Dan Griffin

Griffin Recovery Enterprises dan@dangriffin.com 612-701-5842

Forum: Care to Share an Amend Story?


Newcomers tend to hit some roadblocks along their Step journey. One of the biggest is their concern about the Step Nine amends.

First, some wonder why they are going through with this at all. “What’s the point?” they ask. Second, most will definitely worry about how the people they approach will respond:

“Will they get mad?”

“Will it bring up old wounds?”

“Will she leave me for admitting what I did?”

“Might he threaten me when finding out what I did?”

“Will my employer call the cops?”

“Will I be charged with a crime?”

“Will he ask me to do something unreasonable to amend what I’ve done?” 

Finally, there other such questions about the process:

“What if I make things right but then I screw up again?” 

“Am I amending with this person for the right reasons?”

There are countless tales of amends to reassure these concerns. Care to share yours? 

Perhaps you have a story of how something didn’t go so well. Share that, too, as a lesson in undertaking this amazing process.

Whether a newcomer or olde tymer, these stories of intimate connections–of making our spirit whole–are an inspiration for all.

  • Brandon

    I went back to my hometown one weekend and decided to use this opportunity to make amends to a couple former bosses from high school. I always looked up to these guys, so I felt awful going to them to admit to shoplifting while employed.

    I went to the first place–a gas station. I wasn’t sure if the boss would even be in on a Saturday. Sure enough, he was. I walked upstairs to his office and he welcomed me in. He had no idea what I wanted. I fessed up, told my story, and placed $17 dollars on his desk. He welled up and said he knows two men in recovery (I had no idea)–one who found his way and one who is still lost. He gave me a hug and that settled that.

    My second stop was a grocery store. I say my former boss’s truck outside so figured he was there, but I figured he’d be busy with a customer and that would be that. But as I made by way to the entrance, out the exit door we came. I couldn’t avoid it know. I asked for a few words and we sat in his truck. I fessed up again (this time for $140 dollars). He didn’t cry, but did something I never knew him to do: be warm and giving. He said to take the money and give to a charity of my choice. I did, and give to this charity when I can five years later.

    This one Saturday afternoon showed me that people are generally generous and warm when being approached for these amends. They are touched and happy to see people on the mend. It also encouraged the idea that “God will meet us halfway”. I made the effort to show up; God made sure these men were present to meet me.

  • Barbara Cofer

    When the time is right, that person will appear. That has been my experience.I make daily amends to my children by staying sober and practicing the steps to the best of my ability. I was visiting family in my hometown and had the opportunity to make amends to a former boyfriend. I had to overlook the wrongs he had done to me and only look at my part. I was able to forgive and one way I made amends to him was to go with him to visit his mother who was dying. I am truly grateful to have been able to be there for him and believe that nothing happens by accident. I was there at the right time and was able to help lift his burden.

  • 6String22

    When I got to step 9, I was willing; I had seen enough of the benefits of working all the steps, and the heartbreak of those that resisted. With my sponsor’s agreement, I had already made amends to my brother. He had cosigned a loan for me and got burned, for which I felt guilty as soon as I got clean. I made amends through step 9 to both my parents for the years of misery and worry I put them through. Before they died, they were able to know me clean and recovering, and I was able to be there for them like a rock when they became sick. I was the last one my mother called as she was dying, although she didn’t want to worry or bother me. I took them both to doctors, hospitals, second opinions all of that, and took my father home to die of pancreatic cancer when it was his time. I thank God and the 12 steps for letting them know me, for my being able to be there for them as they were, at my bottom, there for me, and for the ability to handle all that clean and recovering.