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Old 02-04-2010, 08:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question about finding a sponsor


.Hi Im a 29 yr old man and I've been coming in and out of these forums for a little while and made it back this time with a few days of dryness under my belt. I've been going to meetings the last few days and they always help me make it through the evening for the most part, along with SR. I have been able to admit that I was powerless over alcohol for a long time, but I have a really hard time with step 2 and can't fathom going through step 3.

Ive always thought that if I could find a sponsor in AA then I might be able to move forward towards the life I want, but I don't know how to pick a sponsor or if they pick me or how it works. I have a really hard time talking with people I don't know, especially about personal stuff like my emotions (I've already re-read this post about 10 times trying to decide if I want to post it), unless of course I can drink large amounts of alcohol in their presence, and find it hard to go up and just talk to random people. I had a sponsor once that somebody set me up with when I got out of rehab a couple years ago but I found it really hard to relate to the guy and therefore probably sold myself short and returned to drinking after only 11days.

I was just looking for some advice on how you met up with your sponsor if you have one, what should somebody look for in a sponsor, or anything in general about sponsorship.

I thank you all for your posts not only here but on every thread on this site, it has helped me go to sleep tonight on day 4 and will be even more helpful tomorrow.
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Old 02-04-2010, 09:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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A sponsors primary job is to help you through the steps.
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Originally Posted by Brian View Post
. but I have a really hard time with step 2 and can't fathom going through step 3.
Good place to start. before your next meeting read as much as you can digest on chapters 2,3 and 4. Get some questions written down and at the start of the next meeting ask the chairperson if they would use that for the topic. Listen to the responses and pick out the ones that seem to be familiar with the step and the material that you have read. Go to those guys that had good answers and ask them more questions. The one that can relay the info to you the best is the one you ask to sponsor you.

Just a suggestion.
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Old 02-04-2010, 09:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't participate in AA, but there are many here who do and will be along to help you with your questions. I just wanted to welcome you to the SR forums. If you've found reading to be helpful, I think you will find posting an even greater help. Hope you stick around. Take care.
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Old 02-04-2010, 10:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Ask someone who "has what you want."

Come a little early and get to know folks. Stick around after the meeting, help put things away and talk to folks. What people say in the meetings is important -- but how they live and act is even more important. You want a sponsor who's taken all the steps and keeps in practice.

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Old 02-04-2010, 10:18 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Hi Brian

I'm not an AAer either, but I wanted to welcome you
Good to have you with us

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Old 02-04-2010, 10:26 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugah View Post
Ask someone who "has what you want."

Come a little early and get to know folks. Stick around after the meeting, help put things away and talk to folks. What people say in the meetings is important -- but how they live and act is even more important. You want a sponsor who's taken all the steps and keeps in practice.

Peace & Love,
Sugah
Sugah is right

The best place for me to learn about AA was in AA, arriving early and leaving late as Sugah suggested
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Old 02-05-2010, 07:25 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Brian,

If I wanted to never feel like I was feeling ever again, if I wanted a completely new life and a new reaction to life, if I wanted what the program of AA promises, I had to do what the program of AA suggested. But I didn't really know what it suggested, not in a precise and specific way. So I had to have a sponsor show me exactly what was required.

Actually, I didn't want any of those lofty things. I just wanted to stop drinking, and I found that I could not, despite my strongest desire and efforts to do so.

I called up a guy in AA that I didn't like very much. His only attractive quality was that he spoke consistently about a solution to alcoholism by having a spiritual awakening as the result of the Steps. The last thing I was interested in was a spiritual awakening (whatever that was). I sure didn't want to talk about god. But I was out of options. I couldn't keep living like that. This guy had a solution for me if I would have it. He didn't talk about his problems or how much he used to drink or anything much outside of the solution for alcoholism.

That's exactly what I recommend looking for in a sponsor. Someone who has a Big Book, knows that book, and can share the solution contained within it. Oftentimes, this will be the guy that doesn't hang back and joke with his friends after the meeting. He will be approaching the newcomer and offering the solution, maybe asking that unnerving question, "How you doing?" while looking you straight in the eye.
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Old 02-05-2010, 07:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Brian, lots of good suggestions, all of which I agree with, I will add another one.

