Chapter 5. HOW IT WORKS page 58
Those who do not recover
are people who cannot or will not
COMPLETELY give themselves
to THIS simple program,
usually men and women
who are constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves.
Notice it doesn't say, those who DRINK,
It just says 'Those who do NOT RECOVER
Meaning, You may stay sober but NEVER recover from alcoholism.
I love the fact that this statement completely side steps the whole issue of drinking/ not drinking and instead focuses entirely on whether someone had RECOVERED or not. Which is far more telling in my opinion.
So this statement implies that there are many people who simply DO NOT RECOVER despite not drinking and going along with the recovery programme to some extent. Perhaps in a buffet-style. Taking the bits they like and leaving out other bits.
I don't know about you but I see a LOT of people who are not experiencing the description of recovery (or the promises as I like to call them) but who are not drinking and are doing bits of the programme. Perhaps just going to meetings and relating their day to day concerns, but not getting through the steps or spending time with newcomers 'giving it away to keep it'.
Obviously unity and tolerance are a priority, so I practice Live and let Live when I encounter these types, but when given the opportunity I try to explain why thoroughness is SUCH an important criteria in MY recovery, and what is potentially at stake if I do not do that.
As far as I am concerned, I risk NEVER RECOVERING if I 'leave bits out' of the programme.
I HAVE to do the WHOLE NINE YARDS if I expect to get well.
If I leave things out, I do so at my own peril.
That's why I'm a real stickler for thoroughness. In myself and the people I sponsor. Like the first 100 members I think its a VERY important aspect of recovery. That's why they mention it so categorically in how it works. In my opinion.
Its also why I prefer not to sponsor people who I instinctively feel are just going through the motions because they want to get to step nine and start dating, (or whatever).
I don't expect 'going through the motions' to work any more than the first 100 members did. Its superficial and partial, and therefore pretty much guarantees that they will not recover.
As taking people through the steps actually requires quite a lot of hard work, and time and energy, I am not willing to commit time and energy to a formula that is designed NOT to deliver recovery. The best thing to do with someone like this is to explain as best I can that I do not think it is working and why, and that they ought to find someone else they either respond to better, or who demands less of themselves and has therefore probably not recovered (to the extent that I would expect to) either. There are plenty of people like this in AA to choose from, so finding a new sponsor along those lines is never a problem. They are much better suited to a sponsor with a similar mindset to their own. Attraction not Promotion and all that. After all, it's not for people that NEED it, its for people that WANT it.
- An Irish Friend of Bill
- I have recovered from the disease of Alcoholism. I believe there is only one person really,.. everybody. And that peace of mind is everything. -So treat your neighbor as you would treat yourself, because your neighbor IS yourself. I think most of recovery is what I would call common sense, but that learning to be ordinary is a true gift very few people acquire. My ambition is to accept everything unflinchingly, with compassion, and therefore be intrinsically comfortable in my own skin, no matter what. I am comfortable being uncomfortable and am willing to go to any lengths to improve my life. I believe the Big Book was divinely inspired, and is extraordinarily powerful. Unfortunately AA's best kept secret a lot of the time. (In my opinion). I just try to do what works, no matter what it is.
Sunday, June 04, 2006
Dry but not Recovered? COMPLETELY give yourself..
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