Grief as Freedom

“Experienced ACA members speak of grief with a sense of serenity rather than with sorrow or resentment.” BRB p. 200

When listening to ACAs share at meetings, newcomers may at first only hear the recounting of the childhood events and their effects. If they keep coming back, they may experience an extraordinary transformation.

Over time, newcomers may realize that what they are hearing isn’t just a recounting of a story: it’s an opportunity to be heard. In alcoholic and dysfunctional homes, none of us was allowed to tell our story. We did not feel that we could trust our families to listen to us because our feelings were minimized or dismissed.

With experience, the newcomer may hear our shares as a courageous, insightful, and inspired reclaiming of our lives. When the experienced member shares, the sense of serenity doesn’t stem from the story. The serenity is in realizing, most often for the first time, that the meeting allows us to talk, trust, and feel. No longer imprisoned, what is being witnessed is a grieving process that frees a lost soul.

On this day as I begin to free my soul from the prison of my childhood, I will be present for my fellow ACAs as they do the same.

Copyright © 2018 by Adult Children
of Alcoholics / Dysfunctional Families
World Service Organization, Inc.
All rights reserved.

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