Experience with AA Online?
Anon...I know you posted 2/15 so sorry for a late response. I just wanted to say, 'I hear you!" & you did the right thing by venting a tad on here.Hoping this finds you sober.
I'm a 15 1/2 mth recovering busy alcoholic w/a 17 & 18 yr old at college, 2 pets etc.....(Ha..busy like no one else...got to get that one out of my head).
Anyway...in tough times...I have gotten through by knowing that I had to DO something...go walk the dog to calm down, read in my car any AA/Grapevine materials, go to a meeting, call someone anything but drink. So..
I hope you found a sponsor. I waited a long time & texted 2 at same time & got one. Funny thing is one was a sponser for one. We are working the Steps SLOWLY, rather than quickly & I always, always remember my lowest in tough times which is when my daughter moved out of the house to her dad's at 16. It crushed me, but woke me up.
We are the best of friends now & her father & I are living back together again after 7 1/2 yrs of separation. So, hang in..is amazing what can happen even on tough days!
Your post strikes a chord with many of us. Take a look at the top of p 64 including “Our liquor was but a symptom.” We are the same people with the same faulty thinking, attitudes and problem solving skills generating the same pain in ourselves except without the anesthetic to turn the pain off. No wonder we are miserable.
“Trying” to do something new requires direction. Perhaps making yourself noticed as someone in need of a sponsor would be helpful. Appearing as someone who deserves a good sponsor would be infinitely helpful. Everybody who walks in the door has a boatload of problems. A few have a boatload of problems and are willing to take some action to get rid of them. Potential sponsors notice them because they ask good questions; they have a 12 X 12 and a Big
Book and are reading them and asking questions about them in the meeting, in the “meeting before the meeting” and the “meeting after the meeting”. Throw in asking about the pamphlet “Q and A about Sponsorship” and you’ve painted a picture of yourself as someone who may be sponsor-able.
Also sober in Missouri
I can identify with how you are feeling as I too have been overwhelmed by that obsession to drink especially early in sobriety.
I have been sober since March 1990 and don't have those real white knuckle days of just hanging on anymore. Thank God as I understand Him.
One observation from your story...you are indeed a very busy man. Try not to ever forget 1st things first, and that is, your sobriety comes first. If you don't make your sobriety the most important thing in your life you are heading for a SLIP (sobriety losing its priority).
When an alcoholic picks up again all those other things important in our lives seem to disappear; wife, kids, job, school, health, happiness, etc.
When I start getting restless, irritable,discontent and overwhelmed because I'm spending too much time on other activities I know what I have to. I need to spend more time working on staying sober; like more meetings,praying, meditating, personal inventory, reading AA literature, talking to my sponsor, working the steps, helping other alcoholics,doing service work, etc. I'm sure you know the rest of the story if I don't.
In short doing whatever I need to do (going to any length)to maintain my spiritual condition through this program of action. When I do, I get another daily reprieve and my life is so much better.
Wish you another 24 hours of contented sobriety and thanks for sharing.
When I finally hit bottom and lost everything, I had to move in with my mother(my biggest trigger), she was ill, I was ill, I was a nurse so it seemed logical to do. As I packed up my house, weeping and mourning everything I had lost, I finally realized I had two choices. Drink until I died or get sober. I decided to get sober and I sought online AA groups since leaving my mother alone, was not an option. I found several groups, in Yahoo groups and other places. These groups saved my life. I could not get out to meetings but I found that joining these groups kept AA in my life, all day long. I got emails from group members, I got meetings online. I even found a group that you could post to live. It was not all sunshine and sobriety, but it was real. I will admit, there is a little more room for drama, when the forum is text on a screen, but sometimes drama is part of face to face groups too. I quit a group that got really weird and off program. I took over a group that was floundering. I participated in women's only groups and groups for everyone. The minute I was able to go to face to face meetings I did but I am so grateful for the online groups.
What Have you ever heard said to a youngster in AA?
The other day I heard a bleeding deacon say to a 16 yr old at a meeting " Awwww i have spilled more booze than you have ever seen! This completely made my blood boil, so i stepped back. paused, quick serenity prayer!
