AA Meetings at LGBT Center Turning Straight - SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information
Go Back   SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information > Special-Interest Groups > GLBTQ in Recovery
Register Blogs FAQ Members List Calendar Arcade Mark Forums Read




Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 08-31-2017, 04:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 3

AA Meetings at LGBT Center Turning Straight


Many years ago I used to travel into the city to attend gay meetings at an LGBT community Center in Philadelphia. These meetings have changed dramatically. The Night Owl meeting is now completely straight with the exception of 3 people. I walked by the center after the 8:30 PM Sober and Gay meeting and it was all straight people except one gay person locking up. Many of these people appear homophobic and when they share have to make a point they are straight. I tried to talk to a straight person about some gay issue I had and they appeared to have a problem with it. Anyone else notice this, the straight-washing of meetings in LGBT Community Centers? I mostly go to regular meetings out of convenience.
buddy16cat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-01-2017, 02:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 426
Being gay or straight has nothing to do with alcoholism. It's an outside issue.

It's like saying I'm going to start a meeting for divorced alcoholics and only divorced alcoholics could attend.

Someone on SR posted recently that a doctor was asked to go to an AA meeting and discuss what it's like being an alcoholic and gay. His share was short and to the point: "I'm an alcoholic who also happens to be gay" or something like that. His point was, he was there as an alcoholic. Maybe someone can kindly post a link because I don't remember where I saw it but it was perfectly stated.

One doesn't have anything to do with the other.

This is not meant to be invalidating, please don't take it that way.

My two cents: why the need for separation? That's the beauty of AA. We're all different people from all walks of life, with a similar problem and similar solution.
Pathwaytofree is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Pathwaytofree For This Useful Post:
SoberCAH (10-10-2017), sylvie83 (09-06-2017), tomsteve (09-01-2017)
Old 09-04-2017, 01:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
MindfulMan
 
MindfulMan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 287
I only go to gay/lesbian meetings. I've experienced discomfort in straight meetings as well.

I also disagree that being gay and being alcoholic are completely unrelated. Many of us have gone through systemic trauma as kids and young adults that straight people just cannot relate to, and often have self esteem problems that contribute to relapse, as well as internalized homophobia that needs to be worked through. Also there is an epidemic of meth addiction in the gay community that is usually comorbid with alcohol that often needs to be addressed, and our primary means of meeting other gay people was in bars. There are now alternatives, including MeetUp, sober gay social groups unrelated to AA, etc., but bars remain the primary place that gays meet other gays. We face unique challenges in recovery that you can't possibly understand if you haven't experienced them.

If someone is more comfortable in gay/lesbian meetings, why discourage attendance?

Buddy, I'm guessing that there are more gay friendly meetings in the Philadelphia area, as it has a small but active gay community.
MindfulMan is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to MindfulMan For This Useful Post:
Cleansing (10-28-2017), SoberCAH (10-10-2017), Steely (09-11-2017)
Old 09-04-2017, 02:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 1,671
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pathwaytofree View Post
Being gay or straight has nothing to do with alcoholism. It's an outside issue.

It's like saying I'm going to start a meeting for divorced alcoholics and only divorced alcoholics could attend.

Someone on SR posted recently that a doctor was asked to go to an AA meeting and discuss what it's like being an alcoholic and gay. His share was short and to the point: "I'm an alcoholic who also happens to be gay" or something like that. His point was, he was there as an alcoholic. Maybe someone can kindly post a link because I don't remember where I saw it but it was perfectly stated.

One doesn't have anything to do with the other.

This is not meant to be invalidating, please don't take it that way.

My two cents: why the need for separation? That's the beauty of AA. We're all different people from all walks of life, with a similar problem and similar solution.
Your experience as a gay man may be such that you do not feel the need to attend a gay meeting. But many other gay men and women are uncomfortable sharing their experience with straight people. And because addiction affects every area of our lives, it is hard to rope off one part of who we are as an outside issue.

