From the January 2017 magazine.

My new social network

With the help of AA friends, a newcomer makes a healthy transition to a safer, more sober way to connect

Four years ago, early in my sobriety, I was sitting at my computer and decided to check in on my social networking page. I decided to reread some of the old posts I’d written during my drinking escapades. Reading my old posts, as well some recent ones, put me on an emotional rollercoaster. It was difficult to read about what my family and friends were doing when I was struggling with my drinking.

One of my biggest challenges as a newly sober AA was managing my ever-changing sentiments. Going back and looking at those posts and photos made me feel horrible, yet I felt compelled to constantly check them. It made me feel upset and ashamed. In addition, reading about what everybody else was doing now put me in a bad place. I certainly didn’t want anyone to know my current state of affairs. My biggest fear was that my so-called friends would pass judgment on me.

-- Nils S.

Princeton, New Jersey, USA

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