Grapevine Online Exclusive

Published February 2014.

What We Talk About When We Talk About Sobriety

An oldtimer looks back on the things that were said to him in his early days

It is often said that the essential experience in Alcoholics Anonymous is simply one alcoholic talking to another about their common problem. In the process, a message of recovery is transmitted that transforms lives.

I know that my own recovery occurred that way. In my case, the result was that I "came to believe" not in God but simply in the belief that I really could lead a clean and sober life.

That belief was inspired by recovered alcoholics I met in my first few days of sobriety. They looked right at me, with the unmistakable demeanor of people who are telling the...

-- Russ H.

Pleasant Hill, California

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