Funny how things work

Help for alcohol abuse addiction alcoholics who want to stay sober
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Funny how things work

Postby Dallas » Tue Aug 29, 2006 6:29 pm

Funny how things work

The new guy/girl gets driven to A.A. by the gifts of pain, despair and desparation.

We talk to them about the importance of getting a sponsor and taking the 12 Steps.

They stay sober a few days.... and then, they drop off the radar screen and we don’t see them for a while.

A few months later... the guy/girl gets driven to A.A., again... by the gifts of pain, despair and desparation.

We talk to them about the importance of getting a sponsor and taking the 12 Steps.

They stay sober a few days.... and then, they drop off the radar screen and we don’t see them for a while.

They stay sober a few days.... and then, they drop off the radar screen and we don’t see them for a while.

A few months later... again, the guy/girl gets driven to A.A. by the gifts of pain, despair and desparation.

We talk to them about the importance of getting a sponsor and taking the 12 Steps.

They stay sober a few days.... and then, they drop off the radar screen and we don’t see them for a while.

This cycle continues over and over and over and over and over again.... until:

a). we finally hear that they have died... or
b). they got a sponsor and take Steps 1 through 12.

While we’ve been blessed with the gifts of pain, despair and desparation we are motivated to do the next right action.

When the benefits of the pain, despair and desparation begin to let up as a result of staying sober... often, there is a tendency to forget what got us here in the first place.

Life gets better. We start feeling better... and the insanity of that fatal next drink returns.... unless we do something different.

And, for many... who do eventually recovery, the something different that made the difference is.... they finally got a sponsor, and finally took the 12 Steps.

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Postby blueangel » Tue Aug 29, 2006 11:09 pm

So true, so true...kind of watching a merry-go-round go round.
wondering which one will stay and ride or get off because they have to get back on that damn roller coaster just one more time.

I am going through a weird time right now due to an anniversary few would understand, and would love to have a sponsor right now to get me through this with all my resentments thats raised they hideous heads in it. But female sponsors in this town is like a bad joke... so I go on.....

I'm going to try to 4th step those that I resent and hope I will get better.. Hopefully God will show me the way to get past this b.s. I guess what is so sad is that the people that offended me the most were only doing their jobs to the best of their abilities. I'm starting to realize though that they are humans too just struggling to get along just as all the rest of us. it's toned down from a resentment actually to just it was all a bad set of circumstances handled improperly by less than qualified indivuals.

I have to close this now and lay down but have a great evening all. wish I felt up to going to a meeting but it was just aa hard day and I'm not up to it but looking forward to tomorrow nights meeting alot :D

..........................................As always, Kay

Dale R.
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Postby Dale R. » Wed Aug 30, 2006 12:07 am

Actually, did you ever consider a male sponser? I know the general rule, but I also know of some plutonic sucessful relationships as well. Doing a 4th step, and not following it with a 5th, can be a waste of time. Why notr invite yourself to coffee with an AA male friend, and just talk. I do it all of the time with women. I probably call more women then I do men as well. For me, most of the men are not married and do not have kids. Its hard to get that connection if you know what I mean. But seriously, even a meeting before the meeting, or after the meeting can be quite helpful, and safe. You need to get rid of the resentments. Just looking for your part is ok, but it is not the same as running it by somebody else.

Just my opinion...

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Postby blueangel » Wed Aug 30, 2006 3:49 am

Actually thats exactly what I do most of the time. Is I have 1 or 2 men that I can talk AA with and I can talk to newtothis about things too.


I am not some uppity bi&* that thinks I am better than anyone especially the other ladies in AA BUT this town is scarey concerning women in AA. first off half of them aren't sober, the other half runs around with that script of valiums and are pill junkies. very few of them have ever worked the 12 steps, and my former sponser I was so grateful when she fired herself i really wanted to hug her but was afraid she would think I wanted her back as a sponser so I didn't. I had tried to relieve her of her sponser duties in the fall but she went off into a rage I was half afriad she was going to hit me so I kept quite and just never discussed anything with her other than the weather till she did fire herself. I have been to AA all over the U.S. and parts of Canada and never run into a shortage of sober women in AA that I have in this town.

I feel much better knowing I straightened that out before I pissed off half of the forum here and If did offend I am truly sorry.
..................... Keep smiling everyone and let them all wonder what you're up,,, Laters, Kay

Scott: Alcoholic
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Location: District 47, Area 59 - Southeastern Pennsylvania

Postby Scott: Alcoholic » Wed Aug 30, 2006 4:19 am

I'm male - and here is my perspective, from my experience.

I know several women in my District who currently have male sponsors - there are no issues with any of them (on either side) - my wife is one of those women seeking direction from a male sponsor.

