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Bev’s Corner – Through the Eyes of Love: Black Lives Matter

BALM | June 12, 2020
How Evidence-Based Practices Make All the Difference in Family Recovery


Through the Eyes of Love: Black Lives Matter

“Do not be dismayed by the brokenness of the world. All things break. And all things can be mended. Not with time, as they say, but with intention. So go. Love Intentionally, extravagantly, unconditionally. The broken world waits in darkness for the light that is you.”  LR Knost

As the BALM movement grows and expands, we are called to speak to the world on behalf of love.

When one person is abused or killed by a police officer, all of us lose a piece of ourselves. When a system of white privilege helps us as it holds down a person of color, it is holding us down too.

Love does not see addiction, mental health, color, wealth, poverty.  In the BALM, we learn to see through to the essence of our own loved one when they are at their worst, and in that seeing, we heal and encourage their healing as well.

It is time to see through to the essence of every human being, whether they look like you or not. Black Lives Matter is not a denial that other lives matter. Rather, it is an affirmation that people of color deserve to be treated with dignity, with respect, with love.  And African Americans cannot advocate for themselves alone in a system built to harm them.

Though our system is broken after years of systemic racism, we, the American people of all races,  religions and ethnic groups can come together to heal it. We BALMer’s, with our loving ability to contribute to our loved one’s recovery, can bring peace, love and understanding into every situation in our lives.

We can Be A Loving Mirror (BALM) with ourselves to heal the broken parts within us, and with others to heal the broken parts of our relationships within our families,  within our communities and within our country.

Our work, the work of helping families grow in love, exists in the larger context of a country and a world that often devalues  families impacted by addiction, regardless of race,  so much so, that many of us keep the ‘dirty little secret’ of addiction from those we know.

If we belong to the majority (white) culture and have the money to ‘solve’ the legal problems our loved ones come across, we can fool ourselves for much longer that our loved one’s problem isn’t ‘as bad’ as that of the son or daughter or spouse of a person without means and/or of color who has done nothing more than what our loved one did, but whose use disorder landed them in jail due to lack of means or support.

The BALM stands for love, and as such, we invite every BALMer, every family member impacted by a loved one’s SUD or other use disorder or mental health disorder, to see through the color barrier and financial barrier that may have made us feel superior, untouchable, or different than those whose loved ones are no better or worse than ours or than us.

Join us in standing for love, in seeing through to the loving essence of every human being on the planet and speaking out to defend those who have been held back, maligned, abused, or who are in danger of wrongful death at the hands of those who do not know enough to love above all else.

If these ideas are not immediately apparent to you, I invite you to consider the words of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s character The Little Prince when he said,

“It is only with the heart that one sees rightly. That which is essential is invisible to the eye.”

And then, as always, my friends, Be A Loving Mirror.

With Love and Respect,