Too many meetings

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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Brock » Tue Jul 05, 2016 3:52 am

Some good advise has been given, about the fact that going to many meetings does not necessarily keep us sober, and also that life certainly does not have to be all AA.

I hope that by this time your sponsor might have been back in touch, unfortunately someone seems to be admonishing you for bringing the questions here, and saying those are for the sponsor, I expect he has not read the difficulty you are having communicating with the sponsor.

On that matter, I believe you should set guidelines with the sponsor, either face to face or as you do here in writing. I don't think it's very productive yourself and herself not knowing who should reach out, maybe you can just call her when the need arises, and tell her not to call you, and if you settle the matter of meetings your mind will be at ease, say you will go to approximately three per week or whatever, because that's what you can reasonably do. Once you both agree to a couple of simple guidelines like these, I am sure things will go smoother, and if she doesn’t agree, it's not a big problem, you can ask someone else to assist you.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Tosh » Tue Jul 05, 2016 7:15 am

Brock wrote:say you will go to approximately three per week or whatever, because that's what you can reasonably do. Once you both agree to a couple of simple guidelines like these, I am sure things will go smoother, and if she doesn’t agree, it's not a big problem, you can ask someone else to assist you.


That's good advice.

One thing to remember is that your recovery is YOUR recovery. Sponsors are great, but no-one is perfect.

You're sober now; go join a gym, train for a marathon, join a night class, get involved in a local charity project [insert anything you always wanted to do but couldn't because you were drinking/drunk/ill].

But do whatever it takes to stay sober, get happy, and help others.
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: Too many meetings

Postby positrac » Tue Jul 05, 2016 8:16 am

I hope that by this time your sponsor might have been back in touch, unfortunately someone seems to be admonishing you for bringing the questions here, and saying those are for the sponsor, I expect he has not read the difficulty you are having communicating with the sponsor.
II am going to take that you are referring to me and my comments about the subject posted earlier.

Sponsors are the first line of defense for the alcoholic who is suffering and hence why a sponsor should be referred to first and foremost before coming to an online forum if the concern is something like this subject. She wasn't talking about BB vs 12x!@ meetings and which one is the best for the new comer.

If that sponsor doesn't return her calls then find another sponsor that will be available for this person's concerns and or emergencies.
Last edited by positrac on Wed Jul 06, 2016 2:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Stepchild » Tue Jul 05, 2016 2:56 pm

1) reduce meetings and keep doing over time and when you get stretched out beyond your mental means you might drink. You could lose your job and then you have nothing to fall back on and have to worry about survival and other living expenses.


This is the kind of thinking you hear in meetings....It's like scaring people that they are doomed if they cut down on meetings. Alcoholics don't go back to drinking based on meeting attendance....They go back to drinking because they are powerless over alcohol. If they haven't found that power by which they can live without it...Then they are doomed....Whether they go to 10 meetings a day or not.

As Dr. Silkworth puts it in The Doctor's Opinion...

This is repeated over and over, and unless this person can experience an entire psychic change there is very little hope of his recovery.

That change comes with working the steps. No amount of meetings will allow you to experience it. It is the easier softer way.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby PaigeB » Tue Jul 05, 2016 3:46 pm

Meetings make it easier to stay sober = the easier, softer way to get through the Steps.
I mean: to sobriety & through sobriety.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Brock » Wed Jul 06, 2016 6:16 am

Meetings make it easier to stay sober = the easier, softer way to get through the Steps.

This may be true, going to meetings where 'good' AA is being practiced, people looking like they have found something we want, speaking about how they found it, yes this may be “the easier softer way to get through the steps.”

But what happens when we have completed the steps, some people still seem to feel meetings are vital in keeping their sobriety. And I hear some who should know better start a contribution with something like, 'thank God for this meeting, I really needed a meeting tonight.' I believe what they really needed was to go back and try to understand what 10,11 & 12 are all about, anyone with such an understanding would never get themselves into a position of “needing” a meeting.

