Member: Mike S.
Location: New York
Date: 5/19/2002
Time: 12:41:19 PM

Comments

When I was first going through the steps with my sponsor, this is the one I feel gave me the most growth. My sponsor did not let me get away with saying I'm sorry, or just deciding my amend would be to never do whatever I had done again. We took my 8th step list, and added the people I had harmed but did not resent to it. Most of my amends were direct ones; there were only a few I could not see and wrote letters to. For all the amends I made directly I was to tell them what I had done, and mention nothing of what they did to me. After that I was to ask them what I could do to make it right, then shut up and listen. After that I was to do whatever I could to make it right. I feel going to people in this manner has done more to keep me from repeating some of the things from my past than anything. I definitely got more from it than I did from all the stupid "sorrys" I said before working with my sponsor. Besides, they all knew I was sorry. I needed to do something to show them I wanted to make what I had done right.


Member: Donnie M (D.O.S. 3-1-99)
Location: Short Gap, W.Va.
Date: 5/19/2002
Time: 5:46:20 PM

Comments

I AM SORRY GOD AND PLEASE HELP ME.

enough said.


Member: Jim F
Location: Guilin, China
Date: 5/19/2002
Time: 6:56:35 PM

Comments

Step 9 ... I went to the pastor who had confirmed me in the Lutheran church to do a direct amends to him personally and to the church in general. I had just barely learned to pray by the time I saw him, so I might have said something like, Lord, help me go easy on him. I was still a little ill and thought this amends would be a chance to get even.

The pastor, retired by then, just talked and talked about the other alcoholics he had tried to help and the frustrations experienced. He mentioned some who killed themselves, people I knew as a child. Others who could not find help from the church or AA.

He also spent some time recalling what I was like as a kid. Not a pretty picture. He even pulled out a letter I had written to him 15-18 years earlier when I quit the church. That wasn't pretty either. He congratulated me on getting sober.

I thanked him and left without taking any random potshots at him or the church. Sometimes healing can take place in silence, just by listening instead of shooting off my mouth. He, the pastor, had read the Big Book, in trying to help his alcoholic parishioners. Imagine that!

Jim from Sequim


Member: Linda C.
Location: Winnipeg
Date: 5/20/2002
Time: 1:44:41 AM

Comments

Hi everyone. My name is Linda and I am an alcoholic. Step 9: Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

When I first did step 9 I wrote letters to the people I felt I had harmed because I didn't have enough courage to face them. With family I apologized in person or on the phone,but in time realized changing my behavior towards them and changing my reaction to what they say was just as important. This change of behavior and reaction took time. The steps are simple, but not easy! Step 9 helps me in removing the guilt,shame,remorse,fear and anger I have to a person, place,or thing. When I do a step 9 I am free of the resentment I had. The person, place or thing is no longer living in my head "rent free!"


Member: Kim S.
Location: Wisconsin
Date: 5/20/2002
Time: 2:36:46 PM

Comments

Hi - Kim S. Adict/Alcoholic.

I am a step 10 girl these days. My last step 9 was done several years ago. I did my inventory directly from the big book. I took the literal aproach and discussed it with my sponsor as I went. Because I write easily, much of my 9th step was in writng. I made copies of all of the cards and notes that I sent out.

Surprisingly, a contact was not always required. When I was in doubt, I talked it over with my sponsor and some of my resentments were simply bad habits.

What I mean by this is that, let's say I have a real sore spot about being slighted. This is fear and self-seaking on my part. Sometimes my part was in taking offence in the first place. When I was able to see this, I looked at the case again. Did I do anything to retaliate against the offence? Sometimes I did. But where I did not, I prayed and prayed for this person and for myself to not repeat the fear and self-seaking behavior. It worked.

I recently found my last 4th step in a box I was unpacking after I moved. There are so many things of which I have let go of. What a relief! Being an alcoholic, I am always generating more resentments. But, now I have the tools to work through the resentments before they cause relaps. Let's not forget, that is the reason for the house cleaning!

Thanks for letting me talk and remember why we do the cleaning in the first place.


Member: A_Hosie123@hotmail.com
Location: newtown,nd
Date: 5/20/2002
Time: 4:10:58 PM

Comments

And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch, Matt 15:14 Twelve step programs are sometimes called selfhelp programs. But theyre not really, because we all help each other. We don't stay sober by ourselves. Sometimes we call twelve step prgrams peer programs. And they are . all of us are equal. No one is an expert. But we need to be careful who we choose for a sponsor. We each need to find someone who has been sober longer than us . Someone who understands the Steps . Someone who lives by them, Someone we want to be like. We need to stick with the winners.


