Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

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Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Larryp713 » Wed Jun 01, 2016 6:13 am

Hi all,

I am Larry and I am an alcoholic. By God's grace, good sponsorship, the steps and actions I have learned to take outlined in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous, I have been sober since Dec 28, 2014. I am so excited to share my message this Saturday at my home group. I was going to share the night with my sponsee and very good friend, but he will not be able to make it because he is going out of town to support his family with an opportunity that just came up.

I have shared a couple other times and I actually enjoy it. Public speaking doesn't bother me because I do it occasionally through work and have given talks at my church, etc... I usually follow the standard convention of chronologically walking through my life through the point where I finally surrendered and started to work the steps, but I am going to try something different this time. I heard a friend share her story about 6 months ago, and her talk was mostly focused on recovery and not the qualifying review of her drunk log. She did qualify herself as she talked about taking the first step, but after that, she shared mostly about the next eleven steps and how they worked for her. I thought it was a great way to share her experience, strength, and hope, and like all good ideas, it should be stolen and reused often!

I see a lot of speakers checking the clock and realizing they only have about ten minutes to talk about their recovery. I don't want to do that, so I think I am going to first talk about the morning of Dec 28 and how low I felt. How I finally crawled through the doors of AA with a new willingness and open-mindedness born of the gift of desperation, and finally took action as I was suggested. I can briefly talk about how my disease progressed as I share my thoughts on the first step, but I want to really share the hope and power of the rest of the program in my life. I think that is the story my higher power would have me share. Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I hope you all have another blessed 24!!! Larry
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Spirit Flower » Wed Jun 01, 2016 6:36 am

Hi Larry,

Good idea to focus on recovery. "What its like now" is more interesting to me.
In fact, I very rarely go to circuit speaker meetings because they just spend all their time on entertaining drunkalogs. I'm not very interested in that.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Larryp713 » Wed Jun 01, 2016 7:19 am

Thanks, Spirit. I actually get a good chuckle out of some of the drunk logs, but I think they often go too long. Today, I can feel the hopelessness when a person shares how they tried everything to moderate or quit and could not. That is when I connect. I hope others can connect with that part of my story.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby PaigeB » Wed Jun 01, 2016 10:10 am

I see a lot of speakers checking the clock and realizing they only have about ten minutes to talk about their recovery.

I was just talking with a girlfriend who said the same thing and when she looked up at the clock, she had 15 minutes left anyway! Balance not perfection?

I too like a short drunk-o-log... a couple laughs. Go ahead and "identify" yourself as an alcoholic by telling about your first drink, one story when times were good, and when they went bad. Of course, as you say Steps 1 and 2 can cover unmanageability and insane thinking. It was the sharing of insane thinking that rang home with me... consequences never bothered me, but my thoughts on them are hilarious! :lol:

Glad for your opportunity. I am sure it will go well, no matter what the clock says when you run out of words!
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Feeya » Wed Jun 01, 2016 10:39 am

Larryp713 wrote:Hi all,

I am Larry and I am an alcoholic. By God's grace, good sponsorship, the steps and actions I have learned to take outlined in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous, I have been sober since Dec 28, 2014. I am so excited to share my message this Saturday at my home group. I was going to share the night with my sponsee and very good friend, but he will not be able to make it because he is going out of town to support his family with an opportunity that just came up.

I have shared a couple other times and I actually enjoy it. Public speaking doesn't bother me because I do it occasionally through work and have given talks at my church, etc... I usually follow the standard convention of chronologically walking through my life through the point where I finally surrendered and started to work the steps, but I am going to try something different this time. I heard a friend share her story about 6 months ago, and her talk was mostly focused on recovery and not the qualifying review of her drunk log. She did qualify herself as she talked about taking the first step, but after that, she shared mostly about the next eleven steps and how they worked for her. I thought it was a great way to share her experience, strength, and hope, and like all good ideas, it should be stolen and reused often!

I see a lot of speakers checking the clock and realizing they only have about ten minutes to talk about their recovery. I don't want to do that, so I think I am going to first talk about the morning of Dec 28 and how low I felt. How I finally crawled through the doors of AA with a new willingness and open-mindedness born of the gift of desperation, and finally took action as I was suggested. I can briefly talk about how my disease progressed as I share my thoughts on the first step, but I want to really share the hope and power of the rest of the program in my life. I think that is the story my higher power would have me share. Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I hope you all have another blessed 24!!! Larry


Hi Larry,
That sounds like a brilliant idea!
The first time I went to a meeting a few people shared their stories and most of them focused on hitting bottom and how low they fell and the one person that focused on their recovery instead of their 'drinking days' was the person I could relate to the most...
I think the idea is great, because it doesnt really matter how low someone fell, how much they have lost and how miserable they were... what matters is how sobriety works for them...
Let us know how it went and good luck!

Feeya, alcohol and drug addict.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Larryp713 » Wed Jun 01, 2016 10:52 am

Thanks, Paige and Feeya. I also am more inspired when people share about their recovery. It makes me want to continue to go to meetings even after the obsession has been lifted. I will let you know how it goes...
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Roberth » Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:41 am

Just curious, how am I going to relate if I don’t know what a person was like…..

“Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.”

