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Healing from Shame in Recovery

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Our work to recover includes healing not only from our dependence on addictive substances and behaviors but also from the many emotional issues that formed our dependence in the first place. The obsession to use often perpetuated unhealthy coping mechanisms in a futile attempt to self-medicate and numb our intense pain. If we never address that pain, our recovery will never be as meaningful or as successful as we would like it to be. Without a solution, we will always be vulnerable to relapse, and we might always be susceptible to the emotional issues causing our pain. We’ll continue to be impacted by the stressors contributing to our pain. We might always be easily stressed or overwhelmed. We might continue to suffer from depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses. Our sense of emptiness will always get the better of us.

How to Heal in Recovery

One of the greatest emotional contributors to our addictions is the shame we carry: around our trauma, our childhood experiences, and our illnesses. We don’t forgive ourselves for our mistakes, even years later. We dwell on our regrets and wrongdoings. Our feelings of shame make us create a self-image based on self-rejection. We suffer from low self-esteem and self-hatred. We experience suicidal thoughts and even go so far as to act on them, many times because of deeply rooted shame. As a person with a mental illness, we may convince ourselves that we’re bad people. We constantly feel inadequate and inferior to others. When we don’t measure up, we hate ourselves even more. We envy the people who have the happiness we long for. We try to escape our pain using our drugs of choice, which only leaves us feeling even more ashamed of ourselves.

Forgive to Heal

To heal from our addiction – body, mind, and spirit – we have to heal the shame we’ve been burdened and weighed down by for most of our lives. We have to learn how to forgive ourselves. This involves developing more compassion, understanding, and empathy for ourselves. Instead of rejecting, shunning and demonizing ourselves, we must be willing to bring our pain out of the dark and into the light. To develop self-forgiveness, even for our worst mistakes and wrongdoings, we can ask our higher power to forgive us, and then practice extending the unconditional love we feel from our higher power onto how we feel about ourselves. Though mindful awareness, we can see ourselves the way our higher power does, with patience and love. We can practice developing our self-love, and self-forgiveness will come more naturally, allowing our shame to dissolve.

Origins Behavioral Healthcare is a well-known care provider offering a range of treatment programs targeting the recovery from substance use disorders, mental health issues, and beyond. Our primary mission is to provide a clear path to a life of healing and restoration. We offer renowned clinical care for addiction and have the compassion and professional expertise to guide you toward lasting sobriety.

For information on our programs,

call us today: 561-841-1296

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If you or someone you love has a substance use or mental health disorder, Origins Behavioral HealthCare can help. We will work alongside you to provide the most comprehensive treatment available.