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Old 05-12-2019, 11:55 AM   #1 (permalink)
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First AA Meeting Question


Hello All,

This is my first time posting after being here a while reading along the way. Currently on my first day sober after many attempts. I know I can't do this alone. My question is, when should you attend your first AA meeting? Should it be after the withdrawal symptoms go away? It sounds silly but I don't want to go in shaking and feeling sick to my stomach. Any advise given would be appreciated.
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Old 05-12-2019, 12:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Go when you feel ready, but don't put it off. There's nothing to fear, and most AA meetings in my neck of the woods don't run much beyond an hour.
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Old 05-12-2019, 12:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The best time to go to any kind of recovery meeting is now. Everyone there will completely understand what you are going through and offer support.
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Old 05-12-2019, 01:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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there was a detox in the town i got sober in. the clients would be loaded up anbd brought to meetings. many were shaking even with detox meds.
ive seen many people with withdrawl symptoms at meetings over the years.
im glad they didnt wait until the felt good.
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Old 05-12-2019, 01:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The best time to go to any kind of recovery meeting is now. Everyone there will completely understand what you are going through and offer support.
Thank you.
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Old 05-12-2019, 01:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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there was a detox in the town i got sober in. the clients would be loaded up anbd brought to meetings. many were shaking even with detox meds.
ive seen many people with withdrawl symptoms at meetings over the years.
im glad they didnt wait until the felt good.
I really wish I could go to a detox center. However, I work 6:30 to 3:30/4 pm Monday through Friday. I don't have anyone other support outside of myself. 😪
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Old 05-12-2019, 02:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I understand how scary it is to attend your first meeting, but I promise, once you walk through those doors, the worst will be over. You only have to walk in for the first time once. Take a deep breath and jump in. You will be in a room full of people that have been exactly where you are now. We all started on day one!

Hugs, let is know how it went,
Cathy
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Old 05-12-2019, 02:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I really wish I could go to a detox center. However, I work 6:30 to 3:30/4 pm Monday through Friday. I don't have anyone other support outside of myself. 😪
understandable. the point was that we dont mind and like to see people show up no matter what their condition is.
something i think would benefit ya is to read the big book of AA to get an understanding of what the program is. you can find and read it online by doing a search for "big book online."
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Old 05-12-2019, 03:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I understand how scary it is to attend your first meeting, but I promise, once you walk through those doors, the worst will be over. You only have to walk in for the first time once. Take a deep breath and jump in. You will be in a room full of people that have been exactly where you are now. We all started on day one!

Hugs, let is know how it went,
Cathy
It is VERY scary. Admittingly and regretfully, i have always cared about what others thought of me. My road has been rough and I have prided myself on getting "through" alot if hardships even though they probably weren't the healthiest ways. I get scared knowing that I will have to admit to others that I am powerless to alcohol. I am tearful and terrified but kind of excited. Just a bunch of mixed emotions. It's hard for me to open up to people due to trust issues. I am trying to stay positive and will be in a meeting very soon. Thanks so much for reaching out to me. I really appreciate it. Hugs.
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Old 05-12-2019, 03:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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understandable. the point was that we dont mind and like to see people show up no matter what their condition is.
something i think would benefit ya is to read the big book of AA to get an understanding of what the program is. you can find and read it online by doing a search for "big book online."
I actually purchased a small copy about 6 months ago. Made it half way through. The 12 steps are a bit overwhelming. I guess all I can really do is start with step one and feel comfortable in that. Thanks for the push and the support.
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Old 05-12-2019, 03:20 PM   #11 (permalink)
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The 12 steps are a bit overwhelming. I guess all I can really do is start with step one and feel comfortable in that. Thanks for the push and the support.
extrememely overwhelming for me,too. old fart at the meetings asked me how old are ya and how long did ya drink for?"
"im 37 and drank for 23 years."
"ok. welp, if ya drink for a week you could get it kicked pout quick.however ya drank for 23 years and have 37 years of life so ya have a lot to sort through and learn from. the steps are in order for a reason. keep it simple."

on other words, very good idea to start at step one until you get a full understanding of it and how it applies to you and your life.
i had that down a little walkin into my first meeting:
i was walkin into an AA meeting- not too many people walk into AA having power over alcohol and a managable life.

GoNwithTheFLOW-good user name.
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Old 05-12-2019, 05:10 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I tried AA and hated it. Nonetheless it was crucial in early sobriety. I myself couldn't possibly have gone to an AA meeting while in withdrawal on my own, I required medical detox. I found myself in an AA meeting in rehab when I was in a group and someone started saying things that I recognized, and I thought "Holy crap, this is an AA meeting." I was still in withdrawal, but on a valium taper so the symptoms were manageable...there isn't a chance in hell I could have gotten myself to a meeting in the state I would have been in without the benzo taper, and without being in an environment where it just kinda happened. Since then I've seen people in meetings, usually brought by someone who found them or knew them, who were in pretty bad shape. In one case, they were taken to the hospital immediately as the meeting ended. I certainly gave AA a shot before I discarded it, and had other sobriety methods at my disposal.

My experiences aside, my overall advice would be to utilize whatever recovery resources are at your disposal. AA isn't a bad place to start by any means, and I'm sure people here can give you tips for finding a good meeting and getting there. I would also suggest that you consult with your doctor regarding your withdrawal, particularly if your symptoms are relatively severe.

I didn't think I could do inpatient either. It's amazing what you can manage when your life is at stake.

Do whatever you can as soon as you can to get sober.
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Old 05-12-2019, 05:26 PM   #13 (permalink)
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LOL, I remember my first meeting, I sat with my arms crossed and a scowl on my face. When it got to me, all I said was "My name is Cathy and I am an Alcoholic, and I would rather be anywhere else in the world except here!" No one passed judgement, everyone seemed to have felt the same way at one point or another. Thankfully, I kept coming back!
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Old 05-12-2019, 08:23 PM   #14 (permalink)
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hi there,
i like that you are tearful, terrified and that excited. very especially the excited part. tells me you are looking forward to a change for the better. at least, that is what i found so exciting
there is nothing you HAVE to do at a meeting; absolutely nothing. if you are not sure you are powerless over alcohol, then no reason to say so.
if you do know that alcohol has “got you licked”, you have already started the stepwork and are in a good place to start out in the better direction.
hope you will soon tell us about your first meeting!
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Old 05-12-2019, 08:44 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I was also scared at my first meeting. I didn't go alone and it was all new to me. Actually it took many attempts to become comfortable at a meeting of any sort because I thought people were judging me or going to judge me if I opened my mouth. You don't have to say anything if you don't want to. You'll know when the time is right. When I relapsed after 5 years and thought I could handle it on my own, 10 years later I went back after knowing I was really licked and had no control over my drinking. I just got away from sobriety being a priority, day to day. It was even harder going back than it was the first time and asking for help. It's still hard to ask for help. I know when I do or anyone does you get what you need and the big surprise is that the person helping you stays sober and probably helped as much or more than you. Much like the support on this site, people retain what they have by giving it away. So many paradoxes in life. You'll also learn that the newcomer is the most important person at any meeting. Good luck and keep and open mind. Don't judge by any one meeting but try many. If a friend hadn't told me that after my first meeting I don't know if I ever would have gone back. That was 31 years ago and we are lifelong friends now. You can do this.
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Old 05-12-2019, 10:00 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I actually purchased a small copy about 6 months ago. Made it half way through. The 12 steps are a bit overwhelming. I guess all I can really do is start with step one and feel comfortable in that. Thanks for the push and the support.
I think we all connect with different parts of The BB at different phases in our process. Sometimes the direction and prayers go over my head. So I do not read too much at a time -- it's not a novel.

I believe some of the pamphlets and the Living Sober book are the best distraction and knowledge for under 90 days. That's just for me. Neither of those types of readings are as persuasive or decisive, so it's less pressure.
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Old 05-13-2019, 06:15 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I

Hugs, let is know how it went,
Cathy
Hi everyone. Thanks for all or the advice and support. I wanted to check in and let everyone know I made it to a meeting. It took everything in my to get past the heart pounding and head shaking. Once I breathed enough to calm down I enjoyed hearing people and their success stories. Unfortunately, I didn't make and friendships. I didn't speak or course so it's probably my fault. I can't start a conversation to save my life. Again, trust issues. Ugh. I can't give up.
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Old 05-13-2019, 06:51 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I never talk at first. Then you cannot shut me up. Making friends can be hard, I sit back and watch people. Keep going back, eventually you will feel comfortable enough to talk.
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Old 05-13-2019, 08:27 PM   #19 (permalink)
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GoN,
good going on attending that meeting!
next time you go, raise your hand when the chairperson asks if there are any newcomers. you don’t need to speak. just raising your hand is a good-enough indication that you would like some help, and hopefully will result in someone else starting a conversation with you as soon as the meeting is over.
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Old 05-14-2019, 01:40 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Hi everyone. Thanks for all or the advice and support. I wanted to check in and let everyone know I made it to a meeting. It took everything in my to get past the heart pounding and head shaking. Once I breathed enough to calm down I enjoyed hearing people and their success stories. Unfortunately, I didn't make and friendships. I didn't speak or course so it's probably my fault. I can't start a conversation to save my life. Again, trust issues. Ugh. I can't give up.
I didn't talk either at first. Like Horsie, then they couldn't shut me up.

It does get easier. People all know each other and it can be intimidating. Once you get adjusted it can be a very powerful experience, particularly in surrender.
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