Frequently Asked Questions

Prayers (8)

An RCA 11th Step Prayer

(Based on the Prayer of St Francis)

Higher Power, Make us an Instrument of your Peace;

where we have divisions, help us sow Unity;

where we have grievance, Forgiveness;

where we have doubt, Faith;

where we have despair, Hope;

where we have darkness, Light;

and where we have sadness, Joy.

Higher Power, Help us not so much seek

to be consoled as to Console;

to be understood, as to Understand;

to be loved, as to Love;

for it is in Giving that we Receive,

it is in Pardoning that we are Pardoned,

and it is with Love that our coupleship will endure.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

Bless it or Block it Prayer

Higher Power, we are considering _________

Please help us to know if you bless this endeavor.

Please help us to see clearly if it is your will.

Help us to hear what you would have us hear,

and to see what you would have us see.

We ask for clear signs to know if you bless or block this.

May we continue to do your work and your will.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

Couples’ Serenity Prayer

God, grant us the serenity

to accept the things we cannot change,

courage to change the things we can,

and wisdom to know the difference.

Categories: Prayers, RCA Readings

 

RCA Seventh Step Prayer

I want to be more sensitive to my partner,

As sensitivity to my partner opens awareness of my innermost self.

Higher Power help me become more open and aware.

 

I need to see my own fear behind my shortcomings:

My tendency to be sarcastic and stubborn,

My tendency to blame and make my partner wrong,

My need to make my partner feel disrespected and ‘less than’.

Higher Power, help me find the courage to acknowledge my own shortcomings,

instead of focusing on those of my partner.

 

I promise to try to use the coupleship tools I have learned

To stop interrupting my partner

To speak from ‘I’ statements,

And to acknowledge the strengths my partner brings to our coupleship.

Higher Power teach me humility and remove my character defects so that I may love more sincerely and completely.” Amen

Categories: Prayers, RCA

RCA Third Step Prayer

Higher Power, we offer our coupleship to you.

To transform us and to do with our relationship as you believe is best.

Take away the selfishness we show toward each other

and others in our lives, so that we may better do your will.

Take away our dysfunctional patterns of caring, communication and intimacy,

that overcoming them may be a testimony

of your power, your love, and your way of life

to each other, and to those we might help.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

Set Aside Prayer

God, please help us to set aside everything we know and everything we think we know

about You, about ourselves, about each other and about this work of recovery,

so that we may have an open mind, an open heart, and a new experience of you in our lives today.

Amen

Categories: Prayers, RCA

I put my hand in yours

and together we can do

what we can never do alone,

No longer is there a sense of hopelessness.

No longer must we each depend

upon our own unsteady willpower.

We are all together now

reaching out our hands

for a power and strength greater than ours.

And as we join hands,

we find love and understanding

beyond our wildest dreams.

Categories: Prayers, RCA Readings

We Are Responsible

We are responsible when any couple,

anywhere, reaches out for help

we want the hand of RCA to always be there.

And for that, we are responsible.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

RCA (17)

An RCA 11th Step Prayer

(Based on the Prayer of St Francis)

Higher Power, Make us an Instrument of your Peace;

where we have divisions, help us sow Unity;

where we have grievance, Forgiveness;

where we have doubt, Faith;

where we have despair, Hope;

where we have darkness, Light;

and where we have sadness, Joy.

Higher Power, Help us not so much seek

to be consoled as to Console;

to be understood, as to Understand;

to be loved, as to Love;

for it is in Giving that we Receive,

it is in Pardoning that we are Pardoned,

and it is with Love that our coupleship will endure.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

Bless it or Block it Prayer

Higher Power, we are considering _________

Please help us to know if you bless this endeavor.

Please help us to see clearly if it is your will.

Help us to hear what you would have us hear,

and to see what you would have us see.

We ask for clear signs to know if you bless or block this.

