Twelve Steps of abuse for targets

Prior to acceptance there is realisation, and we move into crisis. The memories and suppressed feelings create turmoil. We pull back and thus do not listen to our intuition, we may be anxious shocked traumatised depressed or hurt. Devastated by the control. We are however at crisis and the abusers spell is broken, we are no longer charmed and the abusers control slips. Knowledge is our gift, once we know then we can never unknow. The end of the charm is over. The abuse may not stop just because we know and can see it. But the abuser will no longer hide his intentions towards controlling the target. There may be may cycles before the spell is broken, or we may be abandoned and distressed because the abuser has moved on. In some cases one abuser is replaced by another. A parent by a spouse, a boyfriend by a husband. It is only when we say "I will not be abused or controlled, I want this to stop", now what do I do, that we reach acceptance that we have lost control over ourselves.

We are honest and we feel, we are moving to the point where we have accepted that change is needed and it can't be done alone. This is the crisis point of realisation, the point at which the twelve steps begins.

1. Acceptance
We admitted we were powerless over the abuse and our lives were unmanageable. This first step is to admit to a problem, those unwilling to admit to an issue may not seek help and return to the abuse. Accepting the problems exist but this creates awareness. Admission firms up the issue. We have broken our silence, we have spoken in confusion and often in dis pair. We may still doubt the reality but we have accepted the existence. We remember this as part of a continuum we do not know why we were vulnerable. We are free to remember and this starts the grief. This is the start of congruence. But it the process of integrating abuse in our life story. We make a decision to heal, an active commitment to healing regardless of the pain and risk. Staying in the current position is more hurtful than moving on. We are ready to heal and we have accepted the need that it's not something we can do alone.

2. Hope
Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us the sanity. Saying we need help that we can't do this alone. We connect with our higher power, our simpler selves, our innocence. Think that we have a small child within us, what is needed to feel whole? This child is our inner wisdom and has complete access to the higher power. This is our vulnerability we can connect with it, feel compassion for ourselves, anger at the abuser and empathy with others. We acknowledge that abuse is the abusers choice. We know we have no shame about the abuse. We didn't cause it, we can't control it and we can't cure it; we have responsibility only for ourselves.

3. Faith
Made a decision to accept help and have faith in the process and the perceptions you have. Then the intuitions we feel have validity, if we have sensed there was something wrong then we can count on the higher power within us which is telling us something about our sitch and ourselves. We learn about boundaries and what is acceptable to us. We accept that we have the need for nurture.

4. Honesty
Look at our own faults, examine where we are missing and that it is our own defects which hold us to the abuse all the while knowing we didn't cause it, we can't control it and we can't cure it. The abusers do what they do for their own reasons, their faults. How this is managed and our response is ours. This is the step of grief and struggle, grieving is honouring pain, examining what happens is part of it. We can cry it out, express the pain.

5. Courage
Admitted to another ourselves and our higher power the exact nature of our role. Admitting we have issues and the truth of our sitch then we can detach and let go, we are ready to receive support.

6. Willingness
We become ready and willing to make the changes, we accept it is our responsibility to change. We may be angry and this is powerful and motivating. We can in the name of our abuser, pay it forward. This doesn't last forever let it fuel you to peace in step 6.

7. Humility
Humbly asked for change using prayer, healing, meditation, hope and faith. In peace challenging the abuser, confronting them by letter, in counselling whilst acknowledging our role can be part of this step. We can write and then let go of the letter. Nothing says I am ready to heal like silence, I have been abused yet I accept that I need to change and move on.

8. Sincerity
Made a list of all persons harmed in accepting abuse. We are not the abuser why should we find ourselves harming others? aren't we the ones who are affected.? The answer is of course but the abuse may have left us depressed, lost, ineffectual and bewildered. It may have made us angry, we are responsible for our reactions and their effects. Our family, friends, coworkers, bosses, children and others have been affected. We may need to apolgise to ourselves.

9. Action
Make amends to others, except when to do so may injure them or make things worse. Not all others are prepared to accept apology or amends and that is their right. We give and accept forgiveness, we allow ourselves the comfort of knowing we are human and flawed. We may come to forgive the abuser but it behaves us not to forget. Forgiveness of the abuser is voluntary and a choice, it's ok to decide not to forgive it's our right. Resentment won't help though and a desire to seek revenge won't fit with the twelve steps. let go of the resentment.

10. Vigilance
When we continue to watch and admit to being wrong we accept that relapses are normal, flashbacks affect us. Admitting that we struggle is not weakness but strength. This is resolution and moving on. This means we have made deep and lasting changes in life, there is awareness, compassion and power.

11. Spirituality
Seek improvement through the thought prayer meditation and study for quiet time and the power to do that which we need to do. We improve our lives and those around us. We are moving forwards, there is no chance of a relapse and we recognise that others are struggling. There is a clarity of thought, we are building on knowledge. A sense there is a greater power is a huge asset and uniquely personal.

Knowing that which we know we can carry the message to others, seeking help to develop ourselves. This is fellowship, community and positivity.


Freedom is just another word for nothing left to loose.
V 64, WAW