Tuesday, May 25, 2010
So... I've been thinking about this lately. Not so sure. I just responded to a comment on another post from one of our peers in the trenches and he gives merit to our detractors. Well, I suppose he's right. I won't go as far as to say our detractors are right. We're just ironically fighting the same fight.
So what follows is a response to him which is a topic of its own. Please enjoy;
The logical assumption is to say "All of A.A.s problems are from within A.A." or "Our problems are of our own making." But, although it sounds nifty, I call bullshit. What's my current experience with it? I just got back from out of town and went to the local treatment center meeting. Bunch of folks with all types of recovery and sobriety and/or "clean" time... so I really like and care about these folks.
But there's this alumni of folks who run the asylum...er treatment meeting and... it's beyond loose. They are so far out in left field with the traditions, recovery, what it is to do the steps, etc. Oh, and they are very loud, vocal, full of shit... and they bash traditional and fundamental A.A.
Now... how in the fuck is that "our" problem? Like you say, this is the stuff where MA and the stinkin' crowd and I/we would totally agree on what a clusterfuck that is.The chair person introduces himself as an addict/alcoholic and he makes the topic "What brought you here?" OK enough. But he shares between everybody elses share, effectively crosstalking them, and says, "You know you've made it in A.A. when you stick around long enough to get a nickname."
What happens when you're a chronic slipper? Do you get "Chonic Slipper" or "bananna peel" as a nickname?
Then you have the "Sober in Recovery" crowd. These are secular/rational recovery folks hijacking an A.A. meeting.
You have the "Recovering" alcoholics... $%#$#@
Before the meeting starts, you have the announcements... the everybody is welcome to our Memorial Day Campout at Lake Dewease... even alkies, addicts, spouses, children, MILs and FILs, etc... just no drinking allowd please... Everybody loves 3M Mike... Meeting Makers Make it!
Then you have the military guy... who speaks his peace about how prevalent drinking is in the military and how they all drink every night and how it's so widely accepted and expected. Another can of worms. Are you an alcoholic because you're military? Is that not a situational drinker?
Ah, it's a mess. Where to start? Do we just leave them be and take the blame at the same time?
Now the poor newcomers at these treatment centers... they get branded as alcoholic/addicts... by guess who? The counselors? Well maybe. But it doesn't matter. The alumni are the real perps.
I did not pick this topic out of thin air. It comes up from time to time. Case in point;
One of our comrades in the trenches:
That's because AA has become about the meetings you make regardless of the content.
It has nothing to do with the original intent of AA.
It's all about meetings.We can thank Rehab centers for this.
Another solid AAer in the trenches commenting on that;
I actually think we can thank ourselves for this. It's our (the AA members) responsibility to uphold our Traditions and carry a message. It's not the rehabs job to make sure we stuck with the original program of recovery.
See? Then the original comrade responds;
Yeah, but we were out numbered!Rehabs sent in the masses raving about 90/90 and slogans to get the job done.
At least they're telling them to go to "A.A. meetings". These guys in this alumni circle at the local Chemical Dependency Unit tell these new folks to go to the treatment center meetings and other loose A.A. meetings where a drug is a drug is a drug and we can hug each other sober.
I'm told I'm passionate about this. Well, how can't we be? Our detractors sure are passionate about how screwed up A.A. is... and they blame the likes of me. They say I'm the perfect example of what's wrong with A.A. The big-book thumper who destroys the lives of other lost alcoholics. Not sure what my motive for this would be... except for brainwash and sabotage.
So I guess I'm like a zombie vampire.
A newbie (antiAAer in disguise) at SR:
Why do all AA members believe AA is the only way to stay sober? All people I have encountered who go to AA believe and preach the steps, and that the AA way is your only chance at sobriety. I went to AA for the first 3 months of sobriety, and I feel like it helped me greatly. Now I feel that everything is so repetitive. I understand some people may need that repetitive message to stay sober, but I think some may practice abstinence other ways. Looking for some feedback, and peoples opinions. Thanks Yall!
Then... some seemingly and truely nonAAs step in and defend the Program a bit and say that's not really what A.A. is about and it's not just about repetitive meetings.
