Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Most of us who recovered with AA's program did so with the help of a "sponsor". But what is sponsorship? How do I get one? Who can be a sponsor? What makes a good sponsor?
Service
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Service » Fri Nov 27, 2015 5:00 am

Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY ? REALLY ?

Sponsorship and what? "ACCOUNTABILITY"Are you selling something here?

Why accountability and not responsibility? oh ya that would deal with ones self instead of someone else, i forgot where were at, sorry.

Ever notice why a judge needs to know who is accountable ? As everyone should be responsible, i forgot this is an institution, forgive me.

Really whats wrong with God and being responsibility instead of having GovernMental needs? ( Govern mentally ) an A.A question?

Whats wrong with the promises of A.A to be able to intuitively handle situations that use to baffle us, instead of your institutional ways ?

Whats wrong with letting go and letting God? Instead of being in control?

Whats wrong with A.A ITSELF , instead of an outside sponsorship system ?

Honest questions deserves honest answers ! :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea:

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Tosh
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Tosh » Fri Nov 27, 2015 6:43 am

Right, which one of the mods let you out of the cage, Service? :lol:

Welcome, back.

Tosh
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: ACCOUNTABLE, defined; ESH

Post by No.3 » Fri Nov 27, 2015 10:21 am

In this case, and from Google
1.(of a person) required or expected to justify actions; responsible.
synonyms: responsible, liable, answerable

There's no reasonable inference of "discipline" or "punishment" (misinterpretation) and any implication that accountable is not "responsible" is simply wrong.

Was the OG-Alcoholic Squad not a program of moral psychology ? Early AAs/ Akron OG carefully vetted Alcoholics for recovery - this is explicit in the literature in numerous places. Their experience informed the BB. People who were "constitutionally incapable of being honest" were/are morally insane (psychopaths). Logically, if you cannot be honest with yourself how can anyone else (Fellowship, spiritual advisor, sponsor) expect you to be honest with them? Trust is impossible (it cannot be implicit, assumed, etc.) with a moral reprobate unless s/he surrenders and agrees to "sin" no more. Qualification implies both judgement & accountability. ABSTINENCE was only the first step; if someone didn't really want (wasn't willing to go to any length) to get and keep sobriety, what was the point?

I can see why Bill W. was so personally averse to judgement (he had everything to lose: philandering and adultery) and a clear majority of The Fellowship in OH opposed the book in 1938. They kept doing what they were doing, independent of 'what the book says' for a long time. (Naturally, they just died out eventually - as BB fundies will.) He kept doing what he was doing too apparently, managing the bimbo eruptions with hush money - precedence set! Later, after Bill railroaded his "Traditions" through, organized AA wisely avoided setting itself up as judge or arbiter of personal behavior for different reasons. But there have been some evil consequences of this inshallah or blanket governance of benign amorality: Midtown's teenage sex-ring, thieving treasurers, powermad secretaries/cliques, predators generally, etc. Given all that, it's easy to see how many AAs are misled by nonsense like "No cross-talk in AA!" "The BB says 'Don't be judgmental!'" and "You can't take someone else's inventory!" (Oh really? See p. 65 of BB) And so on, to the point of mindless confusion.

ESH? Why of course! Fairly recently, the popular treasurer of a "group" (meeting I attend) occasionally gave verbal statements about financial contributions (7th Tradition collection) - yet there was no money for literature. Too strange. I was certainly distrustful - "judgmental" (a word that does not appear in the BB, btw) you might say- and I can tell you exactly why. The group had basically no expenses. The Treasurer was shifty, came late &only to scoop $s into his wallet. His numbers were implausibly high. And he occasionally nodded off in meetings (I sponsor h addicts, I'm aware) the situation was ridiculous. Did no one else see? They certainly didn't say.

WTF. Well, I know how to tie my own shoes ...and use the telephone. I called Elizabeth at the GSO, our regional central svc, and the Area Treasurer to see what funds "we" had donated the last year. Can you guess? Oh, try.

I was fairly new to that meeting, so I spoke with my sponsor (+35 yrs sober) what to do. "WHO ARE YOU TO HOLD SOMEONE ELSE ACCOUNTABLE" came the stern, & irate rebuke.* Predictably. And this, to my unceasingly bemusement and occasional frustration, is THE IDIOCY OF AA writ large, time after time. Certain criticism is forbidden, it's judgmental to question ... a "Trusted Servant"? anyone popular? a psychopath's motives/actions? and the perfect predatory environment is thereby established. (Online, scrutinize Moderators - they must be held to the very highest standards.)

