Step One – the most often misquoted Step of the 12 Steps!

12 Steps: Discussions related to the 12 Steps and using them as a treatment to recover from alcohol and drug addiction.
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 7:45 am

what is the PROBLEM of the alcoholic?

Postby FORTMILL » Sat Dec 12, 2009 11:38 pm

what is the main PROBLEM of the alcoholic? Either you believe in STEP 2, or you do not. Thank GOD it is true and and can recover from the INSANITY and OBSESSION. That is one of the sad things about AA today, most people do not know exactly WHAT we recover FROM. If you don't think you can recover from the INSANITY, then you have not had a Spiritual Awakening as the result of these steps, and the 10th Step promises are not true...

By this time sanity will have returned.... the PROBLEM has been removed.

Kind of like breaking my leg as a kid... my leg has recovered from that break YEARS ago... I do not go through life still claiming I have a broken leg. THAT DOES NOT MEAN I CANNOT BREAK MY LEG AGAIN (ITS IN THE BOOK)

Being a real alcoholic, and not a hard drinker only, thank God the obsession has been removed since 1993, and the insanity has never returned.

Our AA literature is packed full of information telling us what we recover from (Hopeless state of mind that always takes me back to a drink, then once I take that drink, the allergy which insures I will keep drinking with unknown results in my case)

So many references.....
when approached by those in that the problem has been SOLVED (not solving... but SOLVED)... what is the PROBLEM...?

120. Either GOD has removed your husband's liquor problem or he has not...

12&12. forward. which if practiced as a way of life, can EXPEL THE OBSESSION to drink, and...

12&12,21: warped our minds into such an obsession , the only act of Providence can REMOVE IT FROM US...

12&12,24: we stand ready to do anything which will lift the merciless obsession from us...

12&12, 25: none but a Higher Power can remove our obsession.

BUT I AM A CHRONIC ALCOHOLIC, I always RETURN to drinking, because of myself, I have lost that POWER of choice.... so I can live on a Spiritual Basis, or be DOOMED to a alcoholic death.

Keep seeking the truth my friend. If something causes you to defend your EGO, seek truth, and that You and I do not have to be correct. I know without a doubt, the 2nd Step is true, and I have recovered from that hopeless state of mind.

peace and happy trails :)

sorry to ramble on this, but this does DIRECTLY RELATE to WHAT Is the "problem" in Step #1, ... Its sad so many AA-ers don't even agree of what the alcoholic problem is... Everytime you read the word "problem" in the Big Book or 12&12, ask yourself, exactly what the "problem" means... it is not to fix your marriage.

Site Admin
Posts: 4782
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:05 pm
Location: Fort Smith, Arkansas USA

Postby Dallas » Sun Dec 13, 2009 3:09 am

Fortmill, I don't think you'll find any of the regulars that post in this forum, that does not believe in recovery, and living a happy, joyous and free experience of life -- that is fulfilling to the max.

I can't think of one member here -- that does not believe in recovery and living the Good Life, as a result of taking and practicing the 12 Steps as their Design for Living.

We're all on the same side as you! :wink:

We can, we will, and we do recover -- "if" we take certain actions. That's not just a promise, it's a fact.

And, most everyone here will agree with you -- that in the majority of AA Discussion type meetings -- you'll hear a lot about the problems and very little about the recovery solution.... And, you'll hear it week after week, and year after year, as though there is no such thing as recovering.

We know this from our own experience at the meetings.

The real question should be "What can we do to help them?"

I know from my own experience, that if we go to the meetings and shove the Big Book down their throats and try to force them to swallow it -- they'll just spit it back up and they'll be angry with us because "we don't appear to be very recovered ourselves"... in our efforts to convince them.

If they don't like you -- you won't be able to help anyone.

Some will reply with "It's not my concern to have them like me, it's my concern to carry the message!" And, they look at it in such a way as "it's all our war to convince these alkies of their wrongs and get them to swallow the message in the book!"

These types, I believe, cause more harm, in the way that they are attempting to carry the message... than the harm caused by not carrying the message.

Often, "the Big Book Thumpers" (as many of us are often called)... :lol: are at a disadvantage... because some other Big Book Thumpers roared through their meetings like a tornado of self-will, good intentions, but with logic that wouldn't hold up under close examination (they were mixing up the message with ideas that were not sound by taking bits and parts of the Big Book, and not thoroughly examining it, in relationship to the other parts of the Big Book).

