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Alright, I'm scared now...

Old 04-29-2016, 12:21 PM
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Alright, I'm scared now...

Sober since Nov 15. Decided to go to AA meetings 3-4 weeks ago...has been good. But...
Ya know, I was doing well without AA, but felt drawn to a meeting, and from there I just committed to more meetings. I have 2 sponsors. My Home group is A cross talk group...which is seeming pretty scary presently. My wife has recently voiced concerns about "losing her husband," mentally if not physically. We had a great talk a few nights ago. THAT hasn't happened in a long time. She brought up the concern about my tendencies, and my history, which were accurate. Mainly, the idea that I tried to drag my family with me into a cult not that many years ago. Yesterday something happened, I won't go into it, but it's something that I should tell my sponsor. What's scary is, the level of despair that I felt, and how "religiously" concerned I was about letting my sponsor down or letting the group down. It was a horrifying thought! And I could barely function. I am now, reading counter points to AA, and am concerned about my tendency to just plow ahead at 100 miles per hour with everything I do...I'm not even sure what to say here...I feel really unsure of everything g at this point...

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Old 04-29-2016, 12:37 PM
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how "religiously" concerned I was about letting my sponsor down or letting the group down. It was a horrifying thought! And I could barely function
given your comment about the cult and this statement I hear ya.

I do NOT like the idea of feeling like i'm somehow accoutnable to someone else or some collective group. LIkve i've heard the term "accountability partner" thrown around and the types that i've met that wanna partner with me or osmething would also love to try and control me. I see it as like some way that certain people just feed off others if that makes any sense.

Now I dont get that vibe with AA personally. But I also keep it at arms length for reasons just like this.

I hope I didnt ruffle any feathers with my post for what its worth I'm also not big on authority either lol.

So i'm not sure if you feel uncomfortable with it I'd say back off. I have no idea what your AA group is like maybe your not off based feeling this way? or maybe its just your past history with the cult that is making you overly cautious. I say better safe then sorry but I would not want my sobriety to falter so stay on top of staying sober by finding other ways to fill in that Gap if possible.

plowing ahead 100 miles per hour? I dunno its almost common amonghts alcholics. I'm an all or nothing person. I'm either all in 100000% or I just totally drop something and not in at all. I can flip on a dime too. Its just how i am. But utilized properly it can be rather beneficial. I eat a super healthy diet and run why> because i'm all in 100% plowed ahead 100mph its not always a bad thing but dont bite off more then you can chew too.
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Old 04-29-2016, 12:57 PM
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You been attending AA for 3 or 4 weeks? That isn't that long...though at 100 miles per hour it might seem like longer. Not long enough to get "lost" if that's your wife's concern.

But everything in balance, in our recovery and in our life. Take a deep breath and ponder your choices...none of which probably need to be made this second.
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Old 04-29-2016, 02:03 PM
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Doing anything at 100mph is rushing and you sound like your doubting yourself

Remember why your getting sober the primary reason is a addiction to alcohol
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Old 04-29-2016, 04:20 PM
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I agree about balance - if you think you're getting unbalanced at the moment it makes sense to right yourself.

I think this is about you, tho and not AA.

You can read anti AA stuff til the cows come home but the fact is you can leave AA anytime you like

If AA is a cult it's massively ineffective at being one


D
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Old 04-29-2016, 09:23 PM
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Agreed that AA isn't a cult. But if you're a person who becomes cult-like in your adherence to things, then even the PTA can be damaging.

Do you have a therapist? That might be a really good idea. A neutral third party to help you manage your emotional relationship to AA in a way that's healthy.
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Old 04-29-2016, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by soberwolf View Post
Doing anything at 100mph is rushing and you sound like your doubting yourself
dingdingdingding.

Between this post and Carl's, the point I was formulating has been said.

Charging headlong into anything is really hard on the head. Take a deep breath, slow down, and make peace with steady progress. It is not so immediately gratifying, but it does allow you time to ponder your next move.

Recovery is not just life-changing, it is lifelong (I write that new to recovery myself, Jan 2016 class here) -- but my sense is that as long as I spent drinking, rushing out to seize the trophy of recovery is not only unrealistic, it's quite possibly counterproductive.
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Old 04-29-2016, 11:44 PM
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I wonder about two sponsors. Does that mean you are working two parallel sets of steps? Two sponsor would be confusing IME, as no two alcoholics have exactly the same approach or story. The crosstalk meeting is a new concept to me. Does it mean someone shares a problem and then everyone gives their opinion? That would be confusing. Then add a therapist and you could be getting 20 different opinions everyday on how you should live your life.

My approach was to have one sponsor, work the steps at a good pace so I could get conscious contact with my higher power, then the only opinion I was interested in was that of my higher power, which once in a while, I would run past my sponsor, just to check my motives.

I don't see anything wrong with tackling your recovery with enthusiasm in AA. The Big Book talks about this effect in "The Family Afterwards" and " Working with Others"

It takes a while to find our balance, and it is likely the wife will become an AA widow for a time. But it will be worth it in the long run, provided your sobriety is steps based and not tied to meeting attendance. Sobriety has to be your number one priority. Without it there is nothing.
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Old 04-30-2016, 05:10 AM
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Originally Posted by fantail View Post
Agreed that AA isn't a cult. But if you're a person who becomes cult-like in your adherence to things, then even the PTA can be damaging. Do you have a therapist? That might be a really good idea. A neutral third party to help you manage your emotional relationship to AA in a way that's healthy.
Yesterday I called around looking for a therapist. Monday is my first appointment. I am looking forward to it. I was thinking the same thing you are, a neutral party to keep me in check. Thank you! Great advice!

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Old 04-30-2016, 05:12 AM
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Thank you EVERYONE for your replies! MUCH wisdom in each one. I am signed up to see a therapist Monday.

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Old 04-30-2016, 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Gottalife View Post
I wonder about two sponsors. Does that mean you are working two parallel sets of steps? Two sponsor would be confusing IME, as no two alcoholics have exactly the same approach or story. The crosstalk meeting is a new concept to me. Does it mean someone shares a problem and then everyone gives their opinion? That would be confusing. Then add a therapist and you could be getting 20 different opinions everyday on how you should live your life. My approach was to have one sponsor, work the steps at a good pace so I could get conscious contact with my higher power, then the only opinion I was interested in was that of my higher power, which once in a while, I would run past my sponsor, just to check my motives. I don't see anything wrong with tackling your recovery with enthusiasm in AA. The Big Book talks about this effect in "The Family Afterwards" and " Working with Others" It takes a while to find our balance, and it is likely the wife will become an AA widow for a time. But it will be worth it in the long run, provided your sobriety is steps based and not tied to meeting attendance. Sobriety has to be your number one priority. Without it there is nothing.
The 2 sponsor thing...idk, I feel like it's too much also. I have my main sponsor and we are working this together. I don't feel like I need another "sponsor" or extra phone call to make, especially with my busy schedule. It's hard enough right now having to call my sponsor at the most convenient time for him, which is not such a convenient time for me, but that is a minor concern. Cross talk...look up AA Dignitaries. It's pretty intense, no paper signers at these meetings. Men only, and basically, someone can interrupt at anytime if they have a question, or if they have a concern/problem with what is being said. That in itself doesn't really bother me, it seems a little much at times, but the intention is to keep each other focused and on track. Idk... In my opinion there is the other end of the spectrum. Meaning, people show up, don't share much, don't have a sponsor etc. maybe that level, so to speak, works for them in keeping them sober. I think I do need to seek a balance right now that keeps me safe, but not obsessed every minute of the day. For the first 3&1/2 months I was sober I didn't go to AA. During this time I didn't even think about drinking, relapsing, etc. Since starting AA I think about this stuff ALL THE TIME. I don't want my mind consumed with this all friggin day. So, here is my plan: 1 sponsor, 1 therapist, chew up the meat, spit out the bones...
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Old 04-30-2016, 02:35 PM
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I'm all for AA and attend meetings myself a couple of times a week. Love the fellowship. I also am working the steps. However many of those in AA get overly zealous in my opinion. I recently fired my sponsor after he became excessively demanding in terms of what he was asking for on my part, at a time when I was not able to comply (I'm traveling). On top of demanding that I attend more meetings and email him daily, he became very preachy and told me my sobriety was at risk. After two and a half years I think not, lol. I thanked him for his support and told him I would find another sponsor locally.

I would recommend backing off and finding some balance. Don't get caught up in all of it. I have found the whole concept of "being granted a daily reprieve" creates dependence, not freedom from our addiction. My first clue with this guy should have been when he told me I shouldn't read non-AA self-help literature in early recovery. What nonsense. I did anyway of course and have found authors like Tolle and DeMello very helpful in understanding my active ego. Use what you can and discard the rest.
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Old 04-30-2016, 03:54 PM
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I've never heard of a cross talk meeting and I've been to a lot of meetings! Is there a chance you can try another group? Sorry you've had a bad experience and I hope you don't close the door on the program.. Good luck with the doctors appointment, wishing you the best!!
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Old 04-30-2016, 06:59 PM
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My plan: talk to my main sponsor, let him know that I need to drop the other sponsor. Explain my extremist tendencies and the need for me to first of all stay sober, and then my need to not feel this incredible compulsion to make AA my 2nd career. I want what's good for me from AA, not what is going to give me a nervous breakdown. I think I was dangerously close to a breakdown the past couple days.

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Old 04-30-2016, 07:17 PM
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I worked those steps, committed to a specific number of meetings per week (5 years later I meet that commitment weekly--3 meetings) and work with one sponsor. I do not share much more than how I work the steps into my life at a meeting, experience, strength, and hope. Personal concerns are discussed with my sponsor and very close friends only.

Work it the way it works for you and work it well! Try to live the steps daily!!!
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Old 04-30-2016, 07:28 PM
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So I used "AA is a cult" as an excuse to not attend meetings for years. My thought process was "they all hold hands in the end and chant for God's sake!"

It took my worst bottom (hopelessness) to give it another go and working with someone in the AA program who actually shared a spiritual message and guided me to find a real solution

I had a stale experience in other fellowships for a long time. Yes--my thinking was delusional and warped, but I was drawn to meetings that were more of a social outing and drama-filled instead of meetings that were sharing a solution.

There are all types of scary cult stuff online about AA. I do know one thing-I have never experienced anyone telling me or making me feel trapped and sucked in dangerously. That being said, I think all the above advice is very good. I like the person who said your wife may feel like an AA-Widow, but remember, she will find in you her husband that she fell in love with again, when you become the awesome sober person you were meant to be.

And rushing headfirst into things at 100 mph is what we do. It's working the steps and finding a spiritual solution that brings us balance. Keep fighting<3
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