- Couples in A.A.

Couples in A.A.




A discussion of topics related to relationships in recovery and treatment

Couples in A.A.

Postby Pebbles » Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:07 am

Hi all-I need some experience, strength and hope.
My husband and I are both in A.A. He was involved in an accident in March of 2010, and since that time, he hasn't worked so he is able to go to every meeting all week long, which is a blessing. He works with sponsees, and I do too, but I've found that in the town that we live, my sponsees see him all the time, and so they talk to him about what is going on, and then they have no need to talk to me. One of my sponsees had an issue happen over the weekend, and she called our house to talk to him while I was at work. He told me about it when I got home-he said that he told her to call me on my cell phone, but she never did. I called her and left her a message asking her to call me. I really believe that if I hadn't called her and asked her to call me, she wouldn't have said anything to me about what was going on.
This is just one incidence....many more like it has happened. I'm grateful that my husband is there for others, but at the same time, how am I supposed to work with others if they always go to him? It's to the point where I am getting a resentment....what am I supposed to do?
There is another thing going on-there is a single gal that isn't my sponsee that is always calling him, and he is calling her. She does have a sponsor. She is a member of our home group, and my husband is constantly writing her name in our book where our home group members sign up to chair meetings, etc. She does the same with him. One night she called our house and I answered, and she asked to talk to him.
Am I being a jealous wife? Shouldn't women work with women, and men work with men? How can I work with others, when my husband does it all in our town?
The thing with the single gal, I have talked to him about how I felt about it, and he said that he can't break it off with her, because it might make her drink.
Help! I need your experience's with this!! I have talked to my sponsor about the single gal, but not about my sponsees yet. I'm going to do that today.
Thanks everyone.....
Pebbles
 
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Postby sunlight » Sat Oct 01, 2011 11:17 pm

Hi Pebbles,

I don't have first hand experience with this, but years ago my second sponsor was dealing with the same thing.
Women just loved her husband. He was very kind and a good listener. The women she sponsored would go to him with all their woes, since he would give them sympathy, where she would tell them to grow up and get a grip.

I watched these women throw themselves at him and slobber all over him at meetings. It was quite a show. :roll:

My sponsor said they would call the house at 3:00 AM crying and asking for him.

She said she told her husband that she felt he was dishonoring her by catering to all these women. He agreed not to interfere with anyone she was sponsoring. But he still carried on at meetings.

It seemed to me there was an awful lot of game playing and ego tripping going on. And the best way to end a game is to refuse to play. But sometimes the best defense is a good offense.

My sponsor was tough! She rounded up a bunch of his friends, who informed him that he was behaving like a testosterone tornado, and if he didn't quit it they were going to start spreading rumors about him that involved sordid, squalorly (is that a word?) things.

It was kind of a nasty way to go about it, but it worked.

I would tell my sponsees what I expect from them, and take it from there.

The steps leave no time for nonsense!
sunlight
 
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Postby Pebbles » Sun Oct 02, 2011 8:20 am

Thank you so much for replying, Sunlight-you are a breathe of fresh air!! :) My sponsor has said basically the same thing that you did about your sponsor-so I believe that we'll round up some of the men and 'sick them on him when it happens again. The beauty of sharing is that when a couple of people verify the same thing, it must be the right thing to do! :) We can do together, what I cannot do alone.....thank you!! :)
Pebbles
 
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Location: Idaho

Postby Dallas » Sun Oct 02, 2011 9:12 am

That plan sounds like a game plan for disaster and possibly death. I've seen people end up w/ shot guns in their mouths and ropes around their necks as the result of people trying to "change others" the way that you've described above.

1. If you've got a resentment -- who's resentment is it?

2. If someone needs to change someone -- who is it that needs to change?

Best wishes,

Dallas
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Postby sunlight » Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:08 pm

This "plan" by the men was done tongue-in-cheek to bring to the attention of the husband the effects of his behavior, not only on the women and the wife, but the whole group. It was a way of approaching a problem with humor, rather than a lecture. There was no intent of actually carrying it out! :shock: Though I can see where it could go there. The men knew who they were dealing with & how to approach him.

In my home group we deal with offensive behavior the way the Good Book suggests. One person talks to the offender, usually the sponsor, & explains how he is not behaving according to our principles. If he doesn't listen, then two members of the group talk to him and tell him the same thing. If he STILL persists in the behavior, we have a group conscience and inform the person that if he wants to continue the behavior, we would appreciate it if he find another group.

Of course we can't make him change, but the opinion and approval of the majority has a way of persuasion. We've even gone so far as to move the meeting to another place to avoid disruptions.

Sorry if this sounded like an assassination proclamation. :oops:
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Postby Dallas » Sun Oct 02, 2011 6:07 pm

It falls within attempting to correct an AA member to do something -- using a group of AA's to do it. We have no steps or traditions for that -- and it will most often turn into a rumor and gossip mill. Alkies never do anything moderately. It's always taken to the extreme. Thus, it could really have some damaging ramifications. As AA's we can NEVER force any AA to do anything or to not do anything. God alone is their judge, and John Barelycorn and Jack Daniels is the avenger and persuader.

