online sponsor?

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?

online sponsor?

Postby CP07 » Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:51 pm

Hi guys,

I have to say that reading posts on here are amazing. It's been helpful and I've been sober over 2 years. My problem is, I've had a couple sponsors, and I have this weird phobia of talking on the phone. When I'm in person, I'm fine. Text messages, emails, fine. But answering the phone and calling cause me extreme anxiety. I want to work the steps with a sponsor. I've tried online sponsors, and I've had 3 different people assigned to me. One wrote 1 email and never wrote back. One wanted to do video chats, from another country (4 hour time difference, we both work, it was impossible unless one of us wanted to stay up in the middle of the night), and one who wanted me to start over at step 1 when I'm already on step 7. My in person sponsor went awol after step 6, doesn't show up to meetings, answer messages ( I hope she's okay).

What do I do? Is it possible to have an online sponsor? :(
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Re: online sponsor?

Postby Brock » Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:47 am

The problem seems to be that you have tried online sponsors and it didn’t work out very well, through no fault of your own, but you now have experience of the limitations regarding online sponsorship, time differences and so forth. Also not wanting to use the phone is quite understandable, I have seen a good few persons here say they don’t like it either, feel as if they are troubling the other person and so on.

I never could understand when folks say they want to work the steps, or work them again. But in some cases with those who didn’t have a spiritual belief, they have reported here that doing the steps a second time gave them that belief, and they start writing the word God. But being at #7 you can move on to 8 & 9, it seems 6 & 7 are not something to over analyze, say the prayer, make a list for 8, and say sorry to those you are willing to say sorry to. Then we live by the principles of 10, 11 & 12, and those defects from 6 & 7, which are holding us back become more apparent, and we turn those over. A person, or a few persons, we didn’t apologize to at 9 may weigh on our mind, we then say sorry to them. We are growing spiritually, which is the whole point of the program, and this growth takes us back to every step, and we may do a little more ‘work’ on them, in step 10 we see this, (with some added notes in brackets) -

This thought brings us to ...Step Ten,... which suggests we continue to take personal inventory and continue to set right any new mistakes as we go along. We vigorously commenced this way of living as we cleaned up the past. We have entered the world of the Spirit. Our next function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness. This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime. continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment, and fear. (Step 4). When these crop up, we ask God at once to remove them. (6 & 7). We discuss them with someone immediately (5) and make amends quickly if we have harmed anyone. (8 & 9). Then we resolutely turn our thoughts to someone we can help. (12). Love and tolerance of others is our code.

So we are continually ‘working’ the steps, it becomes a habit and doesn't feel like work, and as we mature spiritually we make less and less ‘mistakes,’ which we need to go back into the steps to correct. In #11 it says - “What used to be the hunch or the occasional inspiration gradually becomes a working part of the mind…we find that our thinking will, as time passes, be more and more on the plane of inspiration. We come to rely upon it.” It’s automatic after a while, as they say ‘a working part of the mind.’

Doing the steps gives us a bag of spiritual tools, living a spiritual life let’s us learn how best to sharpen and use those tools. I am afraid that some folks are expecting to sharpen up those tools by going through the steps again and again, when the program seems to suggest we start doing that by living in the solution of the last three. I don’t want to be rude, but after more than two years and only on step 7, this is not what the program suggests, you should have moved on a very long time ago.

Also any uncertainty about how to proceed through 7 – 9, if you can find a sponsor to help directly fine, if not research by listening to you tube tapes covering those steps, there are many fine AA speakers who discusses the steps, and of course questions are welcomed here.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: online sponsor?

Postby Blue Moon » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:54 am

CP07 wrote:and one who wanted me to start over at step 1 when I'm already on step 7.


When I'm sponsoring someone, we start at step 1. This is because we need to ensure we've done the step properly, as there is way too much misinformation being shared as fact in the rooms about what alcoholism is. We need to get on the same page about that, and the fact that alcoholism really has almost nothing to do with drinking. Step 2, what is your Higher Power? If it's a group or a doorknob, we may need to talk about spiritual matters. Step 3, whose will are we talking about? Was Step 5 about defects of character, or a life-story?

If we don't cover such ground, then I'm only guiding you from where I think you are, and I won't make such suppositions with your recovery. It really doesn't take long to catch up to wherever you truly are.

After all, why wouldn't you want to be on the same page as your sponsor? This is your recovery we're talking about, and half measures avail us nothing. I wouldn't put a person's recovery fate into whatever understanding that person's prior sponsor was able to pass along .... they're "ex-"sponsor for a reason.
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