From the May 1981 magazine.

A Different Selfishness

The welfare of others began to mean more to him than his own problems

WHAT A SURPRISING and upsetting thing it seemed when I first heard it said that AA is a selfish program. Its meaning took a while to sink in: that I was the only one who could get sober for me, and in that sense, my recovery would necessarily be selfish.

What I was seeing in those church basements where AAs met was very different from selfishness as I was used to it. I had known many selfish persons--greedy, grasping, demanding. The world revolved around them, so they thought. They were boring; they were dreary. It was to come as quite a shock when I would realize that the foregoing description fitted me to a T.

-- W. H.

Manhattan, New York

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