the time so i want to reach out to a fellowship and i can’t remember the name of it at the moment but we looked into it once before and it is a fellowship about moderation it’s not called moderations i think it’s called moderation management or something something like that yeah and and they like that was their premise was like look we don’t necessarily think that recovery from addiction is based in abstinence like we believe that we get together and we have this program where we teach people to you know manage their using or at least you know find a healthy balance with those things and we have these points of accountability um i believe if i’m not mistaken that smart recovery isn’t necessarily abstinence-based that it’s more of a management of your life type of thing and i would not have agreed with that early on in recovery i definitely think there are those things now but i also know people that i would say that i believe are addicts you know the quote-unquote addicts that their life is not totally unmanageable that they might be addicts but they’re managing their life okay in a way that it’s not a [ _ ] train wreck like mine you know like and these are people that i i mean i can’t say that i intimately know their feelings and emotions i’m not in like a therapy session with them they’re not people that i’m overly intimately close with um that i can talk deeply about their feelings but when you look from the outside like they’re living life they seem to be having fun they seem to be managing a job and raising children and all this stuff and yet they just use all the time you know and i mean it’s not a life that i want for myself but it also i don’t have to look at them with like well they’re [ _ ] addicts and they’re destroying their lives i don’t know that that’s true maybe they’re living the best version of themselves in that space i don’t you know who the [ _ ] am i to make that judgment um but i remember meeting a it was one of my friends moms and she was one of those excessively clean people and when i say excessively clean people like when you went into her [ _ ] house not a thing was out of place not a cat hair on the [ _ ] furniture like and if you were there and when you used anything or or put a thing on the table it was [ _ ] pledge like it was obsessive her level of cleaning um and i would say like i was like that’s an addict who doesn’t use drugs but i don’t know that it was making her life completely unmanageable you know she just seemed to be getting on okay she liked having a clean [ _ ] house who am i to make judgments on her and be like you need a program you know i need to fix that [ _ ] so interestingly and and here’s something that i find fascinating for my own brain you mentioned that moderation management and the first thought that came up for me was like oh my god no you can’t go straight from using all the time to moderating immediately you need a space where there’s abstinence to heal first and look i’ll probably change that [ _ ] opinion in five years like that’s what am i basing that in nothing just right and that’s what i’ve learned for myself i make a lot of opinions based on and they’re i’m gonna say educated opinions it’s not i’m not a dummy and i try to really read and research and watch and observe and you know i’m trying to give myself the best possible information so that i can have the best outcomes and i don’t generally have malice in my heart i’m not trying to steer people wrong or or whatever i’m trying to live the best version of my life that i can and i consider myself a pretty generous or giving person i want other people to have that too so a lot of times when i say this stuff that now i wouldn’t say it’s with good intentions but that’s where i need to be the most careful right um i thought recently a little bit about this like early in recovery i used to sort of grab these beliefs ideas thoughts and it was like they were written on me like i was a piece of granite and they were etched into my chest and that was like my identity and who i was and so i had to defend these ideas and be rigorous um you know touter of my righteousness and nowadays in my life i look at it more as like a like a chalkboard with a complicated math problem like a big you know trigonometry problem or you know physics problem written all out on a board and i constantly need to be looking at it for errors and flaws so that i can erase this piece and put in a new piece or erase it and start over and i’m not so married to my ideas thoughts and beliefs today because i recognize like there might be a [ _ ] flaw there somewhere that i’m just not seeing that it takes another person to walk in and go hey have you thought about this or have you looked at it that way and then go huh yeah that’s that seems to make sense yeah yeah so a couple more here to wrap up the two sickies don’t make a welly or two dead batteries don’t make a spark right this idea that if you get in relationships as newcomers it’s not going to work out and i just from my own personal life i know at least two people who have you know quote unquote 13th stepped a newcomer and that has at least so far you know once 20 years in another one’s 10 years in that’s worked out well for them they have nice families they’re very happy and i know another situation of people who have like 25 years to clean and married like they got together early on and have been together ever since and it’s been just fine so that’s a rehab romance that’s worked out and they’re still married so and not to say that like it’s a good idea i don’t want to sit here and say everybody should go do it but just the idea that it could never be a thing or never work out i don’t believe that at all like let’s wait and see i don’t know well and for me so being i think one of these people that you’re talking about in the 13th stepping thing i don’t know if i was counted yeah you’re in there yeah okay um you know i got with my wife she had 11 years clean and i had just gotten clean a few months and thank god i didn’t have a sponsor that said oh don’t do that and all that stuff he was like no it doesn’t say that anywhere in our literature what it says is that relationships can be a particularly difficult area um some things you really need to make sure that you’re keeping focused on yourself and your recovery don’t get lost in your relationship you know make sure these commitments that you have for your home group and your service commitments like those things need to be a priority but you know and for me that was good advice you know i took his advice and and followed those things and it worked out well i will say in in general if i was a betting man i’m usually not going to bet on those things to work out but in fairness what are we 50 divorce rate in this country anyway if not higher so relationships you know you’re a 50 50 chance with quote unquote normal people when you start throwing addicts into it i don’t know that the amount of clean time leads to greater success other than maybe you’ve done some work on your relationship skills well that’s 50 50 for divorces if you i don’t know anybody that’s only been in one relationship yeah so for everybody that’s been in more than one relationship your failure rate is way higher yeah or maybe you’re still in marriages for kids or finances or other reasons that you’re not even happy uh a drug is a drug i don’t know that i believe that anymore i i think there’s different classes of drugs and they do different things i you know i held onto that idea early on and i tamped it down because everybody around me said it was crazy but this idea of like my mushrooms never [ _ ] me up like and i don’t know that using mushrooms early in my recovery would have been a good idea like it probably would have led me back somewhere else but i’m definitely a lot more open to the idea that a drug is not a drug anymore to me there’s different like and even if i want to look at caffeine or nicotine or whatever like there’s different purposes for all these drugs and they do different things and that doesn’t mean i need to necessarily need to run out and do any of them right this minute but like if i was to consider something positive in my life if i said man maybe going on one of these ayahuasca trips to south america or something might be like a real spiritual experience i would not say dude you know what we should go to the middle east and get black tar heroin that would be a really spiritual experience like those are two completely different concepts to me and i just don’t see them as equal drugs or the same thing or yeah i and i guess i always heard that statement a little different um i kind of always heard it from the perspective of oh and i think it’s in one of the n a pamphlets it talks about like our bodies don’t know the difference like if i go to a doctor because i broke my wrist and get pain meds my body doesn’t really know a difference between that and me doing heroin like those are similar classes of drugs so and i guess that’s the way i had always heard that statement so i see what you’re saying i just never really thought much of it i always looked at that statement as being more like if i do a drug it doesn’t matter if it comes from a doctor if it comes from the street if it comes from a psychiatrist like i gotta [ _ ] watch out because my body is gonna treat it the same yeah yeah i could see that i mean i just i guess i’m looking at the actual drugs themselves and i’m like yeah there’s no way that a friday night crack smoking binge sounds like a great idea right life but like some of these other things maybe maybe one day it’s something i do explore i’m still struggling with the idea and i hear people say this and i don’t i can’t bring myself to be a little more open on this but that there is like healthy crack smokers or healthy heroin that is and i yeah i’m not going to sit here and say they don’t exist i’m just that’s a stretch if you’re using credibility if you’re setting aside 500 and smoking crack one night a month and having a good time and stopping when your money’s done all right call us because i want to have you if you are socially using heroin please let me know because maybe i don’t want to know and and the last one i had really because we’re a little over time here egomaniac with an inferiority complex i have said this so many goddamn times and i look at this today and i say that is the most shaming like uh put down description of myself like why would i say that right it’s not does it kind of present like that yeah i could get it and if you’re kindly telling me that it looks sort of like that’s what’s going on sure maybe but really it’s like i [ _ ] hate myself and i’m doing anything possible my body’s response to that is to try to feel better by by building myself up in some kind of way even if it’s irrationally building myself up to be better than other people like it’s it’s trying to find homeostasis right i feel so much worse than people that i’m why don’t i just have compassion for how much worse i feel than everybody right i don’t need to sit around and label myself with these judgmental terms of like egomaniac with the inferiority count i don’t know i really have changed on that one what do you think yeah i i probably if i haven’t recently used that particular statement i definitely know that i have shared that sentiment um yeah i don’t know i still and i don’t know i guess shaming language in general is something i’m still trying to become aware of i i have that very sarcastic uh what’s that self-deprecating type of humor and then self-deprecating talk to myself um which i have learning isn’t healthy i mean i try to convince myself that it’s motivating but i don’t know that it is so i still struggle with that even you know for myself and then of course if i talk to myself that way i’m totally willing to talk to other people that way think of it like a turtle that gets scared right it goes in its shell you don’t pick it up and shake it around you don’t bang on it with a stick you don’t like look inside the hole and yell at it like none of that’s going to make it come out of its shell right right calmly waiting patiently creating a safe environment around it then it pokes its head back out you don’t beat a turtle into feeling safer so don’t beat yourself into feeling better yeah all right uh i think that’s about it you got anything else no like say thanks to like recovery in this podcast and and talking with different people like i’m really glad that i have opened my mind to be a more loving caring person um one of the things i thought recently and this is a recovery thing that i think i used to believe that i don’t think now is there was a difference between addicts that were out on the street using and addicts that were in meetings seeking recovery i used to look at those as two very different people and nowadays i don’t we’re the same people they’re just people that are still suffering and haven’t figured out a way out you know and i’m a person over here that hopefully can love them in instead of shaming them out yeah that’s a beautiful way to end keep your minds open have a great week

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