"Pletcher and Bartolameolli are undisputed experts on the subject of co-sex addiction.  They know more about it than anyone I know and have presented  an expose that with great clarity supersedes anything I have read before."

– John Bradshaw

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Embracing Disappointment and a Spiritual Perspective

Embracing Disappointment, adopting a Spiritual Perspective and Acceptance
Many years ago when my daughter was just a toddler, she was crawling and moving and grabbing everything. She kept wanting to hold things that were dangerous and would cry as I redirected her attention. Her father continued to hand her toys and stuffed animals in a frantic attempt to distract her from her focus. If she began to cry in frustration or disappointment, his frantic attempts would increase. I finally told him to allow her the experience of disappointment. It was a part of life and she would be fine. He stepped back and she was once again redirected away from inappropriate items. This time she wasn't given anything to distract her. At first she cried and fussed and after a few minutes, she stopped, crawled over to her toys and began to play and laugh again. She had moved on rather quickly. It became a metaphor in life for me. Disappointment is a part of life and I am disappointed by those I love regularly.

When someone's behavior does not meet my expectations, I feel disappointed. In my cosex addiction, I want to "convince" them of another way or try to "understand" their rationale. Often I obsess about the situation and think about how I might have handled it differently. I experience disappointment in myself too. It has been a great relief in knowing that those I love will, in fact, disappoint me. I know I will also disappoint myself at times. Whenever this happens, I have learned to try and increase my perspective to see from a wider angle. In this wider perspective, I can see that my disappointment in someone is not all of who they are. Perhaps in this situation, I can see their hurt and fear. Rather than ending a relationship or trying frantically to get them to see my point of view, I am able to accept that they are who they are, human with faults and blind spots. I know that they've probably done their very best as I also do in all situations. In experiencing the humanness and inevitable disappointment of those closest to me as well as in myself, I am able to redirect my own energy and attention to a Spiritual Source. This is a place where I am able to hold my expectations high and learn about emotional and spiritual maturity. In my Spiritual Journey, I can find meaning and purpose in all that happens, whether joyful or disappointing. I learn to surrender my own expectations of myself and others and keep my focus on my spiritual learning and my own emotional maturity. In doing this, I embrace compassion, forgiveness and acceptance; for myself and those I love most in the world. Learning to love myself when my own behavior is disappointing has been a great and challenging endeavor. It's easy to love myself when I have done something wonderful or achieved a goal. It is easy to love colleagues, friends and family members when they are supportive and kind. The great gift is to allow myself and those I care most about to be human and disappointing at times without withdrawing my love and care. This is how I learn compassion and acceptance.

To love imperfection and accept disappointment is a most maturing spiritual challenge. As I work my program around my own addictive behavior and thinking, I learn that disappointment can be a path for embracing Divine Purpose. Embracing disappointment allows for a redirecting of my focus and offers the opportunity to embrace forgiveness and compassion for all.

Blessings on your journey,


Monday, March 8, 2010

Embracing Powerlessness and Unlimited Possibilities....

Cosex Addiction, like all addictions, eats away at our self-esteem and ability to care for ourselves in loving and responsible ways. In any addictive behavior, our energy is tied into how to fill "the emptiness within" regardless of whether we use a substance or over focus on someone else's behavior. The automatic patterns of behaving that we learned by default to survive our family systems and dysfunctional societal conditioning become a way of living. We are tied to cycles of drama and try as we might to break free, it is only possible when we accept our powerlessness over our own behavior and that of others and then connect with a Higher Power who can assist.

In admitting powerlessness over these painful dynamics in ourselves and our relationships, we surrender to another possibility for life. In this new possibility, we embrace a Spiritual Power greater than ourselves and begin to experience hope. Our world begins to open up and we see with new eyes, hear with new ears and begin to welcome the synchronicity of the journey to emotional and spiritual maturity. We begin to have choice over our behavior and learn to use our own energy wisely.

The journey into recovery encourages our descent into honest reflection of who we are and who we are not. We begin to take responsibility for our own choices and feel the grief of authentic losses in our life. Caring for ourselves becomes a way of life and a priority. From this fullness of self-esteem and self-love, we are able to give to others with discernment and care. Our energy is freed to pursue our own dreams rather than chasing unavailable relationships and our creativity finds expression in the world.

It is one of the many paradoxes of 12 step recovery that when we fully embrace our powerlessness, we are able to fully receive our own power. We are able to see our choices more clearly, our energy is ours to use as we desire and we are aware of the workings of our Higher Power to assist us on the path.

Powerlessness leads to Possibilities beyond our imaging.

Blessings on your journey,