Find a "Step Study" or "Literature meeting". The majority of these folks are actively working the AA program, listen and watch, as already suggested find a man that has what you want & not only talks the talk, but walks the walk.

I have one more thing to add, do not be looking for some one to be your buddy, look for some one that has what you want. My sponsor & I get along fine, he took me through the steps straight out of the Big Book and shared his ES&H with me of how he was taken through the steps as well as how he applies them to his daily life.
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Old 02-05-2010, 08:23 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
That's exactly what I recommend looking for in a sponsor. Someone who has a Big Book, knows that book, and can share the solution contained within it. Oftentimes, this will be the guy that doesn't hang back and joke with his friends after the meeting. He will be approaching the newcomer and offering the solution, maybe asking that unnerving question, "How you doing?" while looking you straight in the eye
Very much my experience.
I was approached by my sponsor.
If im honest i would have rather had the guy with better war stories and the lastest mobile phone He looks like he has got his life together..lol.

I was an angry guy that didnt get approached by many people.
Then this guy walks up to me......looks me straight in the eye and tells me he knows how i feel...

i hadnt noticed him much before.......he didnt have any good war stories.
he talked about the solution he had found laid out in the BB.
to be honest i thought he was a newcomer.......i later find he had been sober for 20 odd years.
i thought he was a newcomer because he was always with newcomers after the meeting........that or washing up.

he told me i could recover......shock..........and slightly amused.
i didnt have much to lose so we agreed to meet...
he didnt waffle..........he told me pricisely what to do.
he didnt pull punchs..

so things that made him different from alot of others?.........he shared he had found a solution to his alcoholism laid out in the BB.
He shared how he had recovered.
He shared a fair bit about direction from god.
He shared about precise direction.

that was my experience anyhow.......
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Old 02-05-2010, 08:55 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Some great suggestions posted here. Pretty much exactly what was suggested to me. Finding someone who has what i want was the biggest thing. Before my last relapse i was determined to find a sponsor who was just like me. I felt i needed a sponsor who approached life as i do and that the same spiritual beliefs. So i waited and waited and searched and surveyed for 100 days or so without a sponsor. Things were good. Then some real life stuff showed up and i didn't have a sponsor with some experience, strength, and hope in this way of life to help me. I was sponsoring myself. I was sponsoring a dam fool. I promptly relapsed.

What i've learned is that a sponsor doesn't have to be my friend, though mine is. My sponsor doesn't ahve to be like me. A sponsor simply guides me through the steps and is a person to take my personal stuff to that i don't share at meetings. Now i did make sure that my sponsor had taken all the steps and hade some significant clean time, but that just goes back to having what i want.

Another thing that helped me in that vein was listening closely when people shared. I took note of those who shared their experience, strength, and hope in the first person and dind't preach. That helped me determine who was really living the program and not just spouting platitudes.

The important thing is to get a sponsor without delay. Early recovery can be brutal. I know this from vast experience with going back out and coming back in. I don't intend to ever do that again. Sponsorship is the heartbeat of the fellowship. Good luck finding yours.
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Old 02-05-2010, 01:52 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Hi Brian, I am so glad to hear that you are ready to move on with your recovery. It's natural to have doubts about posting here and what to say........you have nothing to be ashamed of here. We all know what it is like to feel how you are feeling.

To add to all the great advice you have had I would say that I hear a lot of people talk in meetings about how wonderful the fellowship is, how great the meetings are and how it keeps them sober. They live for the days of the meetings to get their 'fix' to top themselves up so that they don't take a drink.

This is not AA's solution. Don't get me wrong, the fellowship is a wonderful thing and you may get sober using it but you will not have the spiritual experience which will make your life happy and fulfilling. This is what you want.

I find that these people who share about how the fellowship and meetings are keeping them from drinking, then go on to share about how crap their week has been and all their problems and tales of woe but then do not give a solution other than, "I'm so glad I got to a meeting today, I feel better already"
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