When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

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When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby steephills » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:59 am

I'm coming up on 30 days sober, and I think I go to a lot of meetings (every other day on average), and I hear the word "sponsor" nonstop. I read the booklet about obtaining a sponsor and it was very vague. All I got out of it was to choose a female sponsor (seeing as I'm female). But how do I really pick one? I've been going to meetings for about a month now and I don't know anyone. Yet, a lot of people I see at my meetings seem to all know each other, which I'm guessing makes it easier to sponsor someone. I got a number from one woman and we texted for about a week and a half and then stopped. The only person I really know is a male, and he's a mess.

So how do I go about this? Am I even ready for a sponsor?? Should I have one by now? And most of all, am I doing something wrong? :?
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby Brock » Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:08 am

I am sure you are not doing anything wrong, and I agree that some AA literature can be a bit vague, especially those leaflets. It's got to do with the tradition of suggesting instead of instructing, alcoholics don't usually like to be told do this and do that.

You could in a meeting just put your hand up, and say you are looking for a sponsor, but then you don't get to pick and choose. The other way is to approach someone who you think you can relate to, especially someone who speaks about how they recovered via the steps, and looks easy and happy in their sobriety. It is very rare that such a person might turn you down, it's considered a privilege to sponsor, and if they do they will have very good reasons, usually time constraints and they just can't give you the best they have to offer, if that happens just ask someone else.

In the meantime, a good head start is by sitting with your big book for a while each day, go to you tube and type in 'Joe and Charlie Journey through the Big Book,' and listen as they go through the book and the steps, it's long over ten hours, but just a bit a day helps in understanding.

You seem serious about sobriety, and in the other thread you speak about 'a winning streak,' and one sip will spoil it. All the more reason to try and get into those steps, because as the book says, without them the day will come when your streak will end, and the hardest part is without doing at least up to step five, you really don't have any defense against that one sip, good luck.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby PaigeB » Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:13 am

I wrote this on another thread for you...
Just go to a lot of meetings and look for people who really speak to your heart, who have what you want! If you find someone ask if they have gone through the 12 step with a sponsor - if they have ASK THEM... WE need a guide, not a guru. We are all just channels for peace & hope... This is an inside job.

But you don't have to know these people or even like them! As alcoholics we have an awful time with relationships - I have no idea who or how to talk to people or form bonds with people. Really... if someone has gone through the Steps with a sponsor they pretty much know how to be a sponsor. If they are willing to go through the book with you then you have a candidate.

All the answers are in the book. Not in a sponsor's head, or even their experiences. This is an INSIDE journey and we need a Light - cause when we are new, it feels pretty dark in there! Good Luck!
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby steephills » Sat Jul 22, 2017 6:44 am

PaigeB wrote:I wrote this on another thread for you...
Just go to a lot of meetings and look for people who really speak to your heart, who have what you want! If you find someone ask if they have gone through the 12 step with a sponsor - if they have ASK THEM... WE need a guide, not a guru. We are all just channels for peace & hope... This is an inside job.

But you don't have to know these people or even like them! As alcoholics we have an awful time with relationships - I have no idea who or how to talk to people or form bonds with people. Really... if someone has gone through the Steps with a sponsor they pretty much know how to be a sponsor. If they are willing to go through the book with you then you have a candidate.

All the answers are in the book. Not in a sponsor's head, or even their experiences. This is an INSIDE journey and we need a Light - cause when we are new, it feels pretty dark in there! Good Luck!


Thanks again! And yeah, the book is pretty much my only real guide at the moment.
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby desypete » Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:43 am

i choose my sponsor as he was at peace with himself, although i didn't know it then i just liked how he was as a person, he was calm and i was raging, he seemed happy and contented with himself and seemed very happy to try to help me
he went out of his way by taking me to some meetings and we just got to know each other that way, i guess he was the first person i came to trust in more so as everytime he spoke about himself i would be amazed as he sounded just like me

so a connection developed that way
i was told to find someone in aa that is hard and would tell me like it is for a sponsor and i was drawn to a very rude arrogant aa memeber who was very in your face and i can look back over the years and see things he had done by being so direct and to the point with me he helped me
but over all i always felt scared of him and inferior to him. and it took me a few years before i was able to stand up to people like him in aa and tell them straight that trying to bully anyone might make them feel all powerful but it doesn't help anyone.

anyway i would suggest you attend the meetings and listen to people in the rooms share i am sure you will hear someone who sounds like you if you id with someone then approach them at the end of the meeting and just keep it simple and tell them how you id with them and see what type of conversation happens after it, if it works you will be unable to stop talking to each other all about yourselves lol

i spent hours and hours with my sponsor just talking about myself and finding out i was not the only nutter in this world and the good news is there is way out which is what i clung to

i guess i was lucky with my sponsor who is now almost 50 years sober and has helped countless others over all those years, he is still as active today but had great balance in his life

anyway good luck to you
only thing to look out for is anyone who tries to force themselves on to you as a sponsor, or anyone who tries to direct you away from aa meetings, no one who is free and contented would ever dream of trying to control anyone in aa

so good luck to you
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby steephills » Sat Jul 22, 2017 8:01 am

Brock wrote:I am sure you are not doing anything wrong, and I agree that some AA literature can be a bit vague, especially those leaflets. It's got to do with the tradition of suggesting instead of instructing, alcoholics don't usually like to be told do this and do that.

