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Old 10-26-2009, 04:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Non-alcoholic beer = starting over?


I drank 1 non alcoholic beer about a month ago, I don't remember when, and my sponsor says I have to pick up a white chip. I am/was almost getting my ninety day chip. I brought it up in conversation when I spoke to her this evening like a dumb arse. I had no idea.

I am so upset. I almost feel like I should drink tonight since I am starting over
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Well i don't think you are a dumb arse for being honest with your sponsor at all, quite the opposite!

Maybe you should sleep on it today and then meet your sponsor for a coffee and share your concerns?

Out of interest do you think that it was ok to drink the NA beer? Or do you look at it as something you were not aware that was a nono at the time and it is something that you will not be doing in the future?
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I didn't know it was a no no and no, I will not be drinking it in the future.
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Hi bananagrrl

You'll get a lot of differying opinions on this - the important thing is how you feel about it. I'm not an AAer, but it seems reasonable to me if you feel at odds with your sponsor, you need to let her know and discuss it.

Whatever you ultimately decide...don't let this little brouhaha impede your progress
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:55 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I feel like I did not drink alcohol and that my sobriety is still intact.
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Old 10-26-2009, 05:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Just my opinion, but do you really need a chip to mark your progression? The good side is that you have almost made it 90 days, and picking up that chip doesn't change that. Just keep going, and in 10 years it won't matter how long it took to get that 90 day chip. Keep going girl!
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Old 10-26-2009, 05:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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bananagrrl...please do not let the opinion of your sponsor upset you enough to want to resort to drinking...In life many people will say things that will upset you...no words spoken are ever an excuse for the f-its. You are staying sober for you...not for your sponsor. I remember at a meeting once a guy who had a few months mentioned he took some nyquil for a terrible cold...my God how the room erupted...they brow beat him to picking up a white chip...honestly the scene was ridiculous and ended by him disappearing from sight. You are in charge of your sobriety...It is my opinion one na beer does not negate your sobriety date...if your sponsor does not like it you may want to find another.
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Old 10-26-2009, 05:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I am so upset. I almost feel like I should drink tonight since I am starting over
Be careful Nan, feeling like this could be a relapse just waiting to happen. That is your disease saying that. I don't agree about starting over with your day count, please discuss this with your sponsor. And as previously stated by others, your sobriety is for YOU not for anyone else.
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Old 10-26-2009, 05:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Please don't let your sponsor's opinion upset you so much, you go back to drinking.

Opinions differ on the subject of non-alcoholic beer, but you should express your concerns to your sponsor and do what you're comfortable with.

Your sobriety is your own.
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Old 10-26-2009, 05:58 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks so much for the input everyone. I did not and I am not going to drink.

She thought on it and decided I did not need to pick up a white chip.

Now I know. This affliction truly is of the body AND the mind.
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Old 10-26-2009, 07:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bananagrrrl View Post
I feel like I did not drink alcohol and that my sobriety is still intact.
Then it is.....



I have an NA Beer once in a while.... I like it with Linguine and White Clam Sauce.

I think it's fine for people to have strong opinions on this.... I understand the many points of view... My own biggest concern for anyone is that it could trigger them to go for an alcoholic beer. And I think a sponsor or a friend or support person should take the opportunity to discuss it

But no one has any right to get in anyone's face and point the finger and say they should pick up a white chip because they are truly not sober if they have a NA beer... In my not so humble (this time) opinion.... that just p1sses me off.... sorry.