In an ideal world, people would check their prejudices and their fears of prejudice at the door. But the world is not ideal yet. And many in the program still treat gay people as somehow "other."

Meetings for gay people, women, men, young people, medical personnel, etc. They never dominate the schedule and few go to them exclusively. But there are a great resource for many.
miamifella is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to miamifella For This Useful Post:
Groucho (09-11-2017), Pathwaytofree (09-07-2017), shortstop81 (10-08-2017), Steely (09-11-2017), sugarangel (09-14-2017)
Old 09-06-2017, 01:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 426
I'm not a gay man, I was just sharing my opinion. My home group has a few gay people and they're not uncomfortable.

I just think this would lead to so much separation, is that what everyone wants? Meetings for black people, meetings for gay people, meetings for white people, meetings for ___________ fill in the blank.

We're all the same; we're alcoholics. Any alcoholic can help another alcoholic.
Pathwaytofree is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Pathwaytofree For This Useful Post:
sylvie83 (09-06-2017)
Old 09-08-2017, 10:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 3
I agree there is a need for speciality meetings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by miamifella View Post
Your experience as a gay man may be such that you do not feel the need to attend a gay meeting. But many other gay men and women are uncomfortable sharing their experience with straight people. And because addiction affects every area of our lives, it is hard to rope off one part of who we are as an outside issue.

In an ideal world, people would check their prejudices and their fears of prejudice at the door. But the world is not ideal yet. And many in the program still treat gay people as somehow "other."

Meetings for gay people, women, men, young people, medical personnel, etc. They never dominate the schedule and few go to them exclusively. But there are a great resource for many.
As Pathway stated, he is not a gay man but an outsider sharing his opinion with no experience as a gay man staying sober. I know I was going to another fellowship that dissolved special interests and their "Freedom Rings" meeting turned straight. One young person said to me that "nobody is calling me a fag". How gracious of them. I went to this Night Owl meeting in Philly at a LGBT center and shared with a straight guy about a man I was talking to that went badly and had no idea what just happened. I know the conversation made him uncomfortable. Am I suppose to just change my pronouns or something? FYI I had to go to a gay nightclub to get the answers I was seeking.

My answer is that you can go to straight meetings and stayed sober until you have a relationship issue. As you know, relationships and resentments can take you out fast. I walked by the LGBT Center after the "Sober and Gay" meeting. There was one gay man and the rest straight. I am sure there were more though and there are other gay meetings. They are just not in the LGBT Center anymore.
buddy16cat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2017, 12:37 AM   #7 (permalink)
MindfulMan
 
MindfulMan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 287
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pathwaytofree View Post
I'm not a gay man, I was just sharing my opinion. My home group has a few gay people and they're not uncomfortable.

I just think this would lead to so much separation, is that what everyone wants? Meetings for black people, meetings for gay people, meetings for white people, meetings for ___________ fill in the blank.

We're all the same; we're alcoholics. Any alcoholic can help another alcoholic.
There are men and women's meetings. Why not gay?

I go to a men's gay stag which is right down the street from my house. As every Friday. It's a very small group, usually fewer than 10. As my 'hood is 80% African American, I'm the lone white boy. That's not an issue. It was a round robin meeting tonight, and many of the shares were about the crossover between substance abuse and sex addiction, and the discussion got pretty raw. I can guarantee that many things said in candor and honesty would not have been aired in a mixed group, and I can also guarantee that a lot of straight men would have felt very uncomfortable with the discussion as it went.
MindfulMan is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to MindfulMan For This Useful Post:
Cleansing (10-28-2017), Stayingsassy (10-09-2017), Steely (09-11-2017)
Old 09-09-2017, 12:46 AM   #8 (permalink)
MindfulMan
 
MindfulMan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 287
Quote:
Originally Posted by buddy16cat View Post
Iknow I was going to another fellowship that dissolved special interests and their "Freedom Rings" meeting turned straight. One young person said to me that "nobody is calling me a fag". How gracious of them. I went to this Night Owl meeting in Philly at a LGBT center and shared with a straight guy about a man I was talking to that went badly and had no idea what just happened. I know the conversation made him uncomfortable. Am I suppose to just change my pronouns or something? FYI I had to go to a gay nightclub to get the answers I was seeking.

