From the September 2017 magazine.

Out of the woods

It took him a while, but he finally found the fellowship he was craving under the trees

I was 24 years old—young by any measure—when I finally got sober after a couple of tries. Thanks to a Higher Power, I fell in almost immediately with a group of men in their 30s, who carried me through those days of early sobriety. I was occasionally asked why I didn’t attend young people’s meetings. “I feel a lot older than 24,” was my honest response. At that point it really didn’t matter how old I was: I was sick and suffering and needed the solution AA offered.

Occasionally I would attend a Friday night young people’s meeting—one of the few in the area. It was the mid-90s, and there seemed to be a three tattoo minimum to get in. Needless to say, as an excruciatingly shy person with a more preppy than punk aesthetic, I didn’t feel terribly comfortable around my peers, and after a few more attempts to join in, I stayed completely away from young people’s meetings for the rest of my 20s.

-- Christopher D.

Harrison, New Jersey

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