We must change playmates, playgrounds, and playthings

Sobriety quotes and sayings heard in Meetings
Posts: 213
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:22 pm

We must change playmates, playgrounds, and playthings

Postby DebbieV » Sat Jul 28, 2007 11:26 pm

Page 100-101: Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do. People have said we must not go where liquor is served; we must not have it in our homes; we must shun friends who drink; we must avoid moving pictures which show drinking scenes; we must not go into bars; our friends must hide their bottles if we go to their houses; we mustn't think or be reminded about alcohol at all. Our experience shows that this is not necessarily so.
We meet these conditions every day. An alcoholic who cannot meet them, still has an alcoholic mind; there is something the matter with his spiritual status. His only chance for sobriety would be some place like the Greenland Ice Cap, and even there an Eskimo might turn up with a bottle of scotch and ruin everything!

I read this and I just had to share it, I have even said it myself in meetings ' we have to change our playmates, playgrounds and playthings'
then boom I read this out of our text ( the BB ) I like to do what the BB tells me and it is right there in Black and white. That book rewrites itself everytime I pick it up, I swear it does. :oops:

Thanks for letting me share and thanks to my sponsor for telling me to get off my butt and read the book. :P See I can read. :wink:


Site Admin
Posts: 4830
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:05 pm

Postby Dallas » Sun Jul 29, 2007 1:46 am

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Posts: 409
Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2006 3:42 pm

Postby anniemac » Sun Jul 29, 2007 1:14 pm

I find both of those to be true, and they're not necessarily opposites. Yes, I need not fear nor shirk away for situations where alcohol is involved. At the same time, the book goes on to say, two paragraphs later, "...our rule is not to avoid a place where there is drinking, if we have a legitimate reason for being there. What defines "legitimate" may be debatable. For me, attending a wedding or a holiday party at my neighbor's or the company luncheon may be legitimate. For me, hanging out in a bar on a Friday night regularly because that's where I choose to socialize, is dangerous. Although this isn't in the BB, the expression "if you hang around the barber shop long enough, you're going to end up with a haircut" seems like sound advice to me.

Posts: 119
Joined: Tue May 22, 2007 8:31 pm

Postby carol1017 » Sun Jul 29, 2007 1:34 pm

For about the first year of my sobriety, I studiously avoided bars and even restaurants where I used to drink, and I still don't keep alcohol in the house -- having it so close at hand still seems too much of a temptation for me.

My husband and I have been invited to parties, etc., where alcohol is served (or in some cases, overserved :lol: ), but I always make sure I have an alternate way home if I start to feel uncomfortable. Friends decided to throw us a going away party at a local watering hole when we were moving from Miami. After being surrounded by people drinking for a few hours, I decided I needed to leave, so I made sure Hubby had a ride home and I left.

It's funny -- at first, when we went to these parties, I had the "poor me's" -- I felt like a pariah, the only person not drinking, can't play with the grownups, etc. Now, it doesn't bother me as much, because I know that I'm not acting foolishly and I'm not going to suffer the hangover that they are!

I agree with anniemac about the legitimacy of being around alcohol -- if I don't have a good reason to be there, I don't need to be there.

Posts: 213
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:22 pm

Postby DebbieV » Sun Jul 29, 2007 4:06 pm

Anniemac Wrote:
Although this isn't in the BB, the expression "if you hang around the barber shop long enough, you're going to end up with a haircut" seems like sound advice to me.

I so agree with that, there is not enough reason in the world to get me in a bar. I was just trying to point out that alot of things we hear in meetings are just passed from one ear to the next and the BB never comes into play. I for one don't feel that strange feeling inside when I'm around alcohol like I did when I was new-new. I like what it says on page 101: " In our belief any scheme of combating alcoholism which proposes to shield the sick man from temptation is doomed to failure. If the alcoholic tries to shield himself he my succeed for a time, but he usually winds up with a bigger explosion than ever. We have tried these methods. These attemps to do the impossible have always failed" I think Bill was working with real sick men at the time he wrote that and trying to just get them sober. Don't know my history real well but that is what I got. it also says in the BB on page 101 " So our rule is not to avoid a place where there is drinking, If we have a legitimate reason for being there." I also believe that it is also there in the BB for people like me, I tried everything I could think of to stay away from alcohol and not one thing worked, but what the Book tells me to do does work today, and I believe it will continue to work if I am spiritually fit.
But anyway I wrote this forum as more of a- do these sayings we hear in meeting have any meaning or is it something we just pass to person to person and no one picks up a Big Book?
Thanks for letting me share this alocoholics oppion.

Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2007 12:52 am

Postby TinaL » Sun Jul 29, 2007 5:58 pm

BB reads: "...our rule is not to avoid a place where there is drinking,[i] if we have a legitimate reason for being there.â€

garden variety
Posts: 750
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 7:39 pm

Postby garden variety » Mon Jul 30, 2007 8:19 am

Legitimate business.

Well that's something that some of us with that "peculiar mental twist" can twist into a real pretzel.

My finest experience in a bar while sober was during a 12-step call. The guy had the shakes and needed beer to keep him from convulsions before he got into a detox unit on a Monday. The stores and deli's had stopped selling at that time of night, and "carry out" was the only thing available in local bars.

I had the biggest smile on my face waiting to get that beer because I knew it was legitimate business. The sober guy who was with me didn't want to go in - he was just at a different place and that is what it is. He actually didn't know about "carry out", but I learned that one when I was 16 or 17 years old - what a drunk! But I was "happy" because I knew the "new freedom" that came from being spiritually fit enough on that day to actually buy beer and see the faces and activities in a bar again.

Funny thing was I did see a girl who I used to see at meetings and I'm pretty sure she wasn't there for legitimate business.

But by the same token, just this Friday my lady friend wanted to see a live band. I would have gone with her to a theater or concert hall, but this was at a local "club". The last I remembered being at that club was complaining that they had a cover charge after the band finished, and the drinks were too expensive. I checked their web site Friday to be sure it was the place I remembered, and it was. They had pictures posted of their "newly remodeled" drinking facilities and bar-rooms and pool rooms and game rooms.

I told her that "I'll pass" on the band because they were playing in a bar - it just isn't me anymore. I don't like being around people getting drunk. It's not that I'd be tempted, it just isn't a "fun" thing anymore. We've had dinner at places that serve. I even went to eat at a place that I drank at when I relapsed, a place called the "Harry Buffalo", with my girl to eat. But you can always hear the real drunks carrying on and "having fun" like I used to think I was "having fun".

My lady friend is a normal drinker when she drinks. It doesn't bother me when she drinks which might be twice a year. One night at her place she wanted some wine and cheese but was worried about tempting me. I said go on and don't worry about it. I had mineral water with my crackers and cheese - I love cheese - real sharp and salty! She had a half-glass of wine and that was all, but I kissed her afterwards, and even that little bit she drank just grossed me out kissing her. Yuck!

Being in someone's face that close and smelling their breath, even though she wasn't drunk, was just plain gross to me. It was pretty weird because she was the way she normally is, but the booze on her breath made me think differently - maybe some old tapes playing in my head. Whenever I see, and smell, someone who has booze on their breath, I just assume they're ripped and its a waste of time trying to talk or interact. So that took some adjustment on my part. I didn't say anything to her because my mind actually did the "thinking" the right way - I would have hurt her feelings if I said anything and there was no need to.

So I guess this is a long way of saying there are times that I'll be around people in places that are serving liquor. But I make it a point that my primary purpose there is not "recreation". Even at family get togethers, if there is a gang of people I know are going to get plastered, I stay away.

So its like you said in the first place, I've changed on the inside and outside. So my "playground, sandbox, and playmates" all change. But the whole thing is "play" = "recreation" and I don't play like that anymore. So the difference to me lies in between "play" and "legitimate business".

Posts: 409
Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2006 3:42 pm

Postby anniemac » Mon Jul 30, 2007 11:38 am

I agree, Paul...I can be around alcohol without wanting to drink...I just don't have the desire to do so. My idea of fun has changed. Since I'm sober I've sat at a bar, waiting for a table in the adjoining dining room, or even to grab a quick burger on the road. But to do it regularly as a hangout? No.

Debbie, I get what you're saying. There's an awful lot said in meetings that seem to have no basis in the Program of AA; that in fact seem to be the opposite of what it says in the BB. In early sobriety I got very confused about what as Program and what was opinion. That was one major benefit of having a sponsor to sort that all out for/with me.

Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 10:22 am


Postby RecoveredEric » Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:35 am

I hear this debate everywhere I go. The book is CLEAR. I can go anywhere a freeman goes Provided I am spiritually fit. Doing The Deal. I also need to check my motives. Am I there for a legitamate reason even if its to hear a Band I like. Or am I going there to live vicariously through others' drinking. Only I can answer that. The book says it too if my intentions are unclear I had better go find a WET One to work with instead.

Posts: 213
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:22 pm

Postby DebbieV » Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:53 am

Thanks for sharing Eric, and welcome to the site. I hope you enjoy posting, reading and learning---As I have so much in here.

I always like to hear new and different opinions on things, so it is nice to see someone sign up and actually post something. Thank You. :D

Keep Coming Back,


Return to “Quotes and sayings - heard in meetings”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest