Reaching Out for Additional Counseling in Step 5

Contributor: Crystal Karges, MS, RDN, IBCLC Special Projects Coordinator at Eating Disorder Hope/Addiction Hope

If you are recovering from an addiction to drugs or alcohol and have followed the 12-step program, you are likely familiar with Step number 5, “Admitted to God, Ourselves, and Another Human Being the Exact Nature of our Wrongs”.

This step is an important part of the recovery process as it signifies a transition from internal and private transformations to external progression. The confession part that is involved with step 5 involves a process of disclosure with family, friends and others.

A Challenging Step

This step also integrates shared expressions of remorse with others who may have been impacted and negatively affected by acts of wrongdoing that resulted from addiction behaviors.

This step is often more challenging that people may anticipate. Admitted the wrongs and pains from a pastime are never easy to do. This involves revisiting history and essentially coming into a full understanding about the devastating nature of addiction.

Hauntings from the Past

Some individuals who reach this step in recovery may actually find themselves struggling with their past and with the people in their lives who may have been hurt by addiction. There is also a possibility that disclosing wrongdoings to others causes hurt, frustration, and diversion in relationships, which can further complicate things for a recovering addict.

The father with the son on bicycles,with a retro effectIn these types of scenarios, it may be beneficial to seek out additional counseling for guidance and support through Step 5 of addiction recovery. A counselor may also be invaluable in helping a person learn the ways to best approach family members, friends and others about past situations.

Completing Step 5

It is possible to complete Step 5 in a productive way that allows freedom and healing for all parties involved, which is the ultimate goal of the 12-Step program for addiction recovery.

If you have found yourself struggling at any point of your recovery process, know that there is no shame in seeking out additional counseling for support and guidance. Utilizing these resources can make all the difference in your recovery journey.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

Have you found it necessary to reach out for additional counseling at any point of your recovery from an addiction? If so, what things indicated to you that you may need additional counseling? How did this help you overcome any challenge you may have been facing?

Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on July 17th, 2015
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