Too many meetings

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Re: Too many meetings

Postby positrac » Thu Jul 07, 2016 3:47 am

Ravensgrl wrote: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.


You have free will to do whatever you need to do and then it is on you since you feel that AA isn't for you as you seem to have it all figured out. You came to AA because you wanted to nip it in the bud I have to commend you on the effort. However if you are "one" of us and go back out you might have to go to any length eventually until you find you are powerless.

Go in peace.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Brock » Thu Jul 07, 2016 4:58 am

Please don't let individual posts get to you too much Raven, I know it's difficult not to, but this is a bit like a meeting, in that some folks will say things that we don't identify with, and we must take what we want and so forth. He has a habit of laying out some 'tough love,' I believe there is a time and place for that, and certain instances in which it might be used, I don't think with what you are going through, and the questions you have, that this approach is helpful at all, but that's just my personal opinion.

As I have said before, I am a great supporter of not letting meetings get in the way of enjoying a full life, because enjoyment of life is what keeps us sober, if the life I have found in AA was not as good, (in my case it's way better), than what I had before, I would not want to stick with it.

While our physical health by eating right and exercising is important, please keep in mind that the program's major role, is to give us a spiritual foundation on which to live. We then build on this foundation, so putting aside time for this wherever possible leads to the rewards of serenity and happy living we speak of. It just entails having the principles like honesty and helping others and so forth close to our hearts, and if possible listening to or reading inspiring things and 'pondering' on their meaning. Keep up the good work you are doing fine.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Stepchild » Thu Jul 07, 2016 5:01 am

Willing to go to any lengths...Has nothing to do with attending meetings....And everything to do with taking the suggested action (the steps) to solve our drink problem...And experience the promises the book offers. A new freedom and a new happiness...etc.

I think putting pressure on people about how you can't make it a week without a meeting...Or we're doomed without them is a turnoff to AA. It's not even backed up in the Big Book anywhere...In the message we should be carrying. That's just my opinion.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Brock » Thu Jul 07, 2016 5:33 am

I think putting pressure on people about how you can't make it a week without a meeting...Or we're doomed without them is a turnoff to AA.

Once again 100% agreement. What I see as well, is on one hand we have some here who would say how great the internet and forums like these are, they serve members who live in isolated areas or work at sea for months on end and so forth. But for me the fellow on the farm in the middle of nowhere, who can't get to regular meetings because of location, and the person who due to a busy life also finds it difficult, are not that much different.

I also keep prominent in my mind, that just about everyone I have met in AA really didn't like meetings at first, hard chair not so good coffee and war stories sometimes to bore you to death. Yes we do come to love the seating and the coffee and the people, but before that happens, telling someone they must attend is just like Stepchild says - “Or we're doomed without them is a turnoff to AA.”
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Noels » Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:32 am

Hi Raven, I'm also a high-bottom alcoholic who were fast going to go towards becoming a low-bottom alcoholic if my ways did not change. When I first entered the rooms I joined a group where we were dictated to in such a nice way that I also eventually had to make up excuses for not being able to attend as attending meetings twice a week, big book studies on a weekend, attending a full day Raleigh, attending AA socials, etc was simply just too much for me at that time. Combine all this AA stuff with trying to get your life back - relationships, work, family life, etc - THE REASON WHY we went to AA in the first place for help - and it simply became completely unmanageable.

So after 3 months trying to juggle all this, putting AA first as I also heard often " my sobriety comes first" and "without AA I wouldn't be sober so I wont be able to enjoy all the other things " I decided that I want my sobriety so bad THEREFORE AA HAS TO BECOME A PART OF MY LIFE because if it didn't become a part of my life it would consume my life which would result in my family relationships, work and normal life suffering and I would simply quit AA.

You and I are not people who have already lost everything and have nothing to cling to and for that I am grateful. Therefore you and I are different to a low-bottom alcoholic and our recovery process etc will be different. We don't need to build a life from nothing and nowhere. We already have a life. We already have people in our life - sober people who have been with us during our drunk days and who still is with us. I am not going to put AA before these people as that would not work for me. So I rather make AA "a part of my life" rather than "my entire life". On THIS basis I will be with AA forever and AA will forever be with me.

So cut down your meetings and start your life as a sober person. AA is NOT everything and everything is NOT AA. You KNOW this as your gut have been telling you this all along. You just needed confirmation ? Correct ?