Our entire District was scarey!! Sometimes still is, depending on what meeting you happen to be attending...some meetings are just hell-bent on making the newcomer feel 'less than' - like they are intruding on a private function; and this covers both male or female...but some of the females here are (sorry) worse than the men folk when it comes to treating other women like crap <- can I say crap??? LOL!

I used to be very much one of the 'Men with the Men / Women with the Women" crowd...the fact of the matter is that -for many years, in our area- many women came into the rooms, got sober and left (either to go back out or just stopped attending meetings). Of the women who were attending, few were reaching out - at all - and most weren't very nice to anyone new (or even to each other). Lately, we have seen a change...

We have more women being sponsored by men; there are more women coming in from out of the area - carrying the message, sponsoring women AND men here; and these women are making regular attendance in our district - some traveling nearly 45 minute to an hour in the evening to get to the meeting...and then making that trip back home after the meeting (and the "meeting after the meeting"). This is really producing some fine results in the quality of recovery here as well as the quality of the message (which is "stick with your Higher Power's Will as well as the primary purpose and you will stay sober AND happy!").

Things are looking better here right now than any time that I can recall in the last 20+ years. There is a strenghtening of the bonds of the women here, some are becoming more active - more willing to reach out and AA as a whole is benefiting tremendously. What's more is that female newcomers in our area are finally being greeted and received by women with solid sobriety, a great message and -last but not least- love.
The men and women seem to get along better side not shunning the it used to be 'round here.

It is really awesome to see. I pray it continues!!


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Postby blueangel » Wed Aug 30, 2006 4:43 am

scott you luckey sounds like dreamland. you and the wife looking to adopt? :lol:

actually this town sounds alot like yours. I stayed on the back walls at meetings sober for over 20 years, and when i was wanting to do steps they just wanted to know who the hell I was :lol: :lol: They really thought I was insane. I actually wasn't insane just living a life filled with insanity, on yet another hubby that went far beyond alcoholism. The shame of it is that the men that do help the women in terms of sponsorship or just someone to talk to. they HAD to be sleeping with them, ya know, it just had to be :lol: :lol: when I started helping with men in this town I was panned as sleeping the story continues, but what the hey if they are talking about us it gives everyone else the day off of being talked about....LMAO

This town operates off the idea that just being not drunk and going to meetings is working the program, and hey if it works for them work it buddy, but it doesn't work for me so there is less than a dozen of us clinging to each other and huddling up for meetings just for safety.

the other AA's in town don't support our meetings and thankfully we don't have to deal with the* just go to meetings and don't drink and life will be great* with joker faces as big old grins.

It's a shame that AA ends up sometimes operating off of personalities before than principals, but hopefully it gets better in time, Nice thing is though that the dozen or so of us do pretty well, and we grow a little at a time.

Wow it just occurred to me that scott you and dale are like I used to be in wilkes-barre, in fact have a drunk ex-hubby up there still if he's alive, last I heard he was homeless. and I took up sky diving in harrisburg. Beautiful country, I always considered it God's country. When I got out the Air Force in late 86 thats where I wanted to move to but very reluctantly came here

..... I've talked way too much on here so I'm outta
.................................Laters, Kay

garden variety
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Postby garden variety » Wed Aug 30, 2006 3:14 pm

Hello all again,

Let me dust off my keyboard and toss in a couple cents worth.

Nothing I read in the Big Book, 12 steps, or 4 absolutes says a man can't sponsor a woman, or a woman can't sponsor a man. I think the general rule ought to be common sense. Up this way, there are not a lot of ladies to go around to sponsor the new gals that come in. But the bigger problem is that too many of the fellas have a primary purpose other than recovery when it comes to women in the fellowship.

I do "unofficially" sponsor ladies from time to time until they get a sponsor. But buddy let me tell you, I have a very healthy phone list of ladies with over 10 years who do sponsor, so I go to that first. I also get ladies numbers who sponsor whenever I can to give out to new girls. Boy was I surprised when one asked me on a date (she is on the sponsor side - not a new girl), and she has 13 years so she knows what she's getting into. That kinda shocked me! :oops:

Right now I unofficially sponsor a lady who's significant other is my official sponsee, they live together as a couple and that's just how it works. Its more like I sponsor them as a couple. No problems there, and she is pretty receptive to suggestions. She has about 18 months and he has about two years.

When I say "unofficial" I mean that they never asked me to be a sponsor but they run to the same meetings as me, and are looking to me and talking to me the same way they look to a sponsor (I also have official sponsees but their all men). So my unofficial sponsees are the lady in the couple I mentioned, a new girl in town from big apple New York with 10 years who is so darn stubborn she don't want a sponsor (I'm kinda scared of her), a lady who is a chronic relapser with no time to speak of (another stubborn cuss), and I got a 1/2 sponsee guy whos afraid to ask me to sponsor him because everytime he gets an official sponsor, they get mad at him and drop him. Now aint alcoholics a peculiar bunch?

