As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live. -Johann Von Goethe
Whether we know it or not, if we have an addictive relationship to something, we have put our trust in that thing. We have, often unwittingly, allowed that thing to take over for important emotional processes that we must learn to take responsibility for if we are to successfully let go of our addiction. Ironically, in the beginning stages of recovery, it may be that we should realize and embrace the fact that we can’t yet trust ourselves. This is a very important step in the addiction recovery process, and if this is the case, we must avail ourselves to some sort of external therapeutic support that we can trust until we are able trust ourselves. This is the appropriate time to become involved in psychotherapy or a support group of some kind. The important thing, however, is to use this interim modality as a stepping stone from emotional dependence to autonomy. There is, however, always a danger that we will simply become dependent on the therapeutic modality and not find our way all the way to autonomy—as dependency is at the foundation of the addiction dynamic. But used properly, we can allow ourselves to temporarily upgrade our dependence from our addictions to our external support system while simultaneously learning to trust ourselves. Eventually, however, we must use that trust to autonomously navigate our lives, having successfully taken over where our addictions left off.