Soar with the eagles. I came to AA to save my rear end, not my face. AA has given me the freedom to do anything I want to do, be anything I want to be as long as I'm willing to pay the price -- give it all to God! In the eleventh step, I give my life to God on a daily basis and try to find ways to be of love and service to my fellows. I haven't been let down yet! If the price of trying to soar like an eagle is the possibility of looking like a turkey, then I'm willing to do that. (Anyone who thinks that's bad, has never been on a turkey hunt.) I have come to believe that God works through me and you and all of AA for our higher good, always. There are no mistakes.
I just read the article why so rigid in jan.grapevine.Interesting article,i agree but disagree with the author.I have been sober 20 years and really feel as tho there are not ENOUGH musts in the program today.I have had the same sponsor for 20 years and we have a good relationship.When i came in he was hard on me as where all the oldtimers.this is the point that this will be taken down off here because i know we have no opinions on outside issues.I am familiar with the traditions.Our success rate is at an all time low.Groups like celebrate recovery and rational recovery and smart groups have more attendance and better success rates the we do in a.a Why are there so many people leaving a.a to go to these groups?I believe it is because we do not have enough musts and we can not do the things we did 20 or 30 years ago in a.a too much of the world and its views have seeped into a.a.We are not able to carry the true real message that Bill and Bob carried because we cant hurt peoples feelings.My feelings where hurt alot the first 10 years i was sober.I was taught to grow up and look at my stuff and work the steps and change and get better,Too many people today want an easier softer way so they do not want to here truth and talk about God and accept themselves and grow so the run away to these other groups.I actually have not picked up a grapevine for a long time because I do not believe it is any longer what Bill envisioned it to be.I will leave it at that for now,i am curious to here what people think.
We have brought back the big book and all the musts and directions to our AA group. The results are incredible. Alcoholics are coming and staying sober by practicing the 12 steps as outlined in the big book. the nonalcoholics no longer attend our group. they felt different as they should. Thank God for the other 200 12 step groups out there where these nonalcoholics can identify and recover.
Our groups meetings are of course smaller for now, but they are actual AA meetings and no longer group therapy for every problem. Alcoholics who could not stay sober in the discusion groups or meetings are getting sober in our big book group.
Can you believe it? An AA group of Alcoholics, chaired by alcoholics, participated in by alcoholics,using the book Alcoholics Anonymous, and 12th stepped by alcoholics!
It's great to practice our primary purpose so hopless alcoholics can find life.
i totally agree that it would me great if there was more emphasis on the musts in the big book. it says in how it works, if youwant what we have you will DO what we DID!
all the feely, touchy messages that have been slowly invading a.a. for many years now has watered down the message of the program.
i am considered an "old timer" and when i was getting sober
the "old Timers" told me to take the cotton out of my ears and put it into my mouth. my sponser told me she wasnt there to be my friend, but to help save my life.
dont drink, go to meetings and do (and live) the steps.
it has become increaseingly difficult to find meetings where i can hear the message and not how peoples feelings got hurt.
i understand how oldtimers look to start meetings with sobriety of 20 years and more.
however, i willnot let the disease of alcohol in and will continue to seek out people with the same meesage i was taught,,alot of musts.
I have 27 years sobriety and I truly think that taking the cotton out of my ears and putting it in my mouth as I was told to do by the then old timers is one of the reasons I'm alive today. Over the past 3 decades I've watch to many people die from this disease and their death weren't without great pain and anguish. Therefore I've come to believe that firmness and strict discipline are totally necessary for continued sobriety. We cannot soften the affects of active alcoholism, so what make some think that we should not use firmness with new comers and those who are struggling to help them in saving their own lives.