Now before I tell you how I responded, please allow me a brief digression. In the real world -apart from the utter insanity of 12 Step "No Judgmental" groupthink- democratic organizations of all sizes have learned that -human nature being what it is- accountability and checks & balances are certainly necessary. Treasurers/money holders must be honest and trustworthy ... or it's fairly predictable that 'problems of money' will ensue.

AA really ought to know better. Our basic text refers to PSYCHOPATHS multiple times! Psychopaths are morally insane, incapable of genuine Honesty. But AA archives (examined closely by Susan Cheever and described in her bio of Bill W.) reveal that common-sense prudence sadly lacking, in group, after group, after group over decades ... Problematic theft is hardly an aberration in AA and we never seem to learn: the leopard can't change his spots. Psychopaths will do what they want to do, self-seekers gravitate to positions of power & money in AA, and great damage ensues. Most of the time, in the perverted name of Unity, their crimes are hushed up. Please tell me, what is this AA character defect: Dishonesty? Blind spot? Built-in-Forgettor? Credulity? Servility? Co-dependence? I was shocked to hear, attending my first and last local area service meeting, of tens of thousands of dollars stolen (multiple anon questions; one case?) by Trusted Servant(s). I laughed - what would a reasonable, informed normie expect from sober horse-thieves ? So why are we/AA collectively so irrational, "insane" (the so-called Einstein adage) - someone told you/me that AA isn't "judgmental" thus no one can be held "accountable" ever? Yes, in my opinion, it comes down to that.

What did I do, regarding the stolen funds? I sent my spons to p.134 of the 12&12. Then I "played God" as churchladies might claim - I fixed the problem quietly. Some folks need it written explicitly in AA lit, but others (the daft, the willful and the malicious) will probably always refuse the commonsense of ACCOUNTABILITY: it troubles them, silence!

Following the lead of longterm group members (Selfish Prudence), I did not hold the culprit publicly accountable, a Selfish Fear (my Turnaround, perhaps.) I don't presume I did the right thing either. So it's a teaching lesson all around.

*This is not ironic. Based on my experience and what I've read in One-on-One, it's both common understanding and practice that a sponsor's role is holding the sponsee accountable to AA principles and right-living. (Groups may likewise include Accountability clauses in their GC/ statement.) Nothing prevents sponsors/sponsorship families & sponsees from adopting very different relationships, however. AA doesn't dictate personal relationships.
"The Group demands total loyalty to the inner group. Some have had to leave the movement because of the Groups' demands which conflict with truth or duty." The Oxford Groups by Herbert H. Henson, 1933, pages 73-74.

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Brock
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Brock » Fri Nov 27, 2015 12:27 pm

This is not ironic. Based on my experience and what I've read in One-on-One, it's both common understanding and practice that a sponsor's role is holding the sponsee accountable to AA principles and right-living.
I don't think anyone will disagree with that, possibly not even our member 'Service,' whose primary reason for being here is to speak ill of sponsors who allow any hint of a codependent relationship to develop with sponsees. Providing the AA principles and right-living are exactly that as laid out in the literature, and never the sponsors own ideas of what right living is, my experience is that sponsors are not generally satisfied with that, and so default to this.
Nothing prevents sponsors/sponsorship families & sponsees from adopting very different relationships, however. AA doesn't dictate personal relationships.
These more personal relationships I have seen encouraged by sponsors, usually when a sponsee might question the sponsors instruction by saying 'show me where the book says that.' And failure to agree that the sponsors own morality will also define right from wrong, will usually find newcomers being labeled as unwilling to go to any lengths, and others as not remaining 'teachable.'

My take on the program is once I have a spiritual awaking, and providing I endeavor every day to enrich my spirituality and contact with my higher power, then I become accountable to that power only. And I feel sorry for those who believe they need another human to keep them accountable, for they may never feel the joy of knowing that God is happy with their progress, while settling for a mere humans endorsement.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

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ezdzit247
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by ezdzit247 » Fri Nov 27, 2015 1:05 pm

LOL.... :lol:

Might be time to lay off those industrial strength expressos and switch to half-cafs for a while. I normally don't care much for rants per se but yours was well written and you made some good points

Here's a link to Nancy O's article from the Grapevine which includes a first person account regarding how the 12 Traditions were put together. She was one of AA's pioneers in New York and the third or fourth woman to join AA.
It's a good read on AA's history.

http://www.e-aa.org/forum/viewtopic.php ... it=Nancy+O.

