Hatred … a tough subject for addicts

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This is going to be a love or hate post for many. I put off these posts because they often seem so confrontational. Most of you, however, thrive with a little confrontation so I thought I would go with it. (I’ve had a few moments of hate this week so this is the perfect time for me to take a look at me.) The truth can hurt. I run from it. When I finally stop running truth is there (still) and I am relieved.

The battle is over when I give up the fight. Not the other way around.

What is hatred?  Why do I have it? Why does it fuel me?

A text book definition of hatred: “an intense hostility and aversion usually deriving from fear, anger, or sense of injury.” Hatred is a feeling one holds within toward something, presumably outside of self. I have it because I am judging that person or thing. I get rid of it by taking a look at (investigating) my thoughts toward that person or thing. It fuels me because at some level I’m invested in the outcome (pay-off) for hating that person or thing.

The feelings I have are coming from within me. They are not coming from anything outside of me. It is the person or circumstance outside of me creating the awareness of what isn’t yet healed inside me. The match was already in me. The situation seemingly caused me to ignite and I want to blame them for my spark. The words or actions cut so deeply because I am unhealed within.

The objective is to remove the matches within.

Not spend my life trying to get people to stop striking.

If I am feeling hatred toward something I can be assured I am feeling it toward self. (This may be the part where you stop reading.) I cannot feel something within that I have no reference point for feeling.

The possession of hatred is exactly that—possession. I am choosing to hold it. I abhor this thought … the thought that I welcome hatred. It is true, otherwise I would release it. I don’t get rid of it because I have a reason for holding onto it. And this reason fuels me. I like being right. And I especially like making you wrong. The task then becomes to find why I hold onto this intense and hostile feeling. I’m into journaling, so I have learned the sheer power of writing out the words that stalk my mind. Here is what I find: As long as I am hating you I don’t have to look at me—at my part. What could my part be? This is what I avoid as I keep the focus on you, the hate on you, and the judgment on you.

Here is an example of my part is past hatreds:

  • I lied at the onset.
  • I never communicated what I needed or wanted.
  • I don’t know how to take care of myself and I don’t want you to see that.
  • I’m scared to love and care for you because I feel I will fail.
  • I have done the exact same thing, but I have never forgiven myself.
  • I said “yes” when I should have said “no.”
  • I allowed it.
  • Hating you means you have to change, not me.

If I am feeling hatred today for anyone or anything it is an opportunity to heal. Looking at my part in the hatred is the moment of freedom. Until I see that I play a role I will be a hostage to my hatred. I will not be growing away from a relapse, but growing toward a relapse.

Unattended hatred is a tidal wave waiting to hit. Once it arrives there is simply no way to stop it. Don’t let your hatred destroy your day, because it will if you don’t do something about it.

Want to learn more about journaling techniques? Contact Lisa

No Responses to “Hatred … a tough subject for addicts

  • Hate is a strong word. I really like your perspective on holding onto your anger in order to not see your part in it. I feel I am seeing alot of myself as I tackle sobriety. I’ve been trying for years to stop drinking. As of today, I’ve been sober 2 days. I’m filled with anger right now. What can I do in the next few minutes, hours, days so that I don’t drink?

    • I’m so glad you came by. Truly getting sober is more confrontational then most can handle. That’s why most don’t. It takes a tremendous amount of trust in something or someone to see you through (at least until you trust yourself). If we trust the process then we don’t have to rely on our own thinking. We just do what is next. Do you trust me? Can you trust me? If so (and I am aware I have not earned it) then follow these four items.

      Answer the question(s) in your journal. Hate journaling? So what, do it anyway. Deal with it on paper before you don’t know how to deal with it and drink.

      #1 Do you want to drink? The answer can only be yes or no. If the answer is yes, then go and drink. I’m not here to talk you out of your plans. I am here to help you if you want help. Drink until you are done drinking. (Hide the car keys)
      I sense for you the answer is “no” but is masquerading as a “yes” because you are in so much pain. It’s harder to get two days then it is to get two years.
      If the answer is no, I do not want to drink, then journal why you don’t want to drink. Journal to exhaustion how much you abhor drinking. (Me thinketh you hate drinking.) Yet you somehow are trapped in the physical pains of day two. It will pass. I promise.
      #2 After you finish writing in your journal do a video journal of what you wrote (and anything else you want to say) on your video-cam/computer. This is something you can reference if the drinking thought gets too much. Nothing like having you speak to you about the pseudo-joys of drinking. The problem with addicts is that we are willing to suffer because we conveniently forget the horror of drinking. HORROR!
      #3 Stop thinking about your drinking issues, get out of your head for a few moments or the rest of the day and do something loving for someone else. The world is in need of so much love. Who can you help today? How can you be of service in your part of the world? Your constant thinking of you is killing you. Stop.
      #4 Find a higher purpose for your life.

      And if all else fails, call me before you pick up that drink.
      ps. the anger is so normal, but if you never learn what to do with it, I can guarantee … you will drink.
      All my love, Lisa

  • Once again L you put thing’s into perspective, hate is indeed one of the strongest emotions that we as humans can feel, it can be consuming if we allow the fuel of hate to continue leaking its toxicity into our lives. What is done is done, we can’t go back and change it, we can only reflect from time to time and remember the lessons we have been taught, learnt and lived through by the hardest teacher of all, the teacher we all remember, that teacher named life.
    Life is not easy I don’t think it’s meant to be, if it was a stroll in the park with the perfect white picket fences, then I think we would still not find the satisfaction that we are seeking, which is sometimes how we come to find that addictive chemical or substance we find, that demon that haunts us, that reminds us we are merely human, shit happens, and even the strongest willed of us out there, who think that we will never become addicted to the demons that we choose to hide under, find those demons somehow managed to take control over us, allowing ourselves to find a way to hate ourselves, to hate others to find excuses for the why’s the how’s this person we see that reflection of in the mirror could possibly be us, how could we possibly have let ourselves turn into this?
    ((hugs)) Angel

    • They are indeed demons. Love that word. I appreciate your thoughts too. We turn to the drug to get away from the haunting of the demons. But all that happens is that they find us in our addiction. Glad to be on this side of that hell. Love to you my Angel.

  • Oh Lisa! I can’t tell you how much I needed this right at this moment. I am on my 4th step & the hatred that is in me is insane. I am so over it. Ready to dig in & find out exactly why I have this feeling towards myself & others. I am so fortunate to have found your blog since it always seems to be exactly what I am needing to hear, though I try to move around it. So, thank you again for sharing your amazing words. Also, the comments that have been left are awesome too! Have a fantastic day 🙂

    • Robin, I am thrilled to see you are finding your way. I am so glad you commented too. Know that you are on my radar. I send energy and love for your success in sobriety. lots of love, me

  • chris10452
    12 years ago

    The notion that hatred involves both a choice to possess and a connection to a feeling already abiding in us is first annoying and then liberating. My reflex is to be angry at any suggestion that my hassles in the world are attributable to my choices. And it’s further insult (initially) to think that hate I direct outward has roots deep within me. Annoying.

    And then, liberation: I can relinquish my possession of hate and I can pull the weedy root out of my gut. And I don’t depend on you for any of it. That’s freedom, right there.

    • Chris I started to read the comment and naturally I got stuck on the word “annoying” … thank goodness the word “liberating” was close behind. I love that you get this post. Your comment is the Cliff Notes for the post. I always appreciate when you comment. You bring ideas for me to ponder as well. with love, Lisa

  • Wow, this is truly humbling and amazing. Thank you so much.

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