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Al-Anon Questions

Old 12-17-2013, 02:20 PM
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Al-Anon Questions

For those of you who attend Al-Anon, how many different groups did you try before you found the right group (ie the group you clicked with)? Or, did you just keep going to the same group until it felt "right"? I'm going. Have been to a few meetings. Am trying a new one tomorrow but I have yet to really click with any group. I do get something out of every meeting. It is helpful. But, I just am not feeling like I've found my place yet, if that makes sense. So far, I've not attended any group more than once. Should I just pick one and keep going back? Am I overthininking this?!

Also, once you find a group you're really comfortable with, how do you choose a sponsor? And, yes, I've read the stickies
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Old 12-17-2013, 02:45 PM
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I went to 3 different groups before I found the right "fit" for me. Now, it wasn't that I walked in and thought "this is it". There were enough things that I could accept, that I decided to come back. I do feel you need to go to one meeting a few times to get a feel for it.

I was a regular participant for about 4 months before I picked a sponsor. By that time, I had enough meetings under my belt to have a feel for the regulars. From listening to shares, and from talking to people afterwards, I was drawn to one particular person. I don't think it's something you need to rush.
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Old 12-17-2013, 02:54 PM
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First time I went to Alanon was back YEARS before the relapse. Mrs. Hammer advised my that I should be familiar with it.

It made no sense at all. Some guy (probably how I now appear) yammering about the Three C's. I sort of said, yeah, ok that is nice. Whatever.

But AFTER the Relapse. OMIGOD. Made total sense. I was hooked at the first meeting. Deep "hood" side of Dallas. Totally fell in love with my group. Would dream about them. By my 4th Step, we (me) were getting so much better that from the time I started my 4th Step . . . which was about getting my family OUT of the Deep Hood of Dallas . . . just 12 hours later, we had the house signed for up in (what I call) Lilywhite. Big Family House, on an acre, with horses running in the pasture in back.

God Delivers.

I foolishly took my eyes off the prize, Mrs. Hammer kept sinking deeper and deeper, and I would not go to Alanon "up there" because I loved my old group so much it felt like I would be disloyal if went to another group.

Even when folks came and directly asked me to come and help the local Alanon because they needed help. (so ashamed of that now, looking back), and I completely stopped my Steps, too. Had what I wanted. F-off, God!

The Lord Gives and the Lord Takes away.

Grabbed an even nicer place and moved on up some more. Mrs. Hammer was crashing down to 90 lbs, I was helping my daughter with a science project (measuring heart rates and blood pressure) and I could see by the numbers that Mrs. Hammer was actually dying. We lost our even better house, wound up homeless, and I went screaming and crying back to Alanon.

God is Good. He restores.

Mrs. Hammer wound up in Rehab, we have a nice house again, AA / Alanon is less than a 1/4 mile away, and THIS TIME I am NOT taking my eyes off of Him. I always thought Peter a dumbass. Yunno the Big Mouth Disciple? Jumping out the boat and walking on the water, but failing to keep his eyes on Him. And almost drowning? Turns out I am Peter. All mouth, backed up with a big dumbass.

So out of my psycho story telling . . . ANY Alanon is a GOOD Alanon, and I hit them all over, whether home or traveling, and often.

Maybe you should, too.
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Old 12-18-2013, 04:33 AM
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When I decided to commit to Al-Anon at the beginning of this year I picked a meeting that I felt would fit into my schedule. I guess I was lucky. I enjoyed the meeting and I found it interesting that the flavor was different every week. I had an absence of 4 or 5 months from my regular meetings in the spring/summer due to a hospitalization and being out of town for a couple of months. What I found upon my return was that a few of the regulars were there, but many of the faces were people I had not seen before. It made me aware that just as the events and concerns in my life change on a daily basis, the same is true for all who attend meetings.

Having grown more comfortable attending meetings, I decided to try another meeting at a different location and time. Great meeting, wonderful people! Time to try yet another meeting. Loved this meeting also. I felt like most of the folks at this meeting were there because of their children and I walked away with much comfort. Same meeting, a couple weeks later was not so much about the children. Still a great meeting.

I sat next to a woman at one meeting and she spoke about the blessings of being able to choose meetings to attend based on when "she needed one". Her comment really got me to thinking. The structure of attending a weekly meeting was great when I first started to attend meetings. Kinda like going to the gym - good to establish a routine. I've moved past the painful stage and am reaping the benefits from my steady practice no matter what day of the week it is.

Justagirl - Remember to take what you need and leave the rest. I don't think it is necessary that you "click with the group" as the group will be continuously changing just as you will grow and change also.
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Old 12-18-2013, 05:09 PM
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Thank you, everyone. I guess the answer is what I knew: Go to the same meetings, go to different meetings, just keep going I have more time off over the holiday weeks so I will make it my goal to try at least one new group and attend one group I've already been to each week. My sister's considering Celebrate Recovery, too, so maybe I will try that with her. On the sponsor thing, I am an impatient person by nature and have this compulsion to start the steps like right now! Or, yesterday, if possible Maybe I need to take that part slower simply because it's the opposite of what I'd usually do?

PS: Hammer, Peter's one of my favorite people from the New Testament. I can so relate to him! I only hope that like him, I can make the transition from "shifty" to "rock" solid
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Old 12-18-2013, 08:17 PM
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I clicked with the fourth meeting I tried. And I stuck with that one but kept trying others. I now have one home group and two other meetings that I try to go to when I can (probably my 7th and 9th meetings that I tried). Definitely keep trying meetings if you want to, why not. As for a sponsor it really works differently in different places. I kept asking people how they got their sponsor and it was a good icebreaker after meetings and helped me get a sense of how to find mine. I hope you find a meeting that feels good to you. It has been life changing for me.
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