When is one no longer a newcomer?

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When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby BethC » Sat Jun 18, 2016 11:40 am

Hello Friends,

I am wondering what length of time someone has to be in the program to be (or no longer) considered a newcomer?

Personally, I have under 3 months sobriety, connected with AA eleven months ago, can't find a sponsor and haven't chosen a home group. But I keep coming back.

Thanks,
~BethC
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Feeya » Sat Jun 18, 2016 12:01 pm

Hey Beth,
I am Feeya, to me, everyone who has been sober over six month is an Oldtimer.
I guess that's due to the fact that I can't even imagine getting there myself, so anyone who has, is not a newcomer to me.
I guess being a newcomer does not necessarily relate to when you joined the program but rather the stepwork you have done and the progress you have made in recovery, though... at least in my opinion.

My sponsor always says: When you have got ten years, you worry for the one that has got a year, when you have got a year you worry for the one that has got three month...

Thanks for the topic,
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Tosh » Sat Jun 18, 2016 4:35 pm

BethC wrote:I am wondering what length of time someone has to be in the program to be (or no longer) considered a newcomer?


I think that's all very subjective, Beth, there's no hard or fast rules. But if you want me to generalise, it's just someone who is new to A.A. and is still at that 'wanting to drink' stage and finding A.A. confusing.

But with regards to myself, I can still feel like a newcomer at times because I still feel that I have much to learn. I think that's a good thing. If I felt like an 'old timer', maybe I'd think I know it all and that would leave very little room for anything new.

Anyway, it's no big deal, Beth; newcomers or old timers; the bottom line is that we're all alkies.

Welcome to the forum and I look forward to reading about your journey.

Regards

Tosh
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Tosh » Sat Jun 18, 2016 5:03 pm

Feeya wrote:I am Feeya, to me, everyone who has been sober over six month is an Oldtimer.


As a side note, when I was brand new to A.A. I didn't relate to the guy who was ten years sober; I found it weird that someone with some years of sobriety would still be going to A.A..

But I really related to - and searched for - the guys with a little longer sobriety than I. I listened closely to those; honestly.

My point is for you to not devaluate your experience because you still feel new to A.A.. Being fairly new to recovery, but in recovery, you're in a very powerful position where the newcomer will relate to and feel more comfortable around you. You can mention buzz words like 'sponsor', 'the steps', 'homegroup' and 'service' and start planting seeds where old timers may not be able to reach. You can let them know about other meetings you go to and maybe make some recommendations about good meetings. I always 'sell'' my homegroup. :lol: I tell them it's the best meeting in South Wales. You can swap phone numbers (I only do this with male alkies - Mrs Tosh has gotten upset about female alkies phoning me in the past) and just be warm and friendly and help them settle in.

Hopefully you're only a newcomer once, so don't pass up this great opportunity before you get corrupted with substantial sober time. :lol:
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby ezdzit247 » Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:52 pm

Hi Beth

Welcome and congratulations on almost 3 months of sobriety!

I got sober in southern California and the "newcomer" designation varied there. Generally after 30 days of sobriety, I didn't have to raise my hand at the beginning of each meeting to let everyone know I was "the" newcomer. It's usually up to each meeting's group conscience to vote on how long a newcomer has to be sober before they can be elected to serve as a meeting secretary, but it's generally about 6 months of sobriety. New AA members in my area were encouraged to get involved in other kinds of AA service work--greeting other newcomers, making coffee, setting up for the meeting, cleaning up after the meetings, etc--in their first few days of sobriety. Those little service jobs I did helped me to feel like a part of the group very quickly and as I got to know the other members who always volunteered their help too, I lost the feeling of being the new kid on the block too. Hope that helps.

Keep coming back.....
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby avaneesh912 » Sun Jun 19, 2016 4:13 am

I am wondering what length of time someone has to be in the program to be (or no longer) considered a newcomer?


Until he/she gets the common message of AA.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Feeya » Sun Jun 19, 2016 4:37 am

Tosh wrote:
Feeya wrote:I am Feeya, to me, everyone who has been sober over six month is an Oldtimer.