I strongly suspect, and I am not being critical of them, that those who have not found the deep spiritual foundation that others have, actually go to meetings for spiritual upliftment. Others are able to follow the suggestions and use the tools, and are never in the position of “needing” a meeting, because our needs have been met throughout the day. A day we started by asking for direction and freedom from self will, and one in which we paused when agitated or doubtful, and asked for the right thought or action. So when we do go to a meeting we are smiling coming in, not looking for the meeting to be the tool to put the smile on our face. We are there to show how these tools work, and can take pleasure in that, AA showed me some great tools for a happy life, but meetings is not one of them.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby positrac » Wed Jul 06, 2016 6:45 am

I am going to agree to disagree with some of the above post^^^^^^^^

I've had hard days and I needed a shower and it felt really good and it was what I needed..... Not being thrown into the fire of the furnace to see if I could become more worn out and sore from my labors. AA on the other hand I've heard many express the same thing of the relief of having a place to decompress and to take in such events as thinking that first drink through for a lack of better words. So needing a meeting might be like a recharge of sorts as people say it with little regard of true meanings.

And reverting back to Raven---- She has a mind of her own and she has free will to decide whether to attend and or not attend and I can't tell her to do something because she says this or that. Point I am making is if we drank everyday it was a habit and we did it no matter what our responsibilities were. Thus going to meetings should be a habit and the tools to fall back on when issues occur with our desire to drink and or desire to stay sober.

I believe we are both on to something and experiences, education level and social levels might be in the way. Bottom line is sobriety only works if we make it happen through right thinking, right people and being well rested. We can't hide behind labor and think we'll stay sober as in time it'll get us come hell or high water.

Hungry
Angry
Lonely
Tired

nuff said.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Layne » Wed Jul 06, 2016 8:57 am

A meeting can help me to continue to take my personal inventory. A meeting can help me to improve my conscious contact with God. A meeting can help me to practice the principals of AA in all my affairs.

Meetings aren't necessary, but like breathing, I find them to be helpful on occasion.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby PaigeB » Wed Jul 06, 2016 11:17 am

anyone with such an understanding would never get themselves into a position of “needing” a meeting.

Hummm - I don't know. I mean things change, we change! I like to get a new broader understanding of the Steps and principles when something is bothering me or - or just because. Like I just got back from a short vacation in a small town. They had a meeting, but it was right during the time we set aside for meeting with friends there - the point of the vacation. So I had not been to a meeting since Friday... I usually go on Sunday & Monday and here it was Tuesday night. I was tired from the trip, but if I did not go on Tuesday, it would be until Thursday night before I could get to one. I felt like "I needed a meeting". Truth be told, I wanted a meeting. I think we all say things like "It was just what I needed tonight" or "I needed a meeting" or like a fella last night said, "My wife strongly advised that I get to a meeting tonight" (laughter all around).
This may be true, going to meetings where 'good' AA is being practiced, people looking like they have found something we want, speaking about how they found it, yes this may be “the easier softer way to get through the steps.”

I could not be happier to know that I live in a place where good AA is being practiced. A lot of the reason this is true is because those who have completed the Steps continue to go to meetings and share the solution! At the end of the meeting, when the Chairperson asks for a show of hand of those who would be willing to be a sponsor to please raise their hands, well over half of the room raises their hands. It is a pretty good place to go... but there is ONLY a place to go because those who got sober before me keep coming back.

If you don't have this where you are - start a new meeting and stick to the solution.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby D'oh » Wed Jul 06, 2016 3:57 pm

For me it is simple. I look at it as My HP has never called me on the phone, and if he did, I wouldn't believe it was him anyways. No my HP works through the people in the meeting is a meeting that I get something to use with life and living. Something I need and can use right now, or something that I might need in the future.

It is only when I have a closed mindset, do I not get something from a meeting. That is when I find I needed the meeting the most in my life.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Spirit Flower » Wed Jul 06, 2016 4:31 pm

D'oh wrote:For me it is simple. I look at it as My HP has never called me on the phone, and if he did, I wouldn't believe it was him anyways. No my HP works through the people in the meeting is a meeting that I get something to use with life and living. Something I need and can use right now, or something that I might need in the future.

