I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I stop

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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby stella1976 » Fri Nov 24, 2017 6:36 pm

tomsteve wrote:stella, you are allowed to set boundaries. and you dont have to be concerned with what others think of you. what others think of you is their own problem. you are allowed to stand up for yourself- it just takes some courage. if she gets offended by you protecting yourself,thats her problem.
courage is an amazing thing to have and use.

ive gone to meetings after a day of wrenchin on cars. all greased up. dirt/grease on my hands even after washing. ive had negative comments about it. the comments seriously stopped one day when someone brought it up before the meeting and i said," are you willing to come over and lend a hand with what im workin on so i can get cleaned up better beforehand? "
amazingly, no offer to help.

I just got home from the AA meeting.Before the meeting i I went to say hi to a this touchy feely woman and I extended my arm to give her a hand shake but she came at me with a hug that lingered.Later I was standing next to her and she held me around the waist.During the meeting she was sitting behind me resting her hands on my shoulders and rubbing my back and shoulders.This woman always feels the need to rub my back .I don't want to make a fuss because I don't want to upset her.I am so afraid of rejection by the group.This woman greeted me on my first meeting. Made sure I had her number and some other women's numbers.She suggested
I volunteer to make coffee. It was a great idea because women would approach me
to thank me for my service. I didn't speak for my first 3 meetings and had trouble speaking for a bit after that. When I finally started talking, I had the feeling that everything coming out of my mouth was stupid. I was reassured time and again by this touchy feely huggy woman that this was not the case. Slowly that sunk in... that even if it was not what I wanted to say, it was always something that someone needed to hear. My shares are still less than 5 minutes , but I'm not self conscious about them anymore.Also, it was suggested to me by this touchy feely huggy woman to sit up front. She said that is where i will meet women that have got some time together and some the same as myself. When I sat up front I couldn't see the other women while talking. When I was in the back, I'd raise my hand to speak and all of a sudden there were 10 sets of eyes turned back looking at me. When I first started AA, I had a hard time putting myself out there as I was shy and scared. This touchy feely woman was the first to say Hi and Welcome .I'm a very private person (can ya believe it? *LOL*) and had a hard time fitting in with the women in my group.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby Chelle » Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:08 pm

Hi Stella,
If that was happening to me, I would ask if I could speak to her alone for a moment and pull her off to the side. I would thank her for how welcome she has made me feel, and tell her straight out that all of this physical contact makes me very uncomfortable. I would tell her it is me and not her.

There comes a point where I am responsible when I am allowing another person to make me feel uncomfortable. If I am not speaking up and being honest the behavior will continue I do not have to allow another person to make me feel violated just to spare their feelings. I would be surprised if you are the only one that this has happened to.

You don't have to be chased away from your meeting. Just keep being kind and smile as you normally would. Don't treat her any different except for all the touching. If she doesn't like it, that's on her. Personal boundaries are very healthy
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby stella1976 » Sun Nov 26, 2017 4:47 pm

Chelle wrote:Hi Stella,
If that was happening to me, I would ask if I could speak to her alone for a moment and pull her off to the side. I would thank her for how welcome she has made me feel, and tell her straight out that all of this physical contact makes me very uncomfortable. I would tell her it is me and not her.

There comes a point where I am responsible when I am allowing another person to make me feel uncomfortable. If I am not speaking up and being honest the behavior will continue I do not have to allow another person to make me feel violated just to spare their feelings. I would be surprised if you are the only one that this has happened to.

You don't have to be chased away from your meeting. Just keep being kind and smile as you normally would. Don't treat her any different except for all the touching. If she doesn't like it, that's on her. Personal boundaries are very healthy

I am already seeing some positive changes in my life.I now no long wake up feeling like crap, I am not yelling at my daughter, small things are minor now and not blown out of proportion. I feel like I am actually caring about people more too.The mood lability. Feel good. Feel bad. Up. Down. Laugh. Cry.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby D'oh » Sun Nov 26, 2017 6:02 pm

I am already seeing some positive changes in my life.I now no long wake up feeling like crap, I am not yelling at my daughter, small things are minor now and not blown out of proportion. I feel like I am actually caring about people more too.The mood lability. Feel good. Feel bad. Up. Down. Laugh. Cry.


