Below are a few characteristics and practices that Recovering Couples consider important and helpful as they work toward becoming stronger people who are creating a stronger relationship.

Recovering Couples (“RC”) surrender efforts at trying to change their partner for their personal benefit, but do seek to change the person which they can control – themselves.

RC work very hard to protect their garden (their head and their heart) from unwanted intruders whose job may be to distract, derail, discount, depress or destroy the couple’s resolve.

RC take their own personal inventory, and when wrong, promptly admit it, in order to not nurse a resentment nor a schism. This prompt response also prevents the stockpiling of hurt.

RC know they are dealing with an intimacy disorder, and they try to eliminate ways that rob them of time with one another, as well as find ways to create communication with each other.

RC don’t shy away from hard conversations and conflict, rather they embrace the opportunity to talk through their conflict & see it as an opportunity to be informed of their partner’s needs.

RC cease the practice of blaming, avoidance and other cognitive distortions, which impede reconciliation. On the other hand, RCs work collaboratively to remove these roadblocks.

RC heal because they take the necessary time to patiently listen, understand and acknowledge their partner’s views, and then make reasonable changes that indicate they “got it.”

RC understand and give room for the recovery principle of progress and not perfection. Reasonable behaviors that facilitate intimacy and demonstrate maturity become more typical.

RC realize the benefit and strength that comes from living in consultation with other couples in recovery. Such relationships provide necessary insight, guidance and support for recovery.

RC spend time with one another, and engage in opportunities to (re)create a life beyond trauma and addiction, where hope, fun, meaning, purpose, laughter and love are experienced.

RC have identified and rewritten old dysfunctional family rules and roles into new rules and roles called their “Bill of Writes,” which helps them to experience safety, serenity and hope.

RC understand and have learned the value of commitment, to their self-care, to each other, to their programs of recovery, to their family and to others whom they have given their word.

If these suggestions are helpful to you, please click here to read “Couples Who RecoverPart 1 of 2 and Part 2 of 2.

“Recovering Couples do heal” is an excerpt from Cultivating Love: When Secrets Surface by Dr. Ken McGill.

Please retweet or pass this post along to others if you think it would be of interest to them, and as time permits, please visit Daily Bread for Life for other information about personal growth.

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About Dr Ken McGill

Dr. Ken McGill is an ordained minister and has been involved in counseling for more than 25 years. Dr. McGill holds a Bachelor's degree in Religion from Pacific Christian College (now Hope International University), a Certificate of Completion in the Alcohol and Drug Studies/Counseling Program from the University of California at Los Angeles and a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Dr. McGill received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Family Psychology from Azusa Pacific University in May, 2003. Dr. McGill's dissertation focused on the development of an integrated treatment program for the sexually addicted homeless population, and Ken was "personally mentored" by dissertation committee member Dr. Patrick Carnes, a pioneer in the field of sex addiction work. Dr. McGill authored a chapter in the text The Clinical Management of Sex Addiction, with his chapter addressing the homeless and sex addiction. Dr. McGill is also a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the States of Texas and California and Mississippi, and is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist, through the International Institute for Trauma and Addictive Professionals (IITAP). Dr. McGill had a private practice in Glendora, CA (Aspen Counseling Center), Inglewood, CA (Faithful Central Bible Church), and Hattiesburg, MS (River of Life Church), specializing in the following areas with individuals, couples, families, groups and psychoeducational training: addictions and recovery, pre-marital, marital and family counseling, issues related to traumatization and abuse, as well as depression, grief, loss, anger management and men's and women's issues. Dr. McGill also provided psychotherapeutic treatment with Student-Athletes on the University of Southern Mississippi Football and Men's Basketball teams. Dr. McGill served as the Director of the Gentle Path Program, which is a seven-week residential program, for people who are challenged with sexual addiction, sexual anorexia, and relationship issues. Dr. McGill also supervised Doctoral students in the Southern Mississippi Psychology Internship Consortium with the University of Southern Mississippi. Dr. McGill was inducted into the Azusa Pacific University Academic Hall of Honor, School of Behavioral and Applied Sciences, in October, 2010. Dr. McGill currently works as a Private practice clinician with an office in Plano, Texas, providing treatment with people who are challenged in the areas mentioned above.

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