May we continue to do your work and your will.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

Coupleship Affirmations

  1. We are a beautiful, unique couple and we deserve recovery
  2. We treat each other with honor and respect
  3. We are honest, direct, appropriate and respectful with each other
  4. We are totally deserving of unconditional love
  5. We are a work of art in progress
  6. We enrich our relationship by reaching out to other couples committed to recovery
  7. We are changing and growing in the present moment
  8. We seek to build closeness and intimacy by asking for what we need and want
  9. Today we acknowledge that our needs may be different We find healthy ways to get our needs met through many available resources
  10. We communicate our differences with love and respect
  11. We respect each other’s boundaries
  12. We respect each other’s path of recovery
  13. We can each grow at our own pace
  14. We can lovingly confront our partner and share our feelings, even if pain is part of that growth
  15. We know, understand and accept ourselves as a couple We gently invite each other to grow
  16. We support our partner’s individuality with our love and understanding
  17. We support each other’s growth and ability to make healthy choices
  18. We affirm qualities in our partner that we admire We choose to share how these qualities enrich our relationship
  19. Today we affirm the little child within our partner and nurture that special quality
  20. Our relationship grows as we get to know our partner
  21. We are fully developing ourselves as persons within a healthy relationship
  22. We accept and respect our differences and look at how they enhance our relationship
  23. Today we affirm that our partnership is made of two equal, unique parts and that our relationship has a valuable life of its own
  24. We help each other learn how to love
  25. “I Love You” can be said by a touch or a look
  26. We express our love in words and actions on a daily basis
  27. Today we develop balance in all areas of our relationship
  28. We are a gift to share with each other and with other couples
  29. Today we accept that we do not have all the answers
  30. We can be empowered and vulnerable at the same time
  31. We choose to say “no” when we are not safe
  32. We trust our sponsor couple and open ourselves to their experience, strength and hope
  33. We ask our Higher Power for the courage and wisdom to face each new challenge in our coupleship
  34. We are lovable for who we are rather than what we do
  35. We do not abandon each other
  36. We choose to be best friends
  37. We STEPPED in time
  38. Today we have healthy conflict, and there is no winner or loser
  39. We affirm our growth: first we learn to listen: then we listen to learn
  40. We listen to each other with our hearts and we open our minds
  41. We share sorrows and joys
  42. We can agree to disagree It is OK to disagree
  43. Today we choose to let go of fear, to take healthy risks and to become more intimate
  44. We feel relief as we share our fears with each other
  45. We are safe with each other and it is OK to express insights about our mistakes
  46. We are learning to be better parents
  47. We take responsibility for our mistakes and learn from our experiences
  48. It’s OK to love my partner and be angry at the same time
  49. Secrets build walls of confusion and threaten our relationship Today we seek to create an atmosphere of openness and honesty
  50. We let go of expectations and perceived outcomes We place our future in the hands of our Higher Power
  51. Today we choose to live in the present, despite our individual or couple history
  52. We know that much of our anger is based on our family-of-origin baggage
  53. We recognize our triggers without reacting to them We see the underlying family-of-origin issues
  54. We choose to forgive and make peace with ourselves
  55. We forgive each other
  56. We peacefully respond to change, rather than react and create crises
  57. When we come to a crossroads in our life, we reach out to each other, ask for guidance from fellow recovering couples, and seek our Higher Power to find a true path
  58. Our RCA three-legged stool does not topple: Each of us and our coupleship are recovering
  59. We allow ourselves creative space to work and play in many ways We find new directions and opportunities
  60. It is fun to play with each other, and we enjoy playing together
  61. We build intimacy through sharing the ordinary moments in life
  62. We learn from each other’s ability to show love
  63. Today we can find a new way to express our love for our partner
  64. We enjoy each other’s touch. Our couple sexuality is not a barometer of relationship success
  65. We are sexually intimate with each other through words, touches, looks, sounds and thoughts
  66. We accept mutual responsibility for our sexual relationship, both in giving and receiving sexual pleasure and in recognizing each other’s boundaries
  67. We share a spiritual connection through our mutual sexual relationship
  68. As our coupleship heals, hope reappears in our relationship
  69. We relax and enjoy our life right now
  70. Today we have recovery tools to build commitment, caring and communication
  71. We build dreams together and live them one day at a time
  72. We validate our coupleship through our recovery We are proud of who we are
  73. Laughter and healthy humor bring lightness and healing to our relationship
  74. I am recovering with my partner Our coupleship is in recovery
  75. We are steadily growing in intimacy with the help of our Higher Power
  76. We find regular ways to restore our connection with each other and with our Higher Power
  77. We walk together We play together We pray together We are together
Categories: RCA, Tools