Life, use to be what as happening when we were trying to arrange every thing else.

I have to Slow Down, and enjoy the "Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny" The "Happy" part is happening all around me. I just have to see what My part is.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby PaigeB » Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:19 pm

stella1976 wrote:I am already seeing some positive changes in my life.I now no long wake up feeling like crap, I am not yelling at my daughter, small things are minor now and not blown out of proportion. I feel like I am actually caring about people more too.The mood lability. Feel good. Feel bad. Up. Down. Laugh. Cry.

That is great! Now apply this same balance to hugging at the meeting. Not a big deal to hug and not a big deal to not hug.

I am doing a 2nd much more through 4th step... I have found that what I think is sometimes the opposite of reality. This woman you speak of was the first to walk up and say Welcome. Be glad she did! We sometimes have to tolerate others and I am working on that part A LOT. I don't have to love them - there is balance. For me, the solution was to focus on the gratitude and not the fears... on the similarities rather than the differences.

Never forget that first Welcome you got. My sponsor would likely position me at the door with my hand out for the next six months! Doing what I fear... it works!
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: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby stella1976 » Wed Nov 29, 2017 6:02 pm

PaigeB wrote:
stella1976 wrote:I am already seeing some positive changes in my life.I now no long wake up feeling like crap, I am not yelling at my daughter, small things are minor now and not blown out of proportion. I feel like I am actually caring about people more too.The mood lability. Feel good. Feel bad. Up. Down. Laugh. Cry.

That is great! Now apply this same balance to hugging at the meeting. Not a big deal to hug and not a big deal to not hug.

I am doing a 2nd much more through 4th step... I have found that what I think is sometimes the opposite of reality. This woman you speak of was the first to walk up and say Welcome. Be glad she did! We sometimes have to tolerate others and I am working on that part A LOT. I don't have to love them - there is balance. For me, the solution was to focus on the gratitude and not the fears... on the similarities rather than the differences.

Never forget that first Welcome you got. My sponsor would likely position me at the door with my hand out for the next six months! Doing what I fear... it works!

Ijust got home from the AA meeting.This woman hugged me from behind when I was sitting down and stroked my collar bones before moving to my shoulders.During the meeting she was sitting behind me and she was rubbing my shoulders and back.After the meeting she hugged me, she pulled me very close and hugged me tight pressing her face on my breasts and rubbing my lower back with her hands for what seemed like a long time .I just can't say no to this woman.She is important to me.This touchy feely huggy short skinny woman was the first to walk up and say Welcome to me.I was thinking a lot and i realized that from my perspective,she is invasive . But all she really wants to do is connect' supporting me and comforting me; she means no malevolence.When she hug me I usually go stiff and don't hug her back. I feel awkward with hugging, and I feel terrible when I don't hug her back.Now within my region this is the only all female group. I love the meetings.AA is a huge part of my sobriety so it is a huge issue to me.It's a good place for me to be! It helps because it is on my work to home route.I am just stopping there on my way home from work. I usually go three times a week. They're awesome meetings.I always feel better afterwards.They are a good thing. Very little swearing, by the way.I can tell when I need a meeting, lol, I start to get pretty wound up after a few days without. Vulnerable to take a drink. I need to be reminded to be humble and grateful I guess.One thing I think is critical in sobriety is to avoid isolation. For me AA is the solution for this problem.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby waller_alkie » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:46 am

I am so glad that you are finding peace in AA and want to continue to attend meetings. What I am going to suggest has helped me to address concerns such as yours in an open and cathartic way:
Bring it up in the meeting. Bring it up as your topic, because it is affecting/concerning your sobriety. You do not have to call anyone out, simply say that you are uncomfortable with being touched and have literally considered not coming to the meeting anymore because of it, and you want to just put it out there. Let everyone say their piece, too. You'll be amazed, because they will also get a chance to say that they are maybe feeling that way, too, but were afraid to say it! You might be doing someone else a favor, too.

