Accustomed to the Chaos

Odds are, at some point in your life you will find yourself in a “toxic” relationship.

As soon as you point your finger, another is pointed back at you.

Towards the end, everything becomes one jumbled mess of pain and heartache. A lot of the time, once it’s over,  we wonder why we stayed for so long.

I know from my experience, I am not completely absent from blame. Many times both parties in the relationship had been victimized and the tangled web of hurtful words and actions became indistinguishable.

It took a frank conversation with family members to get me to the point of ending the relationship. But, no matter how much I had been hurt and knew I hurt him I STILL craved a relationship with this person.

Toxic relationships can do this to a person.

At a certain point, we become accustomed to the chaos.

But why do we continue to put ourselves through this?

Why do we not get out of the relationship before its wreckage has piled up so high it seems impossible to break through?

I wish I had answers. But no how many articles I read about toxic relationships, or how many times my family members came to me with worried eyes after an explosive phone call, I was not able to see how this relationship was deeply affecting me.

I can not emphasize enough the importance of listening to yourself and your feelings, while also understanding you cannot fix people.

If you start noticing behaviors in your relationship that are troubling or cause you distress, do not ignore them. Saying “I love you” more, or spending more time with that person will probably not make that person love you any more.

If you feel unappreciated, giving your significant other the world will likely not change that. Making unhealthy sacrifices in your own life to make them feel more secure will not make everything better.

We tend to think each bad fight might be the last one, each hurtful comment, each tearful phone call will be the last time.

It’s not. I promise.

If you find yourself settling into this pattern, I urge to you look at your relationship from a loved one’s perspective. Often times I would use the excuse, “My parents don’t know my relationship. They do not see all the good things he’s done for me.” But they did hear me yelling from my bedroom on the phone, or crying after trying to prove to my significant other that I was not seeing anybody else.

Since ending my relationship, I have truly found myself. Instead of putting all of my energy into “fixing” it  and contributing to the chaos that it was, I am now taking care of myself.

I started focusing on friendships I had neglected during the duration of my relationship and have apologized to those I hurt with my absence.

The damage and chaos of a toxic relationship is not worth the absence of loneliness being with someone provides.

If you feel that you may be involved in a toxic relationship, lean on those that love you. And realize you are not alone. Making the decision to end a relationship is always scary. Nobody wants to feel alone, or like they failed.

But I promise you, as you begin to heal, you will know it is the best decision you ever made.

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What Are You Willing to do for Your Recovery?

As 2017 comes around the corner, a lot of us are making New Years resolutions. 

Whether it’s to lose a couple pounds, quit smoking or to start and/or continue on your road to recovery, a new year always seems like a great time to start. 

But what are you willing to do for your resolution? What are you willing to do for your recovery? 

When difficult times fall upon you, are you going to reach out to your sponsor? Or are you going to reach for a drink? 

Are you willing to make amends to those you have hurt or wronged in the past? Are you willing to clean your side of the street, even though that may not fix everything? 

Recovery does not suck, but it is also not a cake walk. And there are times where you will be uncomfortable. 

But you need to be willing to walk through those times, and reach out to those who want the best for you to get you through it. 

If you are willing to put in the work, we are willing to guide and direct you to places that can get you there. 

Recovery does not suck, and there is so much hope. Happy New Years from A Man in Recovery Foundation and please reach out to us if you need help on your journey to recovery. 

Darek Horan (630)-730-8323

Ashley Buffano (847)-361-0422

Tim Ryan (312)-502-8671

Chris Reed (847) 307-1143

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Slow Down

“Slow your brain down.”

If I had a dollar for every time my mother had to tell me this.

In this day and age, we are expected to carry the world on our shoulders and then some. We are expected to know about current events, execute tasks effectively and correctly, while we provide for those we love. And still, at the end of the day, we are expected to be a decent human being.

It can get difficult at times.