Then Walked right between them and asked if I could speak to the youngster outside. thank goodness he said yes. I spent the next few minutes explaining that there are still sick people in AA even tho they haven't drank in many a year doesn't mean that there a working the program of AA, and this gentleman was obviously work his program and not ours! I could see a that the words made him feel a bit more at ease. Then laughing inside i quoted my sponsor "take what you can use and leave the frigin rest there" That sentence change my entire recovery!!
Everone needs someone or somthing to complain to !!!!
Makes no difference where ya at or what you do if you come to give rather than get.
AA Online is the name of a chat site which has unfortunately fooled a lot of newcomers into believing they are a real AA group, and operate within AA Traditions. Sadly, this form of subterfuge helps no one. People who are unable or unwilling to seek a real walk-in AA meeting frequent the place, spewing their sick ideas about 'recovery' endlessly. The place appears to be managed by Alanon members who alternately scold, then coddle ((((((((((hugs))))))))) (gag!) Posting readings from Hazelden and other Bible-based literature, then responding sometimes with outright hostility toward the Big Book shows their deeper animosity toward Alcoholics Anonymous in general. "Step Chat" has displayed not less than a 'reign of terror' against anyone who might suggest that someone find an AA Group in the town they live in. There is no 'online recovery'
this is the first time ive ever seen a guru try try to take over the computer i reached out for a little support and you throw that in my face ? try reading your big book again
Before bashing online AA too much, a person might do a little math exercise. Subtract two from the number of legs you have. Subtract two from the number of ears you have. Now write down the number zero for the number of vehicles you can use to get to meetings. Write down zero if your walker will get you around your home for your basic needs but your knees start screaming for narcotics if you go much farther. Sure, there’s going to be a ride to some handicapped accessible, or deaf signed meeting somewhere sometime. Write down the number of times you have provided any of these services in the last month. Now start with one and see quickly you can get to twelve. I bet really smart, really kind people with tons of experience will be more than happy to help you – on line.
What a great reply to that AA member. Not all of us can get to meetings as we did when we were younger. Some of us find a wealth of information here that would take us maybe a couple of months to get at those meetings. Only people who have walked our walks can complain about online AA. TY
i am new to this so please excuse my mistakes love aa i have a beautiful life the last 25 year alldue to aa with so much of my fears removed i have had freedom to travel down south allby myself and always know i have a family where ever i go thank you AA
I was saving the world from Y2K in 1999, spent six months traveling, away from my home. And I sure did find some wonderful F2F meetings in my travels, great people, great recovery -- it was really nice. But I could not always make a meeting, sometimes worked late, and got to the hotel late, and often I just didn't know where too many meetings were.
And that is where online AA came through. It was great.
All I needed was a puter and I was on my way. I have been in mtgs with people from all over the world, all at the same time, once including a person who lived a block from my home -- isn't that just the best? What a hoot! The online group I "went to" was well attended, and well organized; the "chair" of the mtg determined who would "speak" next, and no one else could type to the screen while that person was typing.
I loved it.
It's obviously not for everyone. You need a computer (duh) and an internet connection (duh2). And I suspect that people who do not type fast might not feel that they're adequately able to express themselves. That never was a problem for me, and maybe isn't for others -- it's not like I "heard" anyone say that in those mtgs, just something I've wondered about.
I have not done it in years, maybe even not at all since 1999.
I happen to love AA, in all its permutations. You gave me my life, and one sponsor in particular, I just owe it to Life to pass on to others what he so willingly gave to me.
In my experience, The Language Of The Heart comes across loud and clear in words freshly minted on a bright screen.
I wish you all a great day, whatever day it is you are reading this.
My name is Samuel and I am an alcoholic. I am grateful to be sober today thanks to AA. I have been participating in AA online for about 3 years and it works well for me. I attend AA meetings in chat rooms online and also have a subscription to the Grapevine. My internet connection just went down on my computer so next month I hope to buy a smartphone so I can continue to listen to the Audio Grapevine and participate in online AA meetings. I am at a local public library typing this. I am keeping in touch with the AA member I am working the steps with in email right now. I am grateful to be sober today.
