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AREA MEETINGS

General Phone Number:
541-749-3040

MONDAY
Christmas Valley Community Church
87921 Co Highway 5-14
Christmas Valley, OR 97641
6:30 to 8:00 pm

Faith Christian Center
1049 NE 11th
Bend, OR 97701
6:30-8:30 pm
5:45 pm dinner - $3
first time free dinner
Child Care Available

Ranch Chapel
5060 SW Clubhouse Road
Crooked River Ranch, OR 97760
6:30-8:30 pm

TUESDAY
Highland Baptist Church
3100 SW Highland Ave. Redmond, OR 97756
6:30-8:30 pm

Klamath Falls Church
of the Nazarene

2142 Carlson Drive
Klamath Falls, OR 97603
541-882-4705
6:00-8:30 pm
dinner at 6pm

WEDNESDAY
Redmond Assy. of God
1865 W. Antler Ave.
Redmond, OR 97756
7:00-8:30 pm
Child Care Available

THURSDAY
High Lakes Christian Church
52620 Day Rd.
La Pine, OR, 97739
6:30-8:30 pm

Westside Church
2051 NW Shevlin Pk Rd
Bend, OR 97701
6:30-8:30 pm
First Thurs: 5:45 pm
Potluck dinner.

FRIDAY
Harney County Church of the Nazarene
311 Roe Davis Avenue
Burns, OR  97738
541-589-3934
5:30-8:30 pm
Landing Program

Redmond Christian Church
536 SW 10th St
Redmond, OR 97756
541-548-2974
7:00pm – 9:00pm

What to Expect

Each week we meet in a Large Group for the first hour.There is time of worship music followed by a recovery lesson or a testimony.

The second hour we break into Open Issue Small Groups by gender to work on individual issues. All groups share on the topic of the evening’s lesson and are open to newcomers.

   

Some
of the issues we struggle with

Celebrate Recovery Conditions

Adult Children of Family Dysfunction

Common Characteristics Among Adult Children Of Family Dysfunction /ACFD:
Guess at what normal is:

  • Have difficulty in following a project through to completion.
  • Lie when it would be just as easy to tell the truth.
  • Judge themselves without mercy.
  • Have difficulty having fun.
  • Take themselves very seriously.
  • Have difficulty with intimate relationships.
  • Over-react to changes over which they have no control.
  • Constantly seek approval and affirmation.
  • Feel they are different from other people.
  • Are either super responsible or super irresponsible.
  • Are extremely loyal even when there is evidence that loyalty is undeserved.
  • Look for immediate rather than deferred gratification.
  • Lock themselves into a course of action without giving serious consideration to the possible consequences, or before considering alternate behaviors.
  • Seek tension and crisis and then complain about the results.
  • Avoid conflict or aggravate it; rarely do they deal with it.
  • Fear rejection and abandonment, yet are rejecting of others.
  • Fear failure, but sabotage their own success.
  • Fear criticism and judgment yet criticize and judge others.
  • Manage time poorly and do not set priorities in a way that works efficiently for them.

In order to change, adult children of family dysfunction/ACFD cannot use history as an excuse for continuing their behaviors. They learn to have no regrets for what might have been, for their experience have shaped their talents as well as their defects in character. It is their responsibility to discover their talents, to build their self-esteem and to repair any damage done. They will allow themselves to feel their feelings, to accept them, and to learn to express them appropriately. When they have begun those tasks, they will try to let go of their past and get on with the business of their life.

Chemically Dependent

The Problem

If you find you cannot quit drinking or using entirely, or if you have little control over the amount you consume, you are probably an alcoholic and/or drug addict. If that is the case, you may be suffering from a problem which only a spiritual solution will conquer.

  • Have you ever decided to stop drinking and/or using for a week or so but it only lasted a couple of days?
  • Do you wish people would mind their own business about your drinking/using and stop telling you what to do?
  • Have you ever switched from one kind of drink or drug to another in the hope that this would keep you from losing control?
  • Have you had to have an “eye-opener” upon awakening during the past year? Do you need a drink/drug to get started or stop shaking?
  • Do you envy people who can drink or use drugs without getting into trouble?
  • Have you had legal or relationship problems with drinking or using in the last year?
  • Has your drinking or using caused trouble at home? Do you ever try to get “extra” drinks or drugs at a party because you did not get enough?
  • Do you tell yourself you can stop drinking or using any time you want, even though you keep getting inebriated when you don’t mean to?
  • Have you missed days of work or school because of drinking or using?
  • Do you have “blackouts” (can’t remember periods of time)?
  • Have you ever felt that your life would be better if you did not drink or use?

What Is Your Score?

Did you answer YES two or more times? If so, you are probably in trouble with alcohol or drugs.

Only you can decide whether you think Celebrate Recovery is for you. Try to keep an open mind on the subject. If the answer is YES, we will be glad to show you how we stopped drinking and using drugs ourselves.

