No matter how bad it gets between you and your partner, if you have a willing heart and an open mind, things can change and get better. I know at times this could not feel further from the truth for you, but everyone goes through dark times in a long-term recovering relationship. There is nothing harder then trying to get along day in and day out with the same person, especially when addiction of any kind has been in the mix. That is not because you are damaged or wrong, it is just the nature of the beast. Long-term partnership is hard, takes work, and grows emotional muscles you may never have imagined you could have.
Given these parameters, let me share some useful techniques with you.
Stop for a moment and bring your attention into the present moment. Every moment is fleeting. It is gone, over. This is also true of your relationship. What you’ve been until this moment is the old relationship, and what you are walking into today is a new one. Try to treat it as such.
How do you craft a new relationship with the person toward whom you have so many old habit patterns, injuries, resentments, frustration, and anger? You do it simply by making the decision to do so. I'm not suggesting you go into a state of denial, collusion, suppression, or lying. I'm suggesting that in each moment you can choose to breathe in a new reality. A new reality takes you out of playing out the past over and over every day of the week, and instead invites you to feel alive and vital.
Just for today, take the time to be aware of how you're feeling and what you're thinking. Allow yourself to be gentle and to calm any fear or anxiety or future dread you may be carrying. See if you can let go of any judgments about yourself or your partner. You may be left feeling lonely, sad, or afraid. Let yourself have those feelings, and put your hand over your heart and breathe.
Be with yourself totally and say to yourself, "For today, I forgive myself for all past mistakes I've made and for not being able to overcome all the difficulties in my relationship." Do one simple action that brings you a feeling of happiness and well-being, even if you are feeling sad or scared.
Offer this same suggestion to your partner as an act of good faith, and in the name of keeping your humanity alive and well within your partnership. Don't worry if your partner isn't interested in taking what you have to offer, just know that you offered it.
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