If you’ve just had a slip, you might think all is lost. After all, we alcoholics can exaggerate. We say this, not as a dismissal of your discouraged feelings, but to posit some humor, and to let you know we understand. Of course it’s scary to lose control and slip, but not all is lost! Many alcoholics in recovery have slips—remember, you’re not alone.
Understanding you’re not alone is a basic part of recovery. People come together with a shared desire to get and stay sober. That’s how Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) began in the first place. In essence, two men, Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith, talked together about the predicament their lives were in because of the disease. Afterwards, they felt better, and were able to maintain sobriety. Just as you share your recovery story, you can also share the story of how you came to have a slip.
It’s a positive step to share your slip with others. People in the program will gain insight as to how they can prevent themselves from having one. In this case, you will be helping them, and that may make you feel better. Secondly, they will most likely offer you lots of support and encouragement to keep coming to meetings.
As you share your slip with others, you may recognize a pattern or behavior that led you to pick up a drink. Maybe you let down your guard, were slacking off on meetings and not communicating enough with your sponsor. Perhaps you let people, places and things get to you, like at work. You allowed your emotions to overtake your common sense and went to the bar in a fury. There are many reasons why people in recovery have slips and can fall back into behavioral patterns. The good news is that if you’ve had a slip, you can learn from it, and prevent another.
Lingering on your slip is not a good idea, because it promotes negative feelings about yourself. Harboring negative feelings about yourself could lead to more slips and possibly a relapse. Relapse happens when you give up hope.
Put your slip in perspective. You had a slip, you felt badly about it, you shared your story with others, and you learned something about yourself and your recovery. Don’t be discouraged. The most beneficial action you can take is to put the slip behind you and carry on with your goal of abstinence.
Infinite change for infinite recovery. At Infinity Malibu, we are creating lifelong changes in our residents. Call us today for information on our private residential treatment programs: 888-266-9048