From the October 2011 magazine.

Our War Stories

A member questions the wisdom of action-packed, graphic drunkalogues in meetings

"A drunkalogue can turn into an adventure tale worthy of the most action-packed best-seller."

The only statement regularly heard at AA meetings that's not an exaggeration is likely the observation that alcoholics have a tendency to exaggerate—and that includes recovering alcoholics.

Meetings sometimes sound like a game of one-upmanship: "You think you had a low bottom, let me tell you about my bottom!"; "You want drunk, I'll show you drunk!"; "You think you had a tough sponsor, you should have had my first sponsor!"; "You think you've got it hard, wait 'til you hear what it was like when I got sober!"

-- John K.

New York, New York

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