The Solution

Celebrate Recovery does not promise to solve your life’s problems. But it can show you how to:

Work through the 8 Recovery Principles found in the Beatitudes. With Jesus Christ as your Higher Power, you can and will change.

Live without drinking or using one day at a time with the help of the Higher Power, Jesus Christ.

Stay away from the first drink. If there isn’t a first one, there cannot be a tenth one. And when free of alcohol/drugs, life becomes much more manageable, with Christ’s power.

Experience the true peace and serenity you have been seeking.

Restore and develop stronger relationships with God and with others.

Stop relying on dysfunctional, compulsive, and addictive behaviors as a temporary “fix” for pain.

Apply the biblical principles of conviction, conversion, surrender, confession, restitution, prayer, quiet time, witnessing and helping one another which are found within the 8 Recovery Principles and Christ-centered 12 Steps.

When life becomes impossible and passes into the region from which there is no return through human resources, there are but two alternatives:

The first is to go on to the bitter end, blotting out the consciousness of our intolerable situation as best we could.

The second is to accept Jesus Christ as our Higher Power.

We chose to accept Jesus Christ!

Codependency - Men

The Problem

We are codependent because we allow the behavior of another person to effect our behavior so that we become consumed with that person and their problems. This obsession with the issues and problems of others becomes debilitating to us as we exhaust inordinate and inappropriate amounts of mental and emotional energy over them, leaving little, if any, energy for ourselves.

Often, our childhood was so chaotic and our environments were so out of control, we learned ways to escape to try to find serenity. As we grew into adulthood, we worked hard at trying to control our external environment, believing it was the key to our happiness and inner peace. Our family of origin was frequently dysfunctional. Sometimes we even blamed ourselves for our parent’s problems. If we were terrorized by a volatile alcoholic parent, anger became an unacceptable and unwelcome guest in our lives. Anger was to be avoided at all costs. As a result, we learned to appease; we learned to rescue.

We learned to be aware of others’ feelings in order to protect ourselves and began to lose touch with our own feelings. We made ourselves responsible for the happiness of others, and when they weren’t happy, neither were we.

We are extremely loyal but also extremely insecure. Self-doubt is our constant companion, and often self-hatred. Being unacceptable to ourselves, we hide our true selves, convinced that if anyone truly knew us, they would abandon us. This fear of abandonment often fuels our codependent behavior as we seek to do everything in our power to become so valuable that others would not want to leave us. By choice, our lives are not our own and our emotions are the property of whatever crisis the person(s) closest to us is having.

The Solution

We don’t have to live this way! We do have a choice. We can live free of these obligatory compulsions. Through God’s help we can learn to take responsibility for our own lives and allow others to take responsibility for theirs.

With Jesus Christ as our Higher Power we learn how to apply the 8 Recovery Principles and 12 Steps, designed to guide us through the journey we call “Recovery.” If we are diligent to provide willingness, integrity, consistency and rigorous honesty, God will supply us with courage, strength and the ability to take the necessary steps to gain freedom from our compulsive behaviors.

In the context of caring and loving relationships, we learn to recognize our dependence upon God. We are then able to take a penetrating look at ourselves and inventory both our own and other’s contributions to our lives which have brought us to where we are today. As our defects of character are unearthed, we are able to come clean to ourselves, to God and to safe people. When our secrets cease our freedom will increase. God provides us with tools and will to do what we once thought impossible. We begin to see relationships restored, old animosities put to rest and lives pieced back together. We learn to take daily inventory that we might continue to walk in truth, light and freedom. Most importantly, we can draw closer to God than ever before. We are being used by Him to share our lives and God’s miracles with others that they might experience the hope and healing that we have experienced.

A Definition of Codependent Sobriety

Codependent sobriety is somewhat different in nature in that we do not have a substance from which to abstain. Our addiction is more relational in nature. The key is learning how to have healthy relationships and how to establish and enforce appropriate boundaries that we may accurately establish where we end and another person

Therefore, we define codependent sobriety as a faithful commitment to consistently work the program; which includes working or having worked through the CR Step Studies; steady attendance at CR meetings; and responsibility to a Sponsor and Accountability Partners. We advocate journaling, daily inventory, transparency and rigorous honesty.

Codependency - Women

The Problem

On the surface, codependency sounds like “Christian teaching.” Codependents always put others first before taking care of themselves. Aren’t Christians to put others first? Codependents give themselves away. Shouldn’t Christians do the same? Codependents martyr themselves. Christianity honors its martyrs.