Couples’ Serenity Prayer

God, grant us the serenity

to accept the things we cannot change,

courage to change the things we can,

and wisdom to know the difference.

Categories: Prayers, RCA Readings

Origins of The RCA Safety Guidelines, Expanded

As mentioned in RCA’s basic text, Recovering Couples Anonymous was founded in Fall 1988.  Several couples participated in the “We Came To Believe” (WCTB) two-weekend seminars, which focused on working the Twelve Steps in intimate relationships.  It was suggested to participants, “During our time together we will ask you to observe the[se] following rules.”

Participants were told that safety during the two weekends was critical, in order for partners to take the risks to trust, to be vulnerable, and to commit.  “We can’t have trust if we can’t feel safe.  If we cannot be safe with each other, then we cannot have a recovering relationship.”   “Without [the] help [of the Safety Guidelines] our anger, hurt and mistrust are too great for us.”

Some of those couples decided to continue their recovery work by founding RCA.

And those WCTB “Weekend Rules” were what are now the RCA Safety Guidelines.

Next, in the spirit of striving to “broaden and deepen the understanding” of RCA principles, RCA’s three principal founders later expanded upon these original 1980s guidelines.  The expansion appears in their 1999 book, “Open Hearts: Renewing Relationships with Recovery, Romance, and Reality,” which many RCAers know and use.

Gentle Path Press, the publisher of “Open Hearts” and of many books by Dr. Patrick Carnes, recently granted the Oakland, California group the permission to reproduce the “Open Hearts” essays on the Safety Guidelines in the form of a booklet used for presentations at the March, 2015 Monterey Retreat.  Experience was shared under the theme of “Progress and Success in Using the RCA Safety Guidelines in Our Coupleships and in Couple Sponsorship.”

The Oakland group itself makes available copies of the booklet to meeting attendees and newcomer couples.  Titled “RCA: Safety Guidelines for Couples’ Step Work and Recovery Meetings,” two examples from the “expanded” Safety Guidelines are below.

Download the extended safety guidelines

Categories: RCA, RCA Readings

Rarely have we seen a couple fail who have thoroughly followed our path. Those who do not recover are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program. They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands mutual and rigorous honesty.

There are those, too, who cannot or will not make a commitment to their partner. There are those who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest. Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now. If you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it, then you are ready to take certain steps.

At some of these we balked. We thought we could find an easier, softer way. But we could not. With all the earnestness at our command, we beg of you to be fearless and thorough from the start. Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas, and the result was nil until we let go absolutely.

Remember that we deal with addictions-cunning, baffling, powerful. We also deal with all those memories of past hurts, misbehavior, and vows violated. Without help our anger, hurt, and mistrust are too great for us. But there is one who has all power; that one is God. May you find God now.

Half measures availed us nothing. We stood at the turning point. We asked God’s protection and care with complete abandon. Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as a program of recovery.

Category: RCA Readings

Many of us exclaimed, “What an order! We can’t go through with it. Our love is lost, our vows forever violated, our communication destroyed, our families broken beyond repair.”

Do not be discouraged. No couple among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles.

We are not saints, our love is not perfect, our energy not unbounded, nor our relationships ideal. There is no such thing as the ultimately caring and nurturing partner or perfect intimacy.  The point is that we are willing to grow together along spiritual lines.