Their attitudes sucked. They appeared to "the unrecovered" (as the Thumpers would refer to them) :lol: as "Elite-ist... better-than, holy-er than"... the others.

Naturally, this does not do much in regards to trying to bring about any kind of Unity! :wink:

Bill also referred to "the good as being the greatest enemy of the best".

What I discovered, through my own personal experience was: If I desire to help the unrecovered alcoholics... then, the first thing on my list should be to "try it smarter rather than harder". :lol:

And, "to carry the message" most effectively, means that "I carry the message by demonstration and example -- in my personality, in my way of life, in my thinking, and in the kind, polite, and respectful ways -- that I treat others."

I was going to write about including "the theory of bedevilments"... in the message... and how that theory can cause us to miss out on helping many other types of alcoholics -- and how the theory will not hold up under close examination of the Big Book -- but, I'll save that for a future post! :wink:

If we're turning people off -- we're not going to be able to turn any of them on! :lol:

Let's find the BEST way, to turn them on "to recovery" rather than "turn them off" before we get a chance to help them.

Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 7:45 am

Postby FORTMILL » Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:07 am

i agree, my gay South Carolina charm sometimes has trouble revealing itself when i type, and my method of response.

thank you, and well noted

Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Nov 08, 2009 8:45 am
Location: Arcadia, Florida


Postby rkdian34 » Sun Dec 13, 2009 12:51 pm

A long time ago I went off on a long tirade in a meeting. After the meeting and old timer ask me this, "Son, whose inventory are you taking today?"

Site Admin
Posts: 4782
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:05 pm
Location: Fort Smith, Arkansas USA

Postby Dallas » Sun Dec 13, 2009 4:45 pm

Interesting that you should mention that. Many years ago, a person went off in a meeting, and after the meeting, I asked them the same question. Just a couple of days ago the same person was going off again. I thought of asking them that question again -- but, figured "What's the use"? For some people, it seems that some things never change.

Don O
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 12:52 pm
Location: Macon Ga

!st step

Postby Don O » Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:51 pm

I dont know about anyone else but my life was unmangeable long before I started drinking. I never knew how to deal with life and ran from reality.I hear people say my best thinking got me here and I just dont think thats true cause I never thought anything through I just reacted to everything. Im an alcoholic because I have a diease called alcohalism but thats not why I drank-----I drank because my life was unmanageable and thats the only thing that seemed to slow it down and that was my delusion.

Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:15 pm
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida

Postby Silverbullet » Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:17 pm

I understood the 1st step is a 1 part proposition yet the (a) of the 3 pertinent ideas, That we were alcoholic AND could not manage our own lives..?? I'll stick with the 1st step to keep it simple, Eh? I guess I'm splitting hairs, it's #4 on my inventory, the 1st 3 are reserved for my spiritual adviser :wink:

Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:15 pm
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida

Postby Silverbullet » Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:29 am

Dallas wrote:
If not... it's best not to use the "Quotes" feature... and "add to it."


Or subtract or modify, why don't we rewrite the BB to suit our interpretation? God, I hope not :roll: :roll:

Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:51 am

Postby thx1138 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 12:07 pm

When I read the descriptions of “what an alcoholic isâ€

Site Admin
Posts: 4782
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:05 pm
Location: Fort Smith, Arkansas USA

Postby Dallas » Thu Dec 17, 2009 6:00 pm

Welcome to the site, and thanks for sharing.

I agree. That sounds like what I did when I first came to AA. I mistakenly thought that the First Step, was the AA definition of an alcoholic. (I hadn't even bothered to read all the other information in the Big Book...) And, I didn't understand, that the part that says "-- our lives have become unmanageable" means to me, my "drinking dominates my life". My drinking controlled every aspect of my life.... but I couldn't see it then.

I thank God, and A.A., that by using the 12 Step tools that were provided to me, great sponsorship, and the Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous, that drinking no longer dominates my life.

My other mistake, in my erroneous believing that the First Step was AA's definition of an alcoholic -- was "if drinking no longer dominates my life... in other words, if I'm sober -- I'm no longer powerless over alcohol... because I'm not drinking" then, there is no need for the other 11 Steps.

What I also failed to understand, was "the reason I'm powerless over alcohol -- is because I have alcoholism. I'm alcoholic.... regardless if I'm sober or I'm drinking."

Kind of like a diabetic. Even when their insulin and blood suguar is being managed and controlled -- they are still diabetic. They have a condition that makes them diabetic. And, their diabetes will dominate their life and finally kill them, if they don't keep it treated.


Return to “12 Steps”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests