Putting Out an Individual

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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby savedsoul » Fri Jan 28, 2011 10:42 am

Thanks to everyone for sharing their experience, strength and hope!
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Tuff Gong » Thu Mar 31, 2011 4:11 pm

IMO its a complete violation of the traditions. It does effect AA as a whole as now "membership" is exclusive and the drunk is not the one deciding that he/she is a member. This is a dangerous deviation from our primary purpose.

The group should no longer claim to be associated with AA or listed by the local intergroup.
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Hguols » Wed Apr 13, 2011 9:48 pm

Tuff Gong wrote:IMO its a complete violation of the traditions. It does effect AA as a whole as now "membership" is exclusive and the drunk is not the one deciding that he/she is a member. This is a dangerous deviation from our primary purpose.

The group should no longer claim to be associated with AA or listed by the local intergroup.


Several years ago there was this group I went to that was in a church basement. Its a good 4 hours from where I live now, and a good 5 years ago when I experienced this, but it still has a powerful memory with me.

There was a guy that was banned from this meeting... BANNED like forbidden to step foot in the door. Why?

This guy would literally start fist fights during the meeting. Happened on multiple occasions. It wasn't that he didn't want sobriety or knew nothing of how meetings work. He actually had several years sober, was very fluent in the big book and its workings, and read the first 164 pages every 11 days. (one chapter per day)

...but if someone disagreed with him, he'd sometimes go into a RAGE. Unruly was an understatement, and more often than not, police had to get involved as he'd physically hurt someone.

Now, is banning him technically a violation of the 3rd tradition? Yes.
...I'm not Bill Wilson, but I can't imagine that he coined the 3rd tradition as some sort of a zero tolerance policy.
That makes zero sense.

If a drunk showed up to your meeting naked, how many of you would let him stay because he still had a desire to stop drinking?
If a drunk showed up with a gun and started pointing it at people, how many of you would let him stay because he still had a desire to stop drinking?
Come on folks. You and I both know there are people out there that cannot be reasoned with.

To tie this in with the original post.... Someone making members "uncomfortable" isn't a good enough reason to exclude them from home membership, in my opinion. Now if he was making aggressive and vulgar advances, or any other unreasonable threats.... that's a different story.
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby MyNameisVictor » Tue Apr 26, 2011 9:44 am

Hi savedsoul, my name is Victor and I'm an alcoholic. To your question, the third tradition states that "The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking." Beyond that, in my opinion I guess it depends on how this person is making women feel uncomfortable. If it's just his mere presence, I don't think anyone has a right to ban him from the meeting. It sounds, however, like he may be doing something to make them uncomfortable, like perhaps making some perverted remarks or trying to hit on them or something else inappropriate. I guess it's up to the group conscience of that particular meeting, but if that's the case, yes, he should be barred from the meeting.

Anyway, that's my 2c, for what it's worth.

God bless,

Victor
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Mayormelon » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:44 pm

I am SO grateful to have found this group!!! I moved a couple of years ago from San Diego where my experience was very deeply rooted in the AA traditions, to a small town in East Texas.
Recently after taking a local job instead of my previous traveling position, I decided to participate in the "steering" committee.
i have been to a total of two steering committee meetings and 2 group conscious meetings (2 months worth)
They "banished" one person for stealing $100 until he repays the money (this group has a $7000 prudent reserve)
They are all about rules and regulations and tonight, they discussed kicking out another member for bringing his dog to the parking lot in his car (not in the actual Aa house) saying dogs re not allowed.
He parks in the shade and leaves his windows down- the dog is not suffering! I am an animal loving witness.
I am absolutely beside myself. Certainly I am practicing tolerance of intolerance but the traditions are very clear on this.
Honestly I have never been to a meeting where someone didn't have at least one piece of recovery I want or can look up to.
It was not so here- there is interance, no compassion, and god has not been mentioned once except by me.
All the people with less sobriety practice complacency and go along with the elders who use the traditions to justify whatever suits them.
I know god has the ultimate authority but truly it has broken my heart.
I love Aa, but sure I am in the twilight zone. One guy actually commented that people can't just come in and act how they want or break rules.
It is only by the grace of god my husband accepted a job in Denver and we will be gone before the end of August.
But what about the people who live here their whole lives and this is the only AA they ever know- I mean these are the old timers talking trash and punishing members. Ugggggg
Excuse any typos as I am doing this from my phone
Tc
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby avaneesh912 » Wed Aug 02, 2017 5:15 am

