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Old 06-13-2011, 11:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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First AA Meeting..what to expect???

So I found an AA group that meets less than 10 minutes from my home on Monday nights. I really WANT to go. I want to meet new people, sober people...

But I'm freaking myself out.

A little back story....I'm 27, a lesbian, and am not religious in any manner.

The group I found online says it's an open discussion for GLBT and is not a 12 step meeting.

What should I expect?

Am I supposed to just walk in? Will the people inside know that I'm new? Will I have to share my story right away?

Ahhhhhhh I know I'm being ridiculous, and I'm sure everyone that has gone to a meeting has felt something similar to mine.

What was your first experience like?
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Old 06-13-2011, 11:11 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi,

I'm not an AA person, but this might help:

http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...-about-aa.html (Curious about AA?)
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks a ton! Loads of good information.
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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My very first meeting (in New Orleans, not my first ever) was an open discussion GLBT meeting - I found it very open and supportive. It was one of my favorite meetings but unfortunately I don't go much anymore since it's waaayyy across town. But since you brought it up, I just might go back...so thanks for reminding me!

My experience at the meeting was great, actually. We went around the circle and identified ("Hi, I'm Elizabeth, I'm an alcoholic") and that was all I said for the entire meeting (my suggestion if you're nervous about what to say, or whether people will identify or not, make sure you sit between some people so no matter what, you won't be going first) - they didn't identify at all of the meetings I've been to, but most of them have. I just listened to what others had to say and took it all in. They did say the serenity prayer at the end but you don't have to say it if you don't want. After the meeting was over, I kind of stood around awkwardly for a second and then a few people came up, introduced themselves...gave me a meeting list, phone numbers of group members, etc. They told me they hoped I'd come back next week (and I did) and that was that! I went home happier and full of hope and courage that I COULD get sober!
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Defyinggravity,

Thanks so much! I appreciate your story. I'm hoping my experience is as great as yours!
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I hope so too! Let us know how it goes!
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Old 06-13-2011, 05:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You don't have to talk but you could introduce yourself. If you want, tell folks it is your first AA meeting. Let us know how it goes.
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Old 06-13-2011, 05:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm not sure what you mean when you say it's an AA meeting but not a "12 Step meeting". AA IS the 12 Steps.

I know quite a few gay/lesbian in my "non-special purpose" groups. Nobody gives a hoot about anyone else's sexuality, that I've ever seen. It's part of who they are, but they are accepted as any alcoholic would be accepted.

Hope your meeting is a good one. If it isn't, try some others.

Incidentally, in spite of the mention of "God" and "prayer," AA is not a religious program, but a spiritual one. God is whatever you understand your Higher Power to be. Could be the power of the universe, the power of the group, anything more powerful than YOU.

Alcoholics in AA focus on how we are alike, not on how we are different. Your story might be different from mine, but we both probably felt pretty much the same about drinking and booze.
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Old 06-13-2011, 09:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Last Wednesday there was a guy who was there for his first. We welcomed him with open arms as always. I ran into him again tonight at a meeting at the sportsmans club. Turns out, he needs new fishing buddies too!

As far as the God thing goes, don't let that get in the way of the fellowship of sobriety and sober people. I hope you enjoy(ed) it.
-SPG
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Old 06-13-2011, 09:55 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I forgot to mention- at my first meeting I had the DTs so bad they brought the coffee to me and only in half cups and cleaned up after me as I spilled all over the table. Very nice, supportive people that help others because it helps them.
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Old 06-14-2011, 07:55 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Update: The meeting went great.

It was held at a facility that a local man opened up on his own. It's a sober clubhouse and there are tons of meetings there each day.

I walked in and saw a huge room with couches, a pool table, pizza, and a flat screen tv. A bunch of people had come together to watch the Bruins game (I'm from Boston). I introduced myself and said that this was my first AA meeting ever. They welcomed me with hugs and immediately gave me their phone numbers. They told me the meeting was in the room next door but to come back over later to watch the game.

There were about 20 people in the meeting. Everyone was really nice. It was great to hear stories similar to mine. I talked a little about myself and it felt so great to open up.

After the meeting, I went over to the TV side and watched the game with a bunch of people. It felt so great. They all invited me back to watch game 7 tomorrow night. I can't wait.

They also gave me a pamphlet of activities during the summer: Pizza parties, dances, karaoke night, stand up comedy.....all sponsored by this clubhouse. It is going to be so nice to have sober people to talk to and sober activities to attend.

It felt like a really comfortable place to be and everyone there said that they consider it a second home. I don't think I could have had a better first experience. =)
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Old 06-14-2011, 07:58 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Wonderful!
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Maybe one of these days you can let the light in
Show me how big your brave is.

Sara Bareilles & Jack Antonoff "Brave"
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:03 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Great to hear, Covered!
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:07 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Way to go CoveredInRain!!!

I've found that AA has helped in so many ways, one of which is providing a new pool of people who have the same primary goal as me- to stay sober and be happy in sobriety.

There are 3 sides to the triangle, recovery, unity and service. I'm happy to hear your experience was a positive one.
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:41 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Yay! I'm so glad you had a positive first experience!!
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:46 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I went to my first meeting last week and it was a breeze. Everyone there knows what is what and has been there and done that as they say.

Everyone has to start somewhere..before you know it you'll be the one embracing other newcomers.
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