Hearing my story coming from someone else was one of the biggest impact on me in my 24 years. That when I thought AA might work for me too.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby trumpets » Wed Jun 01, 2016 3:47 pm

good stuff Larry. few years ago i was looking to speak on something different and i will share what i did.

i took the promises, (amazed half-way through, etc...) and i spoke specifically on how each promise has come true in my life and what actions it took to come true. i didn't even tell my roadie about my format and even he was pleasantly suprised. this is of course if the promises have come to fruit on a tree in your life.

to be real, i kinda mumbled through the financial insecurity promise because although -to this day- it has eased up, it hasn't left me. i still tense up when i see monthly numbers on paper haha

good luck bro
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby avaneesh912 » Wed Jun 01, 2016 4:24 pm

“Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.”


For me its about using my story to portray my struggle/attempt to stay stopped. The spiritual malady when not drinking and then the obsession/blindspot, then that insidious first drink. Few escapades and then quickly get into the recovery part and the struggle just going to meetings. And at the end what it is like today. How do I keep the emotions in check. shouldn't take more than 40 minutes.
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: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Lali » Thu Jun 02, 2016 6:15 am

Roberth wrote:Just curious, how am I going to relate if I don’t know what a person was like…..

“Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.”

Hearing my story coming from someone else was one of the biggest impact on me in my 24 years. That when I thought AA might work for me too.


I agree, Robert. If we weren't supposed to share our past struggles, there would be no "E" in ES&H! (LOL) If we don't hear what the speaker has overcome, we may not be as impressed with their recovery. And as you stated, we may have trouble identifying. We may wonder if this person is even a "real" alcoholic versus a hard drinker.

That said, I believe that the emphasis should be on how we got to where we are and what our lives are like now (IMO about 70% - 75%).
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Larryp713 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 7:31 am

Roberth wrote:Just curious, how am I going to relate if I don’t know what a person was like…..

“Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.”

Hearing my story coming from someone else was one of the biggest impact on me in my 24 years. That when I thought AA might work for me too.


I agree, but I feel that most of the speaker meetings I go to are very heavy on the qualifications. If somebody hears me speak about the morning of that last binge, the lowness I felt, and of the DUIs and a quick rundown of my other lowlights, I don't think they are going to relate to me. I just don't see how me rambling for 40 minutes about all of that will impress somebody, but maybe I'm wrong. As I said, I feel like the miracle of my story is really about the surrender and how recovery has changed my life. Thanks for your feedback, though.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Feeya » Thu Jun 02, 2016 7:55 am

Roberth wrote:Just curious, how am I going to relate if I don’t know what a person was like…..

“Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.”

Hearing my story coming from someone else was one of the biggest impact on me in my 24 years. That when I thought AA might work for me too.


I agree, but for me, someone who has not lost everything due to drinking and who is trying to get sober before doing so, hearing how low a lot of people fell kind of gives me a feeling of 'not having that bad of a problem'... and that is so so dangerous... (Not sure if that makes sense, English is not my first language)

I think it is up the individual and everyone relates in a different way!

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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby trumpets » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:29 am

Roberth wrote:Just curious, how am I going to relate if I don’t know what a person was like…..

“Our stories disclose in a general way what we used to be like, what happened, and what we are like now.”

Hearing my story coming from someone else was one of the biggest impact on me in my 24 years. That when I thought AA might work for me too.

I had the opposite experience. Even as a newcomer, hit the snooze button on every war story i ever heard. i have been in enough detoxes and rehabs as a patient with nothing but idle time to hear a million of them. Stories are also usually drummed up a bit because we secretly take pride in doing the most damage. But hey, if you love storytime that much, skip the steps and just work out of the back of the big book.
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby Reborn » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:31 am

I have spoken at meetings quite a few times and I have gone both ways. Early in sobriety my share was alot more about what is was like. Today I spend the majority of my alloted time talking about the solution...how each step got me a little more free from me. I do spend a little time qualifying myself but when I do I try to focus on the mental twist that kept me going back to the first drink again and again. I believe all alcoholics can relate to the internal condition...the why we drank more than how much we drank. I love to hear how the steps changed a person's life...what they experienced when they were working each one...those are the shares I find to be the most beneficial.
We have recovered, and have been given the power to help others. BB pg 132
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Re: Sharing my story this Saturday!!!

Postby positrac » Fri Jun 03, 2016 2:52 am

Great topic about reflections of then and now, I think in some cases it does stoke egos and that is not the purpose. We are far from perfect and though sober some old habits die hard with regards to not becoming big headed because we can speak freely.

In the early years it was easy to focus on "me" because I was full of "me" and was actually doing things different. I was never one of those look at "me" people, and more just about "me" as a person and the journey if that makes sense.

Today I have many to thank when I share my story as the more will be revealed quote is really no BS. I shared at a meeting several years ago and one area that had kept me baffled was my last drink and the events I remember and the days afterward for about a month as I had blacked out really bad and had no clue of things. I had found out that a vote had been taken to sack my sorry hide and that people who didn't know me wanted me out. Higher power had other intentions for me and I found these details out some 22 years later. I was finally able to mentally close that portion of my past up. Next day I called two people who voted to keep me on the clock and told them thank you for taking a chance as we worked in close quarters in different areas over those years. For normal people my comments were oddly heard after all those years and yet they knew I was sincere in my humble thanks. I felt it important to make amends and also explain how I had really changed outside of work, as they knew of my ethics on the clock but outside of work I was on the same agenda of sobriety.

This portion for me means so much because had I been sacked I would of died. So if I were to suggest one thing: Please keep it real and explain it works if we work it and in time it gets better.

Best of success on the speaking.
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