When I first received this book to review I must admit the first thing that sprung to mind when I read the word addiction was drink and drugs, thanks to this book and Irene Watson's other book, The Sitting Swing, they have opened my eyes to what an addiction really is. I now realise that an addiction can be anything behavioural, such as co-dependency, workaholism, sexual, to my initial thoughts of drink and drugs, it is what we do to hide from the pain that we do not want to deal with.
What everyone tends to forget about when the addicts starts receiving help, is that behind the addict and their problems there is a family who also needs help. The addict, once they admit they need help, can receive various treatments to try and overcome their problem, but what happens to the family at this time and more importantly how do the family react and deal with the addict. The family need help, not only on how to deal with this major issue in their lives but how to understand how the addiction could have started in the first place and how to help the addict on the recovery process, all of which cannot really be done until they have first cleared themselves of problems. This book is here for them, written from years of research and clinical practice, and should be given to every addicts family as part of the whole recovery process. If an addicts family are unable deal with the issues, due to lack of knowledge, this could be the difference of of recovery and loosing their will to help themselves.
I have learnt so much from this book, I cannot put into words just how important I feel this is to read. In life we tend to hang on to our old survival techniques to get us through the difficult patches, hiding from the problem or pain, thinking that this will make everything alright or that the problem will go away. Unfortunately the way we do this hasn't helped with any problems in the past so why should it now. We need to find the courage to face a problem, instead of going into denial, and realise that there are things in life that we cannot change or control, what will be will be, we need to let go of the problem and surrender ourselves to these old patterns and to channel that energy into improving our life instead, making us stronger.
The book is a fantastic resource of help to all family members. It gives the reader a greater understanding of addictions and recovery, with great insight into the inner lives of addicts, how addictions affect family dynamics that can be carried into adult life. It is full of stories to bring the reader closer to understanding the topic, success stories, questions and answers and even has some quote here and there.
The book is all about our current beliefs and acceptances as we were taught as we grew up and how we can rewrite these. Our lesson in life should be to trust and enjoy every moment in life, believe in yourself and realise that nothing is perfect, we cannot control everything, To Love Life Again !!
For me the chapter on 'Making changes in your life first' was the most important, especially the Fear part, in fact I read and re-read this as it was quite an eye opener for me and I wanted to fully understand. One line in the book stood out for me and made so much sense -
'Love is the energy that heals feelings and the power that restores us to sanity'. Extremely Highly Recommended.