7 Year Itch

For recovery discussion
SouthofBoston
Forums Newcomer
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:02 pm

7 Year Itch

Post by SouthofBoston » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:18 pm

Hello,

I am 29 years old and I have been sober for over 6 years, my life is great, however I am bored with AA. None of it is interesting. I spend all meetings playing on my phone. I'm not a social person so i don't start conversations at the outskirts of meetings. AA feels like it has "worn off" for me. I often speak at open discussion meetings but I avoid commitments because hate talking at them. I wouldn't mind sponsoring people, but the opportunity never comes around. I can't stand most young people because they are immature and rarely stay sober. I can't relate to most older people because they have kids and grew up in the 60s/70s. I just feel lost in a sea of sobriety.

Anyone feel this way before?

becksdad
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:54 pm
Location: Nawth Carolina

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by becksdad » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:53 pm

Not to sound too smart-alecky, but my sponsor has a sticker intended to be put on mirrors. It say, "You are looking at the problem".

When I am out of sorts, there is something out of whack with either - what I am doing... or what I am not doing.

Just possibly, you might want to lose the phoone in meetings, talk to people, identify with and relate to others who suffer from this disease, and maybe also re-evaluate how spiritual principles are alive in your life.

I have to always remember that Action is the magic word for my own recovery. The only important thing is what I DO..... not what I think, feel, or say.

Actions change my reality.

Thanks, Ed

SouthofBoston
Forums Newcomer
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:02 pm

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by SouthofBoston » Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:06 pm

I don't start with the phone, it just ends that way when I hear someone telling the same story I've heard thousands of times before. I DO hear things that i can relate to but it is few and far between. Maybe I should find a mens 12 step meeting or something. Also, I should get a new sponsor. I've had two but neither worked well with me. Finding a compatible sponsor is very difficult.

becksdad
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:54 pm
Location: Nawth Carolina

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by becksdad » Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:16 pm

All I can really say for sure South of Boston, is that external changes never got me sober and they certainly don't keep me sober.

There are lots of folks here who have much longer experience than I do, and maybe someone will have something to share about this that speaks more directly for you.

I do wish you luck,.....Ed

Jaywalker Steve
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 514
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:36 pm

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by Jaywalker Steve » Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:41 pm

All went well for a time, but he failed to enlarge his spiritual life. To his consternation, he found himself drunk half a dozen times in rapid succession. Alcoholics Anonymous Page 35
This passage tells us what we need to do on a daily basis lest we relapse. The best way I know how to keep spiritually fit is service to others both in and out of AA. Eventually, life had to stop being about what I needed and start being about what I can contribute.
Every group has men and women who put too much thought and effort into their daily sobriety and not enough of themselves into their daily living. - Ed B., Akron, OH

User avatar
Marc L
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 1549
Joined: Sat May 03, 2008 8:04 pm
Location: South Florida. U.S.A.

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by Marc L » Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:52 pm

SouthofBoston wrote:Hello,

I am 29 years old and I have been sober for over 6 years, my life is great, however I am bored with AA. None of it is interesting. I spend all meetings playing on my phone. I'm not a social person so i don't start conversations at the outskirts of meetings. AA feels like it has "worn off" for me. I often speak at open discussion meetings but I avoid commitments because hate talking at them. I wouldn't mind sponsoring people, but the opportunity never comes around. I can't stand most young people because they are immature and rarely stay sober. I can't relate to most older people because they have kids and grew up in the 60s/70s. I just feel lost in a sea of sobriety.

Anyone feel this way before?
Hi;
I'm Marc and I'm Alcoholic.
I'm twice your age and I have a similar problem.
In the past couple years on this forum I've noticed that the e-aa.org Membership is largely made up of DrugAddicts and Relapsers. Sad but true.
I can't identify with any of that so I am an outsider of sorts.
It is frustrating, sure, but it does not prevent me from continuing my work which is to carry a message of recovery through the Steps. I built a pretty cool website, I think, to do that. I have gained some satisfaction from it and avoided boredom. By staying busy I've stayed out of trouble and Sobriety continues...

Marc
Recovery won't just happen by Osmosis. You gonna' have to work at it some.
12th Step work ain't just a job... It's an Adventure.