Experience with AA Online? "BETTER THAN BEING OFF LINE"
I am an alcoholic and a food addict. I have nothing but gratitude for AA Online. I am 8 + years sober by God's grace and with the help of this AA program.
In 2004, I was traveling continuously for my job and there was no way I could reliably get to meetings. I found my sponsor Becky in a meeting run by email. We stayed together for my whole first year in AA until I could get to conventional meetings.
Those email meetings saved my life. Now when I go to meetings and say I came into AA through email, people just drop their jaws in disbelief. But it's not the medium, it's the message. It works if you work it, not matter how you get it. Keep coming back.
One disgruntled member has frequently posted diatribes critical of AA’s present form. In one particular rant he made reference to a court ruling which supposedly rule that AA was a religion. Even a casual observer would know that that is not true but our courts have made wackier rulings so I thought I should look it up. Read the ruling carefully: “Though AA itself was not deemed a religion”. stands out.
The rulling from the 9th circuit, pertained to forcing inmates, parolees, and probationers
into AA. This only proves that if you tell the same lie enought times many will begin to believe its true.
United States Court rulings
United States courts have ruled that inmates, parolees, and probationers cannot be ordered to attend AA. Though AA itself was not deemed a religion, it was ruled that it contained enough religious components (variously described in GRIFFIN v. COUGHLIN below as, inter alia, "religion", "religious activity", "religious exercise") to make coerced attendance at AA meetings a violation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment of the constitution. In September 2007, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit stated that a parole office can be sued for ordering a parolee to attend AA.
I just recently left treatment and I have 28 days sober. Does anyone have any experience doing sponsorship online? Is having an online sponsor realistic?
I suggest you find a sponsor at a local meeting.Start working the steps and get into service work. I wish you well with your new gift of sobrity.
Try going to a meeting
As others have said a Face to Face sponsor is best. Why? Because honest and open communication involves much more then words alone and honesty is the most important component in a sponsor/sponsee relationship you need to be called on your BS. When those 4 hideous horseman (Terror, Bewilderment, Frustration and Despair) come to call you will need someone to talk to right then, not on line not in a couple hours or days or at some appointed time but NOW.
Having said all that I found myself on a small island for 4 months in the first year of my sobriety and I used on line resources a lot. Like this online Grapevine, and communication with a couple closed mouthed friends but I had to come back to the real world and deal with real world problems and I needed my real world sponsor. Please don't confine yourself to a cyber-world sobriety. Dennis D.
AA has something unique.
THE LIVE SHOW IT CANT BE BEATEN
Rember keep comeing back.
It is probably always preferable to have a face to face sponsor. I know a lot of people at face to face meetings.
I have an online sponsor. It is working out OK. I read the book Alcoholics Anonymous and pray daily. I wanted a sponsor to take me through the 12 Steps and to be a bit friendly but not to be in my life on a daily basis necessarily.
I knew therefore, what I needed from a sponsor and was willing to connect regularly with aaonline and face to face meetings. I relapsed in 1999 because I did not work the Steps, and I got back to AA last August.
I do use other people in AA for support and guidance, my sponsor cannot do everything for me. God helps me daily and I hope I do the work necessary to remain sober, happy and free.
I hope this helps you. In the end, you can just try online sponsorship and if it doesn't help you then you can try something else. That's how I approach it. In the first place I had a temporary sponsor, that didn't work out and now I have someone that it works with. It is important not to isolate, I need to share my journey and work the Steps.
In love and fellowship
How can I find an Russian AA meeting in Atlanta, GA?
Absolute nonsense stop waffling pure non stop dribble
you did not drink on line, So If you have decided you want we have and are willing to go to any lengths to get it Get up and shift your lazy butt and get down to a meeting and experiace the meaning of fellowship.
Absolutely correct time to cut the waffle and get back to black and white
Trad 3 and 5 and the responsiblity statement... Thank god for the Trads to keep those with out humility from running our lives.