The principles we have set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection. In our spirituality we claim the goal of greater caring, communication, and intimacy.

Our understanding of our addictions, dysfunctions, and our personal histories before and after recovery make clear three pertinent ideas:

  1. That our relationship had become unmanageable.  That despite our best efforts we were headed for  separation and/or divorce.
  2. That probably no human power could have restored us to commitment and intimacy.
  3. That God could and would if God were sought.
Category: RCA Readings

Ours is a fellowship of recovering couples. We suffer from many different addictions and dysfunctions, and we share our experience, strength, and hope with each other that we may solve our common problems and help other recovering couples restore their relationships. The only requirement for membership is a desire to remain committed to each other and to develop new intimacy.

There are no dues or fees for membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. We are not allied with any organization. We do not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorse nor oppose any causes.

Although there is no organizational affiliation between Alcoholics Anonymous and our fellowship, we are based on the principles of AA. Our primary purpose is to stay committed in loving and intimate relationships and to help other couples achieve freedom from dysfunctional relationships.

Category: RCA Readings

If we are honest about our commitment and painstaking about working the Twelve Steps together, we will quickly be amazed at how soon our love returns. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will learn how to play and have fun together. As we experience mutual forgiveness we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. Trust in each other will return. We will comprehend the word serenity, and we will know peace.

No matter how close to brokenness we have come, we will see how our experiences can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness, shame, and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our partners, families, and others. Self-seeking will slip away.  Our whole attitude and outlook on life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will be better parents, workers, helpers, and friends. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them.

For those of you who are new to our fellowship, there are no problems that you have experienced that are not common to many of us. Just as our love for our partners has been imperfect, we may not always be adequately able to express to you the deep love and acceptance we feel for you. Keep coming back; the process of loving and communication grows in us, and with each other, one day at a time.

Category: RCA Readings

 

RCA Seventh Step Prayer

I want to be more sensitive to my partner,

As sensitivity to my partner opens awareness of my innermost self.

Higher Power help me become more open and aware.

 

I need to see my own fear behind my shortcomings:

My tendency to be sarcastic and stubborn,

My tendency to blame and make my partner wrong,

My need to make my partner feel disrespected and ‘less than’.

Higher Power, help me find the courage to acknowledge my own shortcomings,

instead of focusing on those of my partner.

 

I promise to try to use the coupleship tools I have learned

To stop interrupting my partner

To speak from ‘I’ statements,

And to acknowledge the strengths my partner brings to our coupleship.

Higher Power teach me humility and remove my character defects so that I may love more sincerely and completely.” Amen

Categories: Prayers, RCA

RCA Third Step Prayer

Higher Power, we offer our coupleship to you.

To transform us and to do with our relationship as you believe is best.

Take away the selfishness we show toward each other

and others in our lives, so that we may better do your will.

Take away our dysfunctional patterns of caring, communication and intimacy,

that overcoming them may be a testimony

of your power, your love, and your way of life

to each other, and to those we might help.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

Anonymity and mutual respect of boundaries are essential to providing a healing experience to each of us. Most of us have had great difficulty establishing our boundaries, assertiveness, and personal space. We are sensitive to cross-talk. Our purpose is not to give advice or try to fix one another, but rather to create a safe environment where we can experience and share our pain, hope and joy.

We have found that:

  1. It is OK to feel.
  2. It is OK to make mistakes.
  3. It is OK to have respectful conflict.
  4. It is OK to have needs and ask for them to be met.
  5. It is important to respect others (partners and others in the group). It is important to avoid self-righteous statements, baiting or button-pushing statements, case-building statements, and the taking or sharing of another person’s inventory.
  6. It is important to respect ourselves and to avoid self put-downs and self-pity. It is helpful to take ownership of our own story and to take credit for our progress and work in recovery.
  7. Anonymity is our spiritual foundation. Whom you see here, what you hear here, when you leave here, let it stay here.

