If you are a recovering addict who has spent some time in drug rehab, you may now be realising that you’ve hurt many people. You may feel a sense of shame or embarrassment, or a feeling that you’ll never be able to fix the relationships you broke while you were an addict. However, when you come out the other side, and you’re looking to turn your life around, making amends is crucial. Here are a few ways to get started.
Remember Who You Wronged
When you’re thinking back to the times you were looking to get your next fix, or you were high or drunk, there are sure to be many people’s names that come to mind. They may be people you said hurtful things to, stole from, or didn’t look after when you were supposed to. The first step to making amends is writing down a list of names of people you know you need to contact.
Think of What You Did
When you attend drug rehab, accountability is a significant part of your recovery. You learn to be accountable for your actions, your feelings, your drug or alcohol abuse, and the path that got you to this very moment. Once you leave drug rehab and begin your recovery in a natural environment, you then start to understand all the wrongs you committed.
While in the first step you outlined the names of those people you did wrong by, it’s now time to think of those wrongs and how to amend them. Write the mistakes you made next to their name, then follow it up with a plan of action.
Begin Righting Wrongs
Now that you know who you’ve hurt and how to make amends, it’s time to work through righting wrongs and repairing relationships. However, it’s important to understand that not everyone you approach to apologise to is going to welcome you with open arms. When you were an addict, you may have caused a lot of pain, and those wounds can take a lot of time to heal.
For example, if you neglected your children, they may take a while to trust you again. And, even if you return the money you stole from a friend, they may not be willing to invite you on regular coffee dates right away. Righting wrongs takes time, but the first step to leading a drug-free life is to make amends, one step at a time.
When you make the courageous step to book into drug rehab and get clean, you will be well aware of the challenging road that lies ahead. While initially, you’ll be dealing with withdrawal symptoms, it’s the relationship repairs that are even more challenging to contend with. Take your time, figure out how you’ll make amends, then begin on the journey to becoming the person your family and friends remember before your addiction took over.