The traditions are of no use to us unless we
understand them and fully obey them: the letter and
the spirit. I believe this is a good example of "Half
measures avail us nothing" and Bill's saying that
sometimes the temporary seeming good can be the
deadly enemy of the permanent best. I'll bet
there is a traditions meeting somewhere which meets
without paying an adequate rent. ANONYMOUS
The person just asked an innocent question. If you were the face of AA, I'd run in the opposite direction!
I am a little over 3 months sober now and find tis type of attitude really disheartening.
And the opposite direction would be...
The person asks a simple question, gets rudely blasted by people in AA. What is that? Is this what you want to present to people asking for your help?
From long experience, I know that many will say "Well, it's just that good ol' AA tough love." I'm here to say that it's not good, it's not AA, it's certainly not love. It's egos on parade.
If you're so proud of your F2F sponsors, you might want to actually use them, F2F; discuss what could be seen as remarkably judgmental attitudes, perhaps after prayer, and some writing. No, no; not after thinking -- after prayer, then writing.
It's often illuminating.
And in reply he got the truth straight between the eyes,
AA is being destroyed by intellectual and waffle merchants
no kidding...I live in a small town and had a VERY high profile job and it's sometimes easier to go on-line but the face to face is much more effective as far as a sponsor goes. They see your emotions, fears, and anything else that's going on in your mind..Go out of your area if it's easier for your first few meetings.
As part of a class i took for work, i had to participate in a chat room with other classmates for credit in the class. That was my first time communicating online with something other than email. So recently I found out about I-Say and have begun to participate.
I have to admit, that after reading some older posts, that I like to post a question or statement and read the responses(ego!). I still get a good laugh at my self-centered nature.
That being said, I would like a link or just a post from the grapevine of the numbers of AA members who may log on and read comments on I-say but might not post. I don't now if its 100 log on or 1,000,000.
So if anyone has those #'s or could steer my in the right direction, it would be greatly appreciated!
A while back our web editor gave us an estimate of how
many times this site is opened. I think at the time it was
600-900 times a month. Could we have an update? I hope our
number of readers has increased. It would probably be a
rough estimate as some of us open it more than once a day.
Total rubbish nothing more or nothing less.
AA tru its meetings is the live show, priceless and irreplaceable.
I was introduced to online AA in January 2001. I was a chat host at talkcity.com and had to do a topical chat on something I knew about, so I chose alcoholism. Active in my addiction at the time the chat did not involve recovery. At the end of the chat a man named Reilly, a Scottish Aussie living in Australia messaged me and asked if it was possible that I had a problem with alcohol. WOW!! How did this man know this from around the world in a chat room? Apparently God intervened that day. I told him yes, I thought I was an alcoholic and that I had gone to AA before but IT did not work for me and I had given up on AA in 1998. He invited me to join the online AA group he was a member of AAustraliaemail@example.com (if your interested just email us) I joined that group in January 2001 and during the next few months the group shared on Steps 1-4, along with the Traditions that at that time were foreign to me. My last drunk led me to jail overnight, in that jail cell next to the toilet I got down on my knees, prayed to God and fully took the first 3 steps for the first time in my life. The next day I was released from jail, charges dropped. I went to my computer, got Reilly in a chat and told him what happened. He asked me if I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. YES I cried over the many miles between us. He told me to get out my Big Book and start reading it. I got very active in the AAustralia group, found my first sponsor who lives locally in that online group and when I was approaching 30 days of sobriety the members of that group told me I MUST attend face to face meetings. I reminded them that those meetings did not work for me. They encouraged me that they would now, I was ready. So I went to a face to face meeting to get a 30 day token, loved it so much I made it my home group and went to that meeting 7 days a week for the next two years, along with other meetings. Today I am coming up on 11 years of continuous sobriety, all due to online AA and people from around the world encouraging me that I WAS ready. My sobriety date is April 26, 2001 and today I go to many face to face meetings, still belong to the AAustralia online group, have a sponsor, read the Big Book, attend 3 Book Study meetings per week and also do a book study each week with my sponsor.I am involved in service work, am GSR for my home group, am on a committee for a conference we hold each year and carry the message by giving open talks. If not for online AA, and Reilly, God rest his soul, there is no telling where I would be today. At age 47 I began college, got my associates degree,became a certified addiction counselor, am working on my Bachelor degree, online school too by the way and just became a Certified Peer Recovery Coach.
