want to go deeper

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want to go deeper

Postby Lansbury » Tue Aug 29, 2017 3:00 pm

Hello everyone. I'm Lansbury, an alcoholic from the UK (I'm female).

I have nearly eight months sober, and I have been attending AA meetings - at least twice weekly, for about three months. I attend a women's meeting and a Big Book study, which happens to be all older men except for me (I'm 35).

AA has really helped me - but I am still struggling - REALLY struggling - partly with the desire to drink, but mainly with the desire not to be sober. I have problems in my relationships, with my partner in particular, with my children, and I feel like my head is like a washing machine. I am exhausted.

In my last Big Book meeting I shared - and just said that I was feeling beat, and I really felt the only way for me to get some peace was to go all into AA, get a sponsor, and go through the steps totally whole heartedly. That I was ready to start with that, after spending the last three months just listening, feeling things out, trying to understand the programme a little. It was clear, as everyone else in the Big Book study is a man, that I wasn't going to be asking anyone from that group to sponsor me, but at the end of the meeting one of the guys came up to me and said that confidentially, there's one person at the women's meeting that should not be sponsoring, that was dangerous and harmful and I should be very very very careful.

Of course i've been in a total tailspin since then. I don't know which person he was talking about and he wouldn't tell me. Now I feel like I can't ask any of these women, because I know full well my own judgement and thinking is shot at - that is why I need help and sponsorship and a programme in the first place.

I keep turning this over and over and over in my mind and I can't seem to make a decision or get any peace on it, but I don't feel safe.

Lansbury
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby JohnDaniels » Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:33 pm

Lansbury,

Welcome to the forums here. First off I want to congratulate you on your 8 months of sobriety.

I hope you find the answers you are looking for here. There are allot of good women here that would love to help you into the AA program. The hurricane has kept some of them away for the time being but I guarantee they'll be back and willing to help you. There are still some wonderful women here who may have not read your post yet.

I feel your frustration on many levels. Your relationships and children issues - hey that's allot to handle right now. The first 12 months in AA sober, everything is new. You're obviously a giving and loving person. I admire you for the strength you have to stick with it. I am thinking your partner and children admire and love you also.

I understand your feelings of the pains in your sobriety. I believe you are right on target in your wishes to find a good sponsor. That is one of the first things we ought to do. I am sorry to hear of the negativity of the women's meeting where you live. But don't give up, search out another one. Hey, not everyone in AA or in the life outside of AA does everything we ought to be doing. Hang with us here. I have found this to be the best Online AA support for anyone. You'll find some wisdom here.

Hey, until a woman contacts you feel free to contact me through a private message or on the forums here. Stick around. =smile
Last edited by JohnDaniels on Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Brock » Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:59 pm

Welcome and congrats on your nearly eight months.

These words are really refreshing - “I really felt the only way for me to get some peace was to go all into AA, get a sponsor, and go through the steps totally whole heartedly.” The members here often spend time trying to get newcomers to think like that, well said.

The fellow who said beware of a certain woman probably thought he was doing you a favor, unfortunately this has you worried. I much prefer that we should pick our sponsor, rather than what sometimes happens that they approach us. With that in mind you likely know these women fairly well by now, if there is one to whom you relate, particularly if she speaks about the steps and looks the part, seems at ease and peace with her sobriety, that's the lady I might approach. I really don't believe there could be someone for you at eight months to be afraid of, and if in doubt many come and ask here if what their sponsor is asking them to do makes sense, and if we see red flags we say choose someone else. I don't think you should worry too much about this.

The big book says that most of us feel relief from these urges to drink, (or not to be sober), after step 5, at eight months this would usually have been done by now, and you would have hopefully been living in the solution others have found. So to me the main thing would be to explain to the potential sponsor, the fact that you fully accept steps 1 through 3 and are ready for 4, hopefully she will agree and your struggle will soon ease a bit. Some of the things like the sort of washing machine brain, or what some call the committee in the head type thinking, can take a while to overcome. It's a matter of having a spiritual experience via the steps, and learning from experience that turning life's troubles and worries over to a higher power actually works, and life becomes 'easier.'

There is the option of asking for an online sponsor, there is a form for that here - http://www.e-aa.org/form_sponsors.php

As John said we have some fine ladies and all round good hearted folks on these forums, if you like keep in touch and let us know your progress and trials, keep your head up better times are coming.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby positrac » Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:14 am

Welcome and well done on 8 months and I wish you much success with the steps and getting your life in order. Sponsors: In the US I was told that if I found someone and I wanted what they had----Sobriety wise; then I should approach them about sponsorship. If I may recommend a few things and believe me you might not remember them unless you write it down and go over these thoughts with the prospective new sponsor.
1) Are they being sponsored and do they regularly meet with them? Because to sponsor they need sponsoring as these are like dominos and one slip and the whole stack starts to fall like a full circle of events.
2) Honesty about the job ahead and time and wiliness on both sides.
3) understand that people have lives and you aren't to suck the life out of them, and yet you do have a responsibility to communicate.