I want to just give a shout out to all of us old timers. I consider old timers having 20 or more years of sobriety. It is not always easy to stay sober after so many years. What really works for me is to have a sponsor, go to meetings and doing service. It works best for me. Magdalena here with over 29 years of sobriety. Sobriety birthday January 1, 1984 from San Francisco
Hi Magdalena, George here, just celeberated 36 yrs. (2-12-77 @ 7AM). We must have the same sponsor. I was taught with the old basics and stick to them, real simpel and it works. How Lucky Are We !!!!--God has a greatplan, all I have to do is ask for it every day. Not my plan but Gods plan. I try to live a life that will show respect for the program of AA. and will make god smile. It frightenes me when I hear people share--this is how I work "my" program---scary, scary, me,me,me!!How lucky are we to be guided by the steps & principals of the AA Felowship and not by ---"me".
Chillen in Costa Rica
I'm long sober and want you to know I love and appreciate deeply...this forum...Daily Grapevine quote pages remarks.
It's like a meeting that lasts as long as I want and am ready to sit through.
I find it strongly thought provoking.I am truly fond of it and hope it will go on for as long as I'm around.
c.k. Me. ( :\\~*
When I came into the program I had help from people who didn't judge me. They taught me the steps and the traditions. I was allowed to come to their meetings and share my story. I was even allowed to asked someone
at their meetings to be my sponsor. We worked the steps together the ones that needed more person to them. I had been in the program before but never had someone care enough to work the program with me. Eventually we both knew it was time for me to go be with of my peers. The (GLBT)
This small quote speaks volumes to me. I had given up hope of ever living a "Normal" life. Alcohol had taken away not only my hope, but also my very will to live. Thanks to the program of AA, my sponsor and my higher power, I now have almost 6 months of sobriety, living one day at a time. I not only have "Hope" again, I can see in myself and those around me the positive aspects of life itself. --David B. (St. Louis, Missouri)
I am having a very hard time. My Drinking has left me isolated and very sad. I am starting to reach out a nd read daily. Thank you
1st of all if your not drinking,your miles ahead of where you've been...get to a meeting ...get involved , speak up, let them know what's going on...before long the laughter will return to your life...when I got here I was so depressed, I just knew I'd never have fun again....wow, was I wrong...so many friends and so much to do...all,in a sober life style...I pray for you and wish you well....
Regardless how hard the times are in sobriety it is easier than being drunk.----I heard that 36 years ago and it is still true today. Hang in there and fight for your self, you are worth it. Keep AA in one hand and God in the other and you can make it. Please dont leave before the "merical" happens. I have seen it happen time and time again. It will work for you if you are willing to fight for it.
You broke the ice!You already have two elements in your program:reading and writing @ the Grapevine.DO NOT BE DISCOURAGED.Keep building your program-maybe to include meetings,the BigBook(p.86 Daily),a sponsor.These are only suggestions,but we all build our programs from suggestions.We put them into actions such as you have already taken,then we share them with others-that'sAA.Welcome aboard!
Hi i,am Freddy alcoholic.
I have a question I am 3 years sober now and still running away from it because the past whas real tuff but I also no that doing it will make me a better person.
Anyone can help me with a idea.
Hay Freddy alcololic, George alcoholic here.
My 4th step was the most dificult to accomplish. Its all due to-- Fear-Fear-Fear.
Took me 5 years to get started on it then I toutoured myself for another 18 mos. Although I heard it thousands of times in meetings that what I had done was "the worst" the truth is someone has done what I did before me many many times, I did not invent the evil in me there were many just like me and worse however I did need the 4th & 5th to chase the evil out of me. When I completed 4 & 5 in the same weekend there was a tremdious relief and a GIANT LOAD off my sholders. I also felt very much more part of AA, I had accomplished it!!!
If someone else did to me what I did to my self I would have them arrested. In the past I would shoot them or throw gasoline on them and light them of fire or throw acid in there face. (see the change)
Keep God and AA with you and you can accomplish your 4th and all the other steps and get ready for a sober life that will take you to places never imagined.
Sober and chillen in Costa Rica
Have you worked all the steps with a sponsor? If so, did you complete a thorough 4, 5 and 6th step? I am re-working the steps again. I hope this helps. Jan
I'm Robbie. I'm an alcoholic and drug addict. My sobriety date is 5/22/1981. Sorry for the long post, but Freddy asked for help.
