A good friend came to me recently to discuss their recent relapse. “I just don’t know what happened, it just happened.”. I do not judge them, just listen and offer help if I can. I am aware that when a relapse occurs, there is a reaction to the fall. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. That is not a law for physics alone. That law pertains to body, soul, and spirit as well.
Everyone in recovery from drink, drug, porn, anger, gambling, or insert any addiction here, need to know there is a ripple effect of consequences to face when the slightest relapse happens. First, Guilt comes knocking. How do I face this with friends and family? What will my sponsor say? The remorse alone causes many to quit altogether.
Second is getting honest with yourself, and with others. Forget the embarrassment. Everyone knew you were in relapse mode long before it happened. You thought you couldn’t possibly fall. Your words and actions, or lack thereof, were the indicators for them. You can’t stop doing what it takes to keep you sober and expect to remain that way.
Third, actually facing the music with others is frightening. Again, that is remorse, having to admit the fall. Anyone having the audacity to judge you will face judgment themselves. What you find out is that for the most part, people rally around you. They are glad you have returned.