From the October 1981 magazine.

PO Box 1980

I had nothing

I have been a member of AA for six years. At seventy, I realize that my two great problems are alcohol and age. My present program in coping includes the Fifth and Eleventh Steps especially, two wonderful sponsors, AA meetings, a home group, and reading and rereading AA literature.

On a recent trip, I attended an AA meeting that I had never been to before. The leader, sitting behind a desk, was in his early twenties and perhaps the handsomest man I have ever seen--blond hair, blue eyes, perfect face. His voice and conduct of the meeting were such that I thought the Lord was speaking through him. As I watched him, my interest in everything gradually vanished, and I began thinking only of myself--old, ugly--nothing left for me. I began a Step Ten, full of anger, resentment, jealousy, self-pity, and hurt pride. Why couldn't I be like the group leader? The only thing we had in common was alcoholism. He had everything. I had nothing. I was shaking with rage.

-- J. W.

Plainfield, New Jersey

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