January 12

ACCEPTANCE MONTH: DAY 12: “The place where you continually return for love and acceptance—that’s home.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

We sometimes believe this is our family home, but I have not met many families who accept anything about the other members. Families are dysfunctional and toxic, in my experience, because of their expectations and beliefs about each other.

Our drive for perfection is most often rooted in the family dynamic from whence we sprung. Our need to prove ourselves and seek approval starts here. If we were abused to make us conform, we will have traumatic responses to disapproval or criticism from others. These over-active defenses will get us into trouble, over and over, in our relationships with others.

I believe that the safest and most important place to call HOME is inside us. Our hearts resonate with who we are. Giving ourselves unconditional love and acceptance is the only way it ever happens. Everyone we know has an agenda and an expectation about our role in their lives. This is impossible to NOT have. Social contracts are such that we define our roles in the lives of others with names and titles; most often neglecting to work out the real details of the contract.

I love working with addicts and having them write out the contracts of the roles they play. And the roles they expect others to play in their lives. It is an interesting exercise in grandiosity and make believe, at best.

We are not very honest about what we expect from ourselves or others. Perhaps that is the best way to begin to learn acceptance in the place it matters most, Home in our hearts. Then, perhaps we can learn to give that to others as well.

And, when we learn to examine what we believe about life and the roles of others, along with the HONEST expectations we place on ourselves, we can begin to let go of all that crap and truly find peace within our hearts. Never in our minds, because that is where the crazy lives. But, we can learn to find peace in our hearts and sit there when the crazy is going crazy…you know, Purple Screaming Monkeys!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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