Burning Desire to Share

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smell free meeting?

Rather then attack others we must admit we are powerless. No way no how is everyone going to stop using hair tonic and after shave or smelly perfume. Please don't even mention the smelly coffee lately which iterates me.. Starting a smell free meeting is the only real answer. You just can't control people.... I've learned. I might even try the smell free meeting but it would be difficult.

RE: smell free meeting

Dear Neil V.S. If the perfume or after shave is making
another AA member uncomfortable, to the point where that
member could possibly stop coming to meetings, would
you come to meetings smell free? Personally I would.
I think we all should be considerate of everyone else
and love them enough to care for them. Note: I do not
use any aftershave. Most of those products contain alcohol
and I don't want that poison on my skin. ANONYMOUS


Yes I would consider going smell free but I guess my real point is it is easier to start a smell free meeting then to change a couple million alcoholics. We are powerless after all. No smell on my clothes from dryer sheets, no hair tonic, no after shave and I noticed lately some very strong smelling coffee at meeting. Really bad.

Joined: 2013-09-05
Re: smell

"Yes I would consider going smell free but I guess my real point is it is easier to start a smell free meeting then to change a couple million alcoholics."
since 1935 AA has changed more than 'a couple million' alcoholics.
It may be easy to start a smell free, or any other type meeting, in those localities with large numbers of sober alcoholics. But contrary to popular belief, there are many who don't have that luxury. Example: A friend lives in a large city with three meetings per week, all smoking meetings. She has resperatory problems and can't tolerate smoke so she can't atend those meetings. She started a non-smoking meeting which soon closed due to lack of willing alcoholics to give up their tobacco for an hour.
So I repeat, "Selfishness - self-centeredness! That, we think, is the root of our troubles."

Smoke Free Meetings

Dear noduis, Every meeting I attended in the seventies
and eighties were smoking meetings. I would leave my
clothes in the garage when I arrived home. It seemed that
I was the only non smoker in A.A. After developing a second
hand smoker's cough, around 1990, I started a non smoking
meeting. It was a small meeting with less than a dozen
each week. I found it ironic that most of them were
smokers. They just smoked outside the building.
Our state of Connecticut finally passed smoking
restrictions, and all of our regular A.A. meetings became
smoke free.
If your friend lives near you, I would ask you to
please consider helping her to re-start the meeting or
help start another smoke free meeting. Would it not be
wonderful if Alcoholics Anonymous could become
the altruistic society it was designed to be? Bob H. Seymour, Ct.

memmorys of the smoking meetings

I remember some of the things we tried, half room smoking other non smoking breaks and I must admit even saying people wont come if we stop smoking years later AA still alive and well!

RE: smell the coffee.

I have always felt that AA coffee is the best in the world.
I describe it as a "quality never before tasted". ANONYMOUS
I would like to see AA return to being an altruistic
society, where we were more concerned about our fellows
than about ourselves.

Know It All or Just Me?

Hello I am fairly New to the program and recently there are some folks that have been in the program longer than myself(6mos) this Month. Every meeting I go to this 1 person seems to be saying the same things about thehigher up Ppl and conventions and Granted I think the conventions are Great idea. But is it necessary to mention gsr's and meetings closing and all it takes is 9 dollars a year from every single person to support our Groups? I know this is a program about sobriety, and there are no dues or fees. I am unemployed and have been for the past year or so and I kind of feel like this is a stab towards myself. I attempt to say hello to this person and get no response. I help out whenever I can and I share in the meetings. Sometimes I have to bite my tongue and not say anything in the meeting because it really gets to me sometimes.I clean up every meeting and I feel that this is my contribution to the facility and the group. Any Thoughts?



One of the greatest things I learned from the meetings is to not take things personally. Right or wrong, that person is sharing for them self. When I take myself out of it, I am able to hear what they (really) say and it might make sense. I try to get something out of every share - perhaps if you look for something positive this person wont upset you so much :-) I have grown to love people who at first really drove me crazy!!

