meeting protocal

Help for alcohol abuse addiction alcoholics who want to stay sober
Bobby D
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Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2010 4:30 am

meeting protocal

Postby Bobby D » Thu Feb 04, 2010 8:05 am

Been to a few meetings now and , I have a couple of questions to throw out there..

1. Are the steps designed to be done in order... I am solidly through 1 through 3 .. but I'm kinda on 11 already and 8 seems like it's logical.. but I see 4 and part of 5 as downstream for me..

2. Don't think I'm ready for a sponser/sponsee relationship yet.... BUT..Is a sponser assigned to you... do you ask the group for one.. or does someone just approach you ??

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meeting protocal

Postby knny913 » Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:21 pm

Hi Bobby D,
Glad to see you're going to meetings. Good questions.
"First things First". Ring a bell? It has always been said that Bill W., Dr. Bob, and the first 100 numbered the steps for a reason. I personally couldn't imagine doing an 8th & 9th step without first doing steps 4 thru 7. First I need to look at the damage I have created in my drinking carreer, then I need to discuss them with my God, and another person, just to keep me Honest. How can I possibly make an amends to someone if I'm not sure as to what my part in the problem was? And how could I even make a list of persons I had harmed if I didn't realize my character defects and ask my Higher Power to relieve me of them so that I could better understand how and why I am making the amends? Just a couple of quick questions to ponder. (Personally I would say YES, please work them in order), this is a program of discipline and we don't get disciplined by starting out in caous.
As far as a sponsor is concerned, I think there are several ways to aquire one. I've heard of people who wanted to pick their own, mostly because they wanted someone they thought was cool enough, , I heard of people approaching newcomers and telling them that they would be their sponsors, and I've heard of people sharing that they needed a sponsor, so there is no rule of thumb (as I see it). I personally had gone to several meetings with my sponsor and asked him questions about sobriety before I asked him to be my sponsor. I think it is very important to get a sponsor to help you through your steps, and to help you understand the program, if you are like me you are going to be really confused at first.

Good Luck
Keep me posted,
Your Friend in Sobriety

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Postby Dallas » Fri Feb 05, 2010 5:02 am

Hi Bobby, great to see your progress!

I believe the steps are to be taken in order.

A huge mistake that I made and that I've watched others make is: looking at the list of 12 Steps and deciding how or which, if any that I took, or how to take them.

What worked the best for me was to start by reading from the front page of the book Alcoholics Anonymous and following the instructions in the book.

In my own opinion, the steps do not make sense if I don't start at the front of the book. It's the precise reason that the book was written, to be like a text book with the precise instructions on how to recover using the 12 Steps.

When I first came to AA, I had a huge dislike of the book Alcoholics Anonymous, and didn't even take the time to read it. I thought that since it was written in 1939... I was more intelligent than the old book. :lol:

When I did read... I read the 12 Steps & 12 Traditions book, and that just filled my head with ideas and theories that I could and did debate.

Thus, I was using my head "thinking about it" rather than "doing it."

My results were: I got drunk again after 5 1/2 months and nearly died drinking. It got so bad that I didn't think I'd ever have another opportunity at sobriety. I tried going to dozens and dozens of AA meetings after that... and I couldn't even stay sober through one meeting.

When I did get a second chance at sobriety... I got real serious about it because I realized that I really was an alcoholic of the hopeless variety. So, I got real serious about "doing" rather than "thinking."

That's my take on it. I hope it helps.


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Postby gunner48 » Fri Feb 05, 2010 10:33 am

Hi Kenny
Can I stay sober jumping around and only doing the steps I want to? My expierience has proven the answer is no. I got a spirital advisor (Sponsor) that took me from the front of the book to the back.(page 164). He shared his knowledge of the program and his expiriences, never putting his opionions out. It was this is what the book said we are to do and I just did it. 2 pages a day. He helped me to practice praying so I could make contact with my higher power. I did things that I really did not believe would work, I talked to people (not a normal reaction for me), I listened without interruption to others, I weeded out the people that were spreading the diasese and hung around people that were demostrating they wanted to live sober, happy lives.

