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Old 03-24-2012, 06:33 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Question

Should I find a new sponsor?


I have 32 days sober today. I have been through quite a few sponsors already and I really need to find one that I can work with. I found one a week ago and everyone is telling me that I have a good one. She told me she was going to take me through the steps and I said ok. Then Thursday night I find out that a close friend of mine died of a drug overdose on Tuesday. I texted her because I was doing a group conscious and asked her what she was doing Friday night. She said that she's going to her home group which is a half hour from me. I then told her that my friend died and she said sorry then told me she wasn't going to change her plans just because her sponsee is thinking of drinking and is a mess. I went to a meeting Friday night alone and I texted her saying I have a resentment towards her bc she's not there for me. I understand that people have their own stuff to deal with but I thought the sponsor was supposed be someone you can call anytime. I'm going to a different meeting than her tonight because I don't need drama in dealing with my friend's death. I don't know what to do other than look for someone who isn't going to make me feel bad and that I can trust.
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Old 03-24-2012, 06:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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God bless you for remaining sober despite your friend's death. My deepest sympathies on your friend's passing. A sponsor should be someone that goes that extra mile for you and is kind and supportive. It doesn't appear that she is being supportive at all. I would find another sponsor that you can trust. It might help to estabish ground rules - how much support she will provide, what her style of sponsorship is and isn't and whether she has a sponsor. Congratulations on 32 days sober!
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you. I hope to find someone tonight. I didn't even tell her my story or anything about me.
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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While you may still want to find a new sponsor, expecting one person to be on call for you 24/7 is not reasonable. If that is what you expect, I would predict that you will be disappointed many times in the future.

I think this is a key point, because if you chose to think that your sponsor was unfair and let you down because she would not come running to support you in emotional crisis--that will be your excuse to drink and use in future.

Being angry is fine, but understand that the anger is YOURS. If you pick yourself up and call other friends--then you will be setting yourself on a good path to recovery.

Yes, it would be great if your sponsor was there, but she said that she was helping someone else! Why are you more important than this other person? This is just how life is. There will always be problems and if you can learn to roll with them--even in the midst of your own crisis!--well then you will do fine when the going gets really tough.
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Old 03-24-2012, 09:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Nice she is well thought of among the local AAs, and good she wants to take you through the steps. Also good she answered your text. You wouldn't drive the 30 minutes to meet up and attend her home group, which is too bad since you wanted to talk with her. She went, so you know she understands the word commitment. And she was honest with you, a plus for her.

She has a good AA rep, is regular at a home group, responds to requests for communications, is honest with you and is willing to take you through the steps.

You say you've had quite a few sponsors to this early point. How does she stack up against the average among all the sponsors you've had so far?
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Old 03-24-2012, 10:28 AM   #6 (permalink)
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1. She DID NOT say she was helping someone else. I should've clarified that her sponsie is me.
2. If your friend dies and your sponsor wasnt there for you either and didnt give a .. you'd be pissed off too.
3. I know my anger is mine but I think I have a right to have a resentment against her.
4. I'm sure she wouldn't be too happy if god forbid one of her friends died and I was her sponsor and I didn't care that she was upset and a mess.
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Old 03-24-2012, 10:33 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I do not drive. I do not have the money to go find her group. I don't want to get technical, and she is horrible. The others disappeared on me, said they would meet me at meetings and never showed up or called me back when I left messages. I want to just take myself through the steps because most of the steps are about yourself and no one else knows your story as good as you do.
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Old 03-24-2012, 10:46 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I am sorry. I was confused, and thought she said that she was not to change her plans for you, because she had another sponsee who was thinking of drinking. If she meant you as the sponsee thinking of drinking--then that does seem very cold.

Of course you are mad, and with good reason, but she is a sponsor. She is not a close friend or a trained therapist. Unless she promised to be always available, then I do know that you can fairly expect that from her. In my experience, most sponsors promise to be able to get back within 48 hours.

But I do think you can expect sensitivity and common courtesy!

So you may want to change sponsors, but I think you also have to understand that many people will disappoint you in many ways. The action you take now will set your course for the future. I think your positive actions (calling friends, investigating other sponsors, posting here, standing up for yourself when I was mistaken) bode well.

I am sorry for your loss. I also hope your sponsor situation gets better.
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Old 03-24-2012, 11:00 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Armywife925 View Post
1. She DID NOT say she was helping someone else. I should've clarified that her sponsie is me.
2. If your friend dies and your sponsor wasnt there for you either and didnt give a .. you'd be pissed off too.
3. I know my anger is mine but I think I have a