Step Nine—Oh Oh—Them ALL? By Jamie Moon

step 9 Jamie Moon makes amends with step 9 of the 12 step program.Step Nine, Made direct amends to such people, except when to do so would injure them or others. In the last Step it said all those you have wronged, does that apply here to? Do we have to make amends to them all?—only if we’ve actually practiced the last Step. Phew, I just noticed “would injure them of others.” There it is, I’m others, right? Most of my amends would hurt me (I think), so that cuts it right down. NO, we’re not others. Well “that is fine” you might say “but surely not when it might mean going to prison?” That is explained very well in the Big Book. Yes, but not at the expense of others. But we’ll talk about that later.

Made direct amends, to me means face to face; that I think is the first and best choice. And maybe that would include Skype or FaceTime. The ease and ability to find ways to work the program on our many addictions thanks to technology is amazing. There are face to face meetings on line along with many ways we will talk about later. Speaking of Step Nine, I have one very young sponsee that has made several smaller minor amends on Facebook so as not to put them off. And it really has shifted her something fierce. Direct amends is through direct communication. Though face to face is always preferred.

To such people, means what exactly? To those that we became willing to make amends in our Step Eight. In Step Eight we became willing to make amends to them all not knowing what the amends would be. But now it is time to figure out what amend would be appropriate. That happens when we sit down with our Sponsors and discuss our amends. Where two or more are gathered together in the name of good there truly is something else working in the mix. And there is nothing I can see that is more of a good thing than trying to clean up your life.

Wherever possible, is not that difficult to understand. Yet, many of us wait and wait for “God” to give them a sign as to when and where is the “right” time—while ignoring the sign that is right in front of them—their sponsor’s suggestion. I don’t know about the rest of you? But if we don’t trust what comes out of that relationship, why are we there?

Now here is the one, discussed earlier in this article, which we often use (as I had) to get out of making our amends—except when to do so would injure them or others. Usually we use this when we are afraid we will be harmed. But of course there is an appropriate application of this caveat. The Big Book and Twelve and Twelve, give us several examples such as going to prison and that harming your family. But of course in that case we take their counsel also so that we are not just using that as an excuse. There will be much more to say in later discussions of the Steps.

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