Powerlessness

For recovery discussion
Post Reply
User avatar
avaneesh912
Trusted Servant
Posts: 5042
Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 12:22 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA

Powerlessness

Post by avaneesh912 » Wed May 08, 2019 4:50 am

I hear so many talk about powerlessness after we take that first drink. While its true, but the main issue is the alcoholic has that peculiar mental twist preceding that first drink. Some would argue that they went out to get trashed, yes, that is true too. But the book talks about we never thought of consequences at that moment. All we were focused is the effect produced by alcohol.

And the key statement is in part of working the inventory. When the spiritual malady is overcome we straighten out mentally and physically. Not that we can safely drink (no cravings), we lose the desire (straighten out mentally) so we dont have to experience the craving part.
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)

User avatar
PaigeB
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 8115
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:28 pm
Location: Iowa USA

Re: Powerlessness

Post by PaigeB » Wed May 08, 2019 9:51 am

I ask my HP for help (grace) then I help my HP (work). I have just returned from a retreat which was 50 women who had at least made it past their 5th Steps. Most had a few years to decades of sobriety. We went through the Steps: 1-12 from Friday 6pm to Sunday 1pm. I have been through them before, but with an open mind & heart (& a closed mouth) I had many a new experience with the Steps and feel a closer connection to my HP. :P :mrgreen: :| :arrow:

I look forward to doing it again next year!
Step 6 is "AA's way of stating, the best possible attitude one can take in order to make a beginning on this lifetime job... with most of them we shall have to be content with patient improvement." 12&12 Step Six, p.65

D'oh
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 828
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2015 10:51 am

Re: Powerlessness

Post by D'oh » Wed May 08, 2019 7:35 pm

When I went back, I didn't think much, but it was a slow relapse. Experiment you might call it. 1 or 2 a month, grew to 3-4, grew to 10-15 a night.

Without any thought of the experiment had failed over time. Soon ALL CHOICE was gone.

The main thing I forgot, was "Complete Defeat" That I could not do it alone, that I needed the Help of a Higher Power and the Fellowship. Of myself, I am nothing.

User avatar
avaneesh912
Trusted Servant
Posts: 5042
Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 12:22 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA

Re: Powerlessness

Post by avaneesh912 » Thu May 09, 2019 5:03 am

When I went back, I didn't think much, but it was a slow relapse. Experiment you might call it. 1 or 2 a month, grew to 3-4, grew to 10-15 a night.

Without any thought of the experiment had failed over time. Soon ALL CHOICE was gone.

The main thing I forgot, was "Complete Defeat" That I could not do it alone, that I needed the Help of a Higher Power and the Fellowship. Of myself, I am nothing.
Exactly, all the knowledge we have acquired in the rooms, are only knowledge. That blind spot the "Fred the accountant story" terms it, leads us to the beginning of the vicious cycle. Then once again we come out of the spree with the firm resolution not to drink again. At that point success depends on that deep deep realization that we are alcoholic (total surrender) and desire to lead a life without any mind altering substance and then comes all the rituals, working the steps, attending meetings service work.
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)

Squarelymet
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 60
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:33 pm
Location: Atlanta

Re: Powerlessness

Post by Squarelymet » Sat May 11, 2019 6:39 am

I wish I am powerless to life only when I am in the bottle. My options are sobriety, suicide and bottle. Knowledge about alcoholism does not do me any good. Life ran by my feelings, and I do not feel right, is a hell of thing.

When the connection with other drunks and God feels further away, life is a harsh place for a drunk like me. I am no good to my loved ones and to myself. Veil of tears and a thing to endure. HJF seems only a whistle in the dark.

I know now why I drank and why it worked so long. It still does not do me any good, because I still have the reality to face.
"Happily and Usefully Whole"

innermost
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 61
Joined: Thu May 16, 2019 3:12 pm

Re: Powerlessness

Post by innermost » Thu May 16, 2019 3:35 pm

The program states:
Lack of power, that was our dilemma.
We had to find a power by which we could live.
A Power Greater than ourselves.
But where and how?

