From the September 2010 magazine.

Dear Grapevine

'Sound bites'?

THE writer of "No Monopoly" (May 2010) is correct on both counts: there are other ways to get sober, and some people who get sober in AA leave. But the people who come to us, want us to show them how we did it. Whether the others stay sober or are happy, we never know. We only see the ones who make it back, invariably saying that they stopped going to meetings. To say that being enthusiastic about AA, when we tell people to go to as many meetings as possible, is nothing but "sound bites" shows a lack of understanding of how the program works.

I still go to a lot of meetings because I could still drink. I also have an obligation to pass it on. When this drunk showed up at the rooms, sober people were there to tell me I didn't have to drink. The people who get sober and leave seemed to have missed this part of the program.

-- BRIAN M.

Asheville, N.C.

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