I Have Found a Solution for Overcoming My Sexual Acting Out
As described in the Alcoholics Anonymous “Big Book” (page 43, third edition), I am one of the 100% hopeless type of addicts. I expected to die as an active sex addict. I had stopped trying to stop. I was emotionally miserable, spiritually bankrupt, and mentally insane. The only pleasure I got out of life was engaging in my addictions. When I finally reached the "pinnacle" of my sexaholism, it was only a few weeks until I hit rock bottom. At that point, the last little speck of humanity inside of me reached out for help, and I rediscovered hope.
As I’ve sometimes heard in Sexaholics Anonymous meetings, that was the last house on the street for me. Actually, it was the last house in the universe. My wife and a therapist were the catalysts for my journey back to hope. I had betrayed my marriage vows again. My wife had every right to divorce me, but instead she said, "You are sick and God can fix it." The therapist said "if you are going to leave a 30-year marriage for a three-week affair, you should at least do it with integrity." The therapist then directed me to Sexaholics Anonymous..
I stumbled into SA. I did not have any hope, but I thought that I might come across some form of integrity. My plan was to get sexually sober and divorce my spouse "with integrity!" With that agenda, it was not surprising that I relapsed again. But then a wonderful thing happened: I surrendered. I was finally beaten into a state of reasonableness (AA Big Book, page 48).
It turns out that SA was a great place for me to rediscover hope. I believe that we are all born with hope, but over time the disease of sexaholism hijacks our sense of hope. The only thing I "hoped" for was my next fix.
Hope came alive in me very slowly over time. One of my delusional core beliefs was that people could not be trusted. When I began attending SA meetings (because I had no other option), I expected my false belief to prove itself out. I actually believed that one day I would show up at a meeting and no one would be there. I thought the whole program was a house of cards.
I Began To Experience Hope
But other Sexaholics Anonymous members continued to be there for me, and I began to experience hope. One day when I listened to another member share, I realized that he meant business. He wasn't just trying to brainwash himself into accepting something he did not really believe. He believed in and relied upon the SA program of recovery.
I stayed after the meeting that morning until everyone had left. I stood alone in our meeting room and asked a God that I did not believe in if there could be one more chance for me. Could I once again have hope?
I began to hear what members were reading at the beginning of the meetings: "The Solution" (Sexaholics Anonymous, page 204). I also found a chapter in the AA Big Book entitled "There Is a Solution” (AA Big Book, page 17). I began to desire SA’s solution. I followed directions (albeit in self-will run riot), and I began to experience the rudiments of change. Lust overpowered me on many occasions, but I stayed true to the SA bottom line sobriety definition, and I began to expose the roots of my illness.
Step Two was essential in my rediscovery of hope. It was really a simple process. My sponsor told me to write down what I believed about God. We talked about it. He suggested a few ideas and challenged a few of mine, but most of all he told me to go live each day as if I believed what I put on that paper. Day after day I compared my sober experience with the words on that paper. I found these words in the Big Book:
What seemed at first a flimsy reed, has proved to be the loving and powerful hand of God.
A new life has been given us or, if you prefer, "a design for living" that really works. (page 28)
That flimsy sheet of paper with a bunch of scribbled words on it turned out to be the key that unlocked the hope that was within me.
Today, a few years later, hope is flourishing in my life. Hope is a forward-looking spiritual principle. Hope acts in conjunction with faith to spawn purpose. Instead of believing that my life is pointless, I now know that every single thing that has happened in my life had a purpose. Today I have the privilege of sharing my hope with others. Our SA solution can work for anyone. Today, I don't just do things in order to "stay busy.” Every action I take has a purpose. It's all part of a greater plan. Sexaholics Anonymous has given me more than I could ever have asked or imagined.