After 13 years in AA I am no longer identifying as an alcoholic or going to as many meetings. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. I am going to one meeting a week and telling people that ask what I did not what I think.
I bought the programming when I was new and stayed sober in cult like fashion taking no responsibility for myself.
Today I stay sober knowing that…
I am not an alcoholic.
I am not powerless over alcohol.
I am not bodily and mentally different from my fellows.
I have done stupid things but am not insane.
I do not have to completely give myself to this simple program.
AA is a recovery venue where it is completely inappropriate to date.*
AA is sexually charged and it is inappropriate for men to sponsor women.*
Platitudes, euphemisms, jargon, rhymes, sayings, slogans, rhetoric, absolutes, old timer gurus, and group think, are all things of cults.
Sponsorship is dangerous. I do not know a single sponsor who has not taken on the role of life coach.*
I have learned much about human nature by going to meetings. Human instinct, breeding, networking, opportunism, control, etc. In Alanon I acquired tools that can be used as weapons or defense against would be steppers.*
As with all things, I now use AA in moderation. I do not drink because I appreciate my health today and do not want to trade a couple hours of intoxication for any clouded judgment or illness.
This is my 12th step.
First of all, if you're not identifying as an alcoholic, why waste the buck? Why go to A.A. at all? Are you such a misfit loser that you can't hang out at the gym or the mall? Well... whatever.
Next, you say something about "only requirement". That's wrong to begin with. You're looking at the short form wall scroll. Here's the 3rd Tradition;
"Our membership ought to include all who suffer from alcoholism. Hence we may refuse none who wish to recover. Nor ought A.A. membership ever depend upon money or conformity. Any two or three alcoholics gathered together for sobriety may call themselves an A.A. group, provided that, as a group, they have no other affiliation."
That's your 3rd Tradtion. A requirement to stop drinking is evidently the Swiss Cheese requirement; too many holes.
Going to one meeting a week and telling people what I did and not what I think sounds fantastic. I totally agree with this and this is what I do too.
You bought the programming when you were new and stayed sober in cult-like fashion? Wow! My experience too. But something funny happened to me. I heard a guy speak at our MOTR meeting one night and he sounded different than the rest... like he really knew what he was talking about, what a real alcoholic drinks like, and what the real Program of Alcoholics Anonymous is really about. He was the first one to ask me what I drank like. He made me really look at how I really drank booze.
See... you might not even be an alcoholic and only think you are. You might be a hard drinker who can... control the amount once you start... or stay stopped on your own power when you really want/need to. There are many like this in A.A. now. No one ever really "qualified them" like Bob and Bill did way back when.
Some people are just lonely and have nothing better to do than to come to A.A. and let them hustle you in. Who would do this? Other real alcoholics? Heck no! The other people who have also been hustled in... like from treatment centers. You know? The whole "a drug is a drug is a drug" thing?
If you really don't need A.A. to get and stay sober, please stay away... please. You're killing people. You're embarking on a spiritual program that demands rigorous honesty based on a fundamental lie... you're not alcoholic. If you're not alcoholic, please go somewhere else; Good Will, the Salvation Army, Stinkin' Thinkin', work with lepers. Do something. Deliver the newspaper.
As far as taking responsibility for yourself, you should have done that 13 years ago. I took responsibility for myself and found a group of alcoholics who did nothing but fundamental and orthodox A.A. out of the book. They don't study or pontificate the book. We just do what it says and discuss our experience in it and are sober as a result. It's really that simple. Yet, you belong to a blog that dedicates it's waking hours to bash a free but spiritual program? Ummm... That is special! You... are special!
You are not alcoholic... you probably have no clue what a real alcoholic looks like. You probably couldn't tell the difference between a hard continuous drinker or a real alcoholic.
You are not powerless over alcohol... neither am I. I took the A.A. treatment and it worked. Alcohol is not my problem today. If I lie to you, it's because I'm a liar, not because I'm powerless or sick, or because I had too much to drink.
A.A. IS NOT NOR HAS IT EVER CLAIMED ALCOHOLISM TO BE AN ADDICTION OR A DISEASE. ALCOHOLICS ARE NOT DRUG ADDICTS, MORAL DEFECTS, OR SKID-ROW BUMS. ALCOHOLICS DO NOT HAVE WEAK WILLS. ALCOHOLICS ALWAYS WERE AND ALWAYS WILL BE... AT THE RATE OF ABOUT 10% OF THE HUMAN POPULATION.
You are not bodily and mentally different from your fellows? Probably not. You are probably bodily and mentally different from real alcoholics though. So why continue to bother with them? Are you an unrecovered alanon?
