Hello lovelies. It’s gonna be another crazy night – what now? What about writing, which seems to be something that others enjoy. What to write about. Recovery letters! I hopped onto the cesspool of people’s fake lives known as Facebook to send more recovery letters. I actually got some good responses. It felt nice.
Recovery letters. Letters of apology for my (And our) behavior in illness. We have been writing them for years and been deservedly handed our asses on more than one occasion. We have learned some stuff that might help you, too.
If you are in recovery, like we are – the worst can be recovery letters. Dredging up bullshit that happened, way back when, when I can actually remember, whatever it was that I/we did wrong. The first big mistake I made was writing them and just sending them off. Without really considering what I was saying. Just raw emotion sent as a letter or an IM.
What we learned, that just like the board, letters to people that may hold a serious grudge can get ugly quickly. I have learned that while we were getting better, to those we were writing, seem even sicker than we were. Still very angry. Things not spoken about. What I learned too, is that sometimes, well wishing letters can invoke jealousy. Let us explain.
We sent a letter to someone who deserved to understand the truth of the matter, why I acted the way that I apologized that this person didn’t get the attention they wanted at the time. I said, “Please tell me how to make this right”. I wanted the person to understand WHY I was acted the way I was with a solemn promise to not make the mistake again. Look out.
This person attacked me/us with what would be described as “heinous fury”. This person was not only downloading all of their hatred on me (Which I deserved) plus another hatred.
The hatred was jealousy. Jealousy that I reached out with an honest hand to make things right and explain myself (us). I have learned that in illness, you attract illness. This person was very mad because my progress was honest and forthcoming. You will find, that those you attracted in illness may still be ill themselves.
What you begin to see is that sometimes, even those close to you want to see you remain ill. If you are ill, they are superior or can remain in a position of power/enabling/manipulation but there is also another side to the coin, that I/we have learned about.
When you become well, those around you are forced to change. They are forced to either accept the fact that you are becoming well and learn to grow with you or they will eventually fade away from you. Wellness takes courage and effort. It takes fortitude, bravery, heartbreak and strength. Many people don’t possess those traits these days, sadly. You will learn quickly which people matter and which don’t.
It’s an ugly side of recovery that never fails. There will be others that see you becoming something better and stronger than them (Or at least, that’s how they see it). In our lives, that only added insult to injury to those that saw me at what must have been my frightening worst – without even an explanation why I was completely out of OUR minds, only to show up years or decades later with our hats in our hands.
Our best suggestion is that when you start writing your own letters, tread carefully. Take your time. 1 letter at a time. Expect a lot of fury. Expect to take an emotional ass kicking. Expect hard questions. Give even harder answers. People want the truth, even if they don’t want to hear it.
We will write more tomorrow about some of the other strategies that we have used. As I/we keep saying, what good is our recovery if we can’t share it. We hope, somewhere, somehow, someone just might read this and it can help them.
M and K
“Happiness is only real when shared”. Alexander Supertramp