The antiAAer in disguise -er- newbie:
Im by no way cured. just feeling good about being sober, in other attempts at sobriety I was angry and not truly wanting it. yjis time im feeling different, and my attitude is different
Well good for you. Why do you give a fuck if A.A. says this or that? If it's not for you, leave. Do something else.
Or better yet, let's stand this question on its head and see what the antiAAers claim;
There are millions of routes to sobriety, even within AA, there is no unique solution. Most alcoholics who do quit drinking do so without any kind of help at all.
There are millions of routes to sobriety.
Even within A.A.
There is no unique solution.
Most alcoholics who do quit drinking do so without any kind of help at all.
A.A. is a fucking scam, a cult, a waste of life, dangerous, opportunistic, and domineering empire run by white middle-aged men for white middle-aged men.
So, the real question would become, "Why go to A.A. at all?" Why do it the hard way when any alcoholic anywhere on the planet can just "choose" to drink or "choose" to not drink?
The antiAAers want to make it abundantly clear that they are the "good guys." They care about you... the suffering alcoholic. But the A.A. empire? Bad. The people in A.A.? Bad. They satire and make fun of those who live on Middle-of-the-road treatment center induced slogan sobriety. So the "fundamental" by-the-book hardliners, big book thumpers, recovered real alcoholics are the real culprits... the real bad guys... even though... we're sort of fighting the same fight... bad A.A. But to them, we're the real ones who are to blame... even though we try to separate the wheat from the chaff... or... the alcoholics from the non-alcoholics.
Maybe some of you hard drinkers or alcoholics who have "not lost their reliance on things human" can recover on something less than a spiritual experience... a psychic change... maybe, just maybe, some of you have a choice.
But I don't have a choice. No matter how many times you throw stats at me and tell me I don't need the A.A. program to remove the obsession in order to stay stopped... to stay "quit"... I just know it is a lie for me.
It may be possible that there are others like me... that may need this same help... just maybe...
But nowhere in the A.A. book does it say in there "A.A. or the highway". A.A. says "We have a design for living that we think would benefit all." But... IMO, most who aren't alcoholic wouldn't bother with these 12 drastic proposals.
Now, many antiAAers are quick to point out how drastic these proposals are. In fact, there's a whole gaggle of antiAA geese that spend their precious waking moments digging up articles and stories about how this A.A. industry is the bane of modern society. They must be on somebody's payroll, because they bash A.A. and offer basically nothing... except links to Rational Recovery, Life Ring, SMART, Moderation Management... endorsed by Stanton Peele... until Audrey Kishline killed a man and his daughter while moderating at 0.26, etc. who do what? Sit around and bitch and moan about A.A.
So... given that little history lesson, I can't for the life of me figure out why A.A. would endorse and talk about the benefits of A.A. Oh, except for the fact that "It works". It works for real alcoholics.
I've failed ________________________________________
I was doing so well. I was in the chat room last night talking about my iPad and how it's helped me keep my mind occupied. I was 10 days sober last night.
However, I gained today on the stock market. I've been unemployed for a year (partial reason for me drinking), but have been buying and selling stocks, breaking even and doing o.k. But, after today's big bust through I'm up A LOT. A LOT A LOT. Capitalization doesn't even do this justice. I was at home, and my buddies called me when they heard market close.
So, I was taken from my house by my 3 best friends, they know I'm recovering, but didn't care.
So...I went to a bar tonight, it's been 11 days since my last drink.
Usually, after a day like today I would be 13+ drinks deep right now. Fortunately, I only had 3 shots and 2 beers tonight, about 1/2 of what I would normally drink. I feel like I've failed, but I wanted to share my "success" with someone, and I had a designated driver for tonight.
Either way, I've failed and I'd love to hear what someone in my position would do. I guess I have to head to A.A. to learn how to cope with days like today.
Thank you for listening. At least I'm able to actually type this out. Usually, I'm 4x's as drunk at this point. So, I guess I've had some sort of "break through."
I don't think you've failed at all. You're trying to stop drinking booze for whatever reason, you had success, you celebrated. Now... if you want to find a different way to celebrate, you might want to really look at this. If you're gonna quit drinking booze for good and all, you'd better have a damned good reason for it.