To maintain my spiritual condition, I would step away from these egoistic situations. If we are not conscious, there is a good chance we can be dragged into the un-consciousness and that is not good for this alcoholic. My drama within my head is enough to tackle. Be glad that your higher power is moving you out of this situation.
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: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Brock » Wed Aug 02, 2017 5:55 am

Welcome to e-AA Mayormelon.

I agree with what avaneesh said - “Be glad that your higher power is moving you out of this situation.” But I am the type of person who would give them a piece of my mind before leaving. It doesn’t have to be confrontational, maybe a letter along the lines of what you posted here, or maybe speaking out at your last meeting, so everybody will understand that the group is not running according to traditions. Things like $7000 reserves are recipes for trouble, and as you say the meetings themselves are lacking in the AA spirit of love and tolerance.

Others might find it best to just move on and whisper live and let live as you go, personally I believe this is overused as an excuse to do nothing, when our conscious says we should act, and I have regrets now for past actions I could and should have taken. Well done on caring enough to express your disappointment here, and best of luck in finding better AA in Denver.
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby positrac » Wed Aug 02, 2017 7:49 am

I found that each area of the country/world have different terms of the concepts of traditions and something's are better left alone as others have to answer to themselves someday for whatever actions and or decisions made.

Hope you'll like East Texas as it is beautiful country and not as weather friendly as San Diego was.
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Blue Moon » Wed Aug 02, 2017 5:53 pm

Mayormelon wrote:(this group has a $7000 prudent reserve)

Unless the rent is $2,500 monthly, this is a new definition of the word "prudent" that I'm unfamiliar with.
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby RyanjSp » Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:19 pm

If the individual was involved in certain incidents which simply violated the safety or well-being of individuals in the group than he can be asked out of the meeting off the property at Pains of involving law enforcement past that don't see anything that could possibly be in line with Traditions as far as barring someone from service work unless the group simply does not vote for him each time
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Patsy© » Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:10 am

savedsoul wrote:I recently heard of a homegroup in my area who put an individual out because some of the women in the group felt uncomfortable around him.
They did not ban him from the meeting but he can no longer be a member of the homegroup.

Is this in line with the Traditions, if so can you please tell me where?

Thanks



Tradition Three "The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking."

This Tradition is packed with meaning. For A.A. is really saying to every serious drinker, "You are an A.A. member if you say so. You can declare yourself in; nobody can keep you out. No matter who you are, no matter how low you've gone, no matter how grave your emotional complications - even your crimes - we still can't deny you A.A. We don't want to keep you out. We aren't a bit afraid you'll harm us, never mind how twisted or violent you may be. We just want to be sure that you get the same great chance for sobriety that we've had. So you're an A.A. member the minute you declare yourself."


I believe that Tradition Three answers this quite well. We are AA MEMBERS when we say so. An AA group has the right to protect itself from harms, whether on the inside or coming from the outside. This person can go to any other AA group, AA meeting or he can start his own AA meeting if he chooses....because he is an AA MEMBER when he says so, although no longer welcomed at that particular AA group.

At our AA group, we had an AA group member pull a gun and threaten someone at the AA meeting. We handled it the best way we knew how...... we called the police, and they came and took him outside. There are consequences to our actions, and one of those consequences is that we may be asked to NEVER come to that AA group or meeting again. We are responsible AA members who take the AA Traditions very serious and we behaved accordingly and took a Group Conscience vote...and this person was no longer allowed to be at the AA Group or the AA meeting. However, the Church where our AA group meetings are held, had other ideas about what this person did and the entire AA group may have had to pay for this one persons actions. The Church is the landlord, and the AA group is the tenant....and the Landlord told us that under no circumstances would this person be allowed on their property again, and it was either that, or the AA group had to find a new place to hold their AA Group meeting.

We decided to continue to rent the space there at that Church basement.....and to inform that AA member that he was no long to come to the AA group or the AA meetings there.

