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Old 01-29-2009, 07:08 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Straight at LGBT meetings.


I used to go to this AA meeting about a year ago. It was near my house, which was nice, plus I was pleasantly surprised to find several of my friends there (never know who you're going to run into...)

I'd gone maybe three or four times before it finally struck me that "wow, a lot of people from the gay community seem to like this meeting!" Well, no one ever said or even suggested that it was an LGBT oriented group. I didn't go back the next week, but only because my work schedule changed.

The meeting is tonight, and I don't work any more. I have a feeling that this is going to be one of those "two-meeting days."

I'm straight. I am also very openly gay-positive. . I really enjoyed that meeting, and felt totally welcome there. I don't bring my sexuality to the tables either.

However, I am aware that such meetings exist as a safer haven for people to be open with their sexuality in a mutual, non-judgmental setting. And I have no wish to presume that I'm in any way "special" just because I'm not judgmental.

I would not go to an all women's meeting. Out of respect and nothing else. Yet at a women's meeting I obviously could not hide the fact that I am a male. At an LGBT meeting my presence is not in itself indicative of anything. If anything, the fact that I have a slight lisp makes a lot of people automatically assume that I'm gay (stupid, yes.) Nor would anything I would say "out" me. I'm not saying I'd intend to go and fake who I am; I just wonder if it's enough that I'm just an alcoholic like everyone else.

So what say you?

I'd ask my two friends who go to the meeting for their thoughts, naturally. But I haven't a phone number. And taking two buses on the off chance to catch them at their jobs to ask... well... you get my point.
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Old 01-29-2009, 08:39 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm straight too, if that matters...

First - the only requirement is the desire to stop drinking.

I was involved with the creation of a new mens' AA group a while back. One thing we found out from our local AA intergroup is that they will list the meeting in the directory as a mens' meeting, though we should not deny attendance to anyone in need. Meaning - if a woman walked into the meeting and wanted to stay, we should still welcome her.

I understand your concern about others needing to feel safe in an AA meeting, free from judgement etc. But you said yourself that you're not judgemental. If that's true, how could your presence cause anyone any harm? And you're already "special." You're an alcoholic who should be welcome to attend any and all AA meetings.

All else being equal, I don't go to womens' meetings either. Luckily I live in a large metro area with dozens of meetings all the time. So I'm not as limited in my meeting selection as others who live in different areas. But if it came down to it, down to me taking a drink or going to a womens' meeting, I go to the womens' meeting. If I'm really in need... Just as I would be open to any woman who is in need to attend any mens' meeting who has no other option.

I say go. You've gone in the past without any issues. Why do you think things would be different now?
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Old 01-29-2009, 08:56 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I am a lesbian.

Although I can't speak for every gay person (although sometimes I do feel like a spokesperson), as long as you are GLBT supportive then it should be ok. The reason we have our own meetings is to avoid derivative comments like, are you the man? Is your girlfriend the man? How do you....etc etc etc. and also to speak about the difficulties of being gay in a straight world. It seems like you get that so I wouldn't be too concerned.

One thing I have noticed with non-minorities (and NOT just straight people) is to make the focus on them and their difference. Such as being the only white person (and I'm white) at an all black event and making it about how weird it is that you are the only white person without just enjoying it or understanding that this is the one place where this person doesn't stand out. I won't go into the reasons that happens but I will say that it doesn't seem like you would do that either.

So I would go and enjoy yourself.
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Old 01-29-2009, 03:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Just go, treat it like a meeting.. because it is. I consider meetings in general to be my safe haven. If other people take issue... that's on them. It also sounds like it's a meeting you've been to before, and you have friends there already.
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Old 01-29-2009, 07:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I also say "go," since you've been before and you have never heard them say anything indicating that gay-friendly straights aren't welcome. The GLBT meetings here all say something along the lines of Welcome to the Name-of-Group gay and gay-friendly meeting of alcoholics anonymous....I've seen straight people leave because they get uncomfortable that it's a gay meeting, but I've never seen anyone seem at all upset because straight people are there....

freya

.....and BTW, I too would be totally offended if anyone at any meeting, gay or straight, ever felt the need to ask my partner and I "Who's the man??" I mean, geeesh,...it's perfectly obvious! LOL!
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Old 02-05-2009, 08:39 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Personally, since the program is all about honesty, I'd just ask the group how they feel about you attending, explaining just as you did in your post that you are straight but very gay-supportive. That way, there are no surprises and you've been upfront. I think you'll be welcomed - I hope you will.
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Old 11-02-2019, 12:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I attend both straight men’s meetings as well as LBGT Meetings. I’m straight but very supportive of the gay community. I recognize that I am a guest at an LBGT meeting.

I also attend straight men’s meetings. I don’t think anyone at the street men’s meeting would be put off or offended if a gay man or even women showed up. I do think that the members would expect all people to be accepting of the language and overall feeling of the meeting which sometimes includes discussion of what it means to be a straight man including sexuality and family issues.

I would never attend a women’s meeting out of respect. I think it’s different than me attending an LGBT meeting. I have only felt welcome and encouraged at any AA meeting I’ve ever been to. I think the great majority of us in recovery know why were here and what the primary purposes. Let our purpose dictate our behavior and believes.




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Old 11-02-2019, 12:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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To men, mens and womens meetings are clear cut- and that would include how you identify (if you felt ok). Trans people I know mainly from open meetings but I don't know which others they attend. I'm straight and a woman - I've been and I would go to LGBT meetings, and I wouldn't go to a mens.

To me, spiritual fitness includes acceptance of others and this would certainly be an example

And as said above, the whole "it's not about me thing" totally applies - and I think it's somewhere in the book to not be like that...
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Old 11-02-2019, 04:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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welcome to SR DrCuisine

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Old 11-04-2019, 06:07 PM   #10 (permalink)
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this might be something that many folks ask themselves and don’t know who to ask.
my former home group was called “queer and trans” and after that name, in the meeting directory we asked to have spelled out “everyone welcome”, which is really helpful. and yeah, “everyone” shows up
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Old 02-12-2020, 09:38 AM   #11 (permalink)
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When I still did AA, I went almost exclusively to the AT Center in Los Angeles, which is an LGBTQ recovery meeting center. It hosts AA, NA, CA, CMA meetings as well as other groups such as a Buddhist meditation. I'm gay, so it made total sense. Most of the others there are LGBTQ. But by no means all!

I attended a meeting where the guest speaker was accepting a 20 year chip. When he got up to speak I thought he didn't vibe gay. And he wasn't. He is a well loved figure at the AT Center who happens to be straight. He recounted how when he started his journey he chose the AT Center because the meetings had a "G" after them...which he assumed meant Good.

If you feel comfortable at a gay meeting, by all means go.

I think in general as being gay is increasingly accepted, these distinctions are blurring anyway.
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