Why? Why quit drinking? Can you moderate? Maybe you're not an alcoholic. Maybe you can be a hard drinker and enjoy your drinking... or at least control the damage.
Maybe you're a real alcoholic or a potential, but you're not done drinking yet. Don't just jump into A.A. and say "Here I am." That's like going to a Hearing clinic and saying, "What?" They're gonna push you into doing the A.A. program and not giving you the dignity to find out for yourself whether you are or not and whether you're done drinking or not.
SR is there for their reasons, but they are going to lead you down one and only one path... total abstinence from booze and drugs no matter what. That's not even A.A. No way, no how. A true A.A.er cannot ask the tough questions they need to ask you to find out your truth. The antiAAers will come bitching and moaning about how mean and brutal we are. The truth is, we're like a mother's kiss next to booze... if you're a real alcoholic... and are done with booze and willing to get "in" all the way.
If you are a real alcoholic and done with it, you'll realize that something will come up, sooner or later... to show you first hand... that Keith is right and Music is full of shit.
Being an alcoholic means you have NO CHOICE where booze is concerned. If you have choice, choose to drink or to not drink, save your buck and don't go to A.A. and don't waste a minute of your valuable time on Sober Recovery and go play that stock market. Go make some fucking money and have fun!
I'm a "real alcoholic"! When I came to AA I found out I had a choice. The choice is simple. To drink, or not to drink.....that is the question!! I called someone, got together with someone, went to a meeting...sometimes two or three in a row in the same day. Calling myself a "real alcoholic" doesn't negate the fact that I have choices. I always did have a choice. Problem is the choice was not in the equation once I took that "first" drink. I learned to do something BEFORE I took that first drink. The longer we're in/around AA, the less innocent we become. Claiming ignorance doesn't fly.
Hey Music, kiss the darkest part of my back. You may be a real alcoholic, but you're not A.A. I don't care if you're sober 54 years and a Navy Admiral. You're full of shit. You don't have a choice TO drink once recovered and you don't have a choice to NOT drink until you become recovered.
No offense, but you did it wrong. You must not be a real alky after all. You were a situational. This is why we fought. Have a good day, sir.
Do like me; find a sponsor who denies being your sponsor. Or at least after I did a set of steps with him.
A.A. is one drunk helping another drunk. But one of those drunks... can be either one I guess... preferably the more sober one... has to know what the fuck they are doing. That sort of helps. They need to at least be able to do what no alcoholic can do... come to their admissions and seek the truth about themselves.
It's easy to tell the truth about someone else... especially for the alky.
Girl at store checkout; "So... how do you know that I'm single?"
Drunk at store checkout; "Because you're ugly."
See? That's easy for the alcoholic. What's hard for the alcoholic is to say stuff like... "I don't know" ... or "I was wrong. I harmed you. Here's how..." or... "This is what I'm going to do and this is what I'm not going to do..."
After you've done a set of steps, you're free. So should be "your sponsor". Stop shitting on him/her and go find someone else or something else to go shit on. Why in God's green earth you want to be hogtied to another human being and under their thumb for eternity sounds completely fucked up to me... and unnecessary.
What I need is an informed recovered drunk or two who... this is assuming two things here;
1) I want to get and stay sober for good and all
2) I'm gonna do A. fucking A. mutherfucker... not B. fucking B. or C. fucking C.
whose done a set of steps 1 thru 12... and can ask me the questions to ask myself... as to what the hell a real alcoholic is and whether I even am one or not.
You may not even be an alcoholic. If you're not an alcoholic or I don't think you are... or if I think you may be but ain't done drinking, I won't work with you anyway.
And if it turns out you are a real alcoholic, it's my job to show you what that is and isn't and to steer you into the direction of seeing that for yourself.
Then and only then... can we get you to look at the prospect of what the A.A. solution is... God. That's right! God. If you want that solution or even are willing to seek God, I'll kindly point you into that direction at every turn. That's it.
If you want to call that a sponsor, so be it.
After that, you should find a good group that does steps to be "accountable" to. I'd trust no one. Find out for yourself if these selfish fucks have a life worth living or not. If they don't, steer clear of them. You don't owe them nothing. Tip your hat to them and be polite, but keep your hand on your god damned wallet. If they walk the talk, then try walking with them. If you get good results, then continue on and talk to other... like minded folks about it.
