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The amends process of recovery is most well known for those who participate in 12-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous. At The Guest House Ocala, clients are encouraged to engage in 12-step recovery as a part of their healing process. Many people who have experienced trauma in their lives turn to drugs, alcohol, and addiction-based impulsive behaviors to cope. As a result, they develop a problem external, but closely related to, their trauma. Twelve-step programs can help people with addictions of varying kinds, and people without addictions of varying kinds. Many have turned to the principles of the program laid out by the twelve steps for guidance in recovering from mental health issues, life difficulties, or general guidance. Part of the twelve step program is making amends.

An amends is an attempt to make up for a wrongdoing. Amends are often confused with apologies. Apologies don’t seek to right any wrongs or make an effort to compensate. By definition, an apology is a written or verbalized excuse or justification which may be regretful. Step nine of the twelve steps writes that takers of the twelves steps “Made amends to such people wherever possible except when to do so would injure them or others.”

“Such people” are typically the people listed in the eighth step process of making a list of all people who have been harmed and may need an amends-making process. One of the most important people who goes unnoticed is the self, especially when it comes to injury. Making an amends with someone who abused you is never a requirement as it may not be safe for you. Unless you have directly done something for which you feel you must make an amends, you have absolutely no need or reason to make an amends to them, or to contact them again. For some, this is easy because their abuser cannot be located or tracked down. For others, an abuser might be a parent, a close relative, or a friend.

Many people believe that they have to forgive their abuser or apologize to their abuser for not forgiving them. What is therapeutically encouraged is acceptance. Forgiveness is a practice in letting go. Acceptance is also a practice in letting go. Finding acceptance that trauma occurred but that recovery is possible is as important a practice as making an amends. When you find acceptance, you safely make amends with yourself, vowing to live forward in recovery.

The Guest House Ocala offers private treatment for trauma, addictions, and related mental health issues. Our concierge style treatment programming creates highly customized programs of care for your every individual need. You are not alone. For information on our programs, call us today: 1-855-483-7800