Compliance Patterns As a codependent, you:

  • Assume responsibility for others’ feelings and behaviors.
  • Feel guilty about others’ feelings and behaviors.
  • Have difficulty expressing our own feelings.
  • Are afraid of your own anger, yet sometimes erupt in rage.
  • Worry about how others may respond to your feelings, opinions.
  • Are afraid of being hurt and/or rejected by others.
  • Minimize, alter or deny how you truly feel.
  • Are very sensitive to how others are feeling and feel the same.
  • Are afraid to express differing opinions or feelings.
  • Value others opinions and feelings more than your own.
  • Put other people’s needs and desires before your own.
  • Embarrassed to receive recognition, praise or gifts.
  • Judge everything you think, say or do harshly as never good enough.
  • Are a perfectionist.
  • Are extremely loyal, remaining in harmful situations too long.
  • Do not ask others to meet your needs or desires.
  • Do not perceive yourself as lovable and worthwhile.
  • Compromise your own values and integrity to avoid rejection or others’ anger.

In its broadest sense, codependency can be defined as an addiction to people, behaviors or things. Codependency is the fallacy of trying to control interior feelings by controlling people, things and events on the outside. To the codependent, control or the lack of it is central to every aspect of life.

The Solution

Jesus taught the value of the individual. He said we are to love others equal to ourselves, not more than ourselves. The love of self forms the basis for loving others. The differences between a life of service and codependency take several forms. Motivation differs. Does the individual give himself and his service freely or because he considers himself to be of no value? Does he seek to “please people”? Does he act out of guilt and fear? Does he act out of a need to be needed (which means he actually uses the other person to meet his own needs: the “helped” becomes an object to help the helper achieve his own goals).

  • Codependents learn to gain self worth through Jesus Christ.
  • Christianity (the Bible) teaches that a person has worth simply because he was created by God.
  • Your self-worth is not based on the work you do or the service you perform.
  • Service is to be an active choice. Codependents learn to “act” rather than “react.”
  • Codependents allow healthy Christian service to bring joy.
  • Christian faith calls for balanced living and taking care of yourself.
  • Codependents learn to choose balanced behavior rather than addictive behavior and allow others to be in charge of their own lives.
  • Codependents learn to live balanced lives; taking responsibility for their own health and well-being.
  • Codependents learn how to set and hold healthy boundaries and to set limits for themselves, not allowing others to compromise those boundaries.
  • Codependents learn to help others in appropriate ways, by allowing others to act independently, rather than making others depend on them.
  • Codependents learn to be God-directed and be free from compulsiveness, knowing that God brings ultimate results.

Eating Disorders - Women

The Problem

For women, Food Addiction is unique. Our behavior ranged from daily binges and excessive exercise to starvation and vomiting. We engaged in a high intake of sweets and unusual rituals while eating. For some of us it was Compulsive Over-eating, Bulimia and Anorexia. We used our bodies to create an illusion that gave us a false sense of self-worth. We jeopardized our relationships, health, jobs, morals and values, we even neglected our children. All the while we rationalized our addictive behaviors. “Why can’t I have a little something like everyone else?” “It’s just food” or “What they don’t know, won’t hurt them.” We tried to maintain a “normal” image yet we lived a double-life. We became disconnected from reality making true intimacy with God or other people impossible. We took God off His throne and replaced Him with our behavior.

Why? We were running. Running from love, running from pain. And running from the pain of shame, self-hate and multiple forms of abuse. We lacked self-worth, had an unrealistic body image and feared intimacy. We tried to connect, we tried to escape, we felt abandoned, we had a need to be in control and have power over others and/or situations. Spiritually, we were bankrupt.

We learned to numb our feelings and to cope with our inadequacies by reaching out for a cure that would ultimately destroy us. This unhealthy belief system was not in line with the plan God had for the food in our lives.

Food addiction is progressive. It can begin as a little curiosity or negative self-talk. When we cross a line it sets us in motion to cross the next line more easily. Ask the recovering compulsive over-eater, bulimic or anorexic “when and how they started and how it ended..” We’ve asked ourselves, “How did we get here?” Sometimes, we don’t even remember why we started in the first place. We tell ourselves that tomorrow our food behavior will be better, but it never is. Eventually our behaviors resulted in kidney damage, destruction of teeth, malnutrition, cardiac arrest or diabetes. For many the risk of death is now a reality. Hopefully, before that happens, we hit bottom.

To determine if you suffer from an Eating Disorder, check the following that apply.