Joined: 2013-01-08
Know it All

I once spoke with a newcomer who had hit the bars nearly every evening after work. She was avoiding AA meetings because there were a couple of people who talked too much and said the same thing at every meeting. Having spent a bit of time in bars, I asked if everyone she encountered in the bars was pleasant and glib and a joy to be around. Of course not.

AA is full of personalities. Some we like and resonate with and others we don't. It helps if I focus on what's good about a meeting, what I get out of it and what I can add to it.

RE: Know it All

That is the result of sharing by "show of hands". Thirty
members can share in an AA meeting using what I have heard
called "Round Robin". When we ask "anyone got a burning
desire?", the talkers will talk and talk. Simply go around
the room. Advice from a real "Know It All".

know it alls

I found out that the Higher Power isn't going to fix all the jerks so that I will be comfortable. Bummer..that would have made things so easy!
I have to be available to HP to be fixed and protected from drinking. The prayers on the top of page 67, and on page 552 do work in dealing with my lack of tolerance of other people's habits. They change my own energy. Also I have to be humble enough to sincerely receive the answers about what I am supposed to do in any situation. Sometimes I am not particularly grateful for the answers until after I do the footwork.

All you can do is keep your

All you can do is keep your side of the street clean. Just remember that we all have so many character defects and his may just be showing thorough. You are doing a lot to help and contribute. It doesn't have to be just money which your not able to right now and that's ok. Know that you are doing your part. Hope this helps.

Joined: 2014-02-04

is this your home group? you need to find a place that is willing to listen and has that great after meeting. You can stay or go. if you decide to stay then turn it over to the god of your understanding and keep up with the service. Someone will come into your life. just don't drink and go to meetings. good things will happen, if you turn it over and let it go. This is a great vehicle to meet people. Take care, Karin


AA's membership represents a cross-section of personality types, and thus our membership includes folks who are holier than thou. The "12 Steps and 12 Traditions" describes some manifestations of those who have been around a while, including the "bleeding deacons." I try to keep in mind that whoever got up earliest this morning has been sober the longest. However, I have found meetings frequented by those on whom the steps have imparted a little humility, a lot of gratitude, and a lot of tolerance - may you find such meetings yourself. The meeting I first walked into had monitors that would typically say as they passed the basket, "Throw a buck in if you have one; if you don't, keep coming back and someday you will." That was just a small part of the hope they gave me.


Read “Tradition accountability” posted in Traditions on this site. Excellent information.
Nobody in AA is bigger than that sign on the wall which tells us among other things:
Tradition 3 “The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking.”
So is there a requirement for paying dues? No.
Are you a member if you say you are and have a desire to stop drinking? Yes.
Is your GSR required to be recovered, friendly, well, polite or even sane? No. In fact, if you think about it, all of us are here because of our shortcomings not our assets. Aren’t we? “Yeah, but he should…” just like frogs should have wings so they don’ bump their little butts on the ground but they don’t. If we admit that we can’t manage our own lives we sure can’t manage his. If we take his viewpoint for a minute it is easy to see a room full of people who have been spending thousands every year to stay drunk that have it but won’t spend a few bucks to get what they need to stay sober. In general, that’s true. If he can’t see the occasional exception them he’s got a problem. Leave it with him. He could be mad because he used to have hair like yours before he went bald. How are your mind reading skills in the rest of your life?

Maybe when you get to your fourth step, and hopefully soon, you will take a look at being oversensitive. You are willing to hurt yourself with a growing resentment because you think someone has unrealistic expectations for you. We are told on no uncertain terms that’s something we can’t afford.

Birth of Alcoholics Anonymous

June 10, 1935 is considered the birth date for A.A. That was the day of Dr. Bob's last drink.
Personally, I would consider that AA was born in mid December 1934. That is when God relieved
Bill W. of the compulsion/obsession to drink. That was THE gift. God instilled the belief in
Bill that this Gift could be carried to other alcoholic sufferers. After nearly six months of
what Bill called violent exertion and repeated failures, a method was found which became the
accepted method of transferring that message of recovery to others. That method is described
in detail on Page 70 in the Brief History of AA, Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age. In weakness
and with humility, a successful method of carrying the message was discovered. The idea for
that successful method/technique came from A.A.'s great, friend Dr. William Silkworth. Bill several
times, simply called it the "cart before the horse idea". Bill W. wrote that without that IDEA,
A.A. could not have been born. Today we have the cart in front of the horse. We stumble along,
moving at a stagnant pace, all the while holding in our hands the solution to sobriety for
the suffering multitudes. ANONYMOUS