I already see a change in you from reading your first post and I congratulate you on that. You have worked hard to get to where you are in your sobriety and there should be times for you to enjoy that sobriety in normal life as well.

So you go girl. Cut down on meetings, continue with your step work and do what you know needs to be done. Work it because whatever you have been doing is working.

Love and Light
Noels xxx
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby positrac » Thu Jul 07, 2016 9:13 am

It is nice that experts know exactly what is going on and that I have no clue on sobriety as a few of you do. After readying Ravens point of really not needing AA and not enough hours in a day to make her own judgments make it clear to me. More was revealed and I got her to admit it. See I did provide a point that said go examine yourself and see what you need to do for more personal time and even 1 hour was not available (I used the max of 1.5 hours) So really what it boils down to is that excuses we have and actions not so much.

Some of the experts think that doing steps and reading AA literature may be the only requirement for sobriety and this might be true if the individual had some years sober and had figured out what works and what doesn't in their individual lives. In this thread nothing to the contrary came up and nor does this person have the time being sober.

So for the wrap up Ravens works 7 days a week @ 10-12 hours a day because she has no time to do her things she wants to do
Sleeps 8-10 hours per off time from work
Commutes the rest of the time to make up the 24 hour day......
If she is a single mother I could clearly see that time management is wishful thinking.

So while you experts are busting my azz over my points maybe look at the whole story and see the holes left behind on the whole truth!

I wish the person well and going to any length is way more than AA literature and working the steps as you experts have forgotten more than you've learned it seems. And if you ALL were in a F2F meeting I'd say the same things because it takes a BS'er to BS and this is about life saving and not about making excuses.

Raven you don't like my explanation and it was never intended to blow up into a finger pointing expedition and for that I apologize. Sadly one of the experts started it and has made it that way from the very start. So if you don't need sobriety then you got it all covered although in your earlier threads it seemed you needed to change your habits as I recall.

I never out right said that do or die AA meetings; I did express that early sobriety needs habits to form to understand root causes and tools for prevention. I also said mixing up meeting might help you out which you overlooked entirely. In most of my post I mention prevention to the newcomer and I rarely press steps because meeting makers will do the steps in time. I've seen to many people say they had it covered and go out and never return and die and or end up in the hospital with life threating issues because AA had to many restrictions and or strings attached.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Brock » Thu Jul 07, 2016 10:22 am

No need to get your draws in a twist posi, you basically told the young lady what her story should be, that she went to any lengths for a fix and so forth, and she replied that she did not. She also said - “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.” Well you can call us “experts” if you wish, and if trying to reassure someone, that there is a welcoming place for her in the fellowship is playing expert, then I plead guilty.
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.

There are no guru's here, and like you say she will get knowledge of what works for her, and others here don't just tell people what worked for them. When I came folks added in a heaping load of encouragement and hope for the future as well, I try to do the same and so does the book.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby PaigeB » Thu Jul 07, 2016 12:49 pm

My experience is that I would not meet any newcomers if I only had the Steps and the literature. In thinking about the very beginning of AA ~ before the literature or even the Steps, what did Bill and Bob have? They had a few "Steps" or rules: Trust God, Clean House, Help Others. The last one there... helping others. I haven't heard much talk about how if you are NOT going to meetings, how you can fulfill even the most rudimentary AA program as our primary purpose is "stay sober & help others to achieve sobriety".

I also do some Public Information Committee work, but that is not enough contact with the person who still suffers from this disease. But that is not enough for me. I sponsor 3 women, 2 of them are just getting into the Steps and one is through the Steps and already sponsoring 2 other women. These are people we met AT A MEETING where they came to look for help. I can only say I am glad I was there. I was there, in the same chair (or about the same one) when that woman came back and got a white chip. She knows where I tend to sit and though we did not speak one-on-one, I hope that my presence gave her Hope that this thing works. And it works in the long term. All things willing, I will get my 7 year chip on August 1st. I do not have an unimaginable amount of sober time, but I can tell you this thing works if you work it.

All three side of the triangle - Unity, Service and Recovery. Where is unity if not in a meeting?


Keep in mind that we are on page 4 of this thread and it may close sooner than you think. We are likely repeating ourselves after that anyway. Moderator note.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Noels » Thu Jul 07, 2016 12:57 pm

I'd like to share this beautiful truth we received via our group communication
Who Knows Best?

Others do not know what's best for us.

We do not know what's best for others.

It is our job to determine what's best for ourselves.

