Choosing a Sponsor for your Addiction RecoveryDr. Collins
Picking the right sponsor for your addiction
An addictions sponsor is another individual in recovery who will take you through the 12-steps of whichever 12-step fellowship you attend. Choosing a sponsor is an important task because you must feel comfortable with sharing deep, intimate, personal pieces of information with this individual.
Before choosing a sponsor, you must establish which characteristics you wish your sponsor to possess. One of the most important questions to ask when considering an individual to be your sponsor is, “Do they have something I want to also have?” This question does not refer to materialistic things necessarily; but, rather do they have personality traits such as courage, honesty, dignity, and self-respect to name a few important ones.
Another important aspect to consider is how they operate their own addiction recovery program. Do they attend meetings regularly? Do they speak and share at meetings regularly? Are they involved in extra service work? If they are active in their recovery, they are more inclined to be working an exceptional program, and therefore, can teach you how to be actively involved in your own natural recovery program.
You should also consider how they are in their life outside of meetings. Are they actively involved in their family life? Are they able to maintain a steady job? Are they honest in other aspects of their lives? How do they hold themselves in public outside of 12-step meetings? All of these aspects will indicate if they have the type of character traits that you also want to retain. These qualifications are not to necessarily put a sponsor on a pedestal. Remember that these are human beings you are considering, which means that they have human flaws. Your sponsor does not have to be perfect in every way, but instead must at least be illuminating their lives with the aspects of recovery you wish to emanate from your own life.
It is important to know that a sponsor is not a therapist or life coach. Their job as a sponsor is to guide you through the 12-steps and your chosen recovery program. If additional outside help is needed, a therapist should be retained. It is also not the sponsor’s job to control or dictate their sponsee’s life, but rather give advice, guidance, or suggestions.
A sponsorship relationship is beautiful. The 12-steps are an extremely personal process and should only be done with an individual in which you feel like can hold your secrets without judgement. Once the right sponsor is chosen, it can be the beginning of some astounding progress in recovery. The sponsorship relationship is a close relationship that, when synchronized correctly, can benefit each party’s recovery.