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The femininity factor

Old 10-13-2007, 07:15 AM
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The femininity factor

An issue thats come to me in the past few days is the almost exclusive female membership at my 2 Al-anon groups, as well as this board. Seems to me that it is almost entirely women. Not that its a problem for me since I like female companionship and have many friends that are woman. I am able to express myself around them, thats not the issue. But after going to 2 meetings, there were no men in attendence. Same goes for this forum, as well as lots of the reading material I've seen. I thought that it would be about an even ratio, maybe with just a few more girls than guys. But so far, its been mostly the ladies (the ladies: !!)

My apologies to Desertmike and the other guys that I have seen posting here. Its just that it has me questioning my "machismo" at the moment, for not being able to deal with my A-relationship. Also, I am wondering if it might be a factor at the meetings themselves, the idea that a woman who is in a terrible situation with an AH or AF being "anti-male" (not so much anti, but not comfortable with a male present). Hope Im not coming across as negative on this topic. I just wanted to put it out there and hear what others think.
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Old 10-13-2007, 07:41 AM
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50/50

There are probably as many men dealing with the same issues. I think it's more likely that a female will seek out others and are more willing to ask for help. Our society has raised men to think they are weak if they need to talk about something or ask for help.

Men (in general, not all) also seem to get over stuff easier...they don't let things bother them as much, they don't dwell on things as much.

I also think there are 'just men' meetings at some places. If that's more comfortable for you, it's worth checking out.

always jmo,
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Old 10-13-2007, 07:52 AM
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I've been to only 3 meetings, but in the ones I've attended there were 60% women and 40% men, I thought it would be more women. All the men and women are very helpful, and I love hearing a mans view of the same problem. Please keep posting!!
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Old 10-13-2007, 08:22 AM
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My 2 main meetings have a healthy ratio, one has more women but the other about equal. There are several male stag meetings in my area. You could ask the district office; someday you may want to start one. Some of my male friends who attend that stag say its the only place they feel comfortable really opening up, for now.

Good luck!
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Old 10-13-2007, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by denny57 View Post
My 2 main meetings have a healthy ratio, one has more women but the other about equal. There are several male stag meetings in my area. You could ask the district office; someday you may want to start one. Some of my male friends who attend that stag say its the only place they feel comfortable really opening up, for now.

Good luck!

Lol @ the term Stag Meeting! I know what you mean by it, but it sounds funny! However none of the local meetings mention gender specific, other then a BLGT listing.

And Im not planning on giving up going to Al-anon because of this. Ive only done a couple meetings so far and have a few more groups to check out before I "settle" on one, although it seems like due to scheduling I'd like to attend more than just one. I assume "meeting hopping" is acceptable in Al-anon?

Also, if I decide to look for a sponsor, in the definition that I understand having one, I dont know that I would need them to be a male or female. Still just feeling my way through the newness of it all.
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Old 10-13-2007, 09:04 AM
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I laugh about it, too, but that's what they call them! I've heard it recommended that sponsors be of the same gender. I have many male friends in Al-Anon who are a huge part of my recovery. It's part of the reason I like the mix. It also was a very gentle way for me to be reminded that there are good, decent men "out there" who are also struggling to make life work. It would have been very easy to write all men off at the time.

I have 2 meetings I try to attend every week, except when I travel. Some others I enjoy are always there if I need them. I hopped around a bit. I only walked out on one within 5 minutes because it was a rap meeting. I am not kidding.
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Old 10-13-2007, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by denny57 View Post
I only walked out on one within 5 minutes because it was a rap meeting. I am not kidding.
Rap? You mean like Fifty-Cent and Snoop-Dawg?

Have to leave for the rest of today. Taking my daughter to her friends Chucky Cheese b-day party!!! I'll stop back tonight and see if anyone else posts. Thx all. And to those that PM'd me, thanks so much for the kind words.
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Old 10-13-2007, 09:57 AM
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I've thought about that too but never asked or posted, just thought that maybe statistically more men become alcoholics than women? Or maybe men might be less inclined to discuss these kinds of personal issues or problems at home? I dunno?

Can't keep a sock in my mouth... LOL!! Never had that problem
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Old 10-13-2007, 10:58 AM
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Gender ratios in meetings depend on where you go and what time of day.

There's a thursday morning meeting here in Vegas that is held at a temple in the middle of a middle-class neighborhood. Attendance is 100% women, except when I show up. We call it the "Soccer mom" meeting.

Another meeting on wednesday nights down in Boulder city is about half and half. There's a Sunday nite one that is around the corner from a AA meet and people wander back and forth from one to the other.

When I was in L.A. there was a mens only Al-anon meet at the Canyon Club in Laguna Beach. About 100 guys every week, and all of them had practically the exact same story as me.

A sponsor is someone who has recently overcome the challenges you are facing today. For that reason it is _strongly_ recommended that a sponsor be of the same gender, else they won't have the same experience as you.

Originally Posted by tollbooth View Post
...My apologies to Desertmike and the other guys that I have seen posting here. Its just that it has me questioning my "machismo" at the moment, for not being able to deal with my A-relationship. ....
* lol * not a problem. I understand completely. Here's how we solve the "machismo" question in Vegas.

Go on down to the pharmacy and get a bottle of ipecac. Then drink the _whole_ bottle. All of it. Be "macho" and do _not_ throw up. Go ahead, be macho.

You can be the Terminator himself and that little bottle of chemicals is going to kick your tush all day, and all night.

A _human being_ is _not_ more powerful than plain old chemistry. We humans have limitations (do you know the Dirty Harry line about limitations? ) Booze and drugs are chemicals. All the "macho" in the world means _nothing_ to chemicals. We all are powerless over chemicals, including the ones our "significant others" consume.

Any time you get to forgeting that lesson, pick up a bottle of ipecac

Mike
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Old 10-14-2007, 02:47 PM
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This is a really interesting point. I met very few men in al-anon in the UK, although they were certainly welcome. I have often wondered why that might be, given that I suspect that quite a few men I have met might perhaps benefit from the message, if not the format.

Most men I know outwith the recovery field have pretty strong boundaries in comparison to most women I have met and whilst they are not necessarily the most compassionate in their reference to former partners, they sure know how to get out before the proverbial hits the fan. And, ime, the majority of men in that situation are far less analytical about the situation and are less likely to take "blame" on board than a lot of women I know. Someone posted a thread recently about the differing thoughts following an incident in a car and I know I find it funny because there is such a ring of truth in there.

There is nothing emasculating about seeking help, tollbooth, and it is surely true that self-aware people are much more attractive and prodictive members of society, which is why you are going to al-anon, right? To become more self-aware?

Oh, and I always love to hear from male members (!), whether here on in meetings. Much of what we experience is not gender specific and I know that personally men sharing have helped me put away the "silly woman" voice that sometimes creeps in. And I have never been anti-male - I adore men. I just dislike abusive, aggressive, gasping and manipulative people, some of which happen to be male.
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Old 10-14-2007, 04:57 PM
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If you look at AA/NA, I think it is more like 75/25 male. In Alanon/Narconon, I think there are more women because women are much better enablers in general.
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Old 10-14-2007, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by minnie View Post
There is nothing emasculating about seeking help, tollbooth, and it is surely true that self-aware people are much more attractive and prodictive members of society, which is why you are going to al-anon, right? To become more self-aware?
You are spot-on minnie. I want to become more self aware of why I allowed myself to not only remain in a relationship that was far below my personal values, but also to understand why I continue to stay attached emotionally even after I have removed myself from it physically for over half a years time. This is where I feel emasculated since the only reason I quit the relationship was due to being abused physically. Believe it or not, I was able to stay involved even though I knew she was alcoholic, and all the other attending factors assoviated with that, except for the physical stuff. I'm 5-9 and 190#, not a large intimidating fellow, but certainly not a candyass. Yet I was genuinly afraid of getting hurt whenever she got into the red wine.
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