My answer is that you can go to straight meetings and stayed sober until you have a relationship issue. As you know, relationships and resentments can take you out fast.
Had a guy said that to me, I would have looked him straight in the eye and said "Fag." Subtlety ain't my strong suit.

I found this for you Buddy. Hope it helps. Surprised there were no gay/lesbian meetings showing up in New Hope.

www.aasepia.org/meetings/
MindfulMan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2017, 04:19 PM   #9 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 426
My apologies, I see now this is on the Gay forum. I didn't mean to intrude. I saw it under "new posts".

I wish you all the best in your recovery.

PS something my sponsor taught me: "If it's not based on love, it's not from God."
Pathwaytofree is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2017, 01:57 AM   #10 (permalink)
MindfulMan
 
MindfulMan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 287
No worries Path. Sorry if I came on too strong. Good luck on the trudging journey!
MindfulMan is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to MindfulMan For This Useful Post:
Pathwaytofree (09-11-2017), SoberCAH (10-10-2017)
Old 09-11-2017, 09:56 AM   #11 (permalink)
Member
 
Groucho's Avatar
 

Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Slouching toward Bethlehem
Posts: 94
I went to a men's meeting the other night that was so hetero that they didn't hold hands while reciting the prayer at the end of the meeting. I took that and a few other aspects of the meeting as a gay panicky subtext that really put me off.

Not trying to shame those guys in any way. This deal can be hard enough without having a safe and comfortable space for everyone. That particular meeting just didn't feel like a comfortable space for me.
Groucho is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Groucho For This Useful Post:
MindfulMan (09-11-2017), Steely (09-11-2017)
Old 09-11-2017, 08:22 PM   #12 (permalink)
MindfulMan
 
MindfulMan's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 287
OMG! That's actually kind of funny! And a bit sad.
MindfulMan is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to MindfulMan For This Useful Post:
Groucho (09-11-2017), Steely (09-11-2017), sugarangel (09-14-2017)
Old 09-29-2017, 06:33 PM   #13 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 439
I had a gay friend take me to a gay men's meeting, at first I felt like I might be intruding as a straight woman, but everyone welcomed me, and it was much warmer, much funnier and more honest than any meeting I've attended. I want to check that one out again, but I fear some of the members might feel like you do. There are straight women's meetings in my area and it's a nicer area but my god so much complaining and whining about everything EXCEPT drinking or recovery, not only did it weirdly seem like a taboo subject (??????) but the women seemed either sad and defeated, or uptight and judgy. Not. Good.
Stayingsassy is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 01:45 PM   #14 (permalink)
Member
 
wehav2day's Avatar
 

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: ohio
Posts: 3,302
We have a gay group in cincinnati that meets every day, in a straight church. Mixed group very cool. Straight people do attend and are welcomed, I believe the most important thing is the "vibe," which is decidedly pro aa and decidedly queer friendly.

I moved so it's tough to get there, but I miss those folks! I've been to women's groups (I'm a lesbian), but definitely prefer the gay group. Like another poster said less judgy.

Maybe the glbt center could be persuaded to offer a "closed" meeting respectfully asking for a solely glbtq presence? I agree, there's stuff that still makes us different. That women's group would never understand what it felt like when my dad boycotted my wedding for example the way folks in our community would.
__________________
2/22/13
wehav2day is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2017, 09:28 AM   #15 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 152
If you don't like the AA/NA group, go to a different one.
fotographia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2017, 09:56 AM   #16 (permalink)
Member
 

Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 152
Or start your own group/meeting for LGBT people.
fotographia is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

 



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:13 PM.