Joke: What is the difference between a politician and an addict?
Punch Line: The addict knows when they are lying.
I have never been a politician, but I am a recovering addict and know about lying. It is my opinion that PC (political correctness) is the new CD (codependency). Codependency is all about reacting to the events around us and self-betrayal. Political correctness is about also reacting to the latest opinion or straw poll by changing my beliefs and behavior to the approval of the appeared “majority.” Politicians are all about being liked and popular. As those of us in recovery all know, codependency is not healthy. I am comfortable in not being popular. Most politicians are not.
Is anyone else fatigued with all the political correctness in our culture? It is my opinion that PC is out of control, and nothing or no one is exempt from it, including the recovery world. It appears that 12-Step and faith-based programs are no longer politically correct. I have noticed that 12-Step and faith-based programs appear to have taken the back seat to more “elite” evidenced based programs.
It is also my opinion that our culture is sexually sick, and that is now the norm. To get healthy, you are going to have to learn to be politically incorrect. I do not believe the latest straw poll should determine which type of program is less than or better than. It is not an either/or. It is an AND, as both have strengths and weaknesses.
Here are some reasons I believe 12-Step and faith-based programs have become politically incorrect.
- Surrendering your will to a Higher Power. I have to do what? For many in our culture, this is a very difficult principle, let alone surrendering our will over to G-o-d. The culture in which we live sells the idea that you are powerful and in control. You can be your own god. Don’t let anyone get in your way. Have it your way. Get yours. This is very countercultural. The word surrender also is not understood by our culture, as this is a word that insinuates weakness and vulnerability, which is covertly frowned upon. For many, the word surrender creates a great deal of confusion. It takes a great deal of unlearning to begin to surrender to G-o-d.
- Owning your poor choices and behaviors. Taking responsibility is also very politically incorrect in our culture where denial, lying and blaming others is rewarded. From children to politicians, the name of the game is to play the victim. Taking responsibility is to be avoided at all costs. As long as it is everyone else’s fault, I do not have to change. To take a personal inventory and own ugly is about growing up and becoming an adult.
- Making Amends. Getting healthy emotionally, financially, relationally, physically, and spiritually is hard work. We live in a lazy culture that is looking for every way to numb and find entertainment to distract and medicate us. Making amends, seeking forgiveness and owning our behaviors that have hurt others is hard work. If we are to have true freedom, forgiving others who have hurt us, regardless if they ever seek our forgiveness, is also our responsibility. Forgiveness is not about forgiving others for their “badness” in our “goodness”. It is about choosing to no longer accuse others and let go of the offense.
- Spiritual Awakening. You begin to understand that you are not just a human being having a spiritual experience, but you are a spiritual being having a human experience. This spiritual awakening allows you to live life for God and His designed plan for you. But again, that takes surrender, which is countercultural.
- Serving Others and Giving it Away. It is politically incorrect to put our needs aside and serve others around us. It is politically incorrect to give to give and expecting nothing in return compared to giving to get. What is in it for me? How is this going to benefit my needs? Giving what we have learned in recovery away to others, such as head knowledge, a transformed heart, and soul awareness, gives us great freedom to begin to live.
All of these principles are dangerous ideas in modern culture, as they threaten selfishness (getting what you want when you want it). It requires us to take responsibility for our actions and to be held accountable by a G-o-d. They are counter intuitive to the ego. Unfortunately, there is no other way to freedom. I am grateful these are politically incorrect.
Cory Schortzman is an author, speaker, teacher and licensed mental health professional. Since 2008, he has served as the Executive Director of Transformed Hearts Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, CO. He is the founder of SARA, the Sexual Addiction Recovery Association. Cory is passionate about helping couples and individuals overcome sex addiction. He is also passionate about bringing awareness to the public and supporting the elimination of sex and human trafficking. Cory has been married since 1998 to his beautiful wife, Kerry, and lives in Colorado with their four daughters. He and Kerry have been seen on the CBS Early Show, Inside Edition, and ABC Good Morning America, Fox 21 News, and TLC/Discovery discussing the harm of sex addiction and the joys of recovery. He has also been heard on numerous radio programs.
Cory’s books include: Out of the Darkness, Into the Light the Workbook, Into the Light the Steps, Ashes to Beauty the Steps, 301 Dating Ideas, 301 Conversational Ideas, 301 Ways to Say I Love You, 301 Ways to Love Your Children & 301 Recovery Tools & Tips.