We have care and concern for ourselves and our coupleships. We meet to both receive and provide the nurturing our relationships need to grow and endure. For that reason, it is important for us to act and speak respectfully to our partners and others. As we do this, we value the group and the relationships in it.

Category: RCA Readings

Set Aside Prayer

God, please help us to set aside everything we know and everything we think we know

about You, about ourselves, about each other and about this work of recovery,

so that we may have an open mind, an open heart, and a new experience of you in our lives today.

Amen

Categories: Prayers, RCA
  1. We admitted we were powerless over our relationship – that our lives together had become unmanageable.
  2. We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to commitment and intimacy.
  3. We made a decision to turn our wills and our life together over to the care of God as we understood God.
  4. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of our relationship together as a couple.
  5. We admitted to God, to each other, and to another couple the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character, communication, and caring.
  7. We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.
  8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it to our partner and to others we had harmed.
  11. We sought through our common prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to other couples, and to practice these principles in all aspects of our lives, our relationship, and our families.
Category: RCA Readings
  1. Our common welfare should come first; couple recovery depends upon RCA unity.
  2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority, a loving God as known in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
  3. The only requirement for RCA membership is a desire to remain in a committed relationship.
  4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or RCA as a whole.
  5. Each group has but one primary purpose, to carry its message to recovering couples who still suffer.
  6. RCA ought never endorse, finance, or lend the RCA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
  7. Every RCA group should be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
  8. Recovering Couples Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
  9. RCA, as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
  10. Recovering Couples Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the RCA name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
  11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, TV, and films.
  12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
Category: RCA Readings

I put my hand in yours

and together we can do

what we can never do alone,

No longer is there a sense of hopelessness.

No longer must we each depend

upon our own unsteady willpower.

We are all together now

reaching out our hands

for a power and strength greater than ours.

And as we join hands,

we find love and understanding

beyond our wildest dreams.

Categories: Prayers, RCA Readings

We Are Responsible

We are responsible when any couple,

anywhere, reaches out for help

we want the hand of RCA to always be there.

And for that, we are responsible.

Categories: Prayers, RCA

RCA Readings (10)

Couples’ Serenity Prayer

God, grant us the serenity

to accept the things we cannot change,

courage to change the things we can,

and wisdom to know the difference.

Categories: Prayers, RCA Readings

Origins of The RCA Safety Guidelines, Expanded

As mentioned in RCA’s basic text, Recovering Couples Anonymous was founded in Fall 1988.  Several couples participated in the “We Came To Believe” (WCTB) two-weekend seminars, which focused on working the Twelve Steps in intimate relationships.  It was suggested to participants, “During our time together we will ask you to observe the[se] following rules.”

Participants were told that safety during the two weekends was critical, in order for partners to take the risks to trust, to be vulnerable, and to commit.  “We can’t have trust if we can’t feel safe.  If we cannot be safe with each other, then we cannot have a recovering relationship.”   “Without [the] help [of the Safety Guidelines] our anger, hurt and mistrust are too great for us.”

Some of those couples decided to continue their recovery work by founding RCA.

And those WCTB “Weekend Rules” were what are now the RCA Safety Guidelines.

Next, in the spirit of striving to “broaden and deepen the understanding” of RCA principles, RCA’s three principal founders later expanded upon these original 1980s guidelines.  The expansion appears in their 1999 book, “Open Hearts: Renewing Relationships with Recovery, Romance, and Reality,” which many RCAers know and use.

Gentle Path Press, the publisher of “Open Hearts” and of many books by Dr. Patrick Carnes, recently granted the Oakland, California group the permission to reproduce the “Open Hearts” essays on the Safety Guidelines in the form of a booklet used for presentations at the March, 2015 Monterey Retreat.  Experience was shared under the theme of “Progress and Success in Using the RCA Safety Guidelines in Our Coupleships and in Couple Sponsorship.”

