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The Work Question

Old 01-22-2010, 09:29 AM
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The Work Question

Hi All,

First, I apologize for writing so many posts. I guess that I'm just really excited to be apart of this site and have found such great people and information. So, thanks to ALL of you - you truly have no idea how much of a blessing you've been to me over the past couple of days.

OK, here's my question. I'm obviously only on Day 3 but I am concerned about my work ethic. In short, there isn't any. I'm either on here reading as much info as I can or getting ready for my next AA meeting.

Is this typical during the first stage of recovery? I told you all about how I e-mailed my family to let them know I'm an alcoholic and how supportive they have been. I'm now feeling convicted about e-mailing my 2 bosses as well.

We've know each other for years and they are like family to me. So, in short, here's my brain at work:

1. Fear - They'll fire me, dock my pay, label me as a liabillity.
2. Truth (as my wife tells me) - They'll be 100% understanding and support me 100%.

<sigh> - I get so sick of living in fear!

RacerX
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:32 AM
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Hi,

I'm glad you're finding support here.

For me, finding balance in my life was crucial, absolutely crucial for recovery. I am not an AA person, but I do spend time every day working on recovery. But, I also find the time to do other things I like to do.

Again, for me, I would never tell a boss or co-worker about my addiction. I believe there are way too many prejudiced and uninformed people out there and it could serve no good.
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:48 AM
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My boss and co-workers are like family too and they're all aware that I'm an alcoholic and in AA, they've been there every step of the way while I hit bottom and went through recovery.

But, I agree with Anna that it's probably best they don't know unless it's necessary. There's no need for them to know. Sometimes my boss isn't too thrilled about the time I spend on recovery. After all, he lost his drinking partner

One of the principles I practice in recovery is integrity. To me that means I perform my job to the best of my ability. In recovery, I'm able to do it better than I ever was.

Main Entry: in·teg·ri·ty
Pronunciation: \in-ˈte-grə-tē\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English integrite, from Middle French & Latin; Middle French integrité, from Latin integritat-, integritas, from integr-, integer entire
Date: 14th century
1 : firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values :
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:49 AM
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Slow down and catch your breath. You've told your family and that's a significant step forward. They likely knew you had a drinking problem, so admitting it to them was a good thing. But why the rush to tell your bosses? Recovery doesn't mean you have to tell the world you're an alchoholic. I've never told anyone at work about my alcoholism, even though I do see several people from the company at AA meetings. We keep AA in AA and never discuss it at work. You've told those that should to be told, now slow down and concentrate on yourself. Go to meetings, pick a sponsor and work on your recovery. Your bosses don't need to know about your alcoholism.
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Old 01-22-2010, 10:00 AM
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All well said and thanks much for your words of wisdom. The reason I was thinking of telling them was 3-fold:

1. Time - Although I go to the noon (lunch hour) meeting, that never ends up as an hour. Or, at least, it didn't when I went through the program 4 years ago. 10 minute driving time, 1 hour meeting, and then my sponsor always wanted to spend time after the meeting discussing me and next steps. Then the drive back. That can take up to 1 1/2 - 2 hours.
2. Travel - A lot of my job involves travel, which I'm guessing would be smart if I cut down on during the early stages. They'll want to know why.
3. Support - We do some major trade shows where we are all together. It wouldn't hurt having their support on staying sober at these shows.

Anyways, that's what was going through my thought process but I do understand that waiting and thinking might be the best solution.

Thanks again for your words.

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Old 01-22-2010, 10:11 AM
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Hi Racer

It helps posting on here and reading when you need it. Don't apologise.

There are a couple of mottos in the Big Book p135 - First Things First and Easy Does It.
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Old 01-22-2010, 10:24 AM
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Me, in your situation, i'd tell them...i'd explain that it has become a problem for you and you have recognised it as such and are on a path of action, AA, support groups, change of lifestyle...tell them it is early days and you would so value their support as you consider them as part of the family..or something like that.