User avatar
Patter
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 73
Joined: Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:17 am
Location: Missouri

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by Patter » Sat Jan 19, 2013 4:21 pm

Hi. I'm Patrick and I'm an alcoholic. I hit that area in my sobriety a few years ago. I felt like growth had ceased and my insidious alcoholic mind asked, "Is that all there is??" I was missing the noon meetings I hit a couple times a week because there were a couple folks there who spoke only of being drunk and remorseful, nothing of recovery. I happened to phone a friend in the program who asked if I was hitting enough meetings and told him that I just wasn't getting much out of them. He asked how long I'd been sober, and it was 4 or 5 years by then. This is what he told , so pardon the language: "As long as you've been sober, you should know you don't go to the meetings to get something out of them, dumbass, you go so you can help someone else!"
"Oh yeah, I guess you're right," was all I could say. I hopped in the car and went to that same meeting with those same people, but I was different. Wouldn't you know it was a pretty good meeting and I ended up heading out afterwards with a newcomer who hadn't said anything about being new. I was able to share a little E S &H and give my phone number before going back to work. Every time I feel like I don't want to go, I remember that friend's statement. And since there's hundreds of meetings within 30 miles of me, I'll mix it up a bit to get some fresh stories. One thing about alcoholism though. Many of our stories are similar, and I need a daily reminder that but for the grace of my HP, I could still be dying in the depths of that disease instead of being restored to a beautiful life. My misery can be refunded whenever I want to get it back. Take care.
Patter

User avatar
johnd
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 721
Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:50 pm
Location: Massachusetts

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by johnd » Sat Jan 19, 2013 5:10 pm

Welcome SoBoston,
I'm John an alcoholic from the North of Boston, Bored? Don't feel like sharing your E S & H? I don't know what meetings you're attending, but I do know there are plenty in Eastern Mass. Maybe you do need to change the scenery a little, I do that when things go disappointingly dull. We have choices today, You're 29 years old,,, I'm 53. I came in over 26 years ago, things have changed
but, I learned to keep an open mind.

If you go on commitments you are not talking at them... You are sharing just as you do at the discussion meetings. When incoming committments come into your hall listen and watch what they are doing, They are saving your life... while saving theirs.

We have to give it away in order to keep it. Your sponsor working the steps with you? May also be a good idea to go to Men's meetings, Leave the phone in the car. I'm sure you can return the call after the meeting. It's your recovery.

You said your life is great... Did A.A. help get you that life? Need to do a gratitude list my friend. That's how my sponsor and members of my Men's group talk to me about saving my life. You got 6 years I'm sure you can share your Experience on how you achieved that amount of time. I hope you keep coming. it sounds like you're talking yourself out of what you have today.
A gift, Not many get this Gift. So I hoped I helped you because you certainly helped everyone who responded to you.
Good Luck I hope you continue sharing with us....... John D.
Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans- Anonymous

User avatar
AlisonT
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 91
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2012 5:21 am

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by AlisonT » Sat Jan 19, 2013 5:38 pm

Read past pg 449 (third edition) or 417 (4th edition) A couple pages later it will talk about what is ailing you. See what you can add to the meeting and focus on what's good about it instead of what's bad.

Mike O
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 3172
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 9:55 am
Location: UK

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by Mike O » Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:08 am

SouthofBoston wrote:Hello,

I am 29 years old and I have been sober for over 6 years, my life is great, however I am bored with AA. None of it is interesting. I spend all meetings playing on my phone. I'm not a social person so i don't start conversations at the outskirts of meetings. AA feels like it has "worn off" for me. I often speak at open discussion meetings but I avoid commitments because hate talking at them. I wouldn't mind sponsoring people, but the opportunity never comes around. I can't stand most young people because they are immature and rarely stay sober. I can't relate to most older people because they have kids and grew up in the 60s/70s. I just feel lost in a sea of sobriety.

Anyone feel this way before?
So, what are ya doin' about your Step 12?
:wink:

MitchellK
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 178
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 3:37 pm

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by MitchellK » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:37 am

It was written "I wouldn't mind sponsoring people, but the opportunity never comes around."

Maybe if you spoke more and people saw you as an example of recovery rather than playing with your phone, some might ask you to be their sponsor.

On the other hand, recovery was meant to be a bridge TO life and not necessarily to become your life. I didn't become bored with meetings but I did find that there was so much more to life than just going to meetings day after day, night after night.