The Oakland group itself makes available copies of the booklet to meeting attendees and newcomer couples.  Titled “RCA: Safety Guidelines for Couples’ Step Work and Recovery Meetings,” two examples from the “expanded” Safety Guidelines are below.

Download the extended safety guidelines

Categories: RCA, RCA Readings

Rarely have we seen a couple fail who have thoroughly followed our path. Those who do not recover are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program. They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands mutual and rigorous honesty.

There are those, too, who cannot or will not make a commitment to their partner. There are those who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest. Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now. If you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it, then you are ready to take certain steps.

At some of these we balked. We thought we could find an easier, softer way. But we could not. With all the earnestness at our command, we beg of you to be fearless and thorough from the start. Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas, and the result was nil until we let go absolutely.

Remember that we deal with addictions-cunning, baffling, powerful. We also deal with all those memories of past hurts, misbehavior, and vows violated. Without help our anger, hurt, and mistrust are too great for us. But there is one who has all power; that one is God. May you find God now.

Half measures availed us nothing. We stood at the turning point. We asked God’s protection and care with complete abandon. Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as a program of recovery.

Category: RCA Readings

Many of us exclaimed, “What an order! We can’t go through with it. Our love is lost, our vows forever violated, our communication destroyed, our families broken beyond repair.”

Do not be discouraged. No couple among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles.

We are not saints, our love is not perfect, our energy not unbounded, nor our relationships ideal. There is no such thing as the ultimately caring and nurturing partner or perfect intimacy.  The point is that we are willing to grow together along spiritual lines.

The principles we have set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection. In our spirituality we claim the goal of greater caring, communication, and intimacy.

Our understanding of our addictions, dysfunctions, and our personal histories before and after recovery make clear three pertinent ideas:

  1. That our relationship had become unmanageable.  That despite our best efforts we were headed for  separation and/or divorce.
  2. That probably no human power could have restored us to commitment and intimacy.
  3. That God could and would if God were sought.
Category: RCA Readings

Ours is a fellowship of recovering couples. We suffer from many different addictions and dysfunctions, and we share our experience, strength, and hope with each other that we may solve our common problems and help other recovering couples restore their relationships. The only requirement for membership is a desire to remain committed to each other and to develop new intimacy.

There are no dues or fees for membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. We are not allied with any organization. We do not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorse nor oppose any causes.

Although there is no organizational affiliation between Alcoholics Anonymous and our fellowship, we are based on the principles of AA. Our primary purpose is to stay committed in loving and intimate relationships and to help other couples achieve freedom from dysfunctional relationships.

Category: RCA Readings

If we are honest about our commitment and painstaking about working the Twelve Steps together, we will quickly be amazed at how soon our love returns. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will learn how to play and have fun together. As we experience mutual forgiveness we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. Trust in each other will return. We will comprehend the word serenity, and we will know peace.

No matter how close to brokenness we have come, we will see how our experiences can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness, shame, and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our partners, families, and others. Self-seeking will slip away.  Our whole attitude and outlook on life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will be better parents, workers, helpers, and friends. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them.

For those of you who are new to our fellowship, there are no problems that you have experienced that are not common to many of us. Just as our love for our partners has been imperfect, we may not always be adequately able to express to you the deep love and acceptance we feel for you. Keep coming back; the process of loving and communication grows in us, and with each other, one day at a time.

Category: RCA Readings

Anonymity and mutual respect of boundaries are essential to providing a healing experience to each of us. Most of us have had great difficulty establishing our boundaries, assertiveness, and personal space. We are sensitive to cross-talk. Our purpose is not to give advice or try to fix one another, but rather to create a safe environment where we can experience and share our pain, hope and joy.