How did I pick a sponsor? I listened until I found someone that when they talked I knew what they were saying. It was as if they knew what was going on inside of me.

Best of luck to you in your adventure. If you are like me you will find a way of life you never dreamed was availiable to you.

Peace and Love Gunner

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Postby DiggerinVA » Sat Feb 06, 2010 7:45 am

The steps are designed to be done in order for sure.

I like to cheat and look at step 10's instructions for some of the evidence.

"Continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment, and fear. When these crop up, we ask God at once to remove them. We discuss them with someone immediately and make amends quickly if we have harmed anyone." From Page 84 in the Big Book

This is in a nutshell 4-9. I like to look at the 1st time through as a learning experience. Your sponsor takes you through these steps to learn how to live steps 10-12.

PS your kinda 11 is just fine. Your higher power knows you want help and asking for guidance in finding your sponsor is a good use of prayer after all you are just asking for the wisdom and knowledge (read the third step prayer). So which one are you doing? 11 or 3

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Postby Tessa » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:32 am

Yes, the steps are designed & suggested to be done in the order they are presented. Also, each step should be done with a sponser. To do them on our own is just our sick minds telling us we don't need anothers help & we can do this on our own. JMHO

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Postby Dallas » Sun Apr 04, 2010 9:42 pm

Hello Keith! Thanks for sharing some good info above. I appreciate you.

Only one thing I'd like to comment on:

Keith wrote:maybe criminal things about yourself to a person who says daily that he is only sober for today

I ALWAYS inform any newcomer that I'm working with... "If you've commited crimes that you haven't paid for, been to jail for, and your not cleared of the charges yet, if or you're wanted for something... I don't want to know the details. You need to share that info w/ a lawyer. I will help you if I can, in regards to walking through whatever you have to walk through... as long as you don't dump the details on me... keep those between you and your attorney and follow his advice on this. Dumping that kind of dirty laundry on me puts me in a bad position, as well as yourself. I don't want to know something about something that might implicate me in the something -- just for knowing about it."


Bobby D
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Postby Bobby D » Mon Apr 05, 2010 5:50 pm

Keith/ Dallas

As usuall good advice..Thanks... I'm still struggling with the sponser
( after 3 months too ).. first one didn't work out for me.. probably my fault cause I still have the have to do this my way attitude... He was pushing me to get started on moral inventory and I just not ready...

Good point re: some things maybe better not said to just$%, I just admitted some of this stuff to myself !

I think I'm doing great on my own.. .. 90 days just around the corner next real compulsions to drink.... I think I need an older guy that I could respect more ??? Last one was only 30 ish and I'm 2nd guessing him..

The only problem I'm having is my patience is thin instead of better...Mostly I hear from meetings that people are more understanding now that their sober.. more under control ect... I'm more the opposite in some ways...

We have a 23 year old active addict in the house.. I used to just bang down another bourbon and look the other way.. now I'm all up in his face about it.. trying to set some rules.. which probably sounds hypocritical to him... I'm a little ( stress little ) resentful with the wife too.. especially when she challenges me.. I am like.. you wanted me to be sober ... I'm not looking the other way anymore cause I'm not drunk... you should be doing cartwheels...Of course I dont say this... but thats what I'm thinking...

Funny thing is as I'm typing this I know the answers... after all I put her through I have no right to expect constant praise.... It's still all about me and thats not what the program teaches the steps... my sponser has been down this part of the road and knows better than I do

Man this is harder than I thought... thought everything would fall itno place with some sobriety and clear thinking

thanks for listening

God Bless


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Postby ccs » Mon Apr 05, 2010 8:54 pm

Bobby D wrote:The only problem I'm having is my patience is thin instead of better...Mostly I hear from meetings that people are more understanding now that their sober.. more under control ect... I'm more the opposite in some ways...
please give yourself T.I.M.E I dont know about anyone else but I spent many many years out there and I wanted to be more patient/understanding/in control when I came to AA and I wanted it NOW :lol:

but they just told me to keep coming back !!! keep listening ,and not compare myself to others in the rooms (cause what I think I see on the outside of someone sometimes is so far from what is going on inside )

one guy said something one night that has always stuck with me he said he couldnt repair in ninety days what it took him 35 years to destroy

its like taking long walk into the woods if you walk the same path for 6 hours your not going to make it back in 3 once you turn around :)

once "I" stopped trying soo hard to decide what "I" wanted in a sponsor and let GOD decide what I needed in a sponsor I knew right away that she was the one GOD had in mind for me :wink:

in early sobriety I was just mush I didnt know much of anything except I didnt want to drink and be misserable anymore and AA and the people that I met here and listened to showed me how they accomplished that they showed how they took 12 simple steps from the book Alcoholics Anonymous and it worked !!!!

