If asked about Ryan L's most prominent character trait growing up, his family would likely cite his need to be right. This trait caused him to inwardly (and sometimes outwardly) push his family members aside at the cost of the loving connections that he needed as a sensitive kid. Through his parents' attempts at sexual education, Ryan learned that sex was supposed to be a loving, connecting thing – never mind that it was only supposed to be used in marriage. At 8 years old, he discovered masturbation and then at 14 he discovered pornography and used them to avoid having to admit that he was wrong. His "inner child" never had a chance to grow up because he couldn't admit his mistake or accept his family members in their imperfections. Instead, he hid that boy away behind walls of half-truths, outright lies, and secrecy. Resentment became a way of life and it only progressed with the practice of sexual addiction. However, while watching his brother's change from the darkness of his own addictions to light, Ryan saw something that he wanted: real change and light. Ryan began working the 12 steps of recovery with ARPSupport sponsorship and SAL groups. One of the most powerful experiences he has had in the last 2+ years of recovery was the amends he made and still works on today to God and to himself.
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Resources mentioned in this meeting:
Inner child questions:
Sitting in a Rowboat Throwing Marbles at a Battleship
Sexaholics Anonymous and the White Book
Outro music is “Standing Still” by Cory Ellsworth and Randy Kartchner, performed by Mike Eldred and Elizabeth Wolfe. This song, and/or the entire soundtrack for the future Broadway musical, “Crosses: A Musical of Hope”, can be purchased here: https://music.apple.com/us/album/crosses-musical-hope-by-cory/528476262 This song is used with the permission of Cory Ellsworth.