Oh! Alanon Joke Alert: Hear about the new alanon doll? You throw it against the wall and it says, "I still love you."*
Sorry, that was bad. I will follow that up with another Alanon Joke; How many alanons does it take to screw in a lightbulb? None. They just detach and let it screw itself. =)
I have done stupid things but am not insane? Me neither. But when I have reached for a bottle of bourbon knowing what it once did to me and do it as if there is nothing wrong with this picture is pure and complete insanity. If you don't believe that, you don't know what an alcoholic is. You should read Melody Beattie. You're in the wrong fellowship.
I do not have to give myself to this simple program? No you don't. Sorry to be rude, but get lost, ok?
A.A. is a recovery venue where it is completely innapropriate to date? That's probably true and good advice, but do me a favor. Save your breath. You tell some sick woman to not spread her legs for any reason and that's the first thing she will do to spite your ass. She's probably bouncing up and down on your boyfriend, your husband, your brother, your dad, your son, and looking at your dog. Who are you to tell people who to date? God?*
A.A.... men should not sponsor women? True that. If I sponsored a woman, my wife would get jealous. That wouldn't work for me. I'm way too good looking anyway. And um... get this; I don't believe in sponsorship. I did a set of steps and have been sponsor free ever since. It's your responsibility to get a sponsor if you must and to choose who will sponsor you. If you do get a sponsor, all they should do is sit you down and talk about their own drinking and listen to you talk about your own drinking and see if you identify with a real alcoholic and whether you fit in or not. If you're not a real alcoholic, leave. If you are, do the 12 steps and then go try to help the new drunk. THAT'S IT! NO TIME FOR FUCKING, SPREADING YOUR LEGS OR BEING A VICTIM! Wow! You make a big deal out of this. If women spread their legs, they need to take responsibility for their own actions and quit bitching to the world about how they're a victim! Why? Because if they don't get screwed in A.A., they'll get screwed a block or two away! Good luck with that.*
Slogans and all that other garbage are a cult? Agreed. Either that or laziness. This is what I call MOTR (Middle of the Road) and it's not A.A. It's B.B. or treatment center garbage. Don't blame A.A. for this. Blame your own closed mindes for this garbage.
Sponsorship is dangerous... life coach? Yeah. I agree. Do a set of steps and become sponsor free. I belong to a group that doesn't believe in it. But we will gladly sit a person down and help them find out if they belong in A.A. or not, if they want to quit drinking for good and all, and if they are willing to do some work out of the book A.A. If not, we send them away.*
You learned about human nature and alanonism? Then you learned this; "He took a drink and I felt better." If your parents or siblings are alcoholic, get growed up and run away. If your spouse is alcoholic, dump them and get a normie. If you attract alcoholics to yourself and find yourself always a victim, that's your problem. You can get help for that in alanon. But even still, you think the A.A. program is full of sick people who don't do steps? What makes you think Alanot is any better?*
This is your 12 Step? You're terminally unique, just like everybody else. You're not an alcoholic. Please stop going to A.A. and 12-Stepping.
* Disclaimer; I am merely a recovered alcoholic here. I have never been abused sexually and rarely any other way and am not an expert against such abuse nor am I insensitive to it. It's merely not my experience. If you need counseling or help for this, get professional help. The only thing I would ever bring to A.A. is to find someone who had my tragic experience and who has gotten free from it themselves. And again, A.A. is not the end-all be-all of life. It's for drunks.
Here's what A.A. says about sex on pages 68, 69, and 70;
Now about sex... Then we have the voices who cry for sex and more sex; who bewail the institution of marriage; who think that most of the troubles of the race are traceable to sex causes... We want to stay out of this controversy. We do not want to be the arbiter of anyone's sex conduct. We all have sex problems. We'd hardly be human if we didn't. What can we do about them?
We review our own sex conduct over the years past. Where had we been selfish, dishonest, or inconsiderate? Whom had we hurt? Did we unjustifiably arouse jealousy, suspicion or bitterness? Where were we at fault, what should we have done instead? We got this all down on paper and looked at it.
In this way we tried to shape a sane and sound ideal for our future sex life. We subjected each relation to this test-was it selfish or not? We asked God to mold our ideals and help us to live up to them. We remembered always that our sex powers were God-given and therefore good, neither to be used lightly or selfishly nor to be despised and loathed.
God alone can judge our sex situation. Counsel with other persons is often desireable, but we let God be the final judge We realize that some people are as fanatical about sex as others are loose. We avoid hysterical thinking or advice...
That's what the book says about sex and I'm proud to be a part of this Program. There's nothing in A.A. that would lead anybody to harm.
Blaming A.A. for any kind of harm is like Oprah blaming her fork for her weight. It's like trying to make a dollar out of 15 cents.