The name for Step 6 in the Spouse and Family Support Guide has been changed to “Thy Friends Do Stand by Thee.” The scripture that accompanies it is Doctrine and Covenants 121:9, “Thy friends do stand by thee, and they shall hail thee again with warm hearts and friendly hands.” I have felt this very love and support. Step 6 is a beautiful section focusing on seeking support. It says: “In addition to relying on the Lord, seeking support from others can be helpful as we face our loved ones’ addictions. We don’t need to suffer alone. President Henry B Eyring said, ‘All of us will be tested. And all of us need true friends to love us, listen to us, to show us the way, and to testify of truth to us so that we may retain the companionship of the Holy Ghost” (‘True Friends’). Sharing our struggles may be an uncomfortable and vulnerable experience. Many of us feel fearful or ashamed about our loved ones’ addictions and do not want others to know about the problem. We may be concerned that others will judge us or our loved ones. Our loved one who is struggling with addiction may ask that we not tell anyone, even ecclesiastical leaders. However, it is acceptable and important to ask for the help we need or desire.
As we identify sources of support, Step 6 suggests considering the following:
Priesthood and Relief Society Leaders
I have personally made each one of these part of my recovery.
At the end of Step 6 we are asked, “How can you be a support to others passing through similar difficulties?” This one is a toughie! It requires sacrifice on our part, but on the other side of sacrifice are great blessings! Step 6 quotes Elder Orson F. Whitney (as quoted by James E. Faust) in saying, “To whom do we look in days of grief and disaster for help and consolation? …They are men and women who have suffered, and out of their experience in suffering they bring forth the riches of their sympathy and condolences as a blessing to those now in need. Could they do this had they not suffered themselves?”
Accompanying this quote, is this suggested under Personal Learning and Application in Step 6: In what ways could someone who has been through a similar situation to yours help you? Who do you know that has been through a similar situation that you could
turn to? Consider asking local leaders, such as your bishop, quorum leader, or Relief Society president to refer you to someone who has overcome similar challenges.
I certainly am far from perfect and I do not have all of the answers. But I am on this road. My hope in doing this article was to give others on this road a hand of love and support. We can’t fix each others’ problems. Boy I wish we could! But knowing that we have a shoulder to cry on, a listening ear, and a heart that understands has been a huge part of my recovery. I am so grateful to those that made the difficult sacrifice of telling me their stories so that I knew I was not alone. It was more than an “anonymous” article, it was a name, a face, a loving Daughter of God who reached out unselfishly to me. I will be forever grateful to sweet sisters (I call all of you sisters) that share this road with