Find the horse

I’m sure that most of us have encountered someone who had or perhaps thought they had a charismatic experience that changed their life. Sinner to saint overnight. If not personally then we’ve seen fringe religious venues filled with them. If we are in a good frame of mind we try to be kindly tolerant. If not in a good mood that day they can quickly pull the worst out of us. They don’t give up easily. Nothing could be more real to them; what it was like, what happened and what its like now. We in AA don’t have an exclusive on that triad, it’s being repeated in storefront churches, missions and mega churches in finest suburbs every day. The single charismatic experience is completely out of proportion to any mundane, problem solving plodding that they might have done. Anything except THE BIG THING is forgotten. The logic of their outreach isn’t particularly faulty. You were alike; they asked and THE BIG THING happened to them, it can happen to you if you simply ask for it.

Someone with some education in the subject and some professional distance can see the rest of the story, so to speak. All of the unlearned lessons from all the misbehavior were really learned. Denied, buried, but still there. All of the unconnected pieces of all the attempted solutions were there. Somehow the missing pieces were added that tied all of the solution together. BANG. THE BIG THING.

That was Bill Wilson in 1935 in Townes hospital. The White Light. Bill wanted everyone who had suffered as he had to have it. He tried his best to give them the formula “Just ask God free you from the alcoholic obsession!” For six months he failed dismally. Enter Dr William Silkworth. Knowing the psychology, knowing Bill’s history, detox, Silkworth’s beating into him the hopelessness and disease concept; he knew many of the pieces of the puzzle behind Bill’s spiritual experience and Bill’s follow-up work in the Oxford Group keeping him sober. He saw Bill desperately telling drunks “Just ask, like I did.”

Silkworth told him in effect “Bill, God’s intervention was the cart that carries you. Everything else was the horse that pulled it. If you are going to help alcoholics, help them find the horse.”

And that boys and girls is the Doctor Silkworth’s story of the cart before the horse.

Just one thing

There seems to be an abundance of posters with a "just one thing" solution for alcoholism that is AA's message.

"Just don't pick up that first drink."
"Just throw out reading How it Works"
"Just listen to what Dr. Silkwoth said.."

Oops, is that going to fix “our liquor was but a symptom”

or "They are restless, irritable and discontented.." So all you have to do is walk around feeling like that for the rest of your life.

or how about a quote from the all-knowing Dr. Silkworth, "We physicians have realized for a long time that some form of moral psychology was of urgent importance to alcoholics..."
Raise your hand if you like that one true message.

RE: Just one thing

I had to smile when I read this one. "just one thing" is
being criticized, and then the "one true message" is offered. My hand is down. ANONYMOUS

Joined: 2014-01-11
64 days sober and feeling pretty confused.

I am having emotional issues, stressed about my job and just plain feeling unhappy. I know Not drinking or smoking pot is the way to handle this, but obviously I am not used to handling my emotions without it as it was the way I handled things before and wish I could get out of the funk. My head is really messing with me.

64 days

All I can share with you is I understand and it will get better. My emotions were all over the place and I didn't know how to handle them. Talking about it and realizing this is what happens to recovering addicts will help. You are not alone!
You can come out on the other side a stronger person. I've learned to accept my occasional emotional roller coaster as just a part of living in this world. I've learned that non AA people have issues also, I just feel lucky I've learned how to talk about what's going on with me and finding solutions. Meetings right now are so important for you. I talk at every meeting I go to, even if it is just to say... My name is Lisa and I'm happy to be sober. I do that because if I'm ever really in a bad place, I know where to go and am comfortable talking about it in a room with people who know my story and care. Good luck ;)

Have you gotten a sponsor??

Have you gotten a sponsor??

