There's certainly a place in life for the stiff upper lip and
putting forth an impressive and hopeful attitude, regardless
of how accurate it may be.
But so many of us in recovery--especially in program-- become
obsessed with keeping up appearances that we fail ourselves
Maintaining a particular image at all costs IS addictive and
sick behavior. If we are focused on convincing others how
well we are, especially when we aren't, we are isolating
ourselves from true interaction with others.(Yes, you can
spiritually and emotionally isolate while in a crowded room.)
We have an obligation to seek, reach out, and ask for the
help we need, especially in a time of crisis.
We also have an obligation to our fellow travellers to share
our hurts just as readily as we share our advice, support,
and good moods. When we let struggling people know that we
have worries and troubles, too--in the present day, real, active,
alive--we allow them to better connect to our humanity.
We cease being an approachable stalwart and start becoming
a regular person. No pretenses. No separation. No baloney.
People need to know that recovery isn't all sunshine and roses,
in order to understand that when they feel their despair and doubt
it is entirely natural.
We will never know others fully. It's impossible. We aren't meant
to know everything. But if, as people in recovery, we can't make
strides to place more balance between the reality within us and
the self we project to the world, everyone's sobriety is in
Open, honest and willing is easy to say, but oh-so hard to live.