You could in a meeting just put your hand up, and say you are looking for a sponsor, but then you don't get to pick and choose. The other way is to approach someone who you think you can relate to, especially someone who speaks about how they recovered via the steps, and looks easy and happy in their sobriety. It is very rare that such a person might turn you down, it's considered a privilege to sponsor, and if they do they will have very good reasons, usually time constraints and they just can't give you the best they have to offer, if that happens just ask someone else.

In the meantime, a good head start is by sitting with your big book for a while each day, go to you tube and type in 'Joe and Charlie Journey through the Big Book,' and listen as they go through the book and the steps, it's long over ten hours, but just a bit a day helps in understanding.

You seem serious about sobriety, and in the other thread you speak about 'a winning streak,' and one sip will spoil it. All the more reason to try and get into those steps, because as the book says, without them the day will come when your streak will end, and the hardest part is without doing at least up to step five, you really don't have any defense against that one sip, good luck.


Thanks for the advice. I gotta admit though, I do get apprehensive to put up my hand and speak. And I feel like my voice shakes when I do. I don't know why I'm so afraid...aren't we all in the same boat? Everyone's different I guess.
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby kdub720 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:06 am

Another sponsor comment. I do not know why this keeps coming up, but I like it. I think it takes a mega strong veteran to be a sponsor, someone who knows and can fight the battle with all their heart. I feel like the people who have approached me to be my sponsor are more in it for themselves and "service" I need a sponsor who understands me and my personal battle. These pushy people have other agendas than to help and guide. Sponsors are like guides and mentors that support us along the path, those who demand time or attention are not sponsor material. Thanks again all, maybe one day I can get it together and be a good sponsor to someone.
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby PaigeB » Sun Jul 23, 2017 10:19 am

Big Book page 18 & 19 tell us what to look for in a sponsor:
But the ex-problem drinker who has found this solution, who is properly armed with facts about himself, can generally win the entire confidence of another alcoholic in a few hours. Until such an understanding is reached, little or nothing can be accomplished.

That the man who is making the approach has had the same difficulty, that he obviously knows what he is talking about, that his whole deportment shouts at the new prospect that he is a man with a real answer, that he has no attitude of Holier Than Thou, nothing whatever except the sincere desire to be helpful; that there are no fees to pay, no axes to grind, no people to please, no lectures to be endured - these are the conditions we have found most effective. After such an approach many take up their beds and walk again.

None of us makes a sole vocation of this work, nor do we think its effectiveness would be increased if we did. We feel that elimination of our drinking is but a beginning. A much more important demonstration of our principles lies before us in our respective homes, occupations and affairs.
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
The e-AA Group's 7th Tradition link: www.e-aa.org/group_seventh.php
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby steephills » Sun Jul 23, 2017 6:57 pm

kdub720 wrote:Another sponsor comment. I do not know why this keeps coming up, but I like it. I think it takes a mega strong veteran to be a sponsor, someone who knows and can fight the battle with all their heart. I feel like the people who have approached me to be my sponsor are more in it for themselves and "service" I need a sponsor who understands me and my personal battle. These pushy people have other agendas than to help and guide. Sponsors are like guides and mentors that support us along the path, those who demand time or attention are not sponsor material. Thanks again all, maybe one day I can get it together and be a good sponsor to someone.


Thanks for the insight! Which leads me to this situation: There is this lady I sort-of know. We used to text and she's very upbeat with a cheery disposition. She's older than me (guessing late 30's, early 40's) but I just like her outlook on life. Today at our meeting, it was asked who had over a year sober to show the newcomers that it works, and she was one of many who raised their hand. I was thinking about asking her, but kept coming back to the thought that once I choose someone I'm stuck with them. Like a choose wisely sort of deal.
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby PaigeB » Sun Jul 23, 2017 11:17 pm

but kept coming back to the thought that once I choose someone I'm stuck with them. Like a choose wisely sort of deal.

Nah - you are not getting married or anything. You can change sponsors anytime you really want to.

If this woman keeps coming to mind as a possible sponsor, you might want to listen to THAT quiet voice and ask her!
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
The e-AA Group's 7th Tradition link: www.e-aa.org/group_seventh.php
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Re: When/ How do I get a Sponsor?

Postby Brock » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:44 am

She sure sounds like the right one to ask, and as Paige said it's something we can usually change if it's not working out, good AA's, (and she sounds like one), don't take changing sponsors as a personal insult.

It's good of you to keep in touch here, we enjoy hearing how things are going, best of luck in getting her as your sponsor.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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