  1. Do thoughts about food occupy much of your time?
  2. Are you preoccupied with a desire to be thinner?
  3. Do you starve to make up for eating binges?
  4. Are you overweight despite concerns by others for you to lose weight?
  5. Do you binge and then vomit afterward?
  6. Do you exercise excessively to burn off calories?
  7. Do you overeat by binge eating or by grazing continuously?
  8. Do you eat the same thing every day and feel annoyed when you eat something else?
  9. Do you binge and take enemas or laxatives to get rid of the food you ate?
  10. Do you hide stashes of food for future eating or binge eating?
  11. Do you avoid foods with sugar in them and feel uncomfortable eating sweets?
  12. Is food your friend?
  13. Would you rather eat alone? Do you feel uncomfortable when you must eat with others?
  14. Do you have specific ways you eat when emotionally upset, sad, angry, afraid, anxious or ashamed?
  15. Do you become depressed or feel guilty after an eating binge?
  16. Do you feel fat even when people tell you otherwise?
  17. Are you ever afraid that you won’t be able to stop eating when you are on a binge?
  18. Have you tried to diet repeatedly only to sabotage your weight loss?
  19. Do you Binge on High-calorie, sugary or forbidden foods?
  20. Are you proud of you ability to control the food you eat and your weight?
  21. Do you have weight changes of more than 10 lbs after binges and fasts?
  22. Do you feel your eating behavior is abnormal? Do you try to hide it from others?
  23. Does feeling ashamed of your body weight result in more binge eating?
  24. Do you make a lot of insulting jokes about your body weight or your eating?
  25. Do you feel guilty after eating anything not allowed on your diet?
  26. Do you follow unusual rituals while eating such as counting bites or not allowing the fork or food to touch your lips?

If you answered five or more of the questions numbered 4,7,12,13,14,15,17,18,19,22,23,24 you may be dealing with compulsive overeating.

If you answered five or more of the questions numbered 1,2,6,8,11,13,14,16,17,20,22,25,26 you may be dealing with anorexia nervosa.

If you checked five or more of the questions numbered 1,3,5,6,9,10,13,14,15,17,19,21,22,26, you may be dealing with bulimia nervosa.

Food Addiction - Women

The Problem

  • Throughout our lives many of us have turned to food to ease our pain or fear.
  • We felt comfort in eating and found ourselves turning to food whenever we were hurt, angry or frustrated.
  • Food became our comforter, our friend.
  • Some of us may have one specific food that he have trouble eating in healthy amounts, and that once we start eating it, we can’t stop.
  • Some of us may have been emotionally, physically or sexually abused and use food to cope with the emotions of those events.
  • Some of us may have had healthy eating habits as children or young adults, but at some point in our lives we chose to overeat and lost the ability to discern when we were physically hungry or when we were physically full.
  • Some of us may have turned to food after obtaining sobriety in other areas.
  • We thought food was “safe” not realizing it could become our “drug of choice.”
  • We have focused on our body image instead of our health.
  • Many of us have tried various diet programs, exercising, medications or many other ways of trying to control our eating habits.
  • We have failed over and over and are left feeling guilty, incapable and unlovable.
  • We have given in to the idea that there is one perfect diet or pill out there that can save us if only we could find it.
  • Some of us believe that thin people do not struggle with food addiction. We have also failed to recognize food as our “drug of choice.”
  • As a result of our food addiction, we feel out of control and may struggle with many other areas of our lives.
  • Some of us have low self-esteem which may affect our motivation and our relationship with God and others.

The Solution

  • We came to realize that we are powerless and could not control our addiction to food.
  • We understand that our problems are emotional and spiritual.
  • We are ready to face our denial and accept the truth about our lives and our food addiction.
  • We are ready to accept responsibility for our actions and make Jesus the Lord of our lives.
  • We are dedicated to learning about healthy eating.
  • We are committed to learning the difference between physical and emotional hunger.
  • We are willing to turn to God when we are not physically hungry.
  • We will begin to view food as fuel for our body so that we will not eat unless we are physically hungry and stop when we are physically full.
  • We are willing to begin the process of recovery and working through the 12 Steps to heal ourselves, and start living the life God intended.
  • We are willing to find a Sponsor and Accountability Partners.
  • We realize our group provides a safe place to share our fears, hurt or anger and is also a place to rejoice in victories.
  • We are willing to face our character defects and work through these feelings in our group.
  • We are willing to take the focus off of food and focus on God.
  • We recognize that recovery from food addiction is not about our body image or what foods we eat, but it is about trusting God and having an intimate relationship with Him.
  • We are willing to believe and trust in God’s love for us, and to see ourselves as He sees us.
  • We are willing to seek a closer relationship with God.
  • By facing our fears, we have realized that we need Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit in our life to overcome those fears.
  • As we surrender our food addiction to God, we will come to know that He is all we need.
  • We will continue to seek a daily quiet time with God and will rely on the Holy Spirit as our source of comfort. We will be transformed by the renewing of our minds.
  • We will use the tools of recovery; calling our accountability partners, journaling and reading the Bible.

Freedom from Anger - Men

The Problem

Anger is one of our ten basic, God-given emotions. This emotion can be CONSTRUCTIVE or DESTRUCTIVE depending upon our response. Our focus is on giving Jesus a “NANO SECOND” (just one billionth of a second) to help us learn to use all of our emotions according to God’s design for our lives and to appropriately change our pattern of relating to others and our responsibilities.

When most of us think of an “angry” person, we think of someone who destroys themselves and their relationships through uncontrollable outbursts of rage. We usually picture someone who goes around slamming doors, yelling loudly and making life miserable for everyone, including themselves. Yet, this is only one part of anger, as anger has many faces. Equally as damaging and destructive is anger that is suppressed or “stuffed.” All anger, if allowed to, will continue to destructively influence our behaviors and attitudes and will, ultimately, erupt from deep within the heart.