We have found that:

  1. It is OK to feel.
  2. It is OK to make mistakes.
  3. It is OK to have respectful conflict.
  4. It is OK to have needs and ask for them to be met.
  5. It is important to respect others (partners and others in the group). It is important to avoid self-righteous statements, baiting or button-pushing statements, case-building statements, and the taking or sharing of another person’s inventory.
  6. It is important to respect ourselves and to avoid self put-downs and self-pity. It is helpful to take ownership of our own story and to take credit for our progress and work in recovery.
  7. Anonymity is our spiritual foundation. Whom you see here, what you hear here, when you leave here, let it stay here.

We have care and concern for ourselves and our coupleships. We meet to both receive and provide the nurturing our relationships need to grow and endure. For that reason, it is important for us to act and speak respectfully to our partners and others. As we do this, we value the group and the relationships in it.

Category: RCA Readings
  1. We admitted we were powerless over our relationship – that our lives together had become unmanageable.
  2. We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to commitment and intimacy.
  3. We made a decision to turn our wills and our life together over to the care of God as we understood God.
  4. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of our relationship together as a couple.
  5. We admitted to God, to each other, and to another couple the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character, communication, and caring.
  7. We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.
  8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it to our partner and to others we had harmed.
  11. We sought through our common prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to other couples, and to practice these principles in all aspects of our lives, our relationship, and our families.
Category: RCA Readings
  1. Our common welfare should come first; couple recovery depends upon RCA unity.
  2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority, a loving God as known in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
  3. The only requirement for RCA membership is a desire to remain in a committed relationship.
  4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or RCA as a whole.
  5. Each group has but one primary purpose, to carry its message to recovering couples who still suffer.
  6. RCA ought never endorse, finance, or lend the RCA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
  7. Every RCA group should be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
  8. Recovering Couples Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
  9. RCA, as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
  10. Recovering Couples Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the RCA name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
  11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, TV, and films.
  12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
Category: RCA Readings

I put my hand in yours

and together we can do

what we can never do alone,

No longer is there a sense of hopelessness.

No longer must we each depend

upon our own unsteady willpower.

We are all together now

reaching out our hands

for a power and strength greater than ours.

And as we join hands,

we find love and understanding

beyond our wildest dreams.

Categories: Prayers, RCA Readings

Tools (1)