Then there's the lady sponsor who asked me out...that just happened last week! She wants to take me to a concert with Steely Dan and some other jazzy type of singer, maybe a doobie brother that is now solo. This Friday...I said what the heck? I think that qualifies as a "fun" thing. But now I wonder if its me or her that wants what the other has, and is willing to go to any length to get it? Boy I think its getting complicated...I better call my sponsor. :?

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Postby Dallas » Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:51 pm

While I agree with most of this thread, I'll go ahead and throw my two bucks in the basket!

My sponsor sponsors women and has sponsored numerous women for the last 48 years.

The women that I know, whom he sponsors, have been sober longer than I've been sober! And, those women are the finest examples of A.A. recovery that I've ever known.

I personally try to steer clear of it. Before I do work with a woman, (other than to just 12 Step her), I call my sponsor to run it by him first. Sometimes, he said yes, it's okay. And, sometimes he has said no, it's not okay. I keep him connected and informed about whatever I'm doing.

My experience has been... that the problem is with "other peoples perception" of what is happening... And, this often becomes the root of the problems, both for myself and for the women that I might help.

While I can't control the "other peoples thinking" or their perceptions... I can limit what they use to fuel their perceptions. And, when I lay down at night, I can feel comfortable in my own skin, knowing the truth, and knowing that I've done my best to do the right thing.... or, that I've really made a mess that needs to be cleaned up!

It's unfortunate but true, that unrecovered minds (especially those that have been in A.A. for a long time) can really stir up a lot of problems and unhappiness. And, most of the time, that's what their busy doing. Stirring up problems rather than trying to be helpful, or participating in the solution.

Unrecovered people meddle in everyone else’s business rather than minding their own mind and it can create serious problems for anyone who is trying to be helpful and for anyone who is trying to recover.

When a problem does arise... unrecovered minds will believe a newcomer or a woman without question and faster than they will believe a male old-timer who is just trying to be helpful.

When I was newly sober, and for a long time afterward, I used several good A.A. women for guidance and direction and suggestion and advice. Sometimes, I still seek their advice. I owe my life to them and they have been great examples that I can look up to, and trust, and respect. I doubt that I could have stayed sober without their help, and my life today and my understanding today would not be as good as it is, without their help. The women that were helping me eventually led me to the Sponsor that I have today.

There were times, especially in my amends phase, and in relationships, that I treasured a "woman’s views" on what I was about to do... or what I was doing. I discovered that women and men nearly always think differently about many things. I also needed a “recovered man’sâ€

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Postby garden variety » Wed Aug 30, 2006 8:08 pm

I like what you said Dallas.

You pointed out where I forgot to mention, whether I'm an official or unofficial sponsor, I always run it past my sponsor. He knows right where I am with anyone, and I stay in contact every day.

And you are also right about "perceptions", and how a new woman's word might be trusted more than a man with lots of time. Then throw in the busybodies who don't have a life, and you have a recipe for disaster sometimes. I like how you it said though, what matters most is when you put your head down at night.

I'm careful how I talk to the new guys about men "helping" women and women "helping" men. This new guy of mine started talking about relationships and helping women and how it sometimes gets all emotional and he don't know anymore what is real and what isn't. See that's the thing about a new man or woman, they can't tell what's real or not because their heads are in the fog. Most of the time opposite sex attraction is the basis of getting to know someone.

So I tell my sponsees when their new, if they think their going to "help" a woman that they also think is attractive, that is a red flag. You got to re-run the words and pray about it. You can't help anyone, and I can't help anyone, just like you said Dallas, we're just the hoses.

The question they have to answer with a clear conscious is "am I trying to help this woman?" If the answer is "yes" then they gotta go back and check their motives. Then I tell them to ask "am I trying to help this woman help herself?" When a man can honestly answer that question "yes", then he's going in the right direction. And it can work the same in reverse with a woman.

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Postby anniemac » Fri Sep 08, 2006 4:37 pm

We are not the solution. We’re just the hose that the Water flows through to put out fires and to water God’s plants! We’re not the Water! We’re not the Earth. We’re just the Hose!

Love it, Dallas! So true. A friend of mine has a button that says "I'm just a pipe".

Hey, how do I do the "quote" thingy so that it says whose quote it is that I took? Ya know, like, "Dallas posted:...."

Anyway, on a lighter note, do you per chance remember the MacKenzie Brothers from SCTV, and "The Great White North" skits?? The one where they always called each other "hosers"? Well, that was the first thing I thought of when I read your post about being a hose. Hey, I can get older but I don't have to mature! :oops: :lol: :shock:

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