Dearest Freddy, I know from experience it's possible to stay clean and sober in spite of unknowingly continuing to run from the past. Some things in my own past stayed hidden in my brain for a long time. One of note didn't finally reveal itself until I was 18 years clean, fairly serene, and absolutely sober! So it was not my conscious running.
But The way I found out was that when I shared at a meeting about it (I thought I'd dealt with it in a 4th and 5th step) a dear friend unknowingly got me upset after the meeting by joking with me about that part of my chair. I had to then take the 4th (aka the 10th when practicing the maintenance steps: 10, 11, & 12) on my resentment against him. For a time I was in denial he had really sparked a resentment, I thought he was just "being childish". He honestly didn't know he was being hurtful. I finally forgave him, and was able to get back to being fairy serene and happy. That's one reason we take the steps, right? Also to be SOBER, "happy, joyous, and FREE". Notice I capitalized SOBER? The book tells us if we skip over this step (any of them really, but specifically the 4th step) then we WILL GET DRUNK! It's true! I've witnessed it happen in AA firsthand. I thank God for my sobriety in spite of my inability to be totally "fearless and thorough" all the time. We do the best we can, one day at a time, and don't pickup the 1st one!
So why needlessley torture yourself with your past? You appear to want sobriety, and if you don't take especially the 4th step, you will very likely GET DRUNK! Don't do that! Pray to your HP for the willingness to do it. REVIEW your 3rd step. Did you not turn your "will and your life over to the care of" your own HP? I'll finish by saying: if you don't have a SPONSOR you can talk to about the steps and issues in your past (and present life) then GET ONE and USE YOUR SPONSOR. We don't have to do this alone, and if you haven't done the steps,.the guidance a sponsor provides is invaluable. Above all, the one on one contact with a human being will always be more effective (and actually easier) than trying to do it online. The 4th &5th step content will want to, and should be, kept private. No one has to know what you write in your 4th step. Hide it, gaurd it, that's OK. The 5th step is another separate step. You do it after 4. Then IF directions are followed ( the 5th taken a person who can hold a confidence) it will never be public if you don't tell it yourself. One day you might! To help someone else! Take care. Call your sponsor. Go to a meeting. Read the Big Book. And above all: don't drink, NO MATTER what happens! I'm praying for you Freddy.
Well I know for sure the answer for you and many others in a like position.I have witnessed it and cried and got depressed & felt desperate & panicy with others over it in A.A. for 45 years. Very easy, one day at a time.
Well this is "IT".
#1. Give to your still abusing loved person/people,your own personal living example of pretty-happy,stable, drug free living. That's #1..
#2. It doesn't help anybody much by offering loving or angry,"anti-using",lectures or attempting to manipulate with "If you loved me" speeches & tactics & statictics. These offerings can barely break through a users mind.They are generally stalemates and moot.
Users are not stupid or bad people. Pill,drug,alcohol,abusers, are not usually amoral nor of a low I-Q.
Users are people running blind on instincts even unknown to themselves! They are living with the irretractable inborn hidden powerful addict genes.
Our/your/,loving,well intended charity such as "helping" them with even a little money,or a warm place to crash,or transportation etc.kills them even quicker.
Definitely quicker.Begin to stop it today.
If you want to help a seeming "alchie" in your family and your "in" A.A. already; success increases when you treat them just like you treat newcomers entering the program.
Know. We are not our illness!
This is not a dress rehersal. Yesterday and tomorrow are but dreamed puffs of fog only...
c.k. One of them. Now responsible for my own sober living. Me.
There is not a lot you can do for you parents and brother only try and have a chat with them and leave a big book in their house and they might decide for themselves
my parents & my brother are drunks but they deny they are one so what can I do
I understand why you would want to help your parents and brother, but that is an HP job.