All I can suggest is that you don't need to drink over any of this regarding what person should or should not be sponsoring people as these things have a way of flushing out folks. Sounds like you have the right attitude and desire and so go seize the day.

cheers
You must live your life from beginning to end: No one else can do it for you.
Hopi Proverb
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Jojo2 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:15 am

[quote="Lansbury"]Hello everyone. I'm Lansbury, an alcoholic from the UK (I'm female).

I have nearly eight months sober, and I have been attending AA meetings - at least twice weekly, for about three months. I attend a women's meeting and a Big Book study, which happens to be all older men except for me (I'm 35).
that is why I need help and sponsorship and a programme in the first place. /quote]

Welcome Lansbury

I am also in the UK . Well done on 8 months.

We have a temporary sponsorship facility here at e-AA This may be of benefit to you until you secure a face to face sponsor.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you wish to talk further.

Meanwhile, If you would like a temporary sponsor, please complete the form here:

http://www.e-aa.org/form_sponsors.php


A temporary sponsor is a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous who is willing to share their experience, strength, and hope with another alcoholic as a way of service to help insure their own sobriety.

Their main function is to help guide the new person towards the 12 Steps, and also, where appropriate to help guide the new person to face to face meetings and a f2f sponsor in their local AA community.


An excellent introduction on sponsorship, permanent or temporary, with questions and answers, is this pamphlet
from GSO :

Questions and Answers on Sponsorship:

http://aa.org/pdf/products/p-15_Q&AonSpon.pdf


Please let me know if you have questions or need further assistance.

http://e-aa.org/form_officer_contact.ph ... =12th-Step


Kind Regards

Jojo

Temporary Sponsor Committee
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby avaneesh912 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:59 am

Also there are some great workshops on youtube and other websites pick one of them. I like Chris Rs because he talks more about the spiritual malady that I could relate. And you see the connection between the un-manageability and powerlessness. That will propel you to do the rest of the steps. If you can't find a good sponsor at your f2f meeting you can always use your shrink, a priest. But pick one. Ask them to help you see the selfishness and self-centeredness in all your resentments, fear and relationships. And them start fixing them.
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: want to go deeper

Postby Cristy99 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:35 am

LANSBURY:

Hello my friend!! My name is Cristy. You are in a very hard spot right now, but please know that you are not alone!!!! I want you to feel welcome here and loved. It gets better...I promise!!! I am 46, very honest, and my capacity to love is huge!!! I work my program with all my heart and I have seen many miricles happen in my life because of the program of AA. I would love to speak to you individually to offer you some hope. Please private message me if you feel comfortable.

Hang in there sweet One!!
"Talk doesn't cook rice."
~ Chinese proverb
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Lansbury » Wed Aug 30, 2017 12:48 pm

Thank you everyone for your replies. Today has been a hard day, but I reached out to one of the women in my group and I am meeting her for a coffee tomorrow afternoon. I like her - I like her sense of humour and her humility, and she has 18 months of sobriety and has been through the steps. I know she sees her sponsor regularly so I might sound her out about sponsoring me, or at least, ask her to recommend someone to me.

It's been a hard day today. I am seeing, very clearly, that what I thought was love from my husband was actually a whole lot of enabling - coming from his own issues. My drinking is my responsibility and not his - I accept that totally - and I accept that I've done irreparable damage to our relationship and that's my responsibility too. But these days, with me not drinking, and me only wanting healthy interactions and not enabling, there doesn't seem to be that much left between us. He sleeps elsewhere. I feel very very very lonely and unwanted. I think the relationship was much easier for him when I was quietly sitting in another room anesethising myself. Without my comfort blanket, stuff hurts. I don't want this to turn into self pity and resentment, but the fact is, that is where I am right now.

Thank you for your replies and listening to me. I hope to post here more, if I may?
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Brock » Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:54 pm

Lansbury wrote:Thank you for your replies and listening to me. I hope to post here more, if I may?

We all hope you do, and every newcomer here is encouraged to, it's what keeps this site alive. When you look at a persons name on the right of the page under that we see the number of posts, so some of us have been here a while and are in the thousands. Some go away for a while and we are happy to see them every couple of months, some good old diehards here every day who we couldn't do without. Most from the US and quite a good number like yourself from the UK, a couple in Spain, South Africa, Singapore and Australia, and yours truly from the Caribbean. Folks from all over the world who may never meet face to face, but share in a common journey.