"I know what you need.".......

"I know what you should do.".........

"Now listen, this is what

I think you should be working on right now."

These are audacious statements,

beliefs that take us away from how we operate

on a spiritual plane of life.

Each of us is given the ability to be able to

discern and detect our own path, on a daily basis.

This is not always easy.

We may have to struggle to reach that quiet, still place.

Giving advice, making decisions for others,

mapping out their strategy, is not our job.

Nor is it their job to direct us.

Even if we have a clean contract with someone to help us –

such as in a sponsorship relationship –

we cannot trust that others always know what is best for us.

We are responsible for listening to

the information that comes to us.

We are responsible for asking for guidance and direction.

But it is our responsibility to sift and sort through information,

and then listen to ourselves about what is best for us.

Nobody can know that but ourselves.

A great gift we can give to others

is to be able to trust in them –

that they have their own source of guidance and wisdom,

that they have the ability to discern

what is best for them and the right to find

that path by making mistakes and learning.

To trust ourselves to be able to discover –

through that same imperfect process

of struggle, trial, and error –

is a great gift we can give ourselves.

Today, I will remember that

we are each given the gift

of being able to discover what is best for ourselves.

God, help me trust that gift.

Love and light
Noels
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Layne » Thu Jul 07, 2016 1:07 pm

When I first came to AA, I spent a lot time looking at ways that the program wouldn't work for me; not surprisingly, I found them. Maybe AA wasn't the place for me. When instead, I started to look for ways the program would work for me, I found them. Maybe AA was the place for me.

I am just glad that I hung around long enough to get to the how it would part because my life today is what I was looking for in the first place before I ever picked my first drink. I am finally comfortable in my own skin (and generally know serenity) :~)

AA is indeed the place for me. I go to just the right (not a set amount) number of meetings for me. "We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us." Big Book page 84 (Into Action).

I go to meetings because I want to, not because I need to. Although when I start coming up with reasons not go, my spidey sense starts tingling and tells me that maybe I need to go. At those particular times, rigorous honesty and an inventory will usually provide me with more information.

Meetings are part of my life, but they are not my life. The meat of the program is in working the twelve steps, after all they are meetings, not meatings.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Brock » Thu Jul 07, 2016 1:28 pm

I go to just the right (not a set amount) number of meetings for me.

Well said and something I believe every one of us would agree with, because it's the message we are pushing. Not one person has said stop going to meetings, and yet we are seeing comments as if that's our message, everything in moderation is something we can all agree on.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Ravensgrl » Thu Jul 07, 2016 5:46 pm

Whoa I didn't realize I was on trial here, posi. No, I don't work 7 days a week, but I do work 5 10-12 hour days. I'm trying to figure out a way to balance AA with my life. I never said that I wasn't going to go to meetings. What I am trying to do is figure out what works for me. If you were in the business of lifesaving, you would not be picking apart my posts trying to figure out the "whole" truth. Instead you are pushing away a newcomer. This is not "tough love" as someone else said, this is preaching and patronizing. I'm grateful for the other posts.

Noels - I really resonated with your post. Thank you.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby whipping post » Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:25 pm

Hi Ravensgrl,

When I came into AA I was reasonably high bottom. I still had a wife and kids at home and a very demanding job. I went to a meeting almost every day for the first 3 months. The easiest meeting for me to get to was one that just wasn't very good ( some people say they have never been to a bad meeting but my opinion differs based on my experience). By the end of that "90 in 90" I was about burnt out and I could tell all the time away was wearing on the wife. I was about ready to throw in the towel on AA. Then I visited a meeting I hadn't been to before that ended up being an excellent fit. That group met twice a week so I began attending those religiously. I show up early and help set up and am usually one of the last to leave. I got busy on the steps and worked through them quickly and continue to work them on a daily basis. For me this is a great balance. It was scary trying to feel it out because some people will try to hammer on you to become consumed by AA meetings. You can find a good balance too. Just take it easy and be honest with yourself. And most important, work those steps and incorporate them into your daily life.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby Lali » Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:37 pm

I don't think it is anybody's place to break down how Raven spends her 24 hours. It's really no one's business.
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Re: Too many meetings

Postby D'oh » Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:39 pm

Raven, I am sure that you will find a balance. Just honestly look at the question. Ask for help with it, either from your Sponsor or in your Meditation. The answer will come if your thinking is clear of wrong motives. I have Faith that you will find a balance.
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