Especially when the world feels like it is spinning faster than you can keep up with, and sometimes you are not able to do all that is expected of you. Or, in my case, you start to lose credit cards, cell phones, pretty much anything that is important to you.

During this stressful holiday season, it is so important that we remember to slow down and appreciate every moment. There is an incredible amount of pressure to keep up with everything and everyone, but sometimes you can’t.

And that is okay.

If you are feeling extra anxiety during this time, I suggest you try this mindfulness exercise. It helps me get grounded and reminds me to just slow my brain down and focus on one thing at a time. ]

Happy Holidays everyone, remember to be mindful and present.

Hand Mindfulness Exercise


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The Cost of Recovery

As the weather gets colder and the days get darker, many addicts find themselves retreating into their addiction more than before.

At AMIRF, we generally see an increase in those seeking help and unfortunately overdoses during the holiday season.

This year is no exception.

Over the past 30 days, AMIRF has put Eight people into long-term treatment programs and 12 into sober homes.

We are thrilled that we have been able to reach so many people, however, putting people into treatment is not cheap.

Scholarship for one month of treatment = $1,400 dollars


Train ticket to treatment center = $300 dollars

= $1,700 dollars

Currently, 80 percent of AMIRF’s funds are from Tim Ryan’s motivational speaking events and it is becoming more and more difficult to provide for those who need our help.

This Tuesday is Giving Tuesday, so please consider donating to AMIRF. If it is not your loved one who needs help, it is someone else’s. Please consider giving someone’s child or parent the gift of recovery this holiday season.

Thank you for helping us continue to fight the good fight.unknown

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The Face of the Modern Day Heroin Addict

As a country, we have many ignorances about heroin and opiate addiction. We are just now seeing that those we should trust the most (doctors) may play a hand in this, we have also learned that no one is immune to this disease.

Race, class, sex, it does not matter. Heroin does not discriminate.

The image of a troubled teen, slumped in a dark alley with a needle in his arm is no longer accurate.

Heroin has snuck into our suburbs, it has claimed the lives of popular cheerleaders, jocks and young, creative souls. So why has the past rhetoric stuck?

I believe that when we reduce this problem to some random, strung out kid in an alley, we lose ownership of this disease.  It’s a lot easier to say, “Oh, this could never happen HERE.” “Not, my kid!” Or, “They’re way too happy to use drugs.”

When we reduce drug addiction to something foreign that cannot reach us, we give the disease more power.

We need to accept the fact that heroin and other opiates are here, and they are not going anywhere soon. The longer it takes us to accept that this is our problem, the longer it will take to fix it.

So yes, it can be your kid. It can be your best friend. It can be your boss, teacher, even your doctor. But, we need to be vigilant. Having Narcan with you, being trained in how to respond to an overdose and knowing the warning signs of a brewing addiction are important steps in making sure this problem does not reach the ones you love.

AMIRF puts on The Cop the Kids and the Convict presentations where those attending can arm themselves with computer monitoring systems and drug-testing kits. Tim Ryan also runs opiate support group programs where attendees can receive FREE Narcan and Narcan training.

Just because drug addiction can reach anyone, does not mean it has too.

Arm yourself, get educated and take ownership of this disease. We will be here to help.


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Tim Ryan Speaks to Chicago Tribune about Upcoming “The Cop, the Convict and the Kids,” Presentation.

Story originally appeared Nov. 9, 2016 in the Chicago Tribune, written by Denise Crosby. 

Tim Ryan and Brandon Novak will be speaking at the Naperville Municipal Center today at 7:00pm and at East Aurora High School Nov. 14 at 7:00pm. The two will be joined by A Cop,  Sgt. Rich Wistoki, a Kid, Jessica Gerke and a convict: Tim Ryan.

Ryan spoke with the Tribune about his education efforts, being four years sober and presenting with former Jackass star Brandon Novak.

Read full story at link below.

Link to story here



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