With all due respect, psychopaths are not "morally insane". They are amoral, yes, but not at all "insane". The fact that they are so intelligent, calculating and high functioning is what makes them so dangerous to society, especially when "kicks just keep getting harder to find" and they transition into Wall Street bankers or serial killers.

There's a really excellent research paper you can google entitled "Never Smile At A Crocodile: Narcissistic Leaders and their Manipulation in Group Dynamics" by Richard Boyd, a psychotherapist from Australia. It's well referenced to previous clinical studies on narcissistic personality disorders and group dynamics as well as Christopher Lasch's paradigm shifting "The Culture of Narcissism".

Here's a teaser from the paper on "accountability"
"...The sociologist Christopher Lasch(1984), noted in his book "The Culture of Narcissism", that "In a dying culture, narcissism appears to embody .... in the guise of personal "growth" and "awareness" .... the highest attainment of spiritual enlightenment". Martinez-Lewi notes that "many of us make the assumption that if an individual has theological credentials or training or claims in spiritual disciplines, he or she is authentic. Some of the most insidious forms of narcissism are perpetrated by spiritual teachers and gurus".

I believe that we in the Western world are very susceptible to the predation by spiritual/self development gurus as a vacuum now exists where the church once played the role as the higher power and spiritual base for many people. The decline of the church and religion in society has not quenched many people's desire for connection to spiritual truths, or indeed to be "saved" by some guru or enlightened person/being. The process of giving one's personal power to some higher power is very attractive to the predatory narcissist who instinctively knows the role of spiritual/self development leader naturally delivers many resources and dynamics naturally demanded by the narcissistic personality.

Writers such as Scott Peck(1983), Ransky(1998), Cawthorne(1991), Ritchie(1999), and others see the New Age spiritual movement as a form of narcissism, and this is why it attracts so many narcissistic adherents. They collectively argue along the lines that follow. New Age philosophy is predicated with the idea that there is no personal god, hence you are not answerable or accountable to any other deity or higher power than yourself, or some universal life force. There is no sin, no need for shame, no evil, all of which are constructs of a controlling, scandal ridden church state. We each are elevated to being gods, we just need to realise that and become that. Once we start behaving as gods(which is the narcissistic aim or goal), we are liberated. We do not need to apologise to anyone, nor have conscience beyond the concept of a positive intention.

If in your pursuit of godhead, you run over someone else and damage or offend them, then well, too bad, that's their stuff, karma or issue, and you are not accountable to them, only yourself. You are better placed to yell at them "stop being a victim!!" as you drive off down the road as that is an enlightened awareness they obviously need....."
I'm not nearly as concerned about AA's petty thieves, liars and philanderers. I would agree that they are a huge nuisance but not much of a danger to AA as a whole. I am more concerned about the self appointed gurus and their weak-minded followers impact on AA than the moral failings of a few scattered individuals dipping into the till or being sexually promiscuous.
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

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avaneesh912
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by avaneesh912 » Fri Nov 27, 2015 1:39 pm

Naturally, they just died out eventually - as BB fundies will.)
I don't think so, young people are taking this more seriously than the conditioned "one day at a time crowd". They are taking ownership and creating a fellowship they crave not polluting AA with their drug affliction. They are creating groups to help their own kind, which is the right thing to do.
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: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by PaigeB » Fri Nov 27, 2015 1:43 pm

Most of the time, in the perverted name of Unity, their crimes are hushed up.
I always kept my mouth shut for Anonymity... 'Cause there, but for the grace of god, go I.
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

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ezdzit247
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by ezdzit247 » Fri Nov 27, 2015 2:26 pm

avaneesh912 wrote:
Naturally, they just died out eventually - as BB fundies will.)
I don't think so, young people are taking this more seriously than the conditioned "one day at a time crowd". They are taking ownership and creating a fellowship they crave not polluting AA with their drug affliction. They are creating groups to help their own kind, which is the right thing to do.
LOL..... :lol:

I am a YPAA alumni and yes, AA youngsters have been very proactive in creating the fellowship they crave among their own age group. Why? To be able to address their generation's problem with addiction in general and alcohol in particular in a safe place without fear of harassment or rejection from the dogmatic, judgmental "purists" among AA's fringe minority. YPAA has built their now worldwide recovery fellowship on the "goofy slogan" of ONE DAY AT A TIME, the same as the mainstream majority fellowship of AA. You're entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts.
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Stepchild » Fri Nov 27, 2015 6:54 pm

There is some real garbage being thrown around here...I have to feel sorry for someone new to AA checking out what it's all about...And having to wade through this nonsense. It's fricken pitiful. I thank God I don't have to listen to this BS in meetings....It wouldn't fly here. I imagine it wouldn't fly in most meetings anywhere. And that's why it gets dumped here. Too bad.

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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by avaneesh912 » Fri Nov 27, 2015 7:05 pm

This guy is going through identify crisis. Tried hard to not work the 12 steps but failed I guess. Now he wants to put a spin on every step. I do the 3rd step this way and the inventory not based on the big book but some other way. So he can label others a BB fundies. For a person who claims to be living under the sunlight of the spirit. Carries too much of resentment toward AA, I wonder why. And there are people here to fan that, total tragedy.
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: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Stepchild » Fri Nov 27, 2015 7:11 pm

avaneesh912 wrote:This guy is going through identify crisis. Tried hard to not work the 12 steps but failed I guess. Now he wants to put a spin on every step. I do the 3rd step this way and the inventory not based on the big book but some other way. So he can label others a BB fundies. For a person who claims to be living under the sunlight of the spirit. Carries too much of resentment toward AA, I wonder why. And there are people here to fan that, total tragedy.
Well put.

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Tosh
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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Tosh » Sat Nov 28, 2015 12:47 am

avaneesh912 wrote:Carries too much of resentment toward AA, I wonder why.
And of course the irony is the resentment in your posts too. :shock:

You know what they say about pointing fingers, don't you?

I've got about three of them pointing at me right now! :lol:
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: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Stepchild » Sat Nov 28, 2015 5:40 am

Tosh wrote:
avaneesh912 wrote:Carries too much of resentment toward AA, I wonder why.
And of course the irony is the resentment in your posts too. :shock:

You know what they say about pointing fingers, don't you?
Do you really look at calling someone out that posts total nonsense as a resentment?....As pointing fingers? I look more at that as standing up for something you believe in...You know Tosh?...The Church of the One True Alcoholic...Or whatever it is he calls AA...The fact you defend this BS says a lot. Or it's just another easy argument to latch on to.

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Re: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by avaneesh912 » Sat Nov 28, 2015 5:48 am

And of course the irony is the resentment in your posts too. :shock:
We are dealing with too much un-consciousness here. I have no resentment towards AA. What I am trying to highlight is there is the Hard drinker sitting in the room sharing with the newcomers to simply sit and think through the drink and then there is the real alcoholic who gets caught in the trap.

Here is an example:

have been sober for a little over 6 months now. I plan to check out the workshop stuff you sent me in the next few days. I do have a couple of questions for you in the meantime. Right now I'm dealing with a lot of difficulty in my recovery process. I have troubles with depression, anger and frustration. Many of these things were preexisting conditions, but have been getting worse. Is this something you dealt with during the early stages of recovery? I sort of thought that I would immediately start feeling better but I haven't yet. I've been told that this is part of the process. It's been difficult.

So, with our identity clear, our purpose is to help this occassional cat that strays into the rooms and occassionally runs into people with solution. I want to be part of that team. Hope you will be part of that too.

Yesterday at the noon meeting here was John Doe who has 2 rules: "I can't handle alcohol" and rule number two, refer to the rule number 1. And the entire meeting broke out in laughter. I had to chime in a bit later to say that the alcoholic cannont stay away from the first drink just based on self-knowledge and fear. He needs to have the 12 steps.
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: Sponsorship and ACCOUNTABILITY

Post by Tosh » Sat Nov 28, 2015 6:16 am

Stepchild wrote:The fact you defend this BS says a lot.
Stepchild, you'll notice I actually disagreed with No 3 and the word 'accountability' in the early posts in this thread. I didn't get into an argument about it though, what I did was seek to find further understanding and clarification of what was meant by the word, and unsurprisingly we found mutual ground.

Why don't you share your experience of sponsoring and holding those you work with accountable?

Or at least try to put principles before personalities; love and tolerance is our code 'n' all that.
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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