Recognizing and accepting responsibility of toxic patterns of behavior is the first hurdle to overcome as one runs the race toward true freedom from anger. Walking through the recovery process with Jesus Christ as our Higher Power allows us to admit our powerlessness to control our anger as well as trust that He will help us to overcome our destructive habits.

Breaking the old patterns that have kept us locked into destructive behavior takes time. What took years to bring about will take some time to change. But with Jesus Christ as our Higher Power and the willingness to allow Him to change our life, real freedom from anger is possible!

Take a few minutes to complete the following questionnaire. It may reveal more about your anger than you realize, helping you to determine if your anger is reaching a destructive levels in your life. It may also be the beginning of the healing that you’re looking for! (Adapted from “The Anger Workbook” Written by Dr. Les Carter and Dr Frank Minirth.)

Note the statements that apply to you: Do you have a problem with anger?

  • I become impatient easily when things do not go according to my plans.
  • I tend to have critical thoughts toward others who don’t agree with my opinions.
  • When I am displeased with someone I may shut down any communication with them or withdraw entirely.
  • I get annoyed easily when friends and family do not appear sensitive to my needs.
  • I feel frustrated when I see someone else having an “easier” time than me.
  • Whenever I am responsible for planning an important event. I am preoccupied with how I manage it.
  • When talking about a controversial topic, the tone of my voice is likely to become louder and more assertive.
  • I can accept a person who admits their mistakes but I get irritated easily at those who refuse to admit their weaknesses.
  • I do not easily forget when someone “does me wrong.”
  • When someone confronts me with a misinformed opinion, I am thinking of my comeback even while they are still speaking.
  • I find myself becoming aggressive even while playing a game for fun.
  • I struggle emotionally with the things in life that “aren’t fair.”
  • Although I realize that it may not be right, I sometimes blame others for my problems.
  • More often than not, I use sarcasm as a way of expressing humor.
  • I may act kindly toward others on the outside yet feel bitter and frustrated on the inside

If you checked 4 to 8 statements your anger is probably more constant than you would like. If you checked 9 or more, there is a strong possibility that you have struggled with periods of anger or rage, whether you are aware of it or not.

Freedom from Anger - Women

The Problem

As women who struggle with anger, we may not recognize that our anger has foundations in other basic emotions-usually fear or pain. These basic emotions may have become damaged as adults or when we were children. Some of us may have been abused or neglected as children. Others may have lost a parent or a loved one by their death. Many of us may have been abused or cheated on by a spouse or boyfriend.

We may have learned how to express anger inappropriately from our parents, other relatives or friends. We did not realize that when we lashed out in anger, we were ignoring our fear, pain or other deeper hurt, habit or hang-up. Others of us did not even realize we were struggling with anger because we did not express it, but rather, we stuffed it down and kept silent.

As our lives and relationships progressed we may have become addicted to the physical symptoms of anger. Some of may have felt a momentary euphoria as the anger was released. Some of did not recognize we were actually hurting our loved ones and ourselves in the process. In the heat of the moment, releasing our anger was all that mattered.

Some of us felt our anger was justified based on the object of anger’s actions, i.e. “If he hadn’t come home late from work, I wouldn’t have had to yell at him” or “If she had not talked back to me, I would not have had to slap her” or “My husband deserved me calling him names, yelling and fighting because he cheated on me.”

Many of us feel intense shame and guilt over the actions that we have committed during our unhealthy expressions of anger. We have vowed to never act that way again only to find ourselves back in the same situation, unable to change it under our own power. Anger has confused us and gotten the better of us time and time again.

Some of us did not understand that anger is a God-given emotion and that we could use it in healthy, productive ways. Being angry meant that we were bad, somehow faulty, even that we were not Christians. We have allowed our shame and guilt to create the false belief that we could not turn to God for His comfort, strength and guidance. We did not feel worthy of His help or love. We remained stuck in using anger as a coping mechanism and to get the desired results from others.