You kind of need someone to tell you to write a 4th step and you can find brilliant directions on that in your SR forum under the Step 4 icon... any thread started by McGowdog is pretty good... IMHO. Someone whose willing to ask you to bring them a piece of inventory and then line you out on a 3 or 4 column inventory is what I would call getting your money's worth.
You also need someone to 5th step with. After that, you need someone to ask you, "Done with all those amends yet? Quit fucking around and getr done." Then you need someone who will ask you, "How's that prayer and meditation coming?" If you're doing it, they'll rap with you. If you're not, they'll say, "Well when you go do that, we'll have something to rap about. Otherwise, talk to the hand."... and walk away.
You do all of that, then you can become one of the elite... or as the antiAAers say, the 5 percenters. Realizing, of course, that you are just like the 75 Percenters who do "nothing" to get and stay sober... besides just deciding with their own willpower to just "quit".
So it's up to you... do it the hard way... or the easy way.
Good question. Thank you for bringing that topic to the cyber world. Bet I answered it differently than about 99.8% of the folks out there huh? I'm unique.... just like everybody else.
A Caveat; if you make your way through the traditional religionists and the spiritually timid, you may find yourself actually passionate about this deal... Not the "not drinking" deal, but the "path to God" deal. You do that, and you'll be rare indeed. You will then be confronted by the "haters" and maybe... God forbit... the seekers. You may one day find yourself on the other side of this coin; "Will you be my sponsor?" What a laugh.
Thursday, May 6, 2010
One of our readers, Cuda, aka “Leadfoot”, who we regretfully had to ban from the site – participates in a forum largely dedicated to this blog, how they don’t care about this blog, and to dispelling some of the “myths” they believe we are perpetuating about AA. He took time out from his serenity and non-involvement in outside opinions, to ask this question, which is too lengthy and full of straw men to answer in a single post. It does, however, ask an important question about the constitutionality of forced AA attendance, so I thought that I would answer that part of it here it here, in the first of a multi-part series titled “Answering Cuda’s Long-ass Question”.
Ah, MA still misses us. I stayed away from your one-sided blog for 6 long months then started to contribute in your absence, until you started to lock my Team McGowdog members up and I heard you kicked us all off. I'd already stopped posting over there, but... I'll give you the gratitude of having "kicked me off of your site". But remember back to who contacted who first. If I'm not mistaken, you came over here as "shark sandwich" and as I thought, invited me back over... back in about December of 09.
tintop says :
First, cuda deserved the ban. Second, AA is religious in nature... piss moan... piss moan...
Anyone with half a brain... piss moan... piss moan...
speedy0314 says :
ma, you realize, of course, that cuda’s foolproof, erudite response will be something along the lines of “is not!” it will also include a fair amount of personal insult ... piss moan... piss moan...
Ben Franklin says:
I am sure we will find a running commentary on McPuppie’s blog. He, even though banned from here has one of StinkinThinkins threads posted over there. He also has another blog called donewithaa. Man, I don’t know if someone has traded an obsession with alcohol with an obsession with Stinkin Thinkin. Hey Mc dog get a job you piker! Whats it been over 9 months now!
Thank you for your concern, Ben. I've been doing some odd jobs, telecommuting, report writing, etc. But I just got back from a big ESD flooring install in Virginia and helped to earn my fine company $34,000.00 (for just the install of the floor, not counting the demolition, the skim coat, and the wall base) So... there again, thank you for your attention and concern. It's a special type of flooring for a company that makes devices for our US Government that's gonna take care of those pesky land mines in the Middle East. "Before you take the first step". It detects them before human contact, marks it via GPS and blows it up if need be. Our flooring enables them the reliability to do it right.
While I'm at it, I'll show y'all some install pics. Enjoy;
Hard to trowel with this, but the pain in my knees took the attention off of it for a while
So it's good to see you whinny bitches are still interested in our shit. Keep up the good work of eating, breathing, pissing, moaning, and manpon stuffing your hatred for A.A.
McGowdog, at your service.
Oh! Speaking of service, I've done a bit of landscaping too;
Sod cutters are hell, even with gloves on.