He was honest, at least. He told the counselor, “If I tell you about it, you will take it away.” The counselor asked, “Can we talk about why you don’t want to talk?” He looked at her and said, “No.”
We love our addictions. Around the church, where people often want to keep relationships tidy and, irrespective of our openness and grace, persist in trying to look presentable — even when they don’t think they are presentable, someone can easily teach us the rules about what topics are on the table and what aren’t. I learn what you don’t want to talk about quickly. When someone says, “I only smoke to go to sleep,” we may not be welcomed into a conversation about how addicted that seems. The other night at a wedding one of us caused quite a stir because he was not carrying a flask full of whiskey like all the other guys. It was assumed that getting drunk was one of the goals for the evening so he caused a little problem by not having the right equipment. No one had ever violated the flask rule before, apparently!
Given that environment, it is no surprise that it was socially unacceptable last week to ask questions about coffee. This time it was me. My friends were talking about coffee and I discovered that both of them do not think they will be able to function well if they don’t get up every morning and drink coffee. I had a dilemma, “Can we talk about that?”