The Steps Aren't Necessary

The 12 Steps are the AA program of recovery from alcoholism.
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martin08
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The Steps Aren't Necessary

Post by martin08 »

An anniversary was celebrated last week by a man with 28 years. He comes to only 3 or 4 meetings a year and chairs on his 'birthday'.

Of note, his length of time away from alcohol is a frequent topic at meetings and many men refer to him as "Sponsor". At meetings, he is charismatic and well versed.

His last topic included the statement, "The Steps aren't necessary for sobriety", and then he documented his path to abstinence and Fellowship involvement.

Many accolades befell this man following his qualification in a popular meeting which regularly fills the room to capacity of 60 -70 alcoholics. I counted 14 newcomers with less than 6 months who also heard this message.

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avaneesh912
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Post by avaneesh912 »

Good thing is he shows up on rare occasion! the book is clear about it, Whether such a person can quit upon a nonspiritual basis depends upon the extent to which he has already lost the power to choose whether he will drink or not. Some people are so asleep that its hard to convince them that they don't need AA. Then there are other people who are asleep that they think we are judgmental. And there are people who immediately quote the 3rd tradition.
Show him the mental twist which leads to the first drink of a spree. We suggest you do this as we have done it in the chapter on alcoholism.(Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Post by Paul N »

Interesting. Hard to dispute his comment that the steps aren't necessary for sobriety ... had he said recovery, might have asked him to the side. Would have been interested in his thoughts on how his message to the newcomer aligns with the PROGRAM of AA rather than the fellowship of it.

Jim 725

Post by Jim 725 »

His last topic included the statement, "The Steps aren't necessary for sobriety", and then he documented his path to abstinence and Fellowship involvement.
It depends on your definition of sobriety. If all you want to do is not drink, it can be done without the steps. We have people on this forum who have proved that, one who thinks himself sober and a few who have found their savior.
Those of us who fit the Big Book's description of "real alcoholic" need more than will power and meetings or religion, we need the twelve steps.
Jim S.

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martin08
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Post by martin08 »

Nail on the head Jim, Paul and Avaneesh.

The Steps aren't necessary for sobriety, so he says, but seem to be lacking for Recovery.

Without taking an inventory of the fellow, since it is a matter of Public Record, the same man had an order of protection from abuse served on him seven years ago and narrowly escaped doing jail time in lieu of public service.

My reason for posting would be to provoke some introspection for those who have settled on just "not drinking" and ask the question: And how is that working for you?

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tasman
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Post by tasman »

Hard to dispute his comment that the steps aren't necessary for sobriety ... had he said recovery, might have asked him to the side.
So true. There is a man in our home group that has been sober for 12 years and at nearly every meeting mentions that he hasn't done the steps, but look I'm still sober :roll:

When I first came in it took me about 5 minutes to decide that I didn't want what he had. I wanted what the people had that had done the steps.

It must be hard to sit and watch newcomers listen to this guy but I guess if they keep coming back then they discover the difference between getting sober and getting sober and doing the steps.

Jim 725

Post by Jim 725 »

I might be a cynic but I have to question the motives of those who come to AA meetings and/or forums and brag about not taking the steps. I doubt very seriously if humility is the driving factor.
Jim S.

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martin08
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Post by martin08 »

Thanks for refreshing my memory, Kerie.

One of the main reasons for wanting to do the Steps for me was that I didn't want what some people had.

Perhaps they were more helpful than I remembered! :wink:

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LetgoJoe
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Post by LetgoJoe »

I hear those types saying that they are their own higher power when they talk that stuff. Message received loud and clear. I was there once, thank God I am not there today. Also I have noticed they don't seem to fit in very well with the AA group conscience.

As I pray for myself, I am still praying for all alcoholics in and out of the rooms. ~Joe
Honesty gets us sober, tolerance keeps us sober. ~Bill W.

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Blue Moon
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Post by Blue Moon »

I had a sponsee once ask me about a guy who claimed 20+ years' sobriety, yet constantly ridiculed the Steps in his sharing.

To be an angry SOB after 20+ years of not drinking seems quite a feat.

I asked the sponsee if he wanted what this old-timer had. He said "hell, no". So I said "so don't do what he did". I've not often seen someone jump into the Steps quite so fast.

So yes, there are such persons in AA. I find they need not bar anyone who honestly wants recovery, and can be quite a good advert of what can happen to those who stay physically sober but don't get well.
Ian S
AKA Blue Moon

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ann2
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Post by ann2 »

Huh, I didn't drink for 16 years before taking step 4. But you can bet, if I hadn't done my inventory and followed through with the steps that come after, I would have taken a path in my life that would have led to my drinking. Maybe at 28 years.

Ann
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

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Ken_the_Geordie
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Post by Ken_the_Geordie »

We've got a guy like the one in the original post at my regular home group, though he doesn't brag about not doing the steps. I only know he never did them because he did a 'main share' and said he was aethist and was never very good at getting stuff done.

Saying that he's an affluent business man.

But I would question whether he's a real alcoholic or was just a heavy drinker. I believe he liked the social atmosphere of bars and when he found AA he just swapped the bars for the social atmosphere of AA.

Me? I just liked drinking. I'd hide from the wife and even drink alone in my shed next to the lawn mower with spiders as company.

He mightn't need the steps, but I ruddy well do.

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martin08
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Post by martin08 »

Ken_the_Geordie wrote:
He mightn't need the steps, but I ruddy well do.
:D :D :D :D

As is the case with me. Thanks Ken!

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Re: The Steps Aren't Necessary

Post by Jack the Hand »

The steps are only suggested as a path to recovery, same as suggesting to use a parachute bailing out of a plane. You can choose not to use either. :D :D

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Re:

Post by Jack the Hand »

Ken_the_Geordie wrote: But I would question whether he's a real alcoholic or was just a heavy drinker. I believe he liked the social atmosphere of bars and when he found AA he just swapped the bars for the social atmosphere of AA.

.
The only requirement for membership....... Aye up Geordie lad.

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