Sober living

How to Make Living Amends: 5 Top Tips

If you’ve successfully recovered or are in the process of recovering, be very proud of yourself. If you’ve done that, you’re going to feel much more fulfilled in your life. For example, let’s say you punched a hole in a friend’s wall while under the influence of alcohol. Making direct amends might mean meeting with your friend face-to-face and admitting that you were wrong. Then, you would take action by repairing the hole in the wall. Remember the Purpose If making an amend doesn’t pan out exactly how you had hoped it would, let it go.

  • If you’re just apologizing for the sake of doing so, then that isn’t truly making amends.
  • If we are to improve ourselves as people, we need to avoid destructive behaviors actively.
  • Instead, making amends means you apologize for what you’ve done and make it right.
  • Paying someone back or replacing an item may right a wrong in the physical sense, but it doesn’t always address the emotional damage that resulted from your behavior.
  • It may help to even write down the wrongdoing in detail and come prepared.
  • And it’s also important to be realistic—there is no set timeline for completing this step.

You will need to demonstrate that you are committed to rebuilding trust and repairing your relationship with them. Making living amends primarily benefits you and not the people you’ve wronged in the past. It’s about making positive changes within yourself so that you don’t repeat old patterns of behavior that led to your broken relationships in the first place. The changes that occur due to your efforts positively affect your commitment to becoming a better friend, child, parent, or person all around. Often, the term amends in recovery comes from following a 12-step program. Specifically, steps 8 and 9 deal directly with the amends process of acknowledging those you have hurt, harmed, or wronged as a result of your substance use disorder.

How Long Will Making Your Amends Take?

While we might apologize later for missing the party, our apology consists of words rather than actions or changed behavior. Another instance where making direct amends may not be a good idea is if admitting your wrongs could jeopardize your freedom, which could hurt your loved ones. However, if after talking with your sponsor you decide to proceed anyway, make sure you have spoken to your family especially if you are the head of the household or primary source of income. Also, it may not be a good idea to make direct amends if it could potentially stir something up. This is one of the situations in which indirect amends may be called for, since forcing someone to have a conversation they do not wish to have or are not ready for could cause them further injury.

What is the best apology message?

I'm so sorry that I hurt you. I'm sending you this apology message in a card to let you know that I love everything about you, for always, every single day. I want nothing more than for you to forgive me so that I can whisper in your ear how much I love you. The perfect couple love, laugh, fight and trust.

You should still follow the guideline above when making indirect amends. Taking action and changing the behaviors you had while in active addiction is key to being able to live a good life in sobriety. It’s not just about you and the changes you’re making, but also those around you.

How to Make Amends with Someone While in Recovery

When you make amends, the way you look and feel about situations changes. You can gain clarity about what happened and what should have happened. If you’re on the fence about Step 9, remember that making amends can help you and the other person. Say, for example, you’re preparing to make amends to a former coworker, whom you once stole from to pay for drugs.

  • A few examples are working in a soup kitchen, helping out at an animal shelter or donating your time to any worthy cause that resonates with you.
  • Essentially, don’t make promises that you can’t keep and do everything you can to live up to the promises you do make.
  • Many addicts think they don’t deserve to have loved ones in their life at all after everything they’ve put them through.
  • Some may notice the change over time and become willing to hear us out, but we have to be okay with the reality that the day when that happens may never come.
  • In these cases, they make promises of cleaning up their act and changing their behaviors to their loved ones just before they die.

Allow us to help you as you work through recovery and take the necessary steps in order to live a fulfilling life after addiction. You may end up speaking to toxic people that have also hurt you. You must be strongly rooted in your recovery and sobriety before approaching these people. You can’t predict someone else’s reaction, but you can control yours. The purpose of making amends is not to receive the “right reaction” from the other person.

How to Get Started Making Amends

These individuals will know the process inside and out because they have worked and studied it themselves. You can suggest ways in which you can repair the relationship by preparing ideas beforehand. It will take time, effort, and trust on their end, but hopefully your amends will help to restore faith and goodwill in you.

They affirm your decision to make lifelong changes, which has a positive effect on both you and everyone around you. It’s possible that you made apologies over and over when you were using, so your loved ones have heard that before. Instead, stay focused on changing your behaviors and being of service to them.2 Offer to do chores or spend time with loved ones. Wash a car, mow a lawn, visit with an elderly relative or do anything else that’s useful and considerate.

Making Amends: How to Approach Step 9 AA… and When Not To

Direct amends, which involve taking personal responsibility for one’s actions and directly confronting the person with whom one wishes to reconcile. Alcoholics Anonymous recommends that we make direct amends to those we have hurt whenever possible. As you make amends during recovery, it’s essential to reconnect with loved ones. Having the support of family and friends can help you deal with Making Living Amends During Addiction Recovery everyday challenges and fight cravings. These relationships can also provide a sense of belonging and purpose, which is essential during recovery. Recovery Connection is the ultimate addiction recovery resource portal for information on the latest treatments, centers, and programs. Whether you’re looking for treatment or for aftercare options, we can point you in the right direction.

What is a backhanded apology?

A non-apology apology, sometimes called a backhanded apology, nonpology, or fauxpology, is a statement in the form of an apology that does not express remorse, or assigns fault to those ostensibly receiving the apology.

We get to enjoy the gift of knowing that we will not make that same mistake again that ruined so many relationships in the past. When you were in the throes of addiction, it was all about you and your needs.

Do Certain Jobs Create More Risk for Addiction?

How the other person chooses to respond to our amends is out of our control. Completing Step 9 is the next step forward in recovery, regardless of how the other person responds. On the opposite side of the street are those individuals who simply say, “All of my amends would hurt people. I’m just not going to speak to anyone.” Avoid the temptation to get out of this step.

Making Living Amends During Addiction Recovery

Forgiveness is as much a process as making amends, and neither are linear. For instance, you might forgive one day and later realize you are still not over certain things, and that’s okay. You need time to fully understand your behaviors and their impacts. Steps, Step 9 is often referred to as particularly challenging.