The Solution

  • EVALUATE THE ANGER: Anger is one of my ten basic, God-given emotions. This emotion can be CONSTRUCTIVE of DESTRUCTIVE depending upon my response. The focus of CR is on giving Jesus a “NANO SECOND" (just one billionth of a second) to help me use all of my emotions according to God’s design for my life and to appropriately change my pattern of relating to my responsibilities and to other people.
  • It is both healthy and necessary to feel anger and to talk about my anger. I should recognize anger as my own emotion and avoid hurting the objects of my anger-keeping my anger as a feeling not an action. Looking at anger as a feeling may also reveal a larger hurt, habit or hang-up that is hiding behind the anger. It is what I do with my feelings that will allow me to fall into sin. I need to check the motives for my behavior. Rudeness under the disguise of being honest is still rudeness.
  • There are two kinds of anger: healthy adaptive anger and unhealthy needless anger. Healthy anger is based on being protective of myself or others. Unhealthy needless anger is based on my resentment which leads to desiring revenge. Recognizing and accepting my responsibility for unhealthy needless anger is the first step towards true freedom from anger.
  • DAILY QUIET TIME WITH GOD Anger causes me to live in conflict and not in peace. I will try to remember that God is in charge of my life and He loves me unconditionally. I will commit to having a daily quiet time with God.
  • TAKING A “TIME-OUT” When I feel body arousal, I need to recognize that as a sign that I am getting angry, I will use a “time-out” to isolate myself from the trigger for my anger and to prevent the anger from becoming too intense. I will ask myself, “What is making me angry?” and “How is this trigger about me?” I will reappraise the situation and keep my behavior under control. I will do something physical to release the adrenaline rush and energy in a healthy way, such as going for a walk or cleaning a closet. I will avoid alcohol, caffeine or other medicating substances during “time-out.” Looking at anger as a feeling may also reveal a larger hurt, habit or hang-up that is hiding behind the anger.
  • CONFRONTING IN LOVE After the time-out, I will go back and deal with what made me angry. If I leave an issue unresolved, it is likely to return later. I will not use the confrontation as an opportunity to blame, shame, seek revenge or to rationalize my anger. Examples of confronting in love while stating my feelings are; I love you, here’s how this action makes me feel,” or “I feel devalued when this is said or done.”
  • WORK THE 12 STEPS AND CONNECT WITH OTHERS I will commit to working the 12 Steps, to attend regularly the Celebrate Recovery meetings and to getting an Accountability Partner for my anger management. (We strongly suggest each woman obtain a Life Recovery Bible and the Participant’s Guides which are the tools we use at Celebrate Recovery.)
  • FORGIVE I will become willing to forgive myself and others. The LORD forgave you, so you must be willing to forgive others (Col 3:13) Forgiveness is NOT forgetting what has happened. Forgiveness IS changing the way I think. Forgiveness IS my giving up my desire for revenge.

Physical/Emotional and Sexual Abuse - Women

STEP 1 We admit we are powerless over the past, and as a result, our lives have become unmanageable.

STEP 2 Believe God can restore us to wholeness and realize this power can always be trusted to bring healing and wholeness in our lives.

STEP 3 Make a decision to turn our lives and our wills to the care of God, realizing we have not always understood His unconditional love. Choose to believe He does love us, is worthy of trust and will help us to understand Him as we seek His truth.

STEP 4 Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves, realizing all wrongs can be forgiven. Renounce the lie that the abuse was our fault.

STEP 5 Admit to God, to ourselves and to another human being, the exact nature of the wrongs in our lives. This will include those acts perpetrated against us as well as those wrongs we perpetrated against others.

STEP 6 By accepting God’s cleansing we can renounce our shame. Now we are ready to have God remove all these character distortions and defects.

STEP 7 Humbly ask Him to remove our shortcomings, including our guilt. We release our fear and submit to Him.

STEP 8 Make a list of all persons who have harmed us and become willing to seek God’s help in forgiving our perpetrators as well as forgiving ourselves. Realize we‘ve also harmed others and become willing to make amends to them.

STEP 9 Extend forgiveness to ourselves and to others who have perpetrated against us, realizing this is an attitude of the heart, not always confrontation. Make direct amends, asking forgiveness from those people we have harmed, except when to do so would injure them or others.

STEP 10 Continue to take personal inventory as new memories and issues surface. We continue to renounce our shame and guilt but when we are wrong, promptly admit it.

STEP 11 Continue to seek God through prayer and meditation to improve our understanding of His character. Praying for knowledge of His truth in our lives, His will for us and for the power to carry that out.

STEP 12 Having had a spiritual awakening as we accept God’s love and healing through these steps, we try to carry His message of hope to others. Practice these principles as new memories and issues surface, claiming God’s promise of restoration and wholeness.

