Running Out of Safe Spaces

I’m in a huge season of growth and healing, which will be great in the long run, but right now it’s really hard. Meanwhile, I’m running out of safe spaces to process through my emotions and realizations. My new therapist has been great, he’s actually challenging me and having me work instead of just listening to me ramble, but I leave those sessions feeling like I need counseling.

Then there’s my recovery group. Talking is limited there because 8 guys are sharing over the course of an hour and a half, but hearing about their journeys gives me new perspectives, and in any case it’s a safe place to share whatever is on my mind. At least it was until last night, when one of the guys made a comment about my wife. It wasn’t intended to be malicious, and it was in the spirit of transparency, but I wanted to kick his teeth in.

Since that would be a bad idea, I figured I’d talk to someone about it. Group? Nope, that’s out. I don’t want to make it unsafe for anyone else, and even if I could find a way to safely share about it, I didn’t finish my homework, so I was relegated to listening last night. Counselor? Maybe, at my next session in 4 days, if we take a break from working to talk about my feelings, if the feelings haven’t subsided and the comment hasn’t faded into the background noise. My wife? No, all it would do is creep her out, and any case I shouldn’t break the confidentiality of the group. Friends? Most of them are women, so talking through issues around sex addiction recovery with them is a conflict of interest. Family? Absolutely not.

I know I don’t have a lot of people in my corner, and I know there are holes in the lineup, but it hasn’t really been an issue until now. I feel really alone with this. I don’t know what to make of his comment, and I don’t have anyone to talk through it with, so it’s just kind of hovering in my mind, confusing and irritating me.


Got you bro. I’ll text you.


Hi my friend,
thank you for sharing. since a while, since we had our group we learned a lot about each other and i hope you
know, if there is something, where this community, where our focus group friends are there for, where i would be
there for you anytime.
this community has given me a safe space, no pre judging, no forcing nothing like this.
i really appreciated you in my way through our group process, like i said. thank you for being part of this community.
if you need help, we and i are there for you now. write all of your things down can help, write a journal or something for yourself. i do that from time to time to vent about myself, to get out of my head and release my thought and
you are loved and you are a wonderful person ! :purple_heart: take care please
feel hugged


Hi friend.
I’m here for you anytime. It was a pleasure getting to know you in our focus group. That was a safe space for all of us. Please feel free to reach out any time.


I hate so much just the idea that you’re running our of safe spaces lately, especially during a time that is so impactful and marked by significant growth. We know how these seasons are… messy, muddy, sometimes uncontrollable and shocking. Just this middle where there’s nothing and everything to feel at the same time. Add to this events or changes in your environment that just disrupt this fundamental safety… like this recovery group member making a comment about your wife. It feels like safety becomes violated while it takes a huge amount of time to create it. I’m sorry that this happened. Hopefully, some honest (and respectful) feedback with them could bring some healing and closure.

I have yet to get back to your message, but wanted to reiterate here something that has not been said for a while: you are so very appreciated, and I’m always willing to stand by your side. I care about you. No matter what it’s about – no matter how nice or “ugly” it is. We know healing and recovery aren’t made to create a nice picture of life. It’s about truth, honesty, reality, which will never be too much here. Addictions are, by essence, ugly. They make us do, think, feel things that we DON’T want. It is so deeply conflicting.

As you embrace this reality in its full expression and use your vulnerability while there are factors in your environment that could make you go muted, I want to acknowledge how brave it is of you to reach out - STILL. How brave it is to seek help - STILL. How brave it is to choose to face challenges that appear on your healing journey - STILL.

Gosh, growth is fucking painful and there’s so many days when it would be nice to just do a huge middle finger to every single “growing pain”. But for days when that’s not possible, you’ll always a friend in me.

1 Like