Boundaries are not meant to make other people happy and they often don’t. When a relationship operates under codependent rules, the action of boundaries disrupts the status quo and causes discomfort. The thoughts and feelings of others towards us are not our business. Our business is to take care of ourselves, act with integrity and resist the urge to act selfishly. When a relationship has been boundary-less for so long, holding a boundary can create guilt. That guilt doesn’t serve you and you can let go of it. When a relationship has been boundary-less, holding a boundary can create anger in the other party. That anger is not yours and you do not have to take it on. When a relationship has been boundary-less, holding a boundary can create fear in the other party. That fear is not yours and you do not have to take it on. You are not responsible for others serenity or peace of mind. You are responsible for your own serenity and peace of mind. You are responsible for being kind and loving to yourself and others. Holding boundaries is kind and loving to yourself and others. Living active in addiction, we force ourselves to ignore the intuitive voice inside that says “I’m not okay with this”. Walking the path of recovery, we have to reconnect and learn to listen to our intuitive self. The inner voice has so much to teach us & we can be guided by it without fear of losing our security.

 

“God will constantly disclose more to you and to us. Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick. The answers will come, if your own house is in order. But obviously you cannot transmit something you haven’t got. See to it that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come to pass for you and countless others. This is the Great Fact for us.” – Alcoholics Anonymous page 164

For years of my sobriety, I thought I was doing something wrong because I wasn’t able to put all the pieces back together perfectly as quickly as I thought they needed to. I thought maybe I was doing recovery wrong. I even thought that may have put my sobriety in jeopardy by not being able to complete amends I wanted to.

While I was coming from a place of genuine desire to right my wrongs, I was ultimately falling into the trap that I needed to make things look good for myself. There is no failing at amends unless you are unwilling to make them. There are certain situations where people are unable to be found, people may still rightfully resent us or people may just want to move on without discussion. Actions speak louder than words in all situations. I can have a tearful conversation with someone but if I go into the world and repeat my behavior, I’m just going to further the harm I’ve done.

This is why a thorough 4th-7th step is required to recognize the harm I’m doing, why and what I gain from it. If I don’t know why I’m holding onto a belief or behavior, I’m not going to be able to recognize in my daily life how to live without it. I won’t be able to take it to God because I can’t even see it.

In my experience, amends are one of the trickiest parts of living the steps and the most rewarding. My alcoholism took the biggest toll on my relationships so being given the chance to repair or create new ones is one of the biggests gifts of my sobriety. I’m finally able to be eye-to-eye with the world.