64+ days

In Bill's Story, he says when all else failed, work with another alcoholic would save him from his depression and despair. It was similar for me: I found that attending meetings got my mind off my own pain (real or perceived), as did doing whatever service work I could. Basically, the more I immersed myself in AA, the less time I spent inside my head. Over time, things got better, or even when it didn't, at least my ability to handle things sober did. Still working on living in the present moment as opposed to inside my head, still working on handling those emotions stark raving sober, but everyday it gets just a little bit better.

when I'm 64

The feelings that you are experiencing are perfectly (although painfully) normal for an alcoholic trying to live without alcohol.

"They are restless, irritable and discontented, unless they can again experience the sense of ease and comfort which comes at once by taking a few drinks -- drinks which they see others taking with impunity."
The Doctor's Opinion, Alcoholics Anonymous

The solution, as well as the problem is also outlined. A hint, it is not "just go to meetings and don't drink in between".

Joined: 2014-01-11
64 days

Thank you

64days sober

Don't worry that is a good place to be getting into touch with your higher power. Read the big book, talk to a sober friend of Bill & Bob's, go to a meeting or have a cup of coffee,tea,pepsi or a chocolate icecream. The best thing I know is that getting out of self is the only way it works for me. Most the time I am hurting or upset or just feeling a lot of anxiety I have to focus on the aa stories or page449 I guess that has changed in the new version I think it is on 417. However this page of the big book talks about acceptance, there are times when I do not want to accept things in my life that I feel I should have "done something more or different with my life" or go into the "If only's";2 main things I need to remember is; 1)- I am just where god wants me to be.(even if I cant see why.)
2nd)-Past is unchangeable and tomorrow never comes, so I must focus on my today or this hour or this sec or minute at a time to get through to another 24 hours. Believe me it is not easy but it can be done and I have 14 years of sobriety and I need to write this out even for me tonight. I have had a lot of "life on lifes terms" as of late and all I want to do is crawl away and just fade in the "background" and I want some magical wand or something to make me "feel" better, Well sometimes the only thing that will make me feel better is changing me,either my attitude or take a shower or a long bath.read a book get out of myself. I want to thank-you for helping me to stay sober tonight also.

Joys of Sobriety

I don't know about anyone else but I love being sober. There is so much joy in my life. Thanks to AA the glass is half-full and I experience the sunny side of recovery everyday. For several years I was stuck in the darkness but, I can see the light everywhere in life. I used to be attracted to the negative forces in the rooms. Today, I focus of the goodness. People would say "Stick around until you feel the love!" But I never felt any love and I blamed AA. Then I realized AA wasn't the problem, I was. I wasn't capable of feeling love because hate was my game. Today, I can see and feel the love in the rooms and that has given me a new lease on life. The biggest gift I think I received is not only the ability to feel love but, to love.

Joys of sobriety

I remember holding hands at the end of my first meeting and joining the group in prayer. The comfort and joy I felt coming to me through the hands of the two people on either side of me was so strong, so nourishing that I can feel it even now, eight years later.

RE: Joys of sobriety.

I am glad that the "holding hands and praying" at your
first meeting was a pleasant experience. If you had found
holding hands with strangers uncomfortable or even repulsive, you may not have returned, after that first
meeting. That is my concern. If members had not formed
a prayer circle and held hands, do you think you would
have returned? I believe you would have continued. Our
first tradition of unity has little to do with physical
contact with each other. I believe this ritual reeks of
religion and cultism. Of course this works for some. AA
has something much better to offer, which rarely fails.
I no longer "hold hands and pray". I simply stand
alone, as we did in the decade of the 1970s. Others are beginning to understand and have joined me. ANONYMOUS

better to give then take

It's all about finding a balance for me. When I was drinking everything got out of balance. I became like a black hole, take, take, take not even love could escape. Now with the program of AA I'm learning to give. To get that balance of give and take that healthy happy people have. Now I'm like a Sun shining out my loving light. It's so much better to give the take.

the wheels in my head are

the wheels in my head are spinnin so fast today Im waiting for smoke to start comein out of my ears. I am fresh back in the rooms for a little over a week now. I have no idea what to do with these overwhelming feelings that are being thrown at me on what seems to be a minute to minute basis. feeling very lonely, irritable, and definitely discontent.But I have a willingness to stick this out for the eventual outcome. how do I ease this mental suffering in the meantime until the obsession is removed?