It is only when I have a closed mindset, do I not get something from a meeting. That is when I find I needed the meeting the most in my life.

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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Lali » Wed Jul 06, 2016 4:35 pm

Raven, Brock makes a good point whenever he posts as he did that once we have taken all of the steps, or have at least completed step 5 and have had a psychic change, we will no longer have to rely on meetings the same as we did early on. But you only have 3 1/2 months so are still a "newbie" in my book. May I ask where you are in the steps? (I don't recall that being a part of your post). Have you had that psychic change? If not, it may not be wise to cut back too much. Once, a while back, I decided to cut back to say, Tuesday and Thursdays. Well, Tuesday something would come up that I needed to do. Oops, same thing happened on Thursday. I wound up going a full week without a meeting. So just be careful that this isn't what ends up happening to you. Paige's post touched on this when she said she had missed some meetings while out of town.

There was something I said in my earlier post that I think is worth repeating: "I do know that without AA all of those things that I want to be doing outside of AA, will be lost."

I heard this said a lot in meetings and it really resonated with me.

I want to add, that someone said here that you are an adult and have the right to make your own decisions and I cannot disagree with that.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Ravensgrl » Wed Jul 06, 2016 5:23 pm

I am on the fifth step. I can make my own decisions and each day I decide not to pick up a drink. I know when I'm going to meetings every night after work I start to get restless, like is this all there is? Work and meetings? And I don't want to knock meetings or my sponsor because I wouldn't have made it this far without them. And when I skip a meeting I know it's not beneficial to me to just go home watch tv go to bed. That's not helpful. What I need to do is make sure I do something productive instead, like go to the gym or stay in and cook a good meal. That's where I am right now. Honesty is important, I can't in any way feel like I need to keep these things secret because these are things that are going to help me stay healthy mentally and physically and there's no shame in that. And my sponsor has every right to decide if she approves of this and if she doesn't want to sponsor me that's ok, we would stay friends. She was my first friend in AA and I don't have any intention of losing that.

Thanks everyone for your thoughts, it has been really helpful. If I had not posted this, I am sure I would have done what I wanted but these posts have helped me come to the conclusion that I don't have to feel guilty about it, I can be honest and unapologetic about what I need.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby positrac » Thu Jul 07, 2016 3:07 am

I wanna say something here regarding this topic and the understandings of AA. Look we all drank for our own reasons and we went to any length to get our fix. So Ravens if you are living in the B'more area I can assure you that many meetings abound and if you are getting restless then maybe it is time to review your situation.

I am not knocking you for your efforts and life as it is today for you! If you decide to box yourself into a corner eventually you will come out swinging. Or simply like this: You are not the only soul in this world working hard and staying sober at wits end! So the real question lies is this: What do others members on this forum do when they feel like you do? Alternatives have got to play into this mix and for the record most meetings in the US run no more than 1.5 hours and in a 24 hour period outside of work there must be some Ravens Girl time?????

Please step back and review your situation and I bet you can come to some conclusion on life on life's terms.

I drove other the road and I had to hustle to keep the money coming in and I would be out for months at a time and I called friends, listed to disks with meetings on them and I really only slept and drove and I had to learn to balance my methods because at one time I was hiding behind my work and it almost cost me a relapse. I woke up and figured out what others in my industry did to balance out the insanity.


I am not the AA guru and I know what works for me and what doesn't because of my past experience and eventually you will have this same knowledge.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Ravensgrl » Thu Jul 07, 2016 3:35 am

I didn't go to any lengths to get my fix. I came to AA because I wanted to nip this in the bud before it got that far. But when things are said like that, it pushes people that weren't every day drinkers away. When I hear things like this, it makes me think this isn't the place for me at all, that I have to be a hardcore alcoholic before I can really get the program. Maybe there isn't really a place for me. When I'm working 10-12 hour shifts, I basically have one 1.5 hour block to do something. If I go to a meeting, I can't go to the gym or the grocery store. So no, in a 24 hour period there isn't extra time.
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