Member: AnilG
Location: Mt Vernon,IL
Date: 5/20/2002
Time: 6:23:46 PM

Comments

When I first did step 9 I talked to the people I felt I had harmed because I did not have enough courage to face them. With family I apologized in person or on the phone,but in time realized changing my behavior towards them and changing my reaction to what they say was just as important. This change of behavior and reaction took time. The steps are simple, but not easy! Step 9 helps me in removing the guilt,shame,remorse,fear and anger I have to a person, place,or thing. When I do a step 9 I am free of the resentment. thanks to AA.


Member: Adam H.
Location: Nagano, JAPAN
Date: 5/20/2002
Time: 7:43:12 PM

Comments

Adam, alcoholic.

Amends, for me, are about changing my behavior...not seeking forgiveness. I've had many people tell me that they never wanted to hear from me again, that they weren't interested in my effort to make right where I went wrong. What do I do when that happens...get drunk? I don't think so.

For me, this step is about trying to live honestly by cleaning up the mess left behind by my dishonesty. I try to make good on where I went wrong in the past, and in the process I try a day at a time not to harm someone with my behavior. To do this I need a lot of guidance, hence the need for a sponsor when doing this step...and I also need a lot of courage, hence the need to keep God close. If I can do this, I will eventually see that my actions are honest, that I have the courage to do the right thing even when it's hard, and that I can walk through this world with my head up. That's why I think the most important promise the 9th Step guarantees us is: "We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it."

Thanks for letting me share. Grateful to be sober.


Member: Michael B.
Location: AZ
Date: 5/21/2002
Time: 1:23:10 AM

Comments

Hi! My name is Michael, and I am a recovering alcoholic and addict, sober today only by the Grace of God and the Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous. Thanks for the sincere shares. Welcome newcomers!

I like the emphasis some of you have placed on changing behavior, especially stopping drinking, as a key to making amends.

My family told me that they didn't want to hear "I'm sorry" any more; they wanted, instead, that I should stop drinking and the unpleasant behavior associated with it.

To me, this is the most genuine way to make amends, not only to family and good friends but to myself as well.


Member: Sarah
Location: NW USA
Date: 5/21/2002
Time: 2:50:12 PM

Comments

"Made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others."

p. 66 of the big book "This was our course: We realized that the people who wronged us were perhaps spiritually sick. Though we did not like their symptons and the way these disturbed us, they, like ourselves, were sick too. We asked God to help us show them the same tolerance, pity, and patience that we would cheerfully grant a sick friend. When a person offended we said to ourselves, "This is a sick man. How can I be helpful to him? God save me from being angry. Thine will be done."

Amends ... much more than "The problem is ME(drunken EGO (Edging God Out)this will get me drunk) ... OR ...The problem is YOU(drunken EGO (Edging God Out)this will get me drunk).

Acceptance of the 'spiritual sickness' of 'ME' and 'You' ... giving a helpful "Healing Power" of 'Thy will be done'.

It takes me back to step one ... I don't have to be a unmanageable alcoholic(crazy drunk).

Thanks, for the Steps and Traditions, the shared Experience, Strength and Hope ... giving an helpful "Healing Power" to live another day sober.


Member: SOBER ME
Location: USA
Date: 5/21/2002
Time: 10:28:10 PM

Comments

Making amends except when to do so may hurt others. You must be careful because sometimes when making amends it will only hurt you and posibly lead to more trouble.


Member: Marcy F.
Location: Southern California
Date: 5/21/2002
Time: 11:47:44 PM

Comments

All the comments on the 9th step are great reminders of why we take this step and how it works to keep us sober.

I only want to add that my name is on my 9th step list. I hurt myself as well as others. I make amends to myself by attending meetings, working the steps, being of service. As I learn how to live sober, I learn how not to repeat the same mistakes. I like myself today and that is a direct result of working the program as it is written in the big book.

Family relations have improved, friendships are now possible. I can give an honest days work. Thank you God, and thank you AA.


Member: Bob A
Location: Tulsa, OK
Date: 5/22/2002
Time: 12:43:51 AM

Comments

Sponsorship was very important when it came to making my amends. the first amends I tried to make I did it on a whim without consulting anyone. I did very well, for them ost part. I explained what I had done to harm them and told the person that I was willing to make right the wrong...but I then proceeded to explain what their part in it was. I had to make an amend for the amends. So from then on I consult my sponsor (I strongly suggest for the newcomers that you get one of those sponsors) on any amend I am even thinking about making.


Member: Liz S
Location: massachusetts
Date: 5/22/2002
Time: 8:43:40 AM

Comments

hi all, Liz, alchoholic. was thinking this morning how i haven't been to a Step meeting for a while and thought i'd hit this site for a morning eyeopener. how nice to read about step 9 and i really liked what adam from japan had to say. the Promises started to come true for me after i did many amends, both face to face and by telephone. some were hard, some were embarrasing, some were easy, some were rejected, some were welcomed.....but i didn't do them for forgiveness. i did them for me, to clear out the stuff sitting there in my head: the remorse and guilt and resentments. there are some amends i can't make directly because they would entail more hurt hence i have made an attempt not to repeat that behavior in my sober life today. that feels good. a happy 24 to you all, Liz


Member: Carrie K
Location: Anchorage, AK
Date: 5/22/2002
Time: 7:53:37 PM

Comments

Alcoholic, Carrie What a nice reminder, today, Step 9. I am truly thankful for the steps of AA ever reminding me to clean house on a daily basis, whichever step we must take. In the beginning, Step 9 allowed me to 'move on' and to recognize I did NOT have to continue in my insane behaviors with or without using alcohol/drugs. It was unacceptable to me, to everyone around me. Thank you to all of you for giving me insight to continue my day in recovery, sober today.


Member: MSW
Location: Germany
Date: 5/23/2002
Time: 6:46:48 AM

Comments

Hi my name is Matthias and I am an alcoholic.

The first time I did my 9th I just took the list from the 4th and started to make amends. I went to a lot of friends and family members and talked to them openly about my mistakes. I also tried to do something good for them in order to show them that I not just taking.

After a while I processed with the steps 10, 11 and 12 and I realized that I had just taken a beginning with step 9. There is still so much work for me to do, in order to build up good relationships, which some I had neglected for so much time.

Thanks for letting me share!


Member: peacock h.
Location: nf canada
Date: 5/23/2002
Time: 12:57:12 PM

Comments

peacockhorny@hotmail.com newfoundland ladies only


Member: Stew E
Location: FL
Date: 5/24/2002
Time: 7:08:22 AM

Comments

Two (2) pages typed and double spaced, three (3) weeks of soul searching, and forty-five (45)people later I had my 'hitlist'. The most important part to me was the 'except when it would injure them' because my visiting would bring up the pain I casued.

I repectfully beg to differ with Donnie from WV for my own internalization of the deeds I can trace back to alcohol.

And I also feel Bob A. is correct about sponsorship guidance.

KCB....


Member: Melissa R.
Location: Ohio
Date: 5/24/2002
Time: 2:27:35 PM

Comments

Hi all, Melissa, alcoholic. I've had a hard time with step 9 if I confront someone and they don't forgive or understand. I've just made their lives so miserable that they cannot let go. i do not blame them, although I wonder if I hold some small resentment against them for not doing so. (don't they know how wonderful I am? lol) So I read the Big Book, as long as I clean my side of the street, who really cares what they think. After that I need to forgive myself for hurting them because I know God did. I'm sure there's still a long line of people that I haven't even discovered yet.

Happy 24


Member: Melissa R.
Location: Ohio
Date: 5/24/2002
Time: 2:27:56 PM

Comments

Hi all, Melissa, alcoholic. I've had a hard time with step 9 if I confront someone and they don't forgive or understand. I've just made their lives so miserable that they cannot let go. i do not blame them, although I wonder if I hold some small resentment against them for not doing so. (don't they know how wonderful I am? lol) So I read the Big Book, as long as I clean my side of the street, who really cares what they think. After that I need to forgive myself for hurting them because I know God did. I'm sure there's still a long line of people that I haven't even discovered yet.

Happy 24


Member: anonymous alcoholic
Location: 2689 Ridgecrest Drive
Date: 5/25/2002
Time: 3:40:51 AM

Comments

I need to "listen". Thanks.


Member: Les
Location: San Diego
Date: 5/26/2002
Time: 5:41:29 PM

Comments

The word amends is not the plural form of the word amend.