Coupleship Affirmations

  1. We are a beautiful, unique couple and we deserve recovery
  2. We treat each other with honor and respect
  3. We are honest, direct, appropriate and respectful with each other
  4. We are totally deserving of unconditional love
  5. We are a work of art in progress
  6. We enrich our relationship by reaching out to other couples committed to recovery
  7. We are changing and growing in the present moment
  8. We seek to build closeness and intimacy by asking for what we need and want
  9. Today we acknowledge that our needs may be different We find healthy ways to get our needs met through many available resources
  10. We communicate our differences with love and respect
  11. We respect each other’s boundaries
  12. We respect each other’s path of recovery
  13. We can each grow at our own pace
  14. We can lovingly confront our partner and share our feelings, even if pain is part of that growth
  15. We know, understand and accept ourselves as a couple We gently invite each other to grow
  16. We support our partner’s individuality with our love and understanding
  17. We support each other’s growth and ability to make healthy choices
  18. We affirm qualities in our partner that we admire We choose to share how these qualities enrich our relationship
  19. Today we affirm the little child within our partner and nurture that special quality
  20. Our relationship grows as we get to know our partner
  21. We are fully developing ourselves as persons within a healthy relationship
  22. We accept and respect our differences and look at how they enhance our relationship
  23. Today we affirm that our partnership is made of two equal, unique parts and that our relationship has a valuable life of its own
  24. We help each other learn how to love
  25. “I Love You” can be said by a touch or a look
  26. We express our love in words and actions on a daily basis
  27. Today we develop balance in all areas of our relationship
  28. We are a gift to share with each other and with other couples
  29. Today we accept that we do not have all the answers
  30. We can be empowered and vulnerable at the same time
  31. We choose to say “no” when we are not safe
  32. We trust our sponsor couple and open ourselves to their experience, strength and hope
  33. We ask our Higher Power for the courage and wisdom to face each new challenge in our coupleship
  34. We are lovable for who we are rather than what we do
  35. We do not abandon each other
  36. We choose to be best friends
  37. We STEPPED in time
  38. Today we have healthy conflict, and there is no winner or loser
  39. We affirm our growth: first we learn to listen: then we listen to learn
  40. We listen to each other with our hearts and we open our minds
  41. We share sorrows and joys
  42. We can agree to disagree It is OK to disagree
  43. Today we choose to let go of fear, to take healthy risks and to become more intimate
  44. We feel relief as we share our fears with each other
  45. We are safe with each other and it is OK to express insights about our mistakes
  46. We are learning to be better parents
  47. We take responsibility for our mistakes and learn from our experiences
  48. It’s OK to love my partner and be angry at the same time
  49. Secrets build walls of confusion and threaten our relationship Today we seek to create an atmosphere of openness and honesty
  50. We let go of expectations and perceived outcomes We place our future in the hands of our Higher Power
  51. Today we choose to live in the present, despite our individual or couple history
  52. We know that much of our anger is based on our family-of-origin baggage
  53. We recognize our triggers without reacting to them We see the underlying family-of-origin issues
  54. We choose to forgive and make peace with ourselves
  55. We forgive each other
  56. We peacefully respond to change, rather than react and create crises
  57. When we come to a crossroads in our life, we reach out to each other, ask for guidance from fellow recovering couples, and seek our Higher Power to find a true path
  58. Our RCA three-legged stool does not topple: Each of us and our coupleship are recovering
  59. We allow ourselves creative space to work and play in many ways We find new directions and opportunities
  60. It is fun to play with each other, and we enjoy playing together
  61. We build intimacy through sharing the ordinary moments in life
  62. We learn from each other’s ability to show love
  63. Today we can find a new way to express our love for our partner
  64. We enjoy each other’s touch. Our couple sexuality is not a barometer of relationship success
  65. We are sexually intimate with each other through words, touches, looks, sounds and thoughts
  66. We accept mutual responsibility for our sexual relationship, both in giving and receiving sexual pleasure and in recognizing each other’s boundaries
  67. We share a spiritual connection through our mutual sexual relationship
  68. As our coupleship heals, hope reappears in our relationship
  69. We relax and enjoy our life right now
  70. Today we have recovery tools to build commitment, caring and communication
  71. We build dreams together and live them one day at a time
  72. We validate our coupleship through our recovery We are proud of who we are
  73. Laughter and healthy humor bring lightness and healing to our relationship
  74. I am recovering with my partner Our coupleship is in recovery
  75. We are steadily growing in intimacy with the help of our Higher Power
  76. We find regular ways to restore our connection with each other and with our Higher Power
  77. We walk together We play together We pray together We are together
Categories: RCA, Tools

Zoom (2)

This is a short tutorial on how to connect to a zoom meeting. Click Here

 

Category: Zoom

Once you have attended a meeting, you already have a zoom account. To meet with another couple to continue the work:

Once you have attended a meeting, you already have a zoom account. To meet with another couple to continue the work:

  • Choose an agreed upon date and time (be mindful of the time zones)
  • One couple logs into their free zoom account and chooses “Schedule”
  • The Topic can be Step ___ and select the date and time agreed upon. You may want to schedule it longer, as you can always end before the time.
  • Select the “join before host” box so that either of you can log in first.
  • Select a calendar option—any one is OK—and then press schedule.
  • Your email software will pop up and let you send the invitation to the other couple and yourself.
  • On they selected day and time, enter the assigned group number and join the meeting!

Note: a free zoom account only allows for 2 connections at the same time. If there are more than 2, there is a 40 minute limit to the call.

Note 2:You may also choose to use Skype or any other face to face meeting.  The phone should be a “last choice” as it does not allow the face to face connection.

Category: Zoom

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