I have spent a great deal of time either being too focused on unity or acting with too much independence. My S-Anon problem manifested itself in both ways. In unbalanced unity, I abandoned myself for the benefit of another or for a group. In unbalanced independence, I isolated and became so self-reliant that I ignored the needs of others. I have learned from Tradition Four that I can be true to myself without cutting myself off from others.
I often chose to become entirely autonomous. I frequently thought that others were either with me or against me. I took someone else’s decision personally, especially if it was the opposite of what I wanted. Then I was either angry and upset or terrified and lonely. None of those feelings was a healthy basis on which to make a decision or take action. This is where I can turn to Tradition Four for guidance.
How many times have my actions or inactions negatively affected others? Far more often than I would like. How many times have I invited my Higher Power to guide my actions? Not often enough. Since coming to S-Anon, I am able to get spiritual guidance by going to God first and asking for help with my decisions and actions.
Tradition Four, like the other Traditions, is a powerful tool. It teaches me about the delicate balance between unity and freedom. I experience peace of mind and release from the bondage of self when I act on my own behalf without harming others.
Reprinted from S-Anon Twelve Traditions, pages 50-51.