Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Trusting Again

A client who's hurting over the breakup of a relationship asks for a solution.

"How do I get over it?" She asks. "And how do I trust anyone again?"

And my answer is not much solace.

I tell her, in a general way, that whenever we deal with others on a personal level we risk pain. And that's because when we have friends, or lovers, we expose our vulnerabilities.

The longer we're in an intimate relationship the more we expose ourselves. Our likes. Our dislikes. Our fears. Our secrets. Our dreams. And if the relationship continues this information can be the glue that holds us together. But if the relationship falls apart then what? We've exposed our innermost selves, our love, with this person who's suddenly become a stranger.

This alienation is so painful that one might wonder - as does this woman - can I ever trust again?

I leave her with the idea that relationships, like much of life, can be risky. But if we want to live fully and have an actualized life we must be willing to accept the prospect of pain.