Old 10-03-2013, 05:27 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Columbus, Ohio
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I have posted before about my beautiful 24 year old niece whom is an abuser of both drugs and alcohol. I am sort of her surrogate father for a thousand reasons, but I have shared all of that in the past.

Anyway, this particular thread is in regards to my desire to be a mentor......a positive voice in someones life. I seem to have decent communication skills with girls and would like to help. It seems to me that more often then not, these girls are "set out" with the garbage. Few people in mainstream life want to deal with girls/people like abusers. I was brought up that way myself......very much a hands off approach. "Don't go near those people". "Stay away". I refuse to stay away.......these girls are human beings and damn it to hell, I want to help. I believe, I have faith that they can have a better life and I want to help!

I do not know where to begin? I do not know who to contact? Maybe AA? In the past I have tried speaking to folks at our local county rehab facility, but they are overwhelmed ( no surprise) and you really can't get any feedback.

Anyway, I do not want to ramble on, but if someone could point me in the right direction, it would be appreciated!

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Old 10-03-2013, 06:50 PM
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Nick, I presume you are a man by your post and your name. I can't help but think you may want to rethink how you can help best. Being a mentor to girls who struggle with drugs or who have been abused is tricky territory for a man, simply because there are so many predators out there who look for vulnerable, needy people to prey on.

Most 12 step programs recommend same sex sponsors for just this reason.

I have volunteered at a woman's shelter, prior to that many years back I volunteered at a non-profit residence/program for unwed pregnant teenagers, where they received counselling and support and if they chose to keep their babies, they were taught parenting skills.

My point is, there are many places out there that help, counsel, and support women who need help.

The best way you could help these girls would be to offer financial support to the programs that help them or to volunteer your time fundraising or collecting clothing and donated items for these places.

It's nice that you have a good heart, just please be careful not to put yourself in a compromising situation.

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Old 10-04-2013, 09:20 AM
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Ann is so very right and worded it as nicely as it could be.
Due to the nature of sharing intimate thoughts and feelings, it is recommended to choose same sex sponsors. There is a trust and bonding that happens, and you don't want it to go the wrong way.

You seem so very new to this disease of addiction. I understand the the need and want to help. But first you must help yourself... Before you can be A light for someone in the shadows you first must know yourself, then you must know the program. Have you attended any Nar-Anon or Al-Anon meetings yet? I know there are meetings in your state, start there. Do you know the 12 steps? Have you worked the steps?

Mentoring, or sponsorship; is about sharing your knowledge, understanding, experience, wisdom, and hope.
It's not just giving, it is also receiving. A listener who helps us understand that we have the ability to release resentment, anxiety and the feeling that everyone is against us. this begins the process of releasing the pain.

It is not about the desire to help, or good communication skills.
Because that alone will not help the situation. You have to have something they want, an enlightenment that shows the path your on. They must choose who they are going to go to for guidance, you don't choose them.

So I would start with YOU. Since your AD or surrogate daughter has the disease, you need to go to the rooms where others are dealing with the same things. You need to work a program, work the 12 steps. ...Then think of doing this. ... Find a Nar-Anon or Al-Anon group near you and attend at least 6 meetings. Then see where you truly are with this thought.
I love your enthusiasm it will take you far with the journey you are about to take. Your not going to be able to help everyone, but you will be helping some and that will be progress for us all. It is people like you that will help those recover from the disease of addiction.

Be well,
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Old 10-04-2013, 09:46 AM
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Have you ever looked into an organization like: Big Brothers, Big Sisters?
They are always looking for mentors, and those that have time to donate. I do think they are also geared toward same-sex mentoring, all the reasons Ann mentioned above ...and its for your safety as well. Big Brother/Big Sisters actually say they have a shortage of Big Brothers usually, you might be a perfect candidate.
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:17 PM
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I appreciate all of the responses very much! And I did expect some of the thoughts you folks have shared especially regarding a guy mentoring a girl. I truly understand what you are talking about with that.

My niece tells me everything...........and no, I do not want to hear it. But I choose to let her talk because I feel there is a need. The family does not support her at all.......I stand alone. I have also helped one of my nieces friends........and she is a success story. Not because of me, but because of what she has chosen which is a better life. I singled out mentoring a girl because of the communication and it seems I am not too bad at it. What do I have to offer? Well, my ear and to prove that someone actually cares.

If it is better for me to help out a guy/man, I would certainly consider it strongly. But I truly believe that the losers in this situation are mostly girls. It is heartbreaking to know someone that is an abuser. It is more heartbreaking to understand how "willing" they are to be abused!

I will look into attending some Nar-ANON meetings as well as AA. I have my own understanding of things but I certainly need a different perspective. Big brothers and big sisters is also a great option that I can look into.

I don't want to ramble on here, I simply want to help. Like all of you good folks on this site, I care.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me!
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:30 PM
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[QUOTE=StNick;4217645]Anyway, I do not want to ramble on, but if someone could point me in the right direction, it would be appreciated!Thx/QUOTE]

I would recommend you start with al-anon and codependency meetings.

As suggested a deeper knowledge of what addiction truely intails and the behaviors of addicts.

If it were only that simple to mentor people and be there for them with understanding......
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