I've never had this approach fail me - ESPECIALLY in a Women's Meeting.
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby stella1976 » Wed Dec 20, 2017 5:23 pm

waller_alkie wrote:I am so glad that you are finding peace in AA and want to continue to attend meetings. What I am going to suggest has helped me to address concerns such as yours in an open and cathartic way:
Bring it up in the meeting. Bring it up as your topic, because it is affecting/concerning your sobriety. You do not have to call anyone out, simply say that you are uncomfortable with being touched and have literally considered not coming to the meeting anymore because of it, and you want to just put it out there. Let everyone say their piece, too. You'll be amazed, because they will also get a chance to say that they are maybe feeling that way, too, but were afraid to say it! You might be doing someone else a favor, too.

I've never had this approach fail me - ESPECIALLY in a Women's Meeting.

Today this touchy feely woman told me that she is going to be my sponsor. I agreed. I am grateful to her.I got used to her touching me and hugging me.This woman sits behind me every meeting. She holds my hand, rubs my back and shoulders, puts her arms around me and will even hold me.The best part is how safe it feels. When I got upset and cried, she would sit by me and rub my leg, or put her arm around me, pull me in and hold me. She said that trust and touch are closely related, as well as making me feel safe and grounded (avoiding dissociation). That's why she use it.She is hugging me before and after the meetings. Either we do a sideways hug where i put my arm around her shoulders , and she will put her arms around my waist and gives me a squeeze. Or we have a full on frontal hug.She said that because i am much taller than her, the hugs make her feel very secure and cared for.I've found that touch in AA made me feel safe and grounded during the meetings, and more connected to other women so I felt safe talking about more difficult issues.I trust her so much and feel so safe with her. It's been really really healing to find out that touch can just be about comfort and connection and caring and that's it.This touchy feely woman suggested to me body/energy work i agreed--- so she does work on freeing up energy in my body which is sort of like a very gentle massage while i am standing.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby positrac » Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:09 am

Interesting topic and from a man's perspective I would of kind of made it known that you don't touch me and keep you damn hands away! I don't like rejection either and I want approval from people as long as it is mutual. Honestly I can say openly I was sexually abused as a child and so for me touching off limits for me unless I give permission.

Waller makes a good point of bring it up in a meeting like a women's group because you all know how to express this point and make it clear on boundaries.

About sponsors: My experience of 27 years is I ask and I am not told who will or won't sponsor me. IMHO your post has a lot of yellow lights of caution and you are fragile mentally right now with sobriety and so if a line is crossed who might lose out and go drinking over it? Please think about this because people in AA might be sober, but some agendas never change and not all people in the rooms are that way, but some are and they will use another at any expense and so I say beware of wolves in sheep's clothing. See I am not sure at all of the points mentioned in your post(s) but to me it sounds questionable.

I don't wish for any member to fail and relapse and so if you have it all in one sock then go in peace and if you have reservations then think is all my suggestion can offer.
You must live your life from beginning to end: No one else can do it for you.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby waller_alkie » Thu Dec 21, 2017 6:35 am

Yes, I agree with positrac. Stella, please be safe. You have the right to set personal boundaries. I am all about my energy and flow, etc., etc. I work with people all day, and it is important. But it is also important that someone doesn't come into my space, infringe on my energy, and tell me how my space will be managed. Even in early sobriety, I get to learn how to do that myself with the help of the 12 Steps.

Also, in my experience with sponsorship since, well, a long time ago, it works much better when you ask someone to sponsor you. She should not be telling you that she is your sponsor. You are not a child and this isn't that kind of program. Please consider these things. They are all boundary issues. You don't have to stop attending that meeting, but it might feel awkward while you set some boundaries (at first) for yourself. Then you will realize that you are doing something quite normal and healthy, and you will grow from it.
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby avaneesh912 » Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:57 am

I wondered about the hugging. But you are right, there is some intelligence the muscles carry and transfer without our knowledge. One of the spiritual masters has 21 day initiation, he calls it, in which he puts his thumb on the angya chakra (place between the eye-brows). And another suggests not to allow anyone touch your spine, because its the most important pathway to your brain. However, I would suggest, you focus on the 12 steps of AA and see what she suggests regarding working of the 12 steps.
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: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby Spirit Flower » Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:32 am

Congratulations OP, you've been groomed. You've traded true sobriety through reliance on a higher power, for the dopamine hit you get when someone rubs on you.