So AA's 3rd Tradition says WE are AA MEMBERS when we say so. Which means no one can kick us out of , or keep us out of AA AS A WHOLE.....but we can certainly keep someone out of an AA group or an AA meeting ..... all it takes is a Group Conscience Vote!
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby LadyJ2 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:57 am

I'm Judy and I am an alcoholic...our group recently had a few members who thought that it was better to remove members who were disruptive during the business meetings...thankfully we had members with considerable time who spoke up...reminding the members that we are a group and all members had a say in the groups's decisions...a group conscience was held, all had a say and each one had a vote...removing one member on the decision of a few is not healthy for the group...
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Patsy© » Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:36 am

LadyJ2 wrote:I'm Judy and I am an alcoholic...our group recently had a few members who thought that it was better to remove members who were disruptive during the business meetings...thankfully we had members with considerable time who spoke up...reminding the members that we are a group and all members had a say in the groups's decisions...a group conscience was held, all had a say and each one had a vote...removing one member on the decision of a few is not healthy for the group...



Hi, my name is Patsy, grateful recovered alcoholic....Gee, if Removing a member for having an opinion that may be disruptive during a business meeting, would mean there would be NO MEMBERS left at our AA group! lol.

I believe that if a group conscience is going to be called to remove someone, it ought to be for a very very serious problem. In our AA group, it was a gun that was pulled and the person threatened someone's life with it. If that isn't reason for removal from the AA group....then I don't know what is. Lets face facts, if someone was allowed to pull a gun and threaten other AA members at an AA Group.... then the Group would break up anyway.

Thank God the AA Traditions are written in order....for a vital reason:

Tradition One "Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. unity."


Page 130 in the 12 and 12: "Those who look closely soon have the key to this strange paradox. The A.A. member has to conform to the principles of recovery. His life actually depends upon obedience to spiritual principles. If he deviates too far, the penalty is sure and swift; he sickens and dies. At first he goes along because he must, but later he discovers a way of life he really wants to live. Moreover, he finds he cannot keep this priceless gift unless he gives it away. Neither he nor anybody else can survive unless he carries the A.A. message. The moment this Twelfth Step work forms a group, another discovery is made - that most individuals cannot recover unless there is a group. Realization dawns that he is but a small part of a great whole; that no personal sacrifice is too great for preservation of the Fellowship. He learns that the clamor of desires and ambitions within him must be silenced whenever these could damage the group. It becomes plain that the group must survive or the individual will not."
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby JohnDaniels » Wed Aug 30, 2017 12:29 pm

Patsy© wrote:
Hi, my name is Patsy, grateful recovered alcoholic....Gee, if Removing a member for having an opinion that may be disruptive during a business meeting, would mean there would be NO MEMBERS left at our AA group! lol.

I believe that if a group conscience is going to be called to remove someone, it ought to be for a very very serious problem. In our AA group, it was a gun that was pulled and the person threatened someone's life with it. If that isn't reason for removal from the AA group....then I don't know what is. Lets face facts, if someone was allowed to pull a gun and threaten other AA members at an AA Group.... then the Group would break up anyway. ...


Well said Patsy,
Thank you
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Re: Putting Out an Individual

Postby Blue Moon » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:46 pm

Patsy© wrote:So AA's 3rd Tradition says WE are AA MEMBERS when we say so. Which means no one can kick us out of , or keep us out of AA AS A WHOLE.....but we can certainly keep someone out of an AA group or an AA meeting ..... all it takes is a Group Conscience Vote!


The Third Tradition states "Any two or three alcoholics may call themselves an AA Group provided that, as a group, they have no other affiliation".

If Group Conscience deliberately usurps AA Traditions, then sooner or later it can (and often will) unravel and cease to function. Traditions contain no ego... the same cannot be said of many a Group Conscience I've been in.

Yet fundamentally, there's a difference between the AA Group and attending the AA meeting. I'm not a member of an AA Group just because I turn up at a meeting there. I also don't cease to be a member of my home group just because I go away for 2 weeks.

So a person can be ejected from an AA meeting, yet still be a member of the Group which hosted that meeting. They're a member if they say they are. It's just a bit hard to stay an active member if they don't turn up, for whatever reason.
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