HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Lali » Thu Jun 02, 2016 6:00 am

D'oh wrote:Then I find Part 1 again, and start reading that Day to Day life is not part of meetings? The What we are like Now has everything to do with Carrying the Message.


Hi, D'oh. I want to understand the meaning behind this as it isn't clear to me. So others may be confused as well! What do you mean when you say, "The What we are like Now has everything to do with Carrying the Message."? If you are disagreeing with this statement, what would be some examples of what "What we are like now" encompasses?

Thx.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby ezdzit247 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:40 am

D'oh wrote:Then I find Part 1 again, and start reading that Day to Day life is not part of meetings? The What we are like Now has everything to do with Carrying the Message.


I agree.

Each and every member who sits in an AA meeting is "the message" to a newcomer. We tell the newcomer in every meeting that if he or she has decided they want we have and are willing to go to any lengths to get "it....." How can a newcomer make that decision without hearing/seeing for himself or herself what the program did for us, i.e. what we are like now?
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby D'oh » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:46 am

Hi, D'oh. I want to understand the meaning behind this as it isn't clear to me. So others may be confused as well! What do you mean when you say, "The What we are like Now has everything to do with Carrying the Message."? If you are disagreeing with this statement, what would be some examples of what "What we are like now" encompasses?

Thx.


Yes sorry I will try to explain better.

This and the previous thread, although started as some Ole Timers, that walked out of a meeting for their beliefs of the First Tradition. It has gone many directions from that point from what I can follow anyways. Totally ignoring the 3rd Tradition for the sake of 1 word (Addict).

It eventual got to the point (from my seat) that a Meeting is a place for Recovered Alcoholics to share/ no pass on, What it was like, What happened, and What it could be like for the Newbie if they followed their course. A meeting wasn't the place to air day to day problems.

Day to Day problems, and How I couldn't handle them is why I drank. I do agree that Drunk alogs, how their puppy aggravates them. Like maybe they shouldn't have a puppy then. But it is a place and a means to help deal with life. Which was my problem to start with, and the same goes with the so called Recovered Alcoholics.

So I do apologise if I have read to much into the posts. But for myself to practice these principals in all my affairs, a word like Addict has little to do Unconditional Love.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Noels » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:09 am

Im pretty sure weve had this debate before. What caught my attention though was another link where a member posted something from the Grapevine which could apply to this particular conversation.

Firstly these are words that have been posted on this particular thread by a few posters.

Too often meetings are used as group therapy

I could not put it any better...while I have empathy for folks who are having a rough go of it...and I even see benefit with sharing some of it if it relates to alcoholism...but too often(in my experience)when someone shares about day to day life problems it seems to open pandora's box...and pretty soon everyone is talking about problems instead of solutions. There is a big difference between showing that life happens and we don't have to drink...and "I'm going to selfishly unload all my S*** right here right now so everyone else can enjoy it too."

I attend AA meetings so that I may stay sober myself and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety, while continuing to learn how to live life on lifes terms.
At AA, I was given the gift of Sobriety and Recovery and all that was asked of this drunk, was to please....Pass It On. I can not keep it, unless I give it away and I can not give away what I do not have! So passing on the message of Hope is not about My Day, My Way. Its about helping an untreated alcoholic to get through this one day without a drink. Passing on the message of Hope is about where I came from, how I got here and what its like now. What its like now is the most vital thing that I have to give away, one step at a time.

Sitting at AA meetings and listening to drunk-a-log after drunk-a-log doesn't help anyone to stay sober, no matter how long we have been coming. I certainly couldn't fix my own sick mind.....with my own sick mind, that's for sure. This is a Program of Action, I needed to hear what those people DO IN Recovery, how they managed not to drink on a daily basis.

I agree that if one has a problem and it relates to alcoholism or how to stay sober through it, then share it and then LISTEN. The recovered AA's at that meeting will then share experience, strength and hope of how they may have got through that similar problem with the help of this Simple Program.. If its really personal, then it ought to be shared privately before or after the AA meeting or with a Sponsor.

Listening to someone go on and on and on moaning about their landlord, their job, their bills, their boss, or their marriage, meeting after meeting.... is not there to get help to stay sober, they are there to moan and groan, not to change the person they brought through those doors of AA by taking Suggestions.

These words above sounds really encouraging to a person who is reading this thread for the first time and whose life is all just problems and was thinking that AA could possibly be the solution ?

This is the quote I found on a different conversation which very much relates to this particular conversation and the strange things is ....... it seems to have been written by Dr Silkworth himself? I must say in advance that I did not research or double-checked this as I have gotten to know Stepchild to be very accurate with his research and postings and did not deem it necessary to double check.