But I really related to - and searched for - the guys with a little longer sobriety than I. I listened closely to those; honestly.

Yup! Most people at the meetings I go to have got a lot of recovery time under their belt but don't usually mention it unless it is specifically related to the discussion, as it puts Newcomers of sometimes...
There are two guys at my Homegroup, they both just celebrated their first year and I am able to relate to their shares a lot, as they are also closer to my age than most people and one year does not seem as insane as 5 years.

For me a great help to feel less awkward, Beth, is getting involved in service at my meetings. I wash the dishes afterwards, together with one of the one- year- guys and you almost have a meeting after the meeting, you feel like you do something that is helping the group and it does make you feel less like 'the new one'.

Another great thing is calling people, or texting. There are plenty of people who gave me their phone number in case I want to or need to call.
It is helping me to clear my mind and it is helping them because they are of service. And it also makes for good conversation sometimes and you just get to know the people a little better. It gets easier to be honest and open with them...
I was really scared to call, because I thought I might be bugging the people I call, but it is their 12th step and it is my way of making sure I don't relapse again... So in my humble suggestion that is something definitely worth trying.

Good 24 hours.
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby D'oh » Sun Jun 19, 2016 9:45 am

Feeya, never be afraid to call. I call people I sponsor at 3:00am once out of the blue, so that they owe me one.

One of the pay backs was "I just had this dream, what did it mean?" I replied "That you were sleeping like I was." He still relates to that call.

As for becoming an Old Timer. Why does it really matter? There is not a Day or a Meeting that I do not grow, yes both up and down. I start everyday as a Gift, a Gift of Sobriety, and regardless of how many of those Gifts I have in a row. I am just 1 drink away from a drunk. Plain and Simple.

If you are talking about a Major Decision, they recommend waiting at least 1 year. If it is to become a Sponsor, I believe that if you have 1 day more sobriety than the Sponsee, and you have what they want, then share where you received it from.
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Noels » Sun Jun 19, 2016 12:12 pm

Halloooooo :D I read somewhere (must have been on the Silkworth site) that (cant remember who was talking to who) but this person mentioned members who was five and six years sober and referred to them as old timers. Hehehehehehehehehe now my brain is running :lol: :lol: :lol: wondering if a five and six year member is an old timer is the next " stage " antique, then dinosaur then extinct then ... :lol: :lol: :lol: so sorry :lol: :lol: that was really meant as a laugh :lol: back in your box brain :twisted:

Here by us (RSA) the general suggestion is to take sponsees only after a year once we've worked all 12 steps. That makes sense as we indeed change and grow as we work the steps. I do, however, believe that someone wont come on our path unless we are already in a position to help / guide them.

I'm off to bed as its getting chilli fast now. Nite Nite and chat again tomorrow.

Mwah xxx
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Karl R » Sun Jun 19, 2016 12:53 pm

Hi Beth,

I am wondering what length of time someone has to be in the program to be (or no longer) considered a newcomer?


Take the steps necessary to stay sober in the AA way of life, find the common solution we, in AA, have found: By that time, you'll most likely not worry too much about it.

regards,
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby BethC » Sun Jun 19, 2016 9:19 pm

Much appreciation to all those who shared opinions to my question!

Thanks for being here :)

~Beth
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Larryp713 » Tue Jun 21, 2016 8:41 am

I felt less like a newcomer and more like a member when I started to have service commitments in a home group, and when I started to recognize people from other groups. I am not an old-timer, but I have a level of comfort in the rooms today, so I no longer feel like a newcomer. Thanks for the question, and congrats on your almost 90 days of sobriety. Good luck on your search for a sponsor and home group - this program changed my life and those two entities are a big part of my recovery. Larry
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Re: When is one no longer a newcomer?

Postby Roberth » Tue Jun 21, 2016 12:11 pm

Hello Beth, new-comer or old-timer are just labels. Our egos don’t leave us at any particular length of time. I would be more concerned with getting comfortable in my own skin. It seem the more I am willing to do the better I feel about being me. Many meetings ask for members to identify with less than 30 day just to see who may want some help.
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