A Victory CelebrationAll my writing and my life is dedicated to my wonderful parents, Roy and Grace De Long of Chester, W. Va. and Zephyrhills, Florida. We found our ways through the tragedies of addiction and mental illness. Hurray for us!
What I BelieveYou tend to think that your beliefs are rigid or unchanging. When what your belief is, is only a thought that you keep thinking. It's more like a habit of thought… Abraham-Hicks
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I am Grateful For My ChildhoodAddictions are the bandage covering the wound of not feeling worthy. I just discovered in 2010, that my primary addiction was to my family of origin—the family I grew up in. I have a picture of myself at age 5 which is about when I started thinking that I was terribly unfit to be in this family. There was always fighting, drama and violence. We had our loving times, too. I believe that my parents did the best they could. When describing those years, I love what ACA says about The Problem: “This is a description, not an indictment.”
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Why I love Helping OthersThe main reason that I love helping others is because we are each born with a core of goodness from birth. I also believe that this core contains our creativity which is the source of our joy. I also believe that helping anyone find this creativity is the answer to awakening others to the beauty of himself/herself. Finally, I believe maturity is returning to the joyful, playful child that God created.
About the author
My name is Kathy Berman and I live in Margate, Florida. My recovery date is 11/24/1976. Having grownup in a home controlled by alcoholism, I was able to see my addiction very early. Thanksgiving, 1976, I told my family that I thought I was an alcoholic. I fully expected everyone to disagree with me.
But, my mother said that she had been afraid of that. So I was stuck with the admission and being the “perfect daughter”, I never drank again and went to AA. I had no idea that I wouldn’t discover until 33 years later than I had experienced PTSD in that home which would continue to shape and direct me.
My third month into recovery, I had a radical conversion as described by William James in his The Varieties of Religious Experience. It was instant and I call it ‘”the moment that changed my life.” So I have been trying since 1977 to hear what God’s will is for my life. Many days I have followed my will and called it His. But there has been progress, too.
Kathy Berman Blogs 2014Addiction Recovery
Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACA) Online
ACA Red Book Twelve Steps
Emotional Sobriety: Becoming Friends & Lovers (The First Blog-Nov.2004)
Twelve Steps: Recovery is a Return to Sanity
Accepting My Right to Give and Receive Love
How to Start and Grow a Recovery Peer Group
Personality Base: Learning About Personality
Physical, Emotional and Mental Health
Books to Help You Become Stress Free: Add to Your Library for Stress Reduction
High Energy Fitness: Positive Energy Comes From Positive Choices
The Free Road: Reparenting Ourselves and Others
Learning Your Labels
Facebook Fan Pages, Pinterest, and Blogs Can be Interconnected
Kathy Berman Social Marketing
Wordpress Landing Pages Can be Your Social Media Hub
Gratitude is the only True Gift We Have For God
Our Online Retreat: A Place to Strengthen Our Faith
The Five Blogs I Created to Teach Blogging
Use Your Favorite Blogs to Share Ideas
Coral Cay Blogs
How to Create a Blog Empire
A Coral Cay Blog for Selling
My Coral Cay Blog
Buy My Afghans
My Favorite Passage From the ACA Red BookEnding the Internal Conflict
The conflict between the two sides of self is one of strategy and not of intent. Both the adult and the child long for the love and respect necessary to sustain the human spirit but disagree on how to attain their desire; the child by hopefully waiting in isolation and the adult by rushing into frustrated action. In ACA we learn both strategies lead only to despair.
Ending our inner conflict depends on both the adult and the child recognizing the need for unity in recovery. By acknowledging their need for each other, the adult and the child create the sense of wholeness needed to fully respond to the world.
Mutual acceptance allows the child to see that the ability in trust is damaged but not broken and can be restored by gently and slowly emerging from the protective prison of isolation. The adult becomes aware of the spirit of joy that inhabits every child and recognizes the need for openness and spontaneity in feeling completely alive.
ACA (Adult Children of Alcoholics) Changed My LifeThe ACA Red Book gave me the blueprint to heal the negative emotional patterns I had learned in childhood. It was more important to me than any book I had ever read about recovery. I came to see that growing up in a home dominated by alcoholism overshadowed every other experience I had as a child.
So my primary addiction healing had to be changing those ways I had learned to cope in a family torn apart by a substance one family member chose to use to control his feelings of helplessness. Alcohol was in charge and we all learned ways to bend to its control.
The Red Book can be ordered at ACA World Headquarters
My ACA Blogs-- Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACA) Online
ACA Red Book Twelve Steps
My Favorite Passage from the Big Book of Alcoholics AnonymousI have used the following passage many times during the course of my recovery. I have typed it out several times and laminated it and carried it and posted it during times of great indecision.
The Big Book is free online at www.aa.org.
This is the how and why of it. First of all, we had to quit playing God. It didn’t work. Next, we decided that hereafter in this drama of life, God was going to be our Director. He is the Principal; we are His agents. He is the Father, and we are His children. Most good ideas are simple, and this concept was the keystone of the new and triumphant arch through which we passed to freedom.
When we sincerely took such a position, all sorts of remarkable things followed. We had a new Employer. Being all powerful, He provided what we needed, if we kept close to Him and performed His work well. Established on such a footing we became less and less interested in ourselves, our little plans and designs. More and more we became interested in seeing what we could contribute to life. As we felt new power flow in, as we enjoyed peace of mind, as we discovered we could face life successfully, as we became conscious of His presence, we began to lose our fear of today, tomorrow or the hereafter. We were reborn.
I am on the Alltop Recovery Page—-One of only 16 chosen sites.
Learning to Retrain My BrainI never realized that my way of thinking everything was a major disaster was contributing to my life's disasters. In other words, I was creating the drama instead of just reacting to it. So I learned that if I created the drama, I could uncreate it. The simple technique I used was to shout "Stop!" at my obsessive thinking. Scream it loud enough and you tend to get your own attention.
I learned that my mind was out to get me--or, at the very least, my mind was out to control me. I think that I was addicted to feeling bad. The main reward from negative thinking is low expectations of ourselves. If you think you're not worth much, you don't have to do much.
Negative thinking or fear controlled my mind and therefore my emotions. I also have learned that feelings can't hurt me unless I hold on to them or try to avoid them. I have to work through the feeling in order to let it go.
We Need to Give Ourselves the Gift of Self-EsteemNothing can change our feeling unworthy until we each give ourselves the gift of self-esteem. Feeling unworthy keeps us feeling separate and less than. Working on the tools of recovery for self-esteem means letting go of the core issues that keep us trapped. These core issues are control, trust, avoidance of feelings, over-responsibility, and ignoring our own needs.
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