Now that you have completed your eighth step amends lists, the time has come for you to take action and begin making the necessary amends. This process can be very rewarding, but there are a few things you should remember as you approach those you have wronged and ask how you can make things right. Let’s look at some of the potential potholes you may run into as you complete your ninth step amends.
You have to understand and accept that not everyone is going to be happy to hear from you, despite the fact that you are now sober. Old wounds still sting from time to time, and your reaching out may bring out some anger and resentment that had been lying dormant in the person you wronged. The ninth step is all about your making an effort to make things right after having wronged others - an individual’s response to your offer of amends has no bearing on your success or failure in this step. In light of this, you should mentally prepare yourself for rejection and perhaps even some words spoken in anger. Talk to your sponsor before approaching anyone in person, as there may be some amends best left to a letter or email.
When it comes to financial amends, you need to put your money where your mouth is! You should not approach someone whom you owe money empty handed - even $20 looks better than lip service and the promise of funds in the future. Before making a financial amends, you should have a clear payment plan which you are able to stick to ready to offer the person whom you are indebted to. Along with this written plan have an initial payment ready to offer along with the amends itself. It is important you demonstrate a commitment to making things right, and the best way to do that is to come with a plan and a down payment.
The ninth step is another step which frees you from the baggage of your past you’ve been carrying around, as you do your best to make things right with those you have wronged. It is important you consult your sponsor throughout your proceeding through your amends list, as you will want some advice as to how to best go about approaching the person you have wronged. So long as you do not allow yourself to be discouraged by any anger or dismissal you receive from those you approach, while maintaining your commitment to making things right in any way you can, you will be blessed with the feeling of freedom that comes with completing your ninth step to the best of your ability!