I came home after 2 years of sobriety to help my parents, as they both were diagnosed with Cancer. I arrived to my childhood home and realized how sick my family was.(very helpful in understanding my disease, and realize how much work I still had to do) It broke my heart to see my dad stuck in his denial, and my mom enabling him. I wanted so much for them to see how great my life had become because of sobriety.
The reality is all I could do was not act the same way I use to and be an example of what sobriety looked like, even in the mist of death, hospice and sadness. My father actually blew pot smoke in my face when I was telling him I was celebrating my 3 years of sobriety. To say the least I wished that they would have found sobriety and the freedom that comes with it...but they both died this year.
I guess this long story is to say the only thing you can do is...have some acceptance, live your program, and give them to God/HP. I know its hard and they don't understand, but deep in side they are proud of you and wished they could have what you have. Fear is a strong foe.
Good luck, and let the serenity prayer be your guide when your around them.
I have been sober 2 weeks due to AA. You have to love them and not judge then. For me I thank GOD for AA. The happiest I have been in years, but 1 day at a time for me. Go to meetings 7 days a week to keep me strong.
Maybe leave a big book lying around and they might decide for themselves if they have a problem
It's true. A lot of my "indexes of maladjustments" are not always removed but they're converted to assets, if I'm willing to let go of them! Robbie R. ECF
The 12 Steps can be described as a way of life.So can the Drill:Don't Drink,Go to Meetings,Read the Big Book,Say your Prayers(or Meditate),Talk to your Sponsor(or another Alcoholic).But honestly,they are principally a means toward an end.If they are not about not drinking,then I've been in the wrong place for the past 20 years.
Amen re toda's Grapevine quote! We often forget that the 12 steps are not the aim of AA. The aim, called "AA as such" in Tradition Nine short form, is to carry the message. Bill says so one way or the other 62 times in the first 164 pp of the BB, which is where the program part of AA is. Too often nowadays we hear something like, " I came in, put the plug in the jug, was taken through the Steps by my sponsor, and now I'm just so very happy." Bill and Dr. Bob did not have the 12 steps and yet they were able to stay sober. When we compare AA in its unadulterated form, the form that got 75% sober at the writing of the second edition and the form that gets 80% sober and teaches them to retain it with the Wasingtonians, then it is clear: it is identification and letting go of ego (anonymity). terminal uniqueness (my case is different and therefore what you in AA do won't work for me), and the obsession with self satisfaction (getting credfit, being a better speaker, being a BB or 12 Step Thumper and on and on) thal is the door to sobriety. And then as we work with our AA fellows in a group (not just a meeting) to provide service with love, we graduallly experience a spirtual awakening within reality that replaces the chemical delusions in fantasy that alcohol gave us.
The 12 Steps help us be able to achieve that, they are means to an end, not an end in themselves. And they don't care how you work them or why: they work if you work them.
I thought you might like to read the rest of the article:
ATHEISTIC, arrogant, egotistical and intolerant as I was, and further, armed with a few years certain knowledge of the fact that I am an alcoholic, made my surrender, after a practical --drunken --raging --drunken --cunning --drunken --methodical --drunken --hopeless battle with alcohol, all the more totally abject.
Totally and abjectly surrendering to the fact that I was powerless over alcohol and that the persistent and stubborn belief that I--I--I did have, had brought my life to a state of unmanageable chaos, I came to believe, thru the testimony of those happy and contented people who told me of "the way," that there existed a power that could relieve me of this senseless urge to destruction. The fact that, to me, this power was ethereal in that I could neither feel, taste, hear, smell nor see it, meant nothing, in the light of the mass of concrete and irrefutable evidence, but further proof of inadequacy in me. Therefore, humbly, if regretfully, accepting the truth of this inadequacy, I decided to find, by conscientious adherence to the directives of those who were living proof of the benevolent potency of this power, a means of knowing His nebular quality, I would follow His dictates with the hope of eventual understanding of and communion with Him.
Impasse! To this point, humbly accepting facts, I had come with dawning hope and eagerness. Now after a keyed-up, fervent and conscientious execution of the directives, I was, in all honesty, not a bit nearer to a conception of this power's will for me. Desperate queries brought only calm admonishment to "take it easy" and "it will come."
Very well, a calm and thoughtful recapitulation of the directives was in order. Point by point I checked them until I came to one that I had missed its full significance. "Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps. . ." If I was to continue my reasoning on the premise that these folks were right, and the proof was still as evident as ever that they were, then the key was in these Twelve Steps.
Reason--I was told by some that reasoning could be of no use in the search. This called for an analysis of the righteousness of this power. First, last, and eternally, this power would be just. Having endowed man, above all living things, with the power to reason, any debate us to its efficacy would be pointless. Justice--it became self-evident that any human being born into this world with the power to reason, regardless of mental range and capacity, would have equal and inherent faculties for the recognition of the will and desires of this power. Therefore this faculty had to be of a simplicity that would be part of everyday life regardless of locality, race or color. I realized that my unconscious assumption that I was looking for something alien to my life could have caused me to look too high and too far away.
A new start was made on the directives, this one to be exhaustively thorough. "A searching and fearless moral inventory." Exhaustively thorough--the thought struck me, "I have been wrong in so many things maybe I don't know right from wrong." Surprise! I found that the instinctive supposition that we are taught what is right and wrong is erroneous. We are taught, if we are lucky, the advantages of doing right, or the disadvantages of doing wrong. A component part of every human being is an inherent and abiding sense of right and wrong. This sense was the root and cause of law which in its intricate ramifications today is no more than a means to force all to do unto others as you would like them to do unto you. To those that triumphantly cry "the Ten Commandments"--Justice--countless humans neither read nor write and thru no fault of their own, live and die with no slightest knowledge of the Bible. Further--strict adherence to this one rule makes nine of the commandments superfluous and non-essential.
What pulled the trigger on a deed and branded it right or wrong? An analysis of the deeds on the wrong side of the ledger in our inventory revealed that only the flouting of this basic law caused that feeling called hurt conscience. Simple and logical--if a harm to a fellow man causes a disagreeable reaction, it certainly implies negation, so inversely a good to a fellow man causes an agreeable reaction hence positive. Here was a law of cause and effect common to all. Finally I had a definite "yes" and "no." Now to bring this conscience out of depths from where it had been shoved every time that it had raised its head. This is, to me, the sounding board of the power. I realized that all consultations with my conscience would be an open book to His omniscient eye--that the cunning contrivances of my mind would gain only what they merited--that the sincerity and honesty with which I interpreted His will and carried it out would be the measure of the benefits that I would receive.
Many months had elapsed in arriving at these simple conclusions. One day I caught myself feeling pity for a man whom I had, in the past, despised with virulent hatred despite all efforts to the contrary. Gradually, with quiet and thankful wonder I realized that I had been experiencing a spiritual awakening for many months, in fact from the time that I had called for help that dark and dismal night.
It was then that I realized fully that the Twelve Steps are not steps to take progressively in order to arrive at a conclusion, but a code for living--the constitution of a way of life.
Three years have passed. Three years of growth--growth in the capacity for growth. The calm certainty that if I live today by these precepts I need have no fear for tomorrow.
Peace--Freedom from fear--Freedom from want--Contentment. Gosh! Ain't Life Wonderful!!!
Good message. I would have ended it this way: And they
don't care how you work them or why: Rarely have we seen
them fail. (We ought to offer them without adding conditions). ANONYMOUS
If only it were true, that we have no need for rules and regs... Too many are coming into play for my group right now and it's not helpful to me.
It takes 2 to have a meeting and 3 to make a group.
You and big book
Reading this quote, the Words of an old standard popular hymn flooded right to my mind !
"I once was lost....but now I'm found; Was blind but now I see!"
Was Lost and Blind.. AND NOW I SEE"
Like this Londoner, My Instinctive denial kept me blind to my life of active alcoholism.And like Him;
I have found calm, cool,, responsible 12th step sober living; has all my immature, nuts living beat to heck !
2/1/13 c.k. Me.