Life is good and I am so thankful to online AA for showing me that AA DOES work, if I work it and am willing to do whatever it takes. I used to belong to the Online Intergoup and look forward to again visiting their suite at the International Convention in Atlanta in 2015 which will be my 3rd International Convention. The 4th International Convention I will attend, God willing, in 2020 is being held in Detroit, my hometown. Hope to see you all in 2015 and again in 2020.
AA DOES work, online or face to face.
Hi, Cherrie :
I AM EDGAR , A JUST READ YOUR STORY ...GREAT , FULL OF WISDOM ...AND SIMPLE , AS DR . BOB SUGGESTED . I AM PRETTY SURE , IT WILL HELP BIG TO OTHERS ALCOHOLICS WHO ARE STILL SUFFERING . I AM FROM MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA ....BUT ORIGINALLY FROM NICARAGUA , CENTRAL AMERICA ...WHERE I AM AT THE MOMENT .
GOD BLESS YOU CHERRIE ... THE GOD , OF YOUR UNDESTANDING. REGARDS ..
Thank you for sharing your positive experience!
NEED INFO PLZ.
I have been a member of an on-line women's group for years. My concern re e-meetings is whether the members of the group are honoring the 7th Tradition. We suggest members donate to GSO or On-line Intergroup or increase their contributions to their home groups. On-line groups have to be careful to honor all the Traditions.
My online group does not take donations from members and guests. We're there to share our ESH and shine the light to F2F where possible.
Dear Grapevine readers: I am sober almsot 28 years and am 72 years old with major physical problems that keep me from
attending my customnary 2 meetings a week. Through two good nline women's groups I have ties with necomers, old-timers and a chance to share my ESH at my own computer. many tries
to sponsor people it wokrs for a whi;e but if they are to be
serious they need a person they can see and touch to do the
4th step and all other work after that. I work at home and I
answer shares at home and write my own because it helps to
curb that terrible loneliness we know as alcoholics. And i
encourage others to pick up the online thread whether you are brand new or fairly new or been around for years.
I am a member of AA for 26 years, and a member of Second Life AA for five. Our online meetings are held four or five times a day to reach a global audience. Friends of Bill W in Second Life has more than 400 members.
Online meetings are, however, missing a few things. Eye contact, gestures, hugs and the sound of laughter, to name a few. If you can get beyond this, Second Life AA meetings are true to form following AA's 12 steps and 12 traditions. It can't be overemphasized how wonderful these meetings are for the housebound and disabled.
We have a wonderful member who is part of OIAA and he is doing great work to cross the gap between real and virtual AA.
Thanks for this sharing board! My name is Paige and I am an alcoholic from Iowa, District 8, Area 24.
I found e-aa when searching for a way to put daily meditation into my program http://www.e-aa.org/talk.php That is still my "online home group" I have a F2F home group too. There is nothing quite like seeing the faces and knowing I am one among many. However, online AA is only slightly different! I am so pleased that the groups I have found practice the Steps and Traditions! I am getting to know a lot of people! Folks in the UK, Sweden, South Africa! Just as if we were in person! I am one among the masses!
I am excited about the 2015 International AA Conference in Atlanta Georgia! This is where my 2 loves ~ Face to Face and Online AA ~ will meet. I know I will be actually seeing many of my online friends there!
Look for OIAA in Atlanta in our cyber suite!
I heard that there was the very first meeting in Russia, of a man and a woman, when 1990, it was illegal to do that. I remarked this to all my friends at land ground in AA. They did not think it was such a big deal, because there was no internet yet, and they did not deal with international anyway. I have dealt with internationals all my life, mostly in Canada and USA, from everywhere they come, and they were my neighbors, and I loved them all.
Then russia changed to new russia, and AA is permitted and all sorts of religion, also.
