Acceptance: A Journey of Recovery as an Adult Child of Dysfunction

Sign up for our newsletter

"*" indicates required fields

Receive new CIR blog articles in your inbox
Join the Pathway to Recovery (Preview)


Growing up amidst the turbulence of alcoholism and dysfunction, my instinctive urge for control was born from a longing for stability. As I navigate this journey of healing, I am discovering that true liberation springs not only from acceptance but from surrendering control to divine guidance. My path was a dance between trusting God’s lead, finding refuge in the Catholic Church, and eventually uncovering the transformative power of adult-child recovery. 

Trusting God’s Plan

Stepping into a now 28-year marriage with a widower and his two grieving boys was an act of trusting God’s plan. I believed that this was His design, a way to channel His love and healing through me. Yet, as the complexities of this blended family emerged, I realized that faith alone was not enough to navigate the challenges that lay ahead.

A trip to a Catholic bookstore and an introduction to Saint Therese of Lisieux set me on a path that eventually led to the Catholic Church. There I found solace and guidance. Daily Mass, the Holy Rosary, and spiritual direction provided a refuge as I grappled with my past wounds and the struggles of the present. God’s still small voice was guiding me toward a deeper understanding of acceptance, of acknowledging that control was an illusion and true strength lay in surrender.

Rediscovering Adult Child Recovery

Though Catholicism offered a beautiful experience of God’s love, I found that some old patterns were difficult to break. About three years ago, I rediscovered adult child recovery. My journey began in high school when a brief yet life-changing time in Alateen opened my eyes to the transformative power of shared experiences and support. Yet, even though I had learned about adult child recovery as a young adult I wasn’t ready to dive in. When my adult stepson moved home a few years ago he suggested I “try it again.” During the pandemic, the meetings were a beautiful way to connect with others who understood the pain of growing up in family dysfunction. As I accepted the 12-step process and surrendered more fully to God, I began to have more serenity in my daily life.

My journey has become a tapestry woven with threads of faith, recovery, and trust in God’s divine plan. My marriage, once navigated solely by faith, is now supported by the sacraments of the Catholic Church. Similarly, as I embrace the wisdom of adult child recovery, I am finding validation and strength in the stories of others who have walked similar paths. Daily surrender and acceptance of whatever happens are now the keys to serenity for me. 

Acceptance and the Healing Journey

With each step forward, I have come to realize that acceptance is the cornerstone of healing. This is not the passive surrender of defeat but an active choice to embrace life’s uncertainties and trust God’s purpose. My vulnerability has become my strength, and by releasing my grip on control, I have found freedom in areas of my heart that were once filled with fear and doubt.

My unfolding story is one of faith, recovery, and acceptance. It’s a journey that began with God’s initial call back to His Church, led by the Holy Spirit, and culminated in the discovery of adult child recovery. In the convergence of these forces, I have found redemption, strength, and a renewed sense of purpose. Through this tapestry of faith and recovery, I have learned that true liberation comes through acceptance and embracing vulnerability. Only then do we find solace in the arms of God’s unfailing love.

Find a CIR group for Adult Children of Dysfunctional Homes (ACDH) today!


Born and raised Catholic, Chloe is an adult child of alcoholics who recently rediscovered the beauty of 12-step recovery through attending Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACA) and Catholic in Recovery meetings. For many years, Chloe was an Evangelical Christian before the Blessed Mother, the saints, and the witness of a dear friend eventually drew her back to the Catholic faith.