**** wow that was quick i hadn't finished editing, good idea to ask your group and pray on it...good luck with whatever you decide:-)
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Old 01-22-2010, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by yeahgr8 View Post
As Anna implied if they don't know you at all and hardly speak to you, then there is no need to tell them, why would you?!
We're a very small company and a very tight bunch (even though they are in CA and I have a single office in Dallas). As I stated before, both of them are like family but, at the same time, 'business is business.'

I think I'll just think and pray on it and discuss with the AA gang today.

Thanks again to everyone!

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Old 01-22-2010, 10:47 AM
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Hey Racer,

Welcome to SR! I'll repeat something here that I brought up in another thread. The risk you run by telling them is what if you come in one day and just have the "Blahs"? They might be quick to assume a relapse. For that matter, any mistake you make might come under scrutiny. Also, you're very early in recovery. What if, God forbid, you do relapse?

If they know you have a real problem, and then relapse they might have trouble trusting you again if you say you're getting back on the wagon to stay.

I don't know, it just seems like the risk might not be worth the gain. When you're traveling, or find yourself being tempted, call your sponsor or friends and family for help, not the boss, perhaps?
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Old 01-22-2010, 10:59 AM
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Do your best, if the job doesn't work out, well you are probably adding on time to your life, and you are def adding quality to your life. I struggled too because running myself in to the ground was causing me to go crazy and want to escape, but you get to the point (for me medically) it was like uh ok stop drink or die.
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:05 AM
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Also, rushing right out to tell people you're sober is kind of like finding out you're pregnant. You might not want to tell people until you're sure it's going to "take".
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by sunset2000 View Post
Also, rushing right out to tell people you're sober is kind of like finding out you're pregnant. You might not want to tell people until you're sure it's going to "take".
Brilliant analogy!
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Old 01-22-2010, 12:36 PM
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Instead of telling an employer/coworkers outright, maybe just let your actions speak for themselves. Be the person who does not drink at the Holiday party, or at lunch with co-workers, or at the party (or wedding etc...) where there are coworkers present etc... There are many opportunities to show people who you have become without having to make a formal declaration. Actions speak louder than words, right?
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Old 01-22-2010, 12:44 PM
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racerx, do you have a sponsor yet? this would be an excellent question for a sponsor. or even a trusted adviser like a addiction counselor. i bounce this stuff off my addiction counselor and my counselor as well as a few other old timers i turn to for help.

that's a big step and might need a bit of thought before proceeding.

me, i haven't told my work since it's not impacting my job.
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Old 01-22-2010, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by gritgirl View Post
racerx, do you have a sponsor yet? this would be an excellent question for a sponsor. or even a trusted adviser like a addiction counselor. i bounce this stuff off my addiction counselor and my counselor as well as a few other old timers i turn to for help.

that's a big step and might need a bit of thought before proceeding.

me, i haven't told my work since it's not impacting my job.
Hi gritgirl,

I don't have a sponsor just yet. Today was my second day back and I'm looking for the temporary sponsor I had four years ago. It's been confirmed and re-confirmed that he is still very active in the group so I'm hoping to see him at our morning meeting. If not, I've got the number of a guy I met today who seems to be of my same 'ilk'.

As far as talking with my bosses, I'm shelving that until I get counsel with a sponsor as well as my therapist. In short, I'm not rushing into that decision.

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Old 01-22-2010, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by getr345 View Post
Instead of telling an employer/coworkers outright, maybe just let your actions speak for themselves. Be the person who does not drink at the Holiday party, or at lunch with co-workers, or at the party (or wedding etc...) where there are coworkers present etc... There are many opportunities to show people who you have become without having to make a formal declaration. Actions speak louder than words, right?
Remarkable advice! I try and think along these lines as I believe recovery is as much of a personal journey as anything. Just think of how kick butt everything is being your natural self not stuck in denial and self pity. Seems to work here pretty well anyway, Good luck what ever you decide and keep your head up pal
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