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  1. Attending Meetings and Sharing at Meetings:  e attend RCA meetings to learn how the Program works, and to share our experience, strength, and hope with other couples. In meetings we learn that our struggles and troubles are not unique, and we gain the hope and assurance that our own coupleship can recover and grow. Meetings often bring couples closer and encourage communication. Being honest and vulnerable in front of our partners is frightening but worth it. Many of us believe that our relationships recover in direct proportion to our willingness to share at meetings.

  2. Safety Guidelines: By adhering to the Safety Guidelines in our meetings and in our coupleship communication, we receive and provide the safe environment and nurturing our relationships need to grow and endure. We affirm our personal rights and agree to act and speak respectfully to others.

  3. Reading and Working the Steps: Recovering Couples Anonymous is first and foremost a 12-Step Program. Couples can apply the Steps to relationships either as individuals or as partners. The principles and techniques, which helped restore our lives to sanity and bring a measure of serenity to us as individuals, can work for us as a couple.

  4. Sponsorship: As part of the surrender process, we admit our weaknesses as individuals and as a couple. We ask others for help, including our RCA sponsors, as well as other members in the RCA Program. Acting as sponsors for other couples helps bring our coupleship closer. Helping others focus on their relationship can help us see where our own relationship has been and where it is to go.

  5. Listening and Communicating: We set aside a time each day for hearing each other's comments, feelings, and gratitude. Before accepting any major couple commitments in our relationship, we consult and listen to our Higher Power for guidance.

  6. Calling a Moratorium or “Time Out”: When communications break down, a prior agreement to call a moratorium for 15 minutes, an hour, or a day can interrupt destructive interaction. We can walk away from each other but not from the relationship. By stating specifically when we will be available to continue discussion, we are showing that we are not abandoning the relationship or our partner.

  7. Meeting of Two: Either partner can call a meeting of two, or “time out”, at anytime, anywhere. A structure of opening and closing with the Serenity Prayer, and following the Safety Guidelines guarantees being heard and often helps us regain our sense of humor.

  8. Conflict Resolution Contracts and Written Agreements: We are learning to practice "fair fighting" by developing our own "Conflict Resolution Contract.” We establish respectful conflict guidelines and boundaries that allow the healthy expression of feelings, and work for resolution of our common problems and concerns.

  9. I Statements: We use I statements — (I feel hurt, I am sad) — rather than you statements (You did, You are, You said) to help us each take individual responsibility for our feelings and thoughts, and to avoid blame. We do not globalize a conflict (You always, You never) and we keep the focus on current issues, not past issues, rather than try to resolve past hurts during conflict resolution.

  10. Developing a Support system Within and Outside of RCA: To help build balance in our relationship, each day we remember to develop personal relationships with people other than just our partners. And each day we remember to nourish our spiritual growth together, our creativity, and our playful attitudes. Couple-to-couple outreach calls, and meeting with other couples over coffee between meetings to discuss our conflicts, shows us that we are not alone and allows us to get another perspective on our problems. Sometimes we "book-end" a critical coupleship decision or coupleship activity between two strength-giving phone calls.

  11. Reading Recovery Literature: Just as daily reading of literature can help keep the focus on our individual recovery, reflecting on our RCA literature can help us focus on our coupleship recovery. Reading our partners' recovery literature can help us grow in understanding and compassion for the challenges they face.

  12. Service: We readily extend help to other couples, knowing that assistance to others adds to the quality of our own relationship recovery. We seek out and accept joint service positions in RCA such as meeting secretaries, treasurers, coffee-makers, and phone-tree chairpersons; we find that doing service together builds our sense of joint participation in our relationship and in its recovery.