Well, that is exactly what this book is about.
Of course our powerlessness when drinking is usually apparent, especially to those that know us.
The powerlessness that hinders many alcoholics is after some time NOT drinking.
Then the drink starts to make sense again.

We are powerless over the first drink.
No human power can stop the first drink at times and this is why we need a Power greater than ourselves, and why we surrender our will and lives over to this power.
Just 2 cents from a real alcoholic.
The first 164 pg. is the program!

User avatar
Brock
Forums Coordinator
Posts: 3855
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:45 pm

Re: Powerlessness

Post by Brock » Thu May 16, 2019 6:28 pm

Welcome here innermost, nice to see your posts, especially at a time when things have been a bit quiet here.

The line in the book I find describes this powerlessness best is this, from How it Works -
Remember that we deal with alcohol, cunning, baffling, powerful! Without help it is too much for us.
For most of my drinking ‘career,’ I knew very well and accepted, that after the first drink I would continue drinking, nothing “cunning” or “baffling” about that. The cunning and baffling part is shown in stories like Fred, after a successful business day -
I had been out of town before during this particular dry spell, so there was nothing new about that. Physically, I felt fine. Neither did I have any pressing problems or worries. My business came off well, I was pleased and knew my partners would be too. It was the end of a perfect day, not a cloud on the horizon.
No problems or worries everything OK, then the powerlessness crept up on him, missing in action drunk for several days, as he tells it -
As soon as I regained my ability to think, I went carefully over that evening in Washington. Not only had I been off guard, I had made no fight whatever against the first drink. This time I had not thought of the consequences at all. I had commenced to drink as carelessly as though the cocktails were ginger ale. I now remembered what my alcoholic friends had told me, how they prophesied that if I had an alcoholic mind, the time and place would come—I would drink again. They had said that though I did raise a defense, it would one day give way before some trivial reason for having a drink. Well, just that did happen and more, for what I had learned of alcoholism did not occur to me at all. I knew from that moment that I had an alcoholic mind. I saw that will power and self-knowledge would not help in those strange mental blank spots. I had never been able to understand people who said that a problem had them hopelessly defeated. I knew then. It was a crushing blow.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

innermost
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 61
Joined: Thu May 16, 2019 3:12 pm

Re: Powerlessness

Post by innermost » Fri May 17, 2019 2:46 pm

Thanks for the kind welcome Brock.
Love the Book.
Love the program.
Love the freedom that AA and a Loving God has introduced me to.
The first 164 pg. is the program!

User avatar
Jojo2
Trusted Servant
Posts: 806
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 6:25 am

Re: Powerlessness

Post by Jojo2 » Sat May 18, 2019 12:03 am

innermost wrote:
Love the Book.
Love the program.
Love the freedom that AA and a Loving God has introduced me to.

Welcome innermost.

Glad you have joined us.

innermost
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 61
Joined: Thu May 16, 2019 3:12 pm

Re: Powerlessness

Post by innermost » Sat May 18, 2019 8:24 am

Jojo2 wrote:
Welcome innermost.

Glad you have joined us.
Thanks for the kind welcome Jojo2.

I look forward to learning from a new group. :)
The first 164 pg. is the program!

maurits
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 156
Joined: Sun Oct 13, 2013 1:59 pm
Location: Amsterdam The Netherlands

Re: Powerlessness

Post by maurits » Mon May 20, 2019 2:45 pm

I knew from that moment that I had an alcoholic mind.

I saw that will power and self-knowledge would not help in those strange mental blank spots.
yes indeed,

I came to believe that relying solely on willpower and self-knowledge might not be effective for me in the long run.

I came to believe that I have a better chance in life by relying on a power greater than my willpower and self-knowledge.

Post Reply