Old 09-13-2015, 08:28 AM
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I am working on a committee to redesign our Al-Anon district website. While researching information to put on the new site, I came across this piece on detachment. I know may of us have had trouble with this concept, myself included so I thought I would share.

Detachment is neither kind nor unkind. It does not imply judgment or condemnation of the person or situation from which we are detaching. Separating ourselves from the adverse effects of another person's alcoholism can be a means of detaching: this does not necessarily require physical separation. Detachment can help us look at our situation realistically and objectively.


-Let go of our obsession with another person's behavior.
-Begin to lead happier and more manageable lives.
-Live with dignity, and rights, guided by a Power greater than ourselves.
-Love the person without liking the behavior.


-Not suffering because of the actions or reactions of other people.
-Not allowing ourselves to be used or abused by others in the interest of another's recovery.
-Not doing for others what they can do for themselves.
-Not manipulating situations so others will eat, go to bed, get up, pay bills, not drink, or behave as we see fit.
-Not covering up for another person's mistakes or misdeeds.
-Not creating a crisis.
-Not preventing a crisis if it is in the natural course of events.
-Nothing we say or do can cause or stop someone's drinking.
-We are not responsible for another person's disease or recovery from it.
-By learning to focus on ourselves:
-Our attitudes and well-being improves.
-We allow the alcoholics in our lives to experience the consequences of their own actions.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:45 AM
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Good post, good reminders, good clarification, Hopeful. Thanks!
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Old 09-13-2015, 11:12 AM
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-We are not responsible for another person's disease or recovery from it.

really good stuff.
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Old 09-14-2015, 04:00 AM
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Struggling with detachment

I'm new to all of this and really struggling with the concept of detachment so hoping someone can help. One of the points above is
Not preventing a crisis if it is in the natural course of events.

But what if the crisis you are preventing involves and innocent third party who it is your responsibility to look after (e.g. a child or a pet). I can definitely see the point of letting the alcoholic deal with the chaos they create but if I have responsibility for someone else, surely I need to protect them as well. Or, what if the crisis affects me negatively as well - surely I can't just sit back and let events take their course.

Any thoughts on this would be really appreciated!

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Old 09-14-2015, 05:20 AM
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You certainly should act to protect yourself or innocent third parties (children and pets) who can't protect themselves. The question is always the best way to do that. Trying to control the alcoholic's drinking is a pretty ineffective way to do that. The best way is to remove yourself or the others who would be endangered from the source of the danger. If he's driving drunk, calling the police can protect innocents who might be hurt. If his drinking is endangering his livelihood then your best course of action is to take steps to protect yourself financially.
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