Spending these precious 30 minutes with Sherri was a June highlight. I hadn’t been to her house in years–gone were the days of home school basketball games when my oldest daughter and her 2nd daughter played together. Our lives went in two different directions. I had two more kids and she ending up navigating a road that no parent would sign up for: her youngest daughter became a drug addict and served time in jail.
“She was different than our other kids, but I did not see addictive behavior. In hindsight, I saw that she felt things on a level I didn’t even realize and she didn’t know how to process those feelings. She didn’t know how to process some childhood trauma and we didn’t realize the degree of the trauma for her. The addictive behaviors showed up in her early teen…I’ve come to learn that some people have addictive type personalities. My husband claims he is that type and I believe my daughter is too. She was born and raised in the same church cult her dad and I were and that caused more damage than we thought, though we left when she was just turning 13.”
Did you ever feel guilty, if so, why?
“Yes! Because we couldn’t stop the freight train coming down the road. Because we couldn’t love her enough to fix her. Because of the things I would’ve done differently. I even felt guilty for not knowing anything about so many subjects: self-harm, eating disorder, drugs, drug abuse, trauma, etc. This quote has helped me a lot:
Mercy is giving people what they need, not what they deserve.“
How did you process the pain when it was greatest?
On my knees. I cried. I raged at God. I begged and pleaded. I surrendered. Also, I processed the pain with the one closest to me who went through it with me: my husband. Also with my family. I processed through prayer, reading, learning, educating, counseling.”
Sherri Cotten – Plan B – A Mother’s Journey Through Addiction and Recovery
Detaching with love means to let go and allow others the dignity to make their own choices and decisions.
To keep up with Plan B – A Mother’s Journey through Addiction and Recovery
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Interview with Cynthia Hash for By God’s Grace Radio at WINA: https://wina.com/podcasts/sherri-cotten/