I just find it odd that in the posts (as placed in red above) views are that meetings seem to have become " group therapy" rather than strictly AA meetings yet in Dr Silkworth's own words (which I have bolded, underlined) is exactly the words " its group therapy is very effective.

It also seems as if Dr Silkworth realized that not all alcoholics are the same so each responded to different approaches. i.e we are all individual and unique so I must say I support him fully in that approach.

Postby Stepchild » Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:30 am

Dr. Silkworth who wrote The Doctors Opinion in the Big Book wrote a couple articles for the Grapevine discussing slips/relapses...Pretty interesting....You can google them if you want. One is called Slips and Human Nature...and this is a part of one called Dr. Silkworth's Rx for Sobriety....



“To be sure, A.A. offers a number of highly useful tools or props. Its group therapy is very effective. I have seen countless demonstrations of how well your ‘24-hour plan’ operates. The principle of working with other alcoholics has a sound psychological basis. All of these features of the program are extremely important.”

“But, in my opinion, the key principle which makes A.A. work where other plans have proved inadequate is the way of life it proposes based upon the belief of the individual in a Power greater than himself and the faith that this Power is all sufficient to destroy the obsession which possessed him and was destroying him mentally and physically.”

“For many years I faced this alcoholic problem being sure of one scientific fact - that detoxication by medical treatment must precede any psychiatric approach. I have tried many of these orthodox psychiatric approaches and invented some new ones of my own. With some patients I would be coldly analytical, if they were of the so-called ‘scientific’ type who is apt to have a superior attitude toward anything emotional or spiritual. With others, I would try the ‘scare’ method, telling them that if they continued to drink they would kill themselves. With still others, I would attempt the emotional appeal, working both the patient and myself into a lather. He might be moved to the point of shaking hands dramatically and telling me, with tears streaming down his face, that he was never going to take another drink. And I knew that the probability was he would be drunk again within two weeks or less.”

“Since I have been working with A.A. the comparative percentage of successful results has increased to an amazing extent.”

“The percentage of success that A.A. has scored leaves no doubt that it has something more than we as doctors can offer. It is, I am convinced, your second step. Once the A.A. alcoholic has grasped that, he will have no more “slips.”

Copyright © The A.A. Grapevine, Inc., June 1945


I have to agree with Dr Silkworth on this..

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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Patsy© » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:13 am

The Traditions were first published in the April 1946 AA Grapevine under the title of Twelve Points to Assure Our Future.

The 12 Traditions were formally adopted at AA's First International Convention in 1950. Wilson's book on the subject, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, was published in April, 1953.

The 12 Traditions were adopted and accepted after 1945 and what Silkworth called "Group Therapy" was never part of Alcoholics Anonymous.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Reborn » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:18 am

Noels wrote:These words above sounds really encouraging to a person who is reading this thread for the first time and whose life is all just problems and was thinking that AA could possibly be the solution ?


I only copied this part of your share because I want you to understand something. When I got to AA I had this victim mentality...I was a victim of circumstance and little things that happened throughout my days would send me off the deep end. I remember sitting in my first meeting after coming out of the hospital (where I was detoxed) being very anxious to find out how AA could help me. The meeting began after the readings and the daily reflections...the first person shared about how they were trying to get their kids back and started crying. The next person shared how they had been sober for 20 years and this program is "just about not drinking one day at a time." This went on for a good 15 minutes until this old timer(my sponsor now) shared. He spoke about the mental twist that lead him back to the drink again and again...that his drinking lead him to prison and it was only there where he finally fully conceded to his inner most self he was an alcoholic...and got busy with the steps. After I heard this guy speak I asked him to be my sponsor...he graciously accepted and we got busy working in the solution. I can't imagine where I would be today if all I heard that day was a bunch of b!tching about problems...I spent way to long doing that myself.

Like I said before I have empathy for those people stuck in their problems...reminds me of me. However if I am to be of maximum service to those who still suffer I have to share the solution...just as it was shared with me. I know for me and many like me...I had so many problems when I got here I never thought I would get out from under it all. My sponsor told me to stop kicking my own ass and deal with one thing at a time. Make it right sized...work the steps...remember you are here to deal with alcoholism and to learn to a happy sober life...the rest will fall into place. I have no problem with someone sharing something that happened in their day as long as it is followed by how they applied the solution to it. We can sit in self pity all we want but until we take action...nothing changes if nothing changes!
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Lali » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:34 am

The context in which the poster used the term "group therapy" is not the same as what you attributed to Dr. Silkworth, Noels. The poster goes on to give an example of what he/she is trying to convey. But yeah, the term "group therapy" could be used loosely to describe how a group of drunks can share their common experience for the better of the group. This does not mean talking about one's bad day. IMO the poster's words are spot on about what happens when one shares their personal problem(s) during a meeting. The poster said:

"...but too often(in my experience)when someone shares about day to day life problems it seems to open pandora's box...and pretty soon everyone is talking about problems instead of solutions. "

I have seen this happen time and time and time again. At one meeting I attended someone shared about how they were attempting to quit smoking by using the 12 steps. The entire meeting became about smoking though the percentage of smokers in the room was no more than 15%. Unfortunately, for some reason that eludes me, none of the non-smokers felt comfortable enough to speak up and say, "Hey, this is my meeting too. This is my RECOVERY."
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Noels » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:35 am

Reborn wrote:
Noels wrote:These words above sounds really encouraging to a person who is reading this thread for the first time and whose life is all just problems and was thinking that AA could possibly be the solution ?


I only copied this part of your share because I want you to understand something. When I got to AA I had this victim mentality...I was a victim of circumstance and little things that happened throughout my days would send me off the deep end. I remember sitting in my first meeting after coming out of the hospital (where I was detoxed) being very anxious to find out how AA could help me. The meeting began after the readings and the daily reflections...the first person shared about how they were trying to get their kids back and started crying. The next person shared how they had been sober for 20 years and this program is "just about not drinking one day at a time." This went on for a good 15 minutes until this old timer(my sponsor now) shared. He spoke about the mental twist that lead him back to the drink again and again...that his drinking lead him to prison and it was only there where he finally fully conceded to his inner most self he was an alcoholic...


That new alcoholic or new person browsing the forum doesn't know that. All they see is DON'T SAY OR ASK ABOUT ANYTHING BOTHERING YOU BECAUSE YOU GONNA BE JUDGED. So rather avoid AA cause they'renot gonna help you anyway and are just going to say how inappropriate and insignificant your problems are.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Roberth » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:37 am

Hmmmmm isn’t it very selfish of me to want everyone to share in meeting the way I think they should? Should it be all about what I get out of a meeting? Could it be that selfishness - self-centeredness is in my nature? Could it be I still suffer from alcoholism?
Maybe I should take a close look at why I’m upset. Maybe I could learn who be a better example of patience.
I have been to a lot of meetings and there is much I haven't heard. I have learned to listen to not only the words but the feeling behind the words. It stopped being about what I get out is but about what I can bring to it.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Noels » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:10 pm

Lali first i must say that your post on how your group holds meetings is the way I would think best from what I've heard this far. Then below
I have seen this happen time and time and time again. At one meeting I attended someone shared about how they were attempting to quit smoking by using the 12 steps. The entire meeting became about smoking though the percentage of smokers in the room was no more than 15%. Unfortunately, for some reason that eludes me, none of the non-smokers felt comfortable enough to speak up and say, "Hey, this is my meeting too. This is my RECOVERY."[/quote]

Or perhaps they weren't uncomfortable at all? Surely if I'm too uncomfortable about something I'm going to speak up?
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby PaigeB » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:11 pm

HEAR HEAR Roberth!
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: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Reborn » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:36 pm

Noels wrote:That new alcoholic or new person browsing the forum doesn't know that. All they see is DON'T SAY OR ASK ABOUT ANYTHING BOTHERING YOU BECAUSE YOU GONNA BE JUDGED. So rather avoid AA cause they'renot gonna help you anyway and are just going to say how inappropriate and insignificant your problems are.


Funny this is what you got out of my share. As far as I can see noone is saying anyone's problems are insignificant. Everyone has problems...but it is the purpose of AA to solve problems..no one ever solved any problem by merely talking about it. I have already said a few times in this thread there is a great benefit to sharing about how we walk through life day to day and not have to drink. If all we do is sit around and talk about how bad things are no one would get better.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Patsy© » Thu Jun 02, 2016 1:43 pm

I don't think its about making someone share the way anyone thinks they should, but WE are at an AA meeting, Lest We Forget. When I don't hear anything about God, the Steps, the Big Book, Spirituality or anything to do with recovery from Alcoholism, at the end of that AA meeting I end up asking myself why the hell I went there? I felt better before I went!! lol

There was a time before the Treatment Centers jargon, before we found ourselves sitting and listening to the same ones who went back out again, got drunk and are now back in again. When offering the Solution in the Big Book to these people, they don't want it.... because they learned to sit in a circle at the detox or treatment center and talk about what was bothering them that day.

When I first came into AA, they shared with me that it didn't matter worth a dime what was bothering me that day or any other day. Because I had ONE problem and the solution to that problem was at the AA meetings and all I had to do was sit up front and listen, identify and do not compare, get a Big Book and read it, get a Phone list, a Meeting list book and then just don't drink, suit up and show up the next night, at another AA meeting.

