Step 5, Walking into Darkness to Find the Light


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

Living under the turmoil of an addiction can be likened to darkness. The most important things in life are often pushed aside as the addiction takes precedent over every facet of one’s being. Addicts may find that everything about them has been utterly changed to accommodate an addiction that is overpowering. This may include a complete reversal of personal morals and values with compromised beliefs in order to maintain an addiction lifestyle.

A person struggling with an addiction may find himself or herself succumbing to behaviors and making choices that would otherwise compromise their moral beliefs and values. Drug seeking behaviors can lead to stealing, lying, manipulation, breaking of laws, abuse and trauma, violence and more. Even if done unintentionally, these actions can destroy the very core of a person, leading to their demise slowly but surely.

Because addiction involves many complex layers, the recovery process is also gradual, occurring in layers or steps. One key aspect of the 12 step process is the Step 5, or admitting to God, ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongdoings. For the addict whose life has been damaged by poor choices make under the influence, this step can be monumental and a powerful step towards light. Being able to confess mistakes or wrongdoings can be incredibly freeing and alleviate the burden of guilt, shame and more.

If you or someone you care about has been struggling with addiction, you have likely felt that your life has become shrouded in darkness. The good news is that there is hope for your healing and recovery. Finding peace with God, yourself, and others can begin by the admittance of any past mistakes and the resolve to stay committed to the recovery process. Work with your local support groups that are founded on the 12-Step process to begin your recovery journey towards healing and to find freedom from the burden of addiction.


Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

Have you gone through the 12-Step process for recovery from an addiction to either drugs or alcohol? If so, how did this process help you achieve sobriety? What was your experience with Step 5 in the 12 Step Process for recovery?