I always say that the Number One Affliction in our marriage brought to me the greatest gift in my life!! Sexaholism brought me to my knees as nothing else could ever have. I had a religious upbringing, but had no personal relationship with the God that I “THOUGHT” I was serving.
Once I accepted that I was powerless to control the sexaholic’s sobriety and to control my own life, I needed to find the God of my understanding who I could let be in control of my life.
I found this personal connection from working the S-Anon Steps, going to meetings, attending International Conventions (I’ve been to 20 consecutive Conventions, and a total of 24.), working with my sponsor, and my spiritual director.
The tools of the S-Anon program are actions we take, principles we use, and attitudes we develop. The actions we take include going to meetings, sharing with others, finding and being a sponsor, reading S-Anon literature; writing down our thoughts and feelings, and being of service. The principles we use are found in the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of S-Anon. They include ideas aimed at allowing us to develop spiritually, as we are guided by the Higher Power of our understanding. The basic attitudes that we aim toward developing are honesty, open-mindedness and willingness. These tools, when used with the Twelve Steps of S- Anon, help our lives to gradually become more serene and fulfilling. Examples of how the tools are used come directly from members themselves.
In S-Anon we come to realize that just as we did not cause the sexaholic’s acting out, we cannot “cure” it either. We learn that it is not our responsibility to keep the sexaholic sexually sober. Instead, it is our job to manage our own lives, whether or not the sexaholic chooses sobriety.
It helped to learn that the sexaholic is suffering from a spiritual and emotional illness, and it helped to learn that we can lovingly detach from that illness. Most of all, it helped to learn that we, too, are suffering from an illness, one that can drive us to unconsciously seek out rejection, victimization, and heartache.
We slowly started to come out of our denial and isolation, and we were able to admit that there was something wrong in our homes and our relationships. We could no longer try to right those wrongs ourselves, so we came for help. Only through this utter surrender do we find strength. Our human will power cannot break the bonds of compulsive behavior, but our admission of powerlessness lays a firm foundation upon which to build our lives.
Reprinted from S-Anon Twelve Steps, page 2.
In one of those amazing program coincidences, I attended an S-Anon meeting on sponsorship only a few hours after my sponsor asked me to do a mini-inventory of our sponsor/sponsee relationship. The meeting chairperson passed around a box containing questions about sponsor- ship on individual pieces of paper. She asked each of us to answer the question we drew from the box and to make our comments pertinent to what we hoped to gain from having a sponsor. My question was: “Why is sponsorship important?” Here is my answer.