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Judgment and CriticismMost people who find themselves in treatment for substance dependence have felt judged and criticized due to their use. Parents, siblings, spouses, friends, and co- workers have often weighed in on what they perceive as the “problem” in the life of the person who is seeking treatment. This can produce a range of feelings from shame and guilt to anger and incredulousness. It is important to remember, however, that we tend to be our harshest critics and no one can judge us harder than ourselves.

Judgment keeps us in the problem and acceptance puts us in a position to learn the solution. People who maintain long term recovery are those who accept the mistakes and consequences of their use, forgive themselves and move forward. Recovery is about moving away from judgment and criticism and toward a life guided by personal morals and values.

At AToN Center, this transition from judgment to acceptance is accomplished by completing task/step work, values exercises, meditation, processing shame/guilt in group, and making direct amends to those harmed by substance use.

Kate Judd
CD Counselor
AToN Center 888-535-1516