How on earth can you objectively do the steps when loaded up with feel good brain chemicals; and I assure you, thats all this is.

(Yes, I hope I just gave you a new axxhole and you stop and think. Believe me, I've been around AA for over 30 years and seen it all.)
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby ClaireS » Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:44 am

Stella, when you are through the 12 steps, lets hope that part of it is learning boundaries. Whatever you may be uncomfortable with is normal when first sober, we are all uncomfortable with many things after sobriety. Just be honest and don't worry about what they think. What matters is that you are learning to speak up for you and what is good for you. I don't see anything sinister going on, there are many in AA who hug and have always done that. So if you do not want her to hug you, simply say that you are uncomfortable with anyone hugging you. Don't drink and keep coming no matter what...
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby stella1976 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:58 am

Spirit Flower wrote:Congratulations OP, you've been groomed. You've traded true sobriety through reliance on a higher power, for the dopamine hit you get when someone rubs on you.

How on earth can you objectively do the steps when loaded up with feel good brain chemicals; and I assure you, thats all this is.

(Yes, I hope I just gave you a new axxhole and you stop and think. Believe me, I've been around AA for over 30 years and seen it all.)

This touchy feely woman my sponsor is intelligent very polite and serious - no crudeness, no sexual innuendo etc.She is very enthusiastic, competent and helpful.She doesn't look threatening. She is masculine but she is tiny, short and skinny 55year old woman.I am physically stronger than her.I am tall curvy well built and well endowed always on high heels she is always in flat shoes.Standing next to me she looks like a midget.She is very different from me - very direct.She is pushing me to attend AA every day of the week.I like meetings, feel at home there, that isn't the problem.I would say we get along.I also don't want to hurt her feelings, because I AM grateful that someone is willing to do all this for free, which is one of the many reasons I think AA is marvelous.My sponsor never went into treatment, had professional therapy, or took any antidepressants. Why do you think that she is grooming me?
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Re: I need advice.I would hate for this to be the reason I s

Postby stella1976 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:45 am

Spirit Flower wrote:Congratulations OP, you've been groomed. You've traded true sobriety through reliance on a higher power, for the dopamine hit you get when someone rubs on you.

How on earth can you objectively do the steps when loaded up with feel good brain chemicals; and I assure you, thats all this is.

(Yes, I hope I just gave you a new axxhole and you stop and think. Believe me, I've been around AA for over 30 years and seen it all.)
My sponsor is well regarded and known in AA around here.We have become close, I care about her very much and I know she feels the same. My sponsor has me using a series of worksheets that I feel make long and complicated work out of a simple thing, but I did agree to do it her way. When we hug, it feels comforting, and that's it. Definitely not sexual at all.There is no doubt that touch has incredible healing power. We do hug often and she always sits behind me and rubs my shoulders and back during the meetings.Often she talks to me while she is holding onto to me to reassure me. Sometimes I am overwhelmed by the emotions it taps into because I was never hugged in my family ever and it feels good to feel cared for and taken care of by her.She will just hug me for 10 min at a time sometimes! Sometimes i will sort of rest my head on the top of her head (i am tall, she is really short).The hand-holding with her feels wonderfully healing and safe.Sometimes my sponsor pats my lower back or hugs me around my waist as we walk together. I am 100% straight.Im a straight woman, i love men, simple!I am STRICTLY hetero.I've never had any desire to do anything sexual with a female. I attend meetings on every work day i go there straight from work, i share and i interact with other women. I WANT to be helped. I need this woman my sponsor badly. I need her support and help. Generally she is a happy and kind person who is well liked by everyone in the meetings we go to. She is very active and has many qualities I admire.
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