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Old 10-26-2009, 07:17 PM   #12 (permalink)
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good for you, I'm glad it worked out=)
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Old 10-26-2009, 07:18 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm glad you didn't drink!:ghug3
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Old 10-26-2009, 07:20 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Be careful Nan, feeling like this could be a relapse just waiting to happen. That is your disease saying that. I don't agree about starting over with your day count, please discuss this with your sponsor. And as previously stated by others, your sobriety is for YOU not for anyone else.

ditto:ghug3
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Old 10-26-2009, 08:02 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I feel like I did not drink alcohol and that my sobriety is still intact.
Like Cube said, then it is

I'm glad it worked out

I have had NA beers in sobriety when I was out watching music, been maybe ten years now, was too iffy so stopped doing it, have accidentally imbibed much more alcohol then is found in an NA beer, I bought some chinese tea stuff that was bubbly and it tasted funny, kampucha or something, it tasted funny, finally I read the label and it sait "contents may ferment"

gotta watch those health food stores

Bottom line is it's about intent IMO, I have known people take huge slugs off a wine bottle thinking it was acai berry (thanks to the wife) and not lose sobriety
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Old 10-26-2009, 10:02 PM   #16 (permalink)
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..The only DOS that I'm certain about is my own.
This thread confirms that fact....

I don't knowingly drink or eat alcohol
and yes, that covers OJ too.
If I did I would re-start my DOS.

Not because of anyone elses opinions but
it would be the right thing for me to do.
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:17 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Bananagrrl,
I'm glad everything worked out for you. And well done on not drinking, you handled an upsetting situation without alcohol, so that is good and a sign that indeed, you are not starting over, but progressing.

In my personal opinion, there is a huge difference if someone consciously chooses to consume something potentially triggering a relaspe or if someone involuntarily does consume something containing alcohol.
About two months into sobriety I ate a bite of cake a friend had brought back from a visit to her granny. After the first bite, I suspected that it contained alcohol, so I didn't eat the rest of the piece, and indeed, as we asked her later, it contained schnapps. She couldn't possibly know that a recovering alcoholic would eat her cake later on. The friend didn't know about the schnapps in the cake either.

Long story short, I accidentally ate from something that contained alcohol. I didn't obsess or make a big fuss about it, moved on and nothing happened. It didn't trigger me. I wouldn' t deliberately order something containing alcohol though. If i chose to deliberately eat rum laced sundae for example, it might be a totally different deal. Because, in my opinion, it would be a sign of me going back to denial of my alcohol problem, i.e. thinking: I can handle it, it will do no harm etc, it is not really like I am drinking...etc....."

This is something highly individual and there are, as some said before me, differing opinions on it. The best is, if you don't feel comfortable about something, refrain from doing it. Have a good day, an may ther be many more sober days to come,
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:57 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Im glad you didn't drink Bananagrrl, and agree totally with Cubile75's posts. Your sobriety date is intact
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Old 10-27-2009, 04:12 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Good deal bananagirl, I see your sponsor changed her mind as well after thinking about the situation.

This is strictly my take on it, and I would suggest the same to a sponsee.

What was my motive in drinking/eating what I did?

If my motive was to sneak a bit just to walk to the edge, then it might be time to pick up a chip, but if there was no motive behind it, then so be it.

If I honestly thought it was totally alcohol free and found out later it contained alcohol...... well I would not view that as a break in my sobriety, now if I continued to do it I sure would.

It is your sobriety, here is the litmus test for me, if I can look in the mirror and look myself straight in the eye and say I did not purposely bereak my sobriety then I did not break it.

I am glad to see your sponsor is open minded and knows that your sobriety is yours and not hers.
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Old 10-27-2009, 06:59 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I actually think it's okay to drink NA beer. However, I think it tastes horrible and so would never do it.

There are non-alcoholic wines out there, too, that have less than 0.5% alcohol. I have tried them and they taste like grape juice -- sweet and nothing like the wine I used to love. I don't even put them in the same category as wine.

I agree with everyone who says your sobriety is your own and no one else's. I can see from this thread that people get too caught up in dates and chips and things like that. The important thing is that you are still sober! This isn't a contest to see who can consume the least amount of alcohol in their foods and medicines.

Seeing a thread like this makes me hesitant to get a sponsor. There's a fine line between support and mind control. I will stick with AA for the fellowship and support that it gives me -- I have no complaints yet but haven't gotten into the chip thing or anything like that - not sure that I want to!
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