Same Sex Attraction - Men

  • Has trouble making, forming and maintaining close healthy relationships with other men.
  • Has more opposite-sex friendships than same-sex friendships.
  • Feels uncomfortable and awkward around other men.
  • Secretly longs or desperately desires to fit in and be part of a group of men.
  • Feels ostracized by other men.
  • Doesn’t see himself as a full and complete man.
  • Can be easily intimidated or persuaded by other men.
  • Doesn’t understand the give and take of healthy male friendships.
  • Is overly sensitive to criticisms.
  • Cannot take good-natured joking or kidding from other men.
  • Can only guess at what it means to be a “man.”
  • Feels more comfortable around women than men (may have chosen a female dominated profession).
  • Has trouble starting or initiating romantic or sexual relationships with women.
  • May have fantasized about being like other men, admiring their qualities, looks, characteristics and these fantasies may have become sexual.
  • May have acted out sexually with other men.
  • May be overly focused on his appearance and that of other men.
  • Secretly craves healthy, affirming affection, from other men but feels awkward accepting or expressing such affection.
  • Feels unsure of himself.
  • Plagued by self-doubt and regrets.
  • Can be indecisive (has trouble making decisions, second guesses himself, fearful of doing or saying the wrong thing).
  • Doesn’t trust his own judgment.
  • Seeks the advice and approval of other men.
  • Often overcompensates for his perceived inadequacies by over achieving in school, career, profession, hobby, or wife’s interests.
  • Feels that no one understands him.
  • May often be very religious or have a highly developed sense of moral/social consciousness
  • Is very sensitive.
  • Has troubled or non-existent relationship with their father.
  • As a child experienced a significant betrayal (either real or perceived) by their father.
  • Has rejected the hurtful models of manhood in addition to the appropriate healthy model.
  • Felt misunderstood as a child and as a man (especially by other boys or men)
  • Looks to external factors (career, accomplishments, material possessions, physical beauty) to make him feel like a man.

The Problem

As children, many of us did not experience the secure love of our father or another male role model. Many of us were abandoned, abused or ignored by our father or an older man. We were disconnected from other boys and were often called upon to provide emotional support to our mothers. We desperately wanted to fit in with other boys and longed for the attention of a loving father.

During puberty these legitimate unmet needs became sexualized. This was a confusing time, as we felt alone and unsure of ourselves with no one to show us the way to manhood. We may have experience additional trauma or abuse during this awkward time. We became more aware of how different we felt and we did not develop emotionally as other boys did. We may have retreated into the world of women or girls, or developed specialized talents, or used drugs or alcohol as a desperate cry for our father’s attention. We began to fantasize about other boys or men is a futile attempt to steal their manhood for ourselves. As we developed, our unmet needs for a father’s love and guidance took over and hijacked our sexual desires. Some of us acted out our desires with pornography, sex with ourselves, and high-risk sex with other men in a desperate attempt to escape from the inner pain, emptiness and insecurity we felt.

Our misdirected sexual thoughts and actions kept us locked in a world of unreality and kept us from developing emotionally and spiritually as men. For some of us this sexual behavior became an addiction, but we felt inadequate, unworthy, alone and powerless to change our thinking and behavior. Many of us lived in shame and secrecy always fearful that others would discover our pain. We were trapped in a seemingly hopeless state.

The Solution

We admitted that, in our own strength, we were unable to change our thinking or behavior. Acknowledging God’s design and desire for our sexuality, we began to face the root causes of our same sex attractions. We realized that our sexual thinking and behavior was an attempt to cope with the pain of our past and the loss (whether real or perceived) of our earthly father’s love. We realized that our painful childhood experiences were not God’s desire for us and our attempts to meet those unmet needs only made the situation worse and started us in a cycle of sexual confusion and bondage.

We sought God’s help for victory over our compulsive desires while examining and admitting our part in our sinful past. We began to reconnect with other men in a safe and healthy environment as God revealed our shortcomings and underdeveloped character to us. We did our part to make amends for our past wrongs and to forgive those who hurt us. By accepting God as our perfect heavenly Father and His unending love for us, we made peace with our past and came to rest in our new-found identity as Men of God, new creations in Christ Jesus.

Sexual Addiction - Women

The Problem

As women, sexual addiction is unique. Our behavior ranged from sex with self, phone sex, cyber sex and pornography. We engaged in promiscuity, illicit relationships and multiple adultery. For some of us it was exotic dancing, escort services and prostitution. We used our bodies, intentionally dressed provocatively and performed for others, creating an illusion that gave us a false sense of self-worth. We were addicted to the intrigue, the tease and the forbidden. We jeopardized our relationships, jobs, morals and values. We even neglected our children. All the while, we rationalized our sexual behaviors. We asked ourselves, “What will a little fantasy hurt” or What they don’t know, won’t hurt them.” As we lived a double-life, we became disconnected from reality making true intimacy with another impossible. We carried this behavior from relationship to relationship and even into our marriages.

Why? We were running; running from love, running from pain, from the pain of shame, self-hate and multiple forms of abuse. We lacked self-worth and feared intimacy. We tried to connect. We tried to escape. We felt abandoned. We had a need to be in control and have power over others. Spiritually, we were bankrupt. We have learned to numb our feelings and to cope with our inadequacies by reaching out for a cure that would ultimately destroy us. This unhealthy belief system was not in line with the plan God had for our sexuality.

Sexual addiction is progressive. It can begin as a little flirtation or a “curiosity.” When we cross a line it sets us in motion to cross the next line more easily. Ask the adulterer, ask the prostitute, ask the slave to the Internet. “When, how they started and how it ended.” We asked ourselves “How did we get here”? Sometimes, we don’t even remember why we started acting out in the first place. We tell ourselves that the next sexual act will be better and more lasting, but it never is.

