The road to recovery is unique for every person. However, for people working through their issues with addiction, making amends is one of the most critical steps of the recovery process. This step can be one of the most challenging aspects of recovery, a process that involves going back to the people they hurt while they suffered from their addiction.
As they continue their journey, coming up to this portion of the process can feel daunting. So what does making amends look like in recovery, and what can they expect moving forward?
What Does “Making Amends” Mean?
You may have heard the general term before in regular conversation and popular culture, but that doesn’t mean that you have the full breadth of what it means to make amends. When a person suffers from addiction, they can become a completely different person that their loved ones don’t recognize. As a result, they make a slew of terrible choices and decisions that negatively affect the people around them and can severely strain these relationships.
As they continue on their recovery journey, a vital component of the process is apologizing to those people who you wronged. Certain media depictions of making amends may have simplified the concept down to people thinking that it’s an apology for past transgressions, and that’s it. However, it’s rarely ever that easy.
The Difference Between an Apology and Making Amends
When we cross a line, get caught in a lie, or do something that affects someone else negatively, we offer an apology to the other person or persons and often call it a day. Apologies can help rebuild the lost trust and open the road to better communication and relationships in the future. Some people may have trouble apologizing for various reasons. However, simply because someone recovering from addiction apologizes for their behavior does not automatically equate to making amends.
While in some scenarios, a genuine and sincere apology is enough for their loved ones, sometimes they need to show a more concentrated effort that they are actively changing their behavior. Alcoholics Anonymous first introduced the concept for people in recovery to “amend their behavior.” It involves demonstrating with examples of positive corrective action that your intentions include doing the right thing moving forward.
Making amends can be as simple as asking, “what can I do to make it up to you?” Other times, it’s a more involved process.
Showing Constructive and Tangible Change
One of the most significant differences between an apology and making amends comes from how much deeper making amends can go. While the person suffered from their addiction, their actions affected the people closest to them and sometimes caused great harm to these relationships. The only way forward is to rebuild the shattered trust and get to a place where they can conceivably move on into the future.
These changes can vary in type, but you can focus on being a more active listener and hearing how your previous actions affect those around you. Using that feedback, you can begin to make constructive changes to the behaviors you may not have realized had such an overt impact on your relationships. Making amends is essential to breaking the cycle and rebuilding frayed relationships during your recovery.
Get the Help and Support You Need From a Trusted Addiction Treatment Center in Mahanoy City, PA
Making amends is one of the most challenging aspects of recovery for many people suffering from addiction. Taking responsibility for their actions and making strides to address their issues can feel overwhelming and, without the right support system in place, can prove too triggering. Fortunately, for people looking for a personalized substance abuse treatment program in Mahanoy City, PA, Silver Pines Treatment Center is here to help.
We have worked with countless patients to work through their complex issues and help steer them towards a sustainable road to recovery. Our trained staff can help identify the specific issues affecting the patient and develop a personalized strategy to help them move forward in their recovery journey. If you or someone you love struggles with addiction and wants help to make amends, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Learn more about our treatment programs and admissions process today by giving us a call at 866-345-2147.