Nowhere is it written that the message has to be carried at a meeting. In the original wording of the 12th Step it said to carry the message of recovery to others, especially alcoholics. The original message I guess was not only about just not drinking but also about a changed life and practicing principles. I found that focusing on just not drinking left out so much of the recovery experience that it became a minor part of my life. My life is NOT about not drinking.

My personal belief is that what you do outside of the meetings is more important than what you do or say inside the rooms. After all, even a liar and fraud can hold it together an hour or two a day in a room trying to impress people they are trying to impress. What you do, how you live all those other hours in practicing the principles in ALL your daily affairs is letting everyone know who you really are. The message of recovery is not just that you aren't drinking.

After 6 years, if your recovery life is comprised of just going to meetings to carry some message, expand your horizons and LIVE your recovery so that everyone sees it. By expanding and enhancing your life during the times you do go to meetings, people will notice the difference. Some might even ask you about what you have and how they too can get some of that.

kenyal
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 560
Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:17 am

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by kenyal » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:58 am

There are common hurdles for many in this path we are on in my observation. One is at 7 years, the next is the 11th year. I've sponsored 2 guys who drank again at those points and when we talked their initial reasoning sounded much like yours. They were tired of hearing platitudes. The platitudes became bothersome and they wanted to hear things discussed on a different level, a higher level. They required stimulation because they were both quite intelligent and the AAs that they were surrounded by did not provide what they needed at that point in their sobriety, having been successfully sober for 7 years now.

Between the lines you might read what was really going on with them, and possibly what is going on with you. Their understanding of AA was insufficient and shallow, their commitment was based on benefiting themselves, and their egos demanded greater glory. Each came back and is now sober 15-18 years this time around. They get now what they didn't get before, and are better men for the experience.

User avatar
AlisonT
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 91
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2012 5:21 am

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by AlisonT » Sun Jan 20, 2013 7:49 am

I agree with kenyal. Over my time of sobriety I have experienced several periods of feeling lost, some of them coinciding with major problems in my life. Each time I had to recommit myself to AA, sometimes finding different meetings or going back to the basics of reading each day, praying each day, talking to an AA each day. I found those pages I referenced very helpful. I did find meetings where every share seemed to be about not drinking instead of living sober boring. I found step meetings and Big Book meetings very helpful. At 5,6,7 years of sobriety you are no longer a newcomer and hopefully staying away from a drink is not a problem any more. It is time for you, as my sponsor put it, to own your sobriety and work on being an example to others of how it is done. Dig deeper into the program so that you have the tools to sponsor others.

User avatar
ann2
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 7941
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:01 am
Location: Somewhere in Sweden

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by ann2 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 9:55 am

AA is wonderful and it's great, but it's not what I work on to make my life interesting. What I work on is me, applying the principles that AA has taught me. Honestly, to me at least, it seems that AA doesn't need any help from me -- it's doing just fine, thank you, whether I'm interested in a meeting or not. I really don't think it's AA's problem that I'm not getting something out of a meeting.

What I need to do on a daily basis is expand my spiritual life, and the tools of AA pretty much fit the bill in that area. One of those tools, which I Loooooooove running across daily, is trying to figure out where I'm most useful, and practicing stepping away from personal instant gratification in order to be true to my higher power's will for me. Boy that keeps me pretty occupied!! lol

In a meeting, in the car, in a line, putting my kid to bed, dealing with the spouse, it's really fascinating to see where I can give of myself and meet that little rebel in me moment by moment :) And i have nothing against her, except that AA has shown me that if given her head she will stray from the path that my higher power has set for me and that will most likely lead me to drinking again. Maybe for you that's not such a scary idea, but that's the last place I want to go and being alcoholic, the most likely place for me to end up.

Phew! That is scary. Gives me a lot of respect for this online group, for helping me day to day learning to grow spiritually. Thank you.

Ann
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

Mike O
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 3172
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 9:55 am
Location: UK

Re: 7 Year Itch

Post by Mike O » Sun Jan 20, 2013 11:49 am

MitchellK wrote:
My personal belief is that what you do outside of the meetings is more important than what you do or say inside the rooms.
Absolutely. Life is not meant to be lived at A.A. meetings.
My advice is put your phone down, get off yer ass and see what you can contribute.
:D

Post Reply