the wheels in my head are

Hi - I've been sober for 36 years, and it does get better, but never perfect. Whenever my wheels start spinning again I've stopped doing what I know I should be doing, (plus that little extra to grow on). Please remember that this is a one-day-at-a-time program, and that's the only way it works. Do what you know you need to do, do it for yourself, and do it right here, right now, today. And then start all over again tomorrow. Do that for a week and I guarantee you will notice a difference.

the wheels in my head

Do you have a sponsor or even one person at the meeting with whom you can talk? It seems like you need a listening ear. Don't keep things in your head. Talk to your Higher Power. I wish you peace.

Re: Spinning wheels

Sounds like the Committee-is screaming for a drink. What I did (and still do) is to make my commitment to not picking up that 1st drink a live-or-die affair, go to every meeting I can and keep my ears and ears attentive for a power greater than myself in everything I experience. I stayed busy doing productive things, even if it was just working out, taking a walk, something to occupy my mind. The activity didn't have to be frenetic, just something that would engage my attention. Reading AA literature, talking on the phone to an AA friend, a little service doesn't hurt, the more peaceful, the better. That part of me that screams and yammers away at me is just fearful and trying to make sense of the abuse I put it through. Time does heal it. Stay busy in the meantime with your recovery (seek your HP first...) and the answer will follow.

reply the wheels in my head etc.

when i first came into the rooms i was full of negative thinking and had feelings of low self-esteem remorse doubt and the like. basically this is why i drank. i wanted to feel good. if i was to stop drinking i had to learn how to deal with these emotions. at first i took the slogans as many as i thought applied to me at that time, let go and let god, one day at a time, easy does it, etc. my best thinking brought me here and i learned to listen to learn and learn to listen and i heard how others dealt with their thinking and their solutions and i tried them see if they will work for me . i had to learn how to share my feelings, anger, sadness, despair, hopelessness, whatever was the emotion of the day and share it at a meeting or with a sponsor or an aa friend and listen to what they said. most of the time they said not to be hard on myself, to put down the bat and pick up a feather to stick with the winners, the one's that seem like they are working the program and not talking the program. i learned to sit still for a minute meditate let go of everything to my higher power. i started to learn tolove myself the way i was and be my own best friend. star

Joined: 2013-01-08

Early sobriety can be a complicated mess involving emotions, chemical changes,life changes, consequences, wreckage. The standard message of go to meetings, get and use a sponsor, read the book, work the steps, pray, be of service might be enough for now.

I eventually had to deal with the new reality of living in the world in a body without alcohol or other chemical relief.

I began to experience things that I didn't even have names for such as anxiety and depression. Being honest about these things with other recovering members helped me realize I was not alone and that there was a way out.

As my mind and body cleared up, I became more sensitive to things. I learned that there were consequences to diet, coffee intake, tobacco use, physical activity, lifestyle and such. Certain substances or activities could impact me in a positive or negative way. I had always been an athlete and found that physical activity took the edge off my anxiety and depression.

I began riding a bike to meetings and became known as "Bicycle Bill". I enjoyed the peace and serenity I felt pedalling to and from meetings.(eventually became bike racer and race promoter) I gave up the roller coaster ride of chewing tobacco and learned how much coffee and sugar I could handle. I discovered the things in life that lifted my spirits and gravitated towards those things (especially AA) and away from the things that took me down.

This is part of the joy and journey of sobriety. It is a journey towards freedom and serenity and away from restlessness, irritability and discontent.

Joined: 2013-05-23
the wheels in my head

I can sure relate to the wheels in the head thing. I had to follow the suggestions that were given at my first meeting. Get a BB, a sponsor, then follow his suggestions. It really does work, but it took a few days to stop the wheels from spinning.
Keep coming back to the meetings and listen for the similarities from others in the rooms.