Sorry to hear of your current troubles, but very pleased that you are meeting a potential sponsor. Things can only get better, when you do the 4th and 5th steps these resentments will be looked at. When I look back and think of how it was for me I can't help but smile, because it's just so much better now, and I thank the 12 steps for that. Keep going forward you won't regret it, best of luck for your meeting tomorrow, and maybe you will let us know how it goes.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Cristy99 » Thu Aug 31, 2017 5:59 am

LANSBURY:

Great job!! So glad you are meeting with someone!! We are all pulling for you!!

My heart hurts for you. I'm so sorry you are lonely and sad. All of the bad emotions we have always medicated like fear, sadness, pain seem to be wayyyyy magnified when we are sober!!! Very raw emotions!! But hang in there sweetie!!! This is a season. It will not always be this painful, I promise!!

Please keep posting!! First, for me, typing out my feelings has always been very good therapy for me. Second: it helps immeasurably to know that we are not alone!!!!

Feel that???? No??? Feel harder!!! That's a great big hug I am sending all the way from America!!!

You are strong!!! You can do this.....just for today!! XOXOX
"Talk doesn't cook rice."
~ Chinese proverb
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Lansbury » Fri Sep 01, 2017 8:32 am

Thanks for your support and help, friends.

I had a very very good coffee meeting with my friend from the fellowship. I told her what had happened, and she said that it sounded like the man who had said that to me was sick and stirring up drama. She asked me who I was thinking of asking, and why, and I told her, and she said the person I was considering asking was great friends with her sponsor, and I could ask, and if it didn't work out, it was okay. We talked for quite a while about sponsorship, and what it might involve, and she said that she doubted it would be necessary, but if I wanted I could always run things past her, or other AA members - and she said posting here was a good thing too. Basically, she told me to involve other alcoholics in my sobriety as much as possible, especially in the early days.

I feel so much better now. I am going to ask the woman I had in mind tomorrow. Am feeling really nervous about it.
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Cristy99 » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:36 am

LANSBURY:

I'm glad you are feeling better!!

Remember: you are never locked in permanently with a sponsor. She needs to be a good fit and someone with whom you are comfortable and feel connected because you will need to confide some very personal stuff to her. If eventually you find that you are not a good fit with her, politely thank her and explain that you will be more comfortable with someone else.

I know of only a few people who still have their original sponsor. It stands to reason since there are 7-8 billion people on this Earth and we all are different. Try not to stress about it.

I am excited for you!!
"Talk doesn't cook rice."
~ Chinese proverb
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Brock » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:56 am

I am also very pleased this turned out fine, I kind of thought the man who gave you the information previously wasn't doing the right thing, but didn't want to say so.

I like this lady you spoke to, the idea of involving others and posting here, not all sponsors agree with this, some seem kind of selfish, a talk to me alone kind of attitude. This is usually justified by them saying, 'if you get different opinions on something you will pick the one that suits you best, the easy way out,' and while there may be some truth to this, I always felt it was treating grown people like children.

Try not to be too nervous in asking the new sponsor she mentioned, if she can't do it she will have a very good reason, but I believe you will come to see, that she and anyone else gains by doing these things, it's an honor to be asked as well.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: want to go deeper

Postby Lansbury » Sat Sep 02, 2017 8:49 am

Thanks so much for your replies. I love the hugs Christy99!

I went to my meeting this morning and asked the woman I had in mind. I was so nervous about it. She said yes right away - and said she had only that morning been praying for a way to be useful. She said she was really honoured and pleased. She was also chairing the meeting and asked me if I would do the tea each week from now on, and I said I would.

I rang her this afternoon and we're meeting this Monday morning. She said - just bring your Big Book and any resentments you have with you. Do you have that? And I said, 'I have a book and loads of resentments' and we had a laugh.

I'm quite nervous, but pleased too. Almost looking forward to it.

Thanks so much everyone. I was in a right tailspin last week and I am not sure I would have sought advice and ended up asking her if I hadn't have posted here first. I am really grateful to you all.

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Re: want to go deeper

Postby JohnDaniels » Sat Sep 02, 2017 2:46 pm

Hi Lansbury

Thank you for sharing the wonderful news! :D

I am so happy for you! It sounds like things are falling right in to place for you and for the woman you mentioned. Prayers have been answered.
It's like when we stop fighting everyone and everything, life is like rowing your boat gently down the stream, taking the path of nonresistance smooth and easy.
One's ships come in over a calm sea

Peace
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