Feelings? I had a lot of feelings when I came into AA, I was ticked off, lonely, I was scared out of my mind, lost, and anxious as hell. What was shared with me is to sit down, and listen, if I had any questions to ask an AA member after the meeting...... because they weren't there to save me from feeling bad, they were there to save my ass.....literally.

What I heard at those early AA meetings was exactly what I needed to hear so that I could stay OUT of my own head and listen to those share who knew how to stay sober, because that AA group stuck with AA Topics and recovered Alcoholics who knew how to live life on life's terms. Every single AA meeting that I left when I was a newcomer, I left filled with HOPE.

The AA group wasn't listening to an entire meeting full of poor poor me, or quitting smoking... they were listening to genuine AA.
We had a large list of Topics to choose from, still do, that kept the focus on WHY WE WERE THERE......for example: Acceptance, Attitude of gratitude, Belief in a Higher Power, Complacency, Contempt prior to investigation, Keep it simple, Fear, Forgiveness, Freedom through sobriety, Hope, Humility, Identification, Inventory, Letting go of anger, Living one day at a time, Making amends, Meditation, Open-mindedness, Resentments, Responsibility, Rigorous honesty, Serenity, Service, Sponsorship, Staying away from the first drink, Surrender, Twelfth Stepping, What is sobriety, Willingness, and Working with others!

The above is a very short list of what we had then to choose from, and its grown very much over the years. The topics that are genuine AA are endless! And our AA meetings are very much the same as Lali described and we make sure that as an AA group, WE take responsibility and are accountable for how the AA Group meeting is conducted and its conducted according to those 12 Steps and 12 Traditions. Our AA group is now celebrating 56 years of keeping those AA doors open and reaching out to help those have lost the ability to choose to NOT drink....

One day at a time, One step at a time.
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby Patsy© » Thu Jun 02, 2016 2:24 pm

Reborn wrote:
Noels wrote:These words above sounds really encouraging to a person who is reading this thread for the first time and whose life is all just problems and was thinking that AA could possibly be the solution ?


I only copied this part of your share because I want you to understand something. When I got to AA I had this victim mentality...I was a victim of circumstance and little things that happened throughout my days would send me off the deep end. I remember sitting in my first meeting after coming out of the hospital (where I was detoxed) being very anxious to find out how AA could help me. The meeting began after the readings and the daily reflections...the first person shared about how they were trying to get their kids back and started crying. The next person shared how they had been sober for 20 years and this program is "just about not drinking one day at a time." This went on for a good 15 minutes until this old timer(my sponsor now) shared. He spoke about the mental twist that lead him back to the drink again and again...that his drinking lead him to prison and it was only there where he finally fully conceded to his inner most self he was an alcoholic...and got busy with the steps. After I heard this guy speak I asked him to be my sponsor...he graciously accepted and we got busy working in the solution. I can't imagine where I would be today if all I heard that day was a bunch of b!tching about problems...I spent way to long doing that myself.

Like I said before I have empathy for those people stuck in their problems...reminds me of me. However if I am to be of maximum service to those who still suffer I have to share the solution...just as it was shared with me. I know for me and many like me...I had so many problems when I got here I never thought I would get out from under it all. My sponsor told me to stop kicking my own ass and deal with one thing at a time. Make it right sized...work the steps...remember you are here to deal with alcoholism and to learn to a happy sober life...the rest will fall into place. I have no problem with someone sharing something that happened in their day as long as it is followed by how they applied the solution to it. We can sit in self pity all we want but until we take action...nothing changes if nothing changes!


Amen Reborn!
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Re: HYPER CONSERVATIVE OLD TIMERS - PART 2

Postby D'oh » Thu Jun 02, 2016 4:53 pm

I get the whole 2 Ears and 1 Mouth thing Patsy. I also get what the Newbie would think if Old Timers got up and left a meeting due to 1 simple word. I would imagine all of the Baggage that I was carrying, would make me feel Definitely! Unworthy of being there.

Now, knowing of the Traditions, it just makes me sad. Did anyone ask before passing judgement? Who is to say they were jeopardizing the 1 Tradition, or did not conform to the 3rd Tradition? And Truly. Why does it Matter? To honestly practice these principal of the programs, both of them. How could an Alcoholic use drugs or an Addict drink?

It might be that I am somewhat tainted from our own local Ole Timers group. You know the kind, it's members go to 1 meeting a week, have their own chair, try to ask another member, the last name of the New Comer, mention something about being time for your 5th step, as you are leaving. A lot of Sober years.
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