I am alcoholic and I don´t know why. Now it isn´t important for me, it doesn´t my reality.
Find and listen to Clancy I talk about Alcoholism: A Disease of Perception. Try to identify with the feelings regardless of the situations and events in his story.
And you will know why.
It doesn't matter. Understanding is the booby prize. Robbie R.
I recently moved jobs because I was fed up with all the petty disfunction and unprofessionalism. I am in a job now with alot of oportunity to fullfilling the wish I've always had in my business. I find myself starting with about half the pay - this is hopefully only temporary until I become estabilished. Why do I want to go back where I was miserable?
Good for you gut feeling is best the higher power will not give you more than you can handle
First things first. Try the 4th and 5th steps. And think of work as an opportunity to do what it tells us on p. 77 of the BB: we get sober so that we can be spiritually fit to be of maximum service to the people around us.
I think that quote is the very essence of our one day at a time slogan. Yesterday is but a dream. Tomorrow is but a vision. Today is our reality.
Sobriety conceals what alcohol reveals!
After 25 years in AA every day only realize that is only by the grace of God that I can say today I'm recovered for that hopeless state of mind impossible to conquer with out His help all that I have is a daily reprieve
Yes excellent comment. Gormet food for thought ! I like it.
I came here in 68 or 69 it-still holds true.Thank you. C.K.
When I arrived Alcoholics Anonimous I wanted stop drink for a few month and handle my drink again. I wanted it for several months but I had to give this idea, because the experience showed me that it was faulse. I saw a lots of people to be a drank again because they thougt that they could handle their drink.
I had a parnet who protested because there were people who came to the group and out drank,he is drinking now and return to alcoholic carrie because he left the gruop and he thought that he could handle his drink. he forgot that he was alcoholic and he forgot that he never could handle his drink.
I had a parnet, who was a engineer, who thougt that he could handle his drink because he was diferent. He usually said that there was diferents kind of alcoholism and diferent grades os alcoholism because he didn´t want stop drink.
Here's a wise quote that I've heard in many AA meetings:
"Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die."
— Malachy McCourt, Irish-American writer and actor (b. 1931)
And; I have come to believe that Malachy heard this originally from Nelson Mandela, initial originator. And I'm also fond of;
"do you have to be an Irish Catholic to be an alcoholic?"
"No! But it helps"
And.another borrowed A.A. old used quote;
"the easiest way to a slip is holding onto a resentment"
AND one of my personal favorites "Yesterday's a cancelled check.Tomorrow's a promisory note.All I really have is today."
Last for now: ";KEEP IT SIMPLE". IS FROM THE REGULAR ORIGINAL SLOGANS THAT often Hang now and have hung on our walls since Bill W.Days. " Keep it simple" No more no less.
"Keep it simple."
(The "stupid" addition is sometimes added by "Fools like me".
"Stupid we alchies are not.
Is that what a conumdrum is?
Sincerely with love to us sober and not sober addicts.Colleen K.
A simple slogan, "Keep it Simple", became a bumper sticker,
"Keep it Simple Stupid", about thirty years ago.
A conumdrum is trying to convince today's A.A. membership
of mistakes (blunders) we have made while our membership
denies that anything is wrong. Most A.A. members think our
fellowship is "alive and well", "TWO MILLION STRONG."
We had two and a half million members twenty years ago.
We ought to have eight million members today. What has
happened? No excuses please, just reasons. The reasons are
posted on our forum over and over. Does anyone care enough
to even investigate? ANONYMOUS
The A.A. way of living can truly be a blessing. I must keep the addict at arms length and stay with the alkies
I tried to that but have been barred from attending for a 1 year period without given an explanation and when I tried to attend a meeting they closed the meeting within 10 minutes. No I was not drinking, but I was tired of having 1 man constantly pushing me around in the rooms. The group decided to get rid of me.
Horse feathers !
Commedian isn't the only carreer choice.
That experience is called a hallucination fellow user.
I love you.Off the sauce Colleen K. Maine