Legal issue

Hi Sober Family,

I have a pending legal issue that’s weighing heavy and making it hard for me to deal with because of the shame associated with it. My sponsor thinks it’s time to deal with it and deep in my heart I think I’m ready to deal with it but scared about it triggering and derailing my program. I have 5 months and 10 days of clean time and very happy to be where I am. I thanks my husband, sponsor, friends and most of all my HP for getting me this far. I’d like to know how do I best deal with this issue and what is some helpful advice on how to approach this situation? Thanks in advance. May your HP/God Bless you.

Yours in sobriety,



I would get some legal counsel (lawyer) to help you be clear about your path and your options. I would also get some spiritual and psychological counsel (priest, trusted spiritual friends, psychological counsellor) to help you be clear on your accountability (to your higher power, to yourself, and to other people). I would also speak with your sponsor about how this relates to your progress through your steps, and how to navigate your accountability and your amends in constructive ways.

Do you have access to these? I’m wondering also, is there something specific you’re hoping for advice about, here on Talking Sober?


Sooo for me anyway… when it comes to having fear surrounding a certain issue (and after discussing it with others and feeling it is the right time to deal with it), I remember this phrase:
Fear or Faith
Obviously there will be fear around it. With a situation of my past… I didn’t know the outcome and there was other feelings like shame and embarrassed or whatever attached to it. But… knowing I was afraid and already having sort of established a connection with my HP, I was able to turn over my will and my life over to that HP. I thought of that phrase Fear or Faith… it is like a 2 sided coin. Fear on one side and faith on the other. We can never have both (meaning we are either living in fear or living in faith). So by giving over my fear to my HP and asking for guidance in that situation, that fear was reduced dramatically. Knowing that everything will work out as it should. Our HP watches over us.
There is also the other fact that having “secrets” that weigh on our minds and hearts, can potentially cause a relapse. It did for me anyway when I avoided dealing with my issue years ago out of fear. But once it was dealt with… freeing!!! I have never felt so free as I did in that moment. Trust ur HP. If u truly deep down inside feel ready and its the right time… take that leap and go for it! :slight_smile:


It sounds as though you are already on a very good path. It’s a sort of amends, yes?

Consider which is the greater baggage: Carrying the uncertainty and guilt of this around forever, or facing it sober and with grace once and for all?

If you are ready to accept your part in whatever trouble it may have been, I think you’ll find it more of a relief than you expect to go forward.

That said, it’s certainly wise to have legal help to understand what the options mean. And your sponsor and other trusted friends to help you cope with it personally, and honestly.

Congrats on your recovery in any case. It’s certainly your most valuable resource right now! Acceptance over fear. :pray:


I once heard it put, “We’re only as sick as our secrets.”



Yes, I found a lawyer I would like to work with. Now it’s just contacting him and beginning the process. But it’s making contact that’s freaking me out. I just can’t take the steps to email him and set up a time to meet. I appreciate your advice and concern.



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Your right. I’m tired of this secret. I’m constantly looking over my shoulder hoping I don’t get pulled over and end up in jail because I let the secret win. Your words are very encouraging and thanks for taking the time to reach out and help.


I can no longer run. It’s impending parts of my life I didn’t know it was going to, such as I have a board exam for a new certification professional program and one of the questions on the registration is if I have any pending legal issues. I appreciate your words. Have a great day.

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Yep - we’ve all been there. Something sticks in our minds and it gets bigger and bigger and seems so intimidating. I’ve been there many times.

You don’t have to be perfect and no one’s expecting you to be perfect. You are a person with a purpose, and you just walk it one step at a time, one sober day at a time.

Break it down:

  • You open your device or turn on the computer. Then say, “ok, done, good - I did good”
  • You open your email.
  • You write the email. It doesn’t have to be perfect. It can be as simple as, “I need help with an upcoming case. Can you please contact me to discuss it?” That’s it. Real simple. The lawyer will take care of the rest.
  • You make yourself a hot bath to celebrate, or you take a walk, or you enjoy some good quality chocolate. You care for yourself, one step at a time. You’re allowed to feel good about taking care of yourself :innocent:

This makes me chuckle a bit.

You’ve had the courage to enter the rooms of recovery with a bunch of total strangers and ask for help. Shouldn’t it be even easier to reach out to someone actually being paid to look out for you? :wink: I’m sure they’ll be a big help, too.


When facing a difficult and uncomfortable task, I think its important to focus on the how you will feel when it’s done.

  • Relief
  • Weight lifted
  • Able to move on
  • Pride
  • Room to breathe
  • Accomplished

These are a few that come to mind.

I too have some issues I need to deal with that, if I procrastinate any more, will lead to unsavory legal action.

It’s overwhelming but despite the unpleasantness and monetary cost of the task, I will be able to sleep when it’s done, and that is what I’m looking forward to most.

Wish you luck!


Hey there…chiming in to say that I also had some (what felt like insurmountable at the time) legal problems to clear up as I was getting sober. Making that first contact was a rip the bandaid off moment. Don’t think about it. Find the number. Press call. Lawyers are absolutely paid to help you here, and they know what to do. Once the ball is rolling, all you have to do is what they tell you. Having these legal issues cleared up, being able to drive without constantly being nervous about getting arrested has changed my quality of life significantly. You don’t have to do this. You GET to do this, because of your sobriety! You deserve a better life.


:pray: all for your outmost support and advice. I did it. I wrote the email and hit sent. I’m feeling free but in the back of my head I hear that voice saying…“what have you done?” I’m sure I’ll be ok. I’ll go to a meeting and share about the experience and the support. I’m also checking in with my sponsor shortly so much love and hugs to you all.




Good for you Cisco.

What have you done? You’ve taken responsibility, instead of running. You’re alive, not burying or silencing your life.

You did the right thing. It’s something to feel relieved about; it’s something to feel good about. This is a step forward :innocent:

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Don’t just say the serenity prayer, practice it every day. It has helped me at times where I didn’t know what else to do.