Our jobs is to fit OURSELVES (not someone else, and not even a spouse) to be of maximum service to God and those around us.

The Inventory is OURS -- and NOT the other man or woman's inventory. Unless of course we want to deviate from this, and when we do, surely the AMENDS will be ours to make.

When I was married to an AA, I was cautioned by many seasoned, veteran married and divorced AA's -- stay out of her program. And, she was wisely counseled to stay out of mine.

Going to another AA to recruit them to assist us in correcting another AA is extremely dangerous and potentially deadly business. What will you do and feel -- if as a result of your efforts to correct them -- it explodes in your face -- and one or more end up drunk or dead as a result of it? You'll end up blaming yourself for it. My suggestion? Stay out of it at ALL costs. OUR sobriety MUST come first -- and that's all there is. There is no second, third, fourth, etc. And, we do this by focusing on OUR recovery, our sobriety, our relationship with God, and our side of the street -- in our relationships with others. Their side of the street is their side of the street. If we can't live with that -- then, it's us that moves on.

Ask yourself, too, have you ever had a joke or humor backfire on you? Sure. We all have experienced that. Now, imagine it backfiring on a real sensitive alcoholic -- then getting transmitted to the entire group and half the group ends up drunk over it. It just isn't worth the risk.
Dallas
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Postby Pebbles » Mon Oct 03, 2011 9:30 pm

Thank you both for your replies in this matter. Dallas, I can see where you are coming from also. I know that me starting to get a resentment is on me, and no one else. I also know that if something is bothering me, I had better "talk" about it, or it will build up in me, and eventually blow like a volcano if I don't "talk" about it. This is about living life on life's terms, and not being a doormat in the process.
I have talked to my sponsor about everything, and I can see my part in how I'm feeling about it. She and I both have come to the conclusion, that what my husband does or doesn't do isn't my business--that is between him and God. But I also at the same time, know what I will and I will not put up with. I have already gone through hell with my husband-and I really don't want to go back to hell again.
Pebbles
 
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Postby Pebbles » Mon Oct 03, 2011 9:33 pm

Oh, yeah, and thank you both for your experience, strength, and hope. That's what this was all about! :)
Pebbles
 
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Location: Idaho

Postby sunlight » Sat Oct 08, 2011 8:45 am

Thank you all!

Insight is a lot better than hindsight. :wink:
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Postby Dallas » Fri Oct 14, 2011 12:03 pm

God and Jack Daniels ALWAYS level the playing field. :wink:

I can understand your concern and relate to your feelings and experience -- not exactly, but similar.

I once had an AA wife that was sharing MUCH more than her experience, strength and hope! :lol: Well... maybe she was passing on a lot of hope to many more AA guys. :lol: What happened? She ended up drunk and divorced. That was about 20 yrs ago... and from the pictures that I've seen of her recently and the stuff she is going through, it's obvious that nothing has changed -- other than her appearance. (Which has steadily gone down hill as a result of the drinking and drugging).

One of the first AA suicide calls that I got was in regards to an AA that many of us really looked up to. He was 25 yrs sober and was helping a lot of people. Unfortunately, he had begun helping some young females in the wrong way and he ended up hanging himself -- and leaving his young, beautiful, and very active, sober AA wife a letter -- blaming "her" for his actions. It was a VERY sad situation to witness and obviously much worse for her to experience it.

I've seen the "reap what you sow" law applied many times over the last 25 yrs. and it isn't pretty. Our best bet is to get as far away from where the anvil will fall in the end.... minding our own sobriety.

There are also times, that I've seen, like my experience, where it was best to get away from the person and move on. It was about the most painful thing I experienced in sobriety -- but, I knew, that I would not be able to stay sober if I stayed in the relationship.

I've seen some stay -- and later they were glad that they did. I've seen some go and later they were glad that they did. I've seen some stay and regret that they stayed.

Marriage is a bond. It's an Official relationship. A partnership. It's much more than just being "AA friends." So, naturally there is the marriage that needs to be considered.

One of my dearest, and most helpful AA-friends was a lady (R.I.P.) that had many more years sober than me. I could go to her and get wise counsel and advice on relationships, and feelings, and AA, and sobriety, etceteras. She was like a sponsor to me. When she first got sober, multitudes in AA were telling her "Pat, you'll never be able to stay sober if you don't leave your husband!" (who was still drinking). And, Pat proved them all wrong. She stayed w/ him. She stayed sober, and eventually he was able to get almost two yrs sober before he died.

When Pat would share her story, she ALWAYS said, in her sharing "Don't ever let anyone tell you that you can't stay sober because of another person or your relationship with them. I'm living proof that they are wrong!"

Perhaps, I didn't have what Pat was made out of. Some of us have it and some of us don't.
Dallas
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