From the February 2011 magazine.

February 2011: Becoming Whole

He had a "hell of a time" integrating his sexuality and his spiritual beliefs.

I really thought I was unique and different when I came into AA. I was just about to come out as a gay man when I got sober in 1982. Getting sober was the easy part of being a recovering alcoholic in the AA program. I was very conflicted and had one hell of a time integrating my sexuality and my spiritual beliefs, to the point of feeling torn apart. I was riddled with fear and insecurity. I drank so I didn’t have to feel pain and loneliness all the time. Drinking was my way of escaping from the reality of my life.

Being a gay man in AA has been a blessing in disguise for me. I’ve learned to love other people unconditionally, and I’ve come to a level of love and acceptance of myself that would not have been possible had I not found the program. I’ve gotten over my terminal uniqueness. Whatever your sexual orientation, recovery is still recovery. I’ve become a whole, integrated, healthy person thanks to AA. After 28 years in recovery, I’m finding out that it still takes what it takes to maintain a happy, sober life. I still go to any lengths to help myself and others who reach out. I’ve come to believe in a power greater than myself. God is doing for me what I could not do for myself.

-- David H.

Missoula, Montana

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