Two Types of Alcoholics ?

The 12 Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous, the principles that hold our groups and society together.

Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby Blue Moon » Tue Jul 12, 2005 1:51 pm

The trouble with AA is that it's full of alcoholics ;)
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby SteveC » Tue Jul 12, 2005 11:33 pm

Hi John,

As Forums Coordinator, I'd appreciate it if you could stick to the forum subject matter. Also, please consider the effect these long, rambling posts might have on the newcomer. If you like, I'd be glad to discuss the above topics with you in private email.

Thanks,

Steve
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But peace within the storm.
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby stephbridget » Thu Jul 21, 2005 4:49 pm

Thank you!
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby curtis s » Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:28 am

I found that, perhaps because of the writing style, that I could not relate to a lot of the big book. I would say that I never drank unless I wanted to, but then at some level I always wanted to. However I have known folks who found themselves drinking even when they desparately did not want to.

Or take the idea of going to any lengths. Yes we must be willing to go to any lengths. But they don't tell us what those lengths will be. Today going to any lengths does not include going to a meeting when I am sick because I don't want to pass on my germs. (Sitting next to someone with the virus when I was noticably ill got that rather strongly brought to my attention) I don't go out to meetings in really bad snow storms unless they are close enough that I can walk home, which after my knee injury got to be a prohibitively short distance. And I don't do stuff like skip my wifes birthday to go to a meeting although if I felt close to a drink I would.

My drinking problem has been removed for the moment. My thinking problem is only partly fixed. I don't think it was any one thing that removed the compulsion to drink. It was a combination of things, the steps, the fellowship, and a bunch of things also that happened outside of AA.

The thing is none of this matters really. What matters is that I was desparate to avoid the problems that continued drinking would bring. Even if my desparation was very quiet and I had few of the outward signs yet of alcoholism like jails, institutions, homelessness and failing health. When I came to AA they did not tell me I had to be a certain way, a certain kind of alcoholic, have a certain bottom. They didn't get into the alcohol vs drug thing. They just said that I should keep coming and to listen carefully. When this seemed to be working I decided to stay.

The BB, and AA itself, is full of contradictions. My favorite is the huge paradox in the 8th and 9th steps, that we do these steps for our benefit but they will only really work if we do them for the benefit of others. So what? Someone once said that the person who never contradicts themself probably never says much of anything interesting. I think the same thing is true here and if we get caught up in looking for contradictions we will be in real danger of losing sight of all that is important.

Curt
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby pabscat » Sun Jan 22, 2006 10:48 am

thank for the ranting lecture,john i dont know what i would have done if you hadnt explained you dream to us, it sounded like the monotone drone of a single subject fanatic,you gave the first big rant then had a break then returned and continued with phase 2,need i remind you we share in a general way
SHARE NOT LECTURE
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby Jim 725 » Sun Jan 22, 2006 12:33 pm

Or take the idea of going to any lengths. Yes we must be willing to go to any lengths. But they don't tell us what those lengths will be.
At the risk of starting an argument, I'll say that in all three editions of the Big Book I've owned, the author did, in fact, say what those 'any lengths' were. On page 58: "If you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it--then you are ready to take certain steps."
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby Susan » Sun Jan 22, 2006 5:54 pm

Hmmmmmmmm ......interesting discussion :p

Yep, the writing style is out dated, and sure you find contradictions if you look for them ... however, I have grown to love our Big Book. :roll:

Happy Trails,
Happy Trails ~

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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby stephbridget » Mon Jan 23, 2006 5:08 am

If you do not look for contradictions, you will not find them. I prefer to keep it simple. AA is a simple program if you live day by day and do what you can to the best of your ability :)
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby PastDelegate57/65 » Tue Mar 28, 2017 4:54 pm

The so called CONTRADICTIONS are the result of folks not understanding what they are reading. The BB is very clear. They key is to read the BLACK PART and keep your Spin, Twist, Opinions and for God's sake, YOUR INTERPRETATIONS out of the equation. Under those conditions, it works quite nicely.

I have no idea where a contradiction lies in Steps 8 & 9/

As to Two Types of Alcoholics? Yes......Drinking Alcoholics and Sober Alcoholics. It's just that simple.
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby Barbara D. » Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:03 am

I have no idea what John wrote, but the Subject certainly reminded me that I did think there were 2 kinds of alcoholics in AA when I first got here.

I'm high bottom. That is, I never drank 2 days in a row, just sporadically for 15+ years. I made a point to be careful. It was a slow progression. I thought I was alcoholic in college because I knew I did not drink like the rest of the kids. I tried being social but preferred being alone, did not want to share my one night stands with other people. Even back then, the problem was I never knew when the drunk would turn hostile or I'd end up climbing a building. And blackouts were unsettling, of course. I can't tell you when taking that first drink meant that I would get drunk. At 36 and being "happily" married with children, I was drinking on Mondays and Thursdays and wanted more, more, more. I came to my first meeting, not knowing a thing about the Steps, just believing that AA could keep me sober long enough for me to straighten out my life. Yep, that's what I thought then. AA had kept my father sober temporarily a few times. He had binges that lasted days but was mostly dry.

For many years, I thought hardcores didn't have the right to project how my alcoholism was going to evolve even though I believed the "yets" were going to happen if I kept drinking. I suspected the hardcores thought high-bottoms were just sissies, hadn't really earned a seat in Recovery yet. But as I worked the Steps and the details of my drinking became less and less important as my thinking began to change and I began to grasp some spiritual principles, I realized the bond of alcoholism included all of us. I was able to focus on the similarities, not our differences. The Big Book does have a section on the stages of alcoholism. And although the Big Book was written by hardcore males for hardcore males, it quickly was invaded by women and high-bottoms. :mrgreen: I think this shows the Power Greater Than Ourselves behind the scenes. The Steps have gone way beyond their original intention and have helped people with many addictions all over the world.

I have come to believe that we get here by many different roads and that sobriety is available to all of us....huh? if we have the capacity to be honest.

Thanks for listening. Barbara D.
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby SoberInMI » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:41 am

Barbara D. wrote:I have no idea what John wrote, but the Subject certainly reminded me that I did think there were 2 kinds of alcoholics in AA when I first got here.

I'm high bottom. That is, I never drank 2 days in a row, just sporadically for 15+ years. I made a point to be careful.


The 12 and 12 talks about bottoms in the 1st step. It says that at first only "last gaspers" or (very) low-bottom drunks could grasp the program and that others had to raise their bottom to do the same.

I haven't found a good definition of an AA bottom, but I see it as how far down you have gone, how much the disease has impaired you morally and spiritually, and how much damage it has done to your life or how much has been lost.

If you didn't drink every day, some would erroneously argue you are not an alcoholic. As you indicate, binge drinkers don't drink every day but can be alcoholics. It is really about what your drinking does to you when you drink that makes you an alcoholic. My point is just because you didn't drink every day doesn't make you a high-bottom drunk.
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Re: Two Types of Alcoholics ?

Postby PaigeB » Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:13 am

Heard at an AA meeting, "Your bottom is when you decide to quit digging."

She also added, "Don't worry about trying to climb outta the role, we jump down in there with you."

:D
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