I had no access to the internet until 2008, after a surgery to get rid of cancer, left me in a nursing home with a residential computer. That was where I got my first print out, of AA Meetings in Spokane, Wa. In Early 2009, I went to Spokane, WA The place I ended up living an adult family home, was only 2 blocks from an Alano Club, with AA meetings. Within 2 more months, the place closed and I had to move, to an assisted living institution. There was an AA meeting about 5 blocks from there, in a Methodist Church. Finally, I was well enough, I moved out on my own, in 2010.
For the Summer of 2010, I was actually farther away, from any AA meeting, than most places. So, during the Summer I went to AA meetings in way South Spokane, about 10-15 miles from where I lived, and it took about an hour there, an hour meeting, and an hour back. Another one I liked took me two hours there, one hour meeting, and two hours back, so It was an all day arrangement. In the winter time, I did not go anywhere, because of being disabled, and couldn't get out.
So, I read the BB and 12x12. Then in late 2011, I got cancer again, and had to deal with the need to talk and read in relationship to AA, so I started going to e-aa meetings, online before my surgery, and am still going to e-AA 12x12 and Lounge, now in February 2012. It has been very needed.
As it turned out, I did not have a phone, and email was the only way to communicate. But coming off hospital meds, was slightly difficult, and my writings were like batting zero. I am still irritated for no apparent reason, and I believe it has something to do with all the narcotics they ran through my veins to do those surgeries, plus other stuff. I am glad to be alive, and looking for naturopathic to put this problem into remission. E-AA is still the way I am doing it, for now, because of not healthy enough to physically go, elsewhere yet. So, I can say that E-AA under these circumstances, is very important, even if I only read, mostly. It is amazing that many of the people there, had expressed that they were cancer survivors also, and had used e-AA as a place to do AA, instead of going to land-ground, at those times. So, I believe that it is good for even those times, when I say: I don't have to put up with this land ground I don't like, and go to an online approach to the same subject, where I can actually hear it better, is another approach, to good AA, a new way to do it. Thanks for the discussion place. Bob F. 2012-02-22. Spokane, WA USA
Because of my mostly severe physical limitations I have subscribed to a woman's email group. After several
"trys" at several different groups, I have hung in long
enough to now say I have been years in this group.
They really are strong about holding onto the steps and traditions. As varied as our personalities are, we seem
to almost work seamlessly.
Our hand(s) are out to the newly joined members, and or
God Bless AA. God Bless online. God bless my group
that keeps me GROWING.
I surely hope that as time goes on that you are able to get out and participate in groups and meet people eye to eye. I wish you the best in your physical, spiritual, and emotional recovery!
When I first was willing to do what was necessary to get sober I did not have computer skills to communicate online w/ our Fellowship.
For over 12 years my life only consisted of drinking. blackouts, and mind warping pain from a horribly painful muscle disorder/chronic fatigue disorder. I was terrified to live with-- without the numbing effect of alcohol to blot out the misery of my existence. I was most certainly very sick but realized that the isolating effect of my health problems only masked the isolation and loneliness that were trademarks of my spiritual malady long long before my health problems arose.
I never minimize that suffering of others whatever their problems may be. The Self Pity and Anger was very harsh and felt as though it was truly intractable until a Higher Power and Inventory on my life performed the miracle-- slowly --- that I could never remove. I often believed that the only reason could not stop was because I could never ever stop because alcohol was the only "medicine" that ever relieved my pain.
My clear understanding now is that no person, not matter how severe their pain would have lived w/ the side effects of my "medicine" with the horrible "side effects" I realized that I had always drank due to the pain of my self obsession and my unique and real allergy to alcohol. I had always and will always be alcoholic.
I try to to as grateful as one can be for each and everyday of sobriety, knowing I would most certainly not be alive or somewhat sane and serene today w/out AA.
I am blessed beyond my wildest dreams if I keep my expectations down and do my best to live in present and not ruminate on hell of my past.
I wish you the very best in your recovery. In obtaining a new life and new found health I was given the gift to face my "self" honestly and work through the torment that I could not expel from my own mind without God's help, AA, and spiritual council from those who had been exactly where I had once been.
Blessed and no longer blind.