I had to get to know ME the me I had been and the me that I would become when I let GOD do the leading and I am still becoming that me I am constantly growing

I know its easy for me to say dont be so frustrated or hard on yourself just keep coming back and listening its amazing what you hear if you just sit and listen HE speaks to us through the most unlikely people some times :wink:

and as for the wife chapter`s to the wives and the family afterward may help after reading them several times !!!

and I know for me getting in the face of someone actively using is probably not a great thing to be doing first of all I could interfere with their bottom and GODs plan for them
and most importantley it could JEPORDIZE my own sobriety and cause me to get a new sobriety date if I make it back!!

I was always told to try to "BE" a good example by changing ME and not trying to change others :wink:

Its been great reading about your Progress BOB congrats on your 80 sumthin days that is a miracle in itself :D

Keep Coming Back & just give it One Day At A Time :wink:

your Sister in Soriety Cessie

It works it really does :wink:

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Postby Dallas » Mon Apr 05, 2010 9:34 pm

Bob wrote:The only problem I'm having is my patience is thin instead of better...Mostly I hear from meetings that people are more understanding now that their sober.. more under control ect... I'm more the opposite in some ways...

That was precisely my experience, too. The longer I stayed sober, everyone else seemed to be getting better... except me. The first time I had come into AA I had some sort of "honeymoon" experience with not drinking. I felt better, performed better and life -- seemed -- to be getting better. However, my sobriety didn't last very long. Only about 5 1/2 months... and I was back at it.

Just before I started drinking again, I had been positive I could do it on my own, without help, and I resented other people trying to tell me what to do. What the heck did they know? They were just a bunch of pukes that were sober! :lol: :lol:

Things got really bad the next times I tried to get sober. I just couldn't do it. I came to believe in what I had heard about the progressive nature of alcoholism... that all the time I was sober, my alcoholism was working out with jumping jacks, push-ups, lifting weights, running... getting into shape to kick my ass again -- as soon as I took the first drink. And, if I didn't take the drink -- it would take one for me!

And, sober for me -- was worse than drinking. I just couldn't handle sobriety. It was kicking my butt. No honeymoon this time. It was hair pulling rage... huge pimples on my nerves... all somebody had to do was breath and it felt like someone was popping one of them!

Sobriety was right at the brink of taking me out for my next drink... and I knew beyond doubt, that the next time would be the pine box time. So, I made the decision that if my alcoholism was going to kill me -- it would kill me sober instead of kill me drinking. But, I could feel the alcoholism over powering even my decision to die sober! As far as it was concerned... I wasn't going to have a choice in the matter.

That's when I got a full dose of becoming convinced that I was alcoholic, and that what that meant was -- my alcoholism had more power than my will to not drink. Powerless.

I thank God, now... that sobriety got so painful for me. Had it remained like the first time I came to AA... even if I had been able to stay sober, I would have missed out on what I refer to as "the Real Deal."

"The Real Deal"... produces euphoric experiences... similar to what I experienced when drinking... except that I'm sober when I'm experiencing it. It's like a medication that chills me out, makes me at peace, and serene... removes those pimples on my nerves, and really makes me feel so good -- that I want to stay sober and want to keep doing what I do to keep "The Real Deal" going on.

The Real Deal... as I call it, comes about as a result of "taking the Steps" instead of "working on the Steps" or "learning the Steps" or "trying to practice the Steps."

And, had my life had not become so painful as a result of my sobriety.... I would NEVER have become willing enough to "launch into a course of vigorous action"... to get some relief! The relief came through taking the Steps.


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