Stabilizing Your Life
Before recovery, many survivors live lives characterized by constant crisis.
Job disappointments, relocations, failed relationships and financial setbacks are among the hallmarks that may result from unresolved childhood abuse issues. Ofcourse, these things can be caused by other life stresses and problems as well. The reasons for this are complex, but for many survivors it comes down to an inability to build regularity, predictability and consistency into one's life because of the ongoing internal chaos associated with a history of abuse. Many survivors find themselves functioning in "crisis mode," responding with stopgap measures that do nothing to resolve the underlying issues. As a result, each new crisis consumes precious energy and attention, and the task of resolving the underlying issues is ignored. Living life in "crisis mode" is truly exhausting and dispiriting. After years, it can lead to discouragement, helplessness and hopelessness.
Trying to initiate and proceed with recovery when your daily life is so
unstable is a setup for failure. Recovery really is possible, but unlikely to occur until the various crises raging in your life have been settled. So, a key component of your SAFETY FIRST! plan will be to identify and start to stabilize the problem areas in your life before embarking on your recovery. It is not necessary to fully resolve these problems that will come as you work through recovery but successful recovery depends on your taking steps to bring some order to your life. In so doing, you will reduce the frequency of crises and thereby increase the amount of time and energy you can devote to your recovery.
The checklists on page 29 and 30 will help you identify and rank the issues that may be diverting energy from your recovery efforts.