Eventually, our behaviors resulted in losing relationships, our marriages, jobs, material possessions and in some cases, our children. For many, the risks of sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s) are now a reality. And finally, we hit a bottom. There is a void that we haven’t been able to fill with fantasy, sex or lust.

Sexual Addiction—Breaking It Down

Female sexual addiction is an addiction to using our sexuality for the wrong reasons with the wrong people.

Addictive Behaviors:

Multiple adultery, illicit relationships, sexual promiscuity, internet chat rooms, internet cyber sex, phone sex, internet affairs, exhibitionism, exotic dancing, serving as an escort/prostitute, couple swapping, non-committal in relationship, dressing provocatively, sexual encounters/sexual relationships with other women (homosexuality), relationships with both men and women (bisexuality), secret double-life, high-risk behaviors/situations.

Characteristics That Fuel Sexual Addiction:

Lust and the desire to be lusted after, control and power, anger and rage, rebelliousness, selfishness, extreme justification, lack of accountability (blame game), resentments, revenge, self-centeredness, self-destruction, pride, jealousy, competitiveness, isolation, running from love.

Core Issues:

Running from love, fear of true intimacy, false intimacy, fear of commitment, false self-image, self-hate, lack of self-worth, low self-image, need to control, lack of nurturing, escape, loneliness, guilt, shame, spiritual void.

The Solution

  • Commit to Jesus Christ and the 8 Recovery Principles.
  • Form an Accountability Team; Sponsor, Accountability Partner.
  • Attend Open Share/Step Study Group.
  • Commit to a daily quiet time in the Life Recovery Bible.
  • Read SA materials and learn about your addiction.
  • Identify the triggers that lead you to act out.
  • Avoid cross-over addictions (food, eating disorders, drugs, alcohol)
  • Avoid people, places and things that tempt you addiction.
  • Understand the root of each core issue you identify with and become willing to experience grief, forgiveness and acceptance.
  • Accept God’s standards for sexuality.
  • Allow God total access to our mind (thought life) and through the program and change your belief system towards your sexuality.

Sexual Addiction - Men

The Genesis Of Our Addiction

Our lust began as an overpowering desire for pleasurable relief from an inner pain, emptiness or insecurity that we were not able to cope with in any other way. At first, it did provide the relief we sought. For a time, sex with ourselves or with others dissolved the tension, relieved the depression, resolved the conflict and provided the means to deal with or escape from life’s seemingly unbearable situations.

Eventually our quest for relief became an addiction and the addiction took on a life of its own. Pleasure and relief were gradually replaced with tension, depression, rage, guilt and even physical distress. To relieve this new pain, we resorted to more sex and lust, losing more control in the process. We desired to spend more time thinking about and carrying out our addiction. We lived in denial to avoid recognizing just how much of our life was controlled by our addiction.

Finally, our addiction took priority over everything; our ability to work, live in the real world, relate with others and be close to God. What began as the cure had become the sickness. The Answer had become the Problem. We were hopelessly addicted to lust.

Overcoming Lust and Temptation

A new loneliness overwhelmed us as we realized that, because of our addiction, we had become increasingly separated from God and our loved ones. We began to seek sobriety, and as we stayed sexually sober for some length of time, we discovered that even though we may not be acting out our compulsion, our obsession was still with us.

We began to recognize the many disguises the enemy uses to trick us into lusting. We learned not to rely on our failed weakened selves, but rather, to turn to God’s pure love and absolute power. With an increased reliance on God, we worked on our recovery with altered attitudes, a changed heart and growing humility and we gained a progressive victory over lust.

As we yielded to God, temptation began to lose its control over us. When we admitted we were powerless and gave our lives and our will over to God, He worked in us and we began enjoying a healthy new balance in our lives. Leaning on and learning from others in the program, we continue to walk in His strength, gaining true freedom from lust and sin through obedience to Christ our Lord.

Are You Szexually Addicted?

  • Do you go from one relationship to another?
  • Do you feel the right relationship will fill all your needs?
  • Do you use sex as an escape?
  • Do you make excuses to leave your partner as soon as possible after the act?
  • After a sexual experience do you feel guilty?
  • Has your pursuit of sex interfered with your relationship with your spouse?
  • Do you find you are unable to resist a sexual overture?
  • Have you ever sought out help to change your sexual behavior or thinking? Have you ever wanted to?
  • Have you ever tried to limit or stop acting out, but have been unable to?
  • Do you put yourself or others in dangerous situations in pursuit of sex?
  • Have you found that you are unable to resist sex or sexual images?
  • Do you have trouble concentrating or completing tasks at work, always thinking about sex?
  • Do you spend time on the internet viewing porn?
  • Do you take time away from work to pursue sex?
  • Do you feel you have lost control of your actions to fulfill the need for sex?
  • Have you ever been arrested for a sex offense?

If you answer YES to at least 7 of these questions, you might consider exploring this area of recovery.