Our devilish alcoholic personalities (book)

I just read this book and it more or less woke me up... Been sober for 21 months and the "I am sober balloon has basically crashed and burned". I am in a relationship (long story) but I find myself blaming this for all my negative feelings. After reading this book I am more aware of maybe I am using this is a good excuse to fall off the wagon. It worries me... I need to get back with the program and stop feeling sorry for myself. Honestly take some real time to thank God and do some honest praying daily. I could on and on but my sober life depends on me getting off my but and contributing to my own and AA's program. I do recommend this book.


Until we make some serious changes, most alcoholics don’t know the difference between a relationship and a hostage situation. The book Alcoholics Anonymous outlined the changes I needed to make. We celebrated our twelfth wedding anniversary with a cruise last year. I’m on such a winning streak I think I‘ll read it again.

Deep Sadness

I have only just joined AA. I woke up and realised that I have become my alcoholic mother who ruined my life. I have been drinking heavily to avoid the sadness I feel when I am sober. My partner wants nothing to do with me anymore because of the drinking and I finally see I have a problem. I have tried for the last 12 years to have a family and now think, maybe its gods way of making sure that another child doesn't have to bear what I did as a child. How can I stop drinking

Joined: 2013-12-17
I really don't think God

I really don't think God works that way. There are many reasons for infertility, and the problem could be yours, your partner's, or a combination.
The way to begin your journey in sobriety is simple:
1. Don't drink, even if your butt falls off.
2. Read the Big Book.
3. Go to as many meetings as you can, and stick with the folks who have long term sobriety.
4. Find someone who has what you want, and ask that person to sponsor you.
5. Let your sponsor help you with the steps.
Just keep coming back, and coming back, and coming back!


I've been sober for 26 years. Two days before Christmas, I sought out one of my son's friends that I know smokes pot. He met me and I took 3 hits off a joint. It was an awful experience and I was back in AA the next day. I never thought it was going to be something that I would do moving forward. I should have seen it coming because I've missed alot of meetings over the past year because I'm attending Nursing school. Tomorrow's my 27th anniversary and I'm having a dilemma over what to do. I haven't told anyone yet and I'm not sure what to do. Pot was never my drug of choice, it was alcohol. I'm totally perplexed. Any advice??

Joined: 2014-01-05

When I relapsed I told friends in the program, and stood up in AA meetings to talk about it. It was *enormously* helpful to me (and others said it was helpful to them). I learned that I relapsed because I wasn't working on my AA program every day.

A sobriety date is just a day like any other 24 hours. We have only a "daily reprieve" in which to maintain our spiritual condition, and "rigorous honesty" is essential to that maintenance. (BB pp. 58, 85)


We got straight and sober about the same time. I haven’t used the equation program = meetings for a long time although I attend some meetings out of gratitude to carry the message. It’s “Practicing these principals” that keeps me where I need to be. Your concern for how you look instead of how you are is a loud tell. So is the premeditation and letting it fester for weeks until caught in the dilemma to get honest or get a medallion. The Big Book tells us that “our liquor was but a symptom”. It’s a safe bet you have others. You’re starting a new life as a nurse, why not start a new life? The tools are waiting for you.


have been sober for 9 1/2 years. have been active in aa but when my husband became ill my meetings slowed down. my husband was diagnosed the 18 of april 2012 and passed away july 18 2012 of multiple myleoma and primary gallbladder cancer. i cared for him at home (i am a nurse). No one wants to talk about him anymore - it is like he has been erased from family conversations. friends are uncomfortable when i bring up his name. blah blah blah
guess my issue is spiritual. i see Gods love guidance and direction in my life only in retrospect. i cannot seem to pray - i feel empty. i have been going to 4-5 meetings a week - have a new sponsor (5 months) but i just feel i am faking the whole thing. i feel dead inside.
have not wanted to drink but i feel anger at strangers - have yelled at people in parking lots. this is not like me. i feel like a shell. know it is said God is always there when we seek him and that we are the ones that step away - but i just cant figure out how to regain my spiritual life. has anyone else experienced this.

