Sunday, May 31, 2015

Co-Dependency Reading List

I used to facilitate a Family Support Group for people who have loved ones in addiction.  It was one of my most fulfilling callings I've ever had.

Several months ago I attended a regional meeting to promote the Addiction Recovery Program (ARP), Family Support Group (FSG), and Pornography Addiction Support Group (PASG) to the leaders of many local congregations.  While there I ran into an old friend.  Addiction had touched her family's life and we had a very good talk.  I promised to send her a reading list but that never happened.  I feel awful!  So I'm finally doing it.  Here it is!

He Did Deliver Me From Bondage- Colleen Harrison
This is the first book on the subject of addiction I ever read.  It's written by an LDS lady who struggled with food addiction, perfectionism, and had a husband with a pornography addiction.  She found scriptures from the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Christ, that related to each of the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

That scripture study resulted in her writing this book.  Each chapter focuses on a different step, with study questions that you are supposed to ponder and journal about.

Healing Through Christ
When the FSG was started, it was considered a pilot program.  We were given a draft of this guidebook to use as we waited for it to be given final approval by the Church's curriculum department.  I love it.  It quickly became my favorite resource on the topic of codependency.  It's written in mostly the same format as the ARP guide.

But then the curriculum department pulled it.  They decided to go in a different direction.  So the original authors took back their book, added and changed some things, and decided to distribute it themselves.

Addiction Recovery Program, A Guide to Addiction Recovery and Healing
When Healing Through Christ was pulled, we had to use the same workbook as the regular ARP meetings.  This guide is a study and workbook.  It takes AA's 12 Steps and talked about each of them from an LDS perspective with many scriptures and General Authority quotes.

At first it was hard to feel like it really applied to codependents.  But soon I fell in love with the 12 Steps.  The 12 Steps are for everyone!  All they are is a plan for applying Christ's Atonement and following the repentance process.  Everyone needs that!

Spouse and Family Support Guide 
This is the workbook the Church eventually decided to come out with for the FSG.  Change is hard and I was upset at first that they had removed the 12 Steps.  But it has proven to be a wonderful resource that has sparked many wonderful discussions in our group.

Codependent No More- Melody Beattie
Melody Beattie seems to be a very well-respected expert in the world of codependency.  She has written many books on the subject, but this seems to be the one I hear the most about.  I have not read it yet myself, but a few women I know personally read it and loved it.

Hold On to Hope- Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone and Dr. Rick H.
This was a pretty easy read.  I loved it!  It was so full of interesting insight.  I found myself many times bringing quotes and concepts from the book into the FSG meeting to share.

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