How is it possible for our pain to become our gain? Andrea’s story illuminates this transformation.

Andrea from Adult Child Podcast joins us to talk about how her greatest pain became her greatest gain.

When Andrea was several years sober, she realized that recovery had not magically fixed all her problems. She tells us about “the two Brians” — “Two guys that I dated named Brian that were the catalyst to my adult child healing journey. I dated Brian number one at seven years sober. And it was through that relationship that I realized that my dating issues were related to my childhood.”

Only a few weeks later, a woman at a 12-step meeting shared a similar experience and mentioned the Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families book. Andrea went home, downloaded it, and devoured it. She says, “I related to it even more than I did in any other recovery literature that I'd ever read. It was like, I was finally reading, all of my thoughts and feelings … written down on paper.” The next time she saw the woman, she went up to her, “and I say that how her share head impacted me and how I had downloaded that book that she had mentioned that I had read it. And I told her a little bit about Brian number one, and these a hot moments that I had had, and she looks at me and she goes, that's wonderful, but I want to let you know that this is going to take years for you to work through. … And I remember looking at her and thinking, years? Years!?”

So she starts working in ACA, and then “Brian number two comes along … what I will tell you is that I hadn't changed a damn bit and the next six months of my life were the most painful times of my life. … I realized that, what I was dealing with was a lot more powerful than what I had assumed and that that lady had been right. That I did have to treat this just as seriously as my alcoholism. That's what I did.”

What is the rest of the story? How did all this pain become her greatest gain? And why did she decide to make a podcast about the Adult Child experience? Listen for all the details.

Readings and Links

There were several books and other resources that were mentioned and read from in this episode. I captured a few of them, below.

First, I have to link to Andrea's podcast Adult Child, where you can hear the full story of the 2 Brians in Episode 1.

The opening reading is from Your Divine Lens: The Secret to Finding Purpose, Healing Grief and Living in Alignment with your Soul (pp. 119-120). Sue Frederick.

Andrea also read from Emotional Sobriety: from relationship trauma to resilience and Balance by Tian Dayton (and enthusiastically recommended anything by this author.)

She suggests that anyone who might possibly think they qualify for ACA read The Laundry List.

Upcoming topics

An upcoming topic is about recovery through writing. Do you use writing as a recovery tool? How does it enhance your program? Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email [email protected] with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.

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