Joined: 2014-01-26

I can relate to your story. My husband had a major stroke June 19, 2010 and passed away June 25, 2010. I was blessed to have a sponsor who had lost her husband quickly, however it had been about 9 years. One day I could not function and reached out for help through the hospice group which my husband had been under their care. They had just started a grief support group. The support group were 3 women and we had all lost our husbands within 6 weeks of each other. The other big key was action to take. When the pain was so great, the Chaplin had another assignment. Know 3 1/2 years later, I know God has been there each and every time I reached out for helped.


My son was murdered 15 years ago. I felt responsible for his death (I didn't protect him) and howled for a year solid. When that settled down I was extremely angry and prone to go off. I stopped attending meetings regularly for 7 years, but kept up the group sessions I had started with my health care provider. I had started my recovery with these folks and felt very safe and respected. I did not feel safe at AA because I might jump across the table at some idiot " just trying to help" with some inane advise. I was extremely angry ( did I already mention that?). My therapist that had helped me early on in sobriety saw us for a year, no charge, and helped my wife and I walk thru the grief. My wife couldn't stand some of the intense feelings and got trapped in depression. My son just fell asleep at the sessions and stopped going so he could medicate himself (he is now one of us). I worked as hard as I could. Still had the anger raging, still coming out, though it did calm down with time. After 7 years of banging away at it, I got back to the rooms. There I ran into a man who had been through and was going through much worse (bone cancer, sent home to die 4 times, had a relationship with his God) and he agreed to be my sponsor. Soon after that, I lost my job and had about a year to work the steps thoroughly with him. We talked a lot about God, why does He " let bad things happen to good people", et al. He taught me to really give my will and my life over to the care of God, as I understand Him. Surrender is the key for me; stop trying to figure out how to get even, feel the feelings and let 'me go ( resentments are to feel again life and keep them looping through) and get back in the service thing.
Even with all Hell breaking loose around me, I have slowed down. I have had to see that not only learning and practicing forgiveness to the murderer of my son was necessary, learning and practicing forgiveness of myself (acceptance) was absolutely vital. The why of it is not my business, it is above my pay grade. But as I have done my best to practice the principles in all my affairs, God has seen fit to illuminate those things He knows I need to know (a little glimpse through a glass darkly). Icing on the cake. And I am almost giddy these days, sometimes, because I have learned to love. My son has come along (5 years and counting), my wife came alive after the birth of our first grandchild (didn't see that one coming), all in all, not a bad gig, but there was a lot of darkness along the way. And who's to say something else won't happen? That is not my business. As I have heard before, sobriety is patient progress punctuated by heavy setbacks. I am just thankful that God kept me sober and I can share my experience, strength and hope with another.God built the strength in me, I just kept tugging at the oars.

Joined: 2014-01-19

Yes, I have experienced much the same. It was more than 20 years ago, I was 7 years sober. My program friends were very helpful and supportive, but after a time they didn't understand that I was still vulnerable and sad. They wanted me to return to the person who did not cry, who could find her way across town without getting lost, and who was not still frequently a mess. Thankfully I found a grief recovery group which helped more than I could imagine. I began to be able to go to meetings without crying. Therapy and expressing my feelings in art and writing helped. Time helped. Staying sober and having sober friends helped most of all.


I lost husband, mother and brother in just a couple years. I took care of all of them. There were times when I couldn't pray and times when I was dead inside. I really had to allow myself to go through the stages including anger at God, aging and disease, as well as family for leaving me.

An inventory of what ticks me off really does help. It means pulling out the stops and just being honest about how I hated this or that aspect of what they went through or what I went through.
It certainly wasn't in my plans to go through all that and have none of them left to hug me when it was over. I have learned that sometimes I am too restricted to let myself be as I am and to feel and think freely. Sometimes I numb out so I won't feel the waves of grieving but that just makes it worse when I do feel.
And it is scarey to be angry with God. But I found out that God allows and understands it.
I also found that making entries in a gratitude journal several times a day was helpful. I started with thanks for my sobriety and that I'm not hugging a toilet puking my guts out.
But the most important thing was finding the willingness to move forward and to allow other events and activities to be my focus. Finding a way to be of service and practicing gratitude while doing that service helped. Praying for others who are suffering helped too.

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