A Recovery Blog

This blog is about my continuing recovery from severe mental illness. I celebrate this recovery by continuing to write, by sharing my music and artwork and by exploring Buddhist ideas and concepts. I claim that the yin/yang symbol is representative of all of us because I have found that even in the midst of acute psychosis there is still sense, method and even a kind of balance. We are more resilient than we think. We can cross beyond the edge of the sane world and return to tell the tale. A deeper kind of balance takes hold when we get honest, when we reach out for help, when we tell our stories.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous Inspiration Line

SLAA Inspiration Line # :  215-574-2120

This is a telephone number that is available 24 hours, 7 days a week.  Different members of Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous leave a recorded message nearly every day and talk about how this program has helped them to recover from their addictions.  They often talk about their personal lives and the lessons they're learning.  The message lasts for a maximum of about 6 minutes and at the end of the message there is a beep and then, if you are willing, you can leave a message of your own.

I found out about this line through getting a bunch of literature and audio programs from SLAA.  They also have The Journal which is a booklet of people's shares they send out to subscribers every two months and in it they usually list this number and explain how it helps.  I started calling it sporadically a year or so ago.  Recently I have made calling the number and listening and sometimes sharing every day as a part of my spiritual practice each morning.  It is especially helpful to me since I am socially withdrawn or as they say in SLAA, anorexic.  Anorexia of this sort is usually related to social, emotional and sexual anorexia.  I relate most strongly to social and some emotional anorexia.  Sexual anorexia usually includes an obsessively strong dislike of sexuality, which I don't personally feel but I think is common for many people who have been sexually abused as children and teenagers.

I think one of the reasons I switched over to listening to the Inspiration Line daily is because a week and a half ago I got my first SLAA sponsor through one of their telephone meetings.   It was a weekly meeting with a focus on anorexia, which I've gone to each week for 4 weeks.  One of the first things my sponsor said to me was that I had to call her everyday of the week except on weekends.  In one of my shares at the meeting I talked about the Inspiration Line and no one had heard of it and wanted the number.  So I've been calling her and listening to the line.  Both reinforce my deepening realization that I am socially anorexic and need to push myself to reach out to others.

The Inspiration Line lets me know every day that there are people recovering from sex & love addiction, leading spiritually oriented lives that focus on daily lessons in their life experience.  They are a wonderful bunch of people who do this service work.  If you listen often you will get to know each of them.  I feel proud of them and their self revealing honesty.  Each one has said that people sharing on the line really helps them in their own recovery.  I know that listening to them and sometimes talking to them indirectly helps me in my recovery and I am grateful.

These people have come from hard places.  Some have gone to jail and prison for acting out.  In their shares it is obvious how far each one has come.  It is not that now their lives are problem free because they aren't; it is that now when problems arise they quickly turn to recovery attitudes and behaviors.  Top on that list is reaching out to other safe people, often their sponsor or friends in the program.  They don't hold the sickness in and let it continue to do damage to their spirits, they let it out and share with others the pain that they are feeling.  This strongly helps them by broadening their perspective and just the act of being heard can heal very deeply.  It gives them the chance to redirect themselves towards health and away from sickness.

Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous (Website) is a very organized and accessible group.  Their website is smartly done with lots of links and whenever I have ordered from their store, they ship my order quickly and I get it quickly.  You can even download a month's worth of Inspiration Line messages (Link) or buy them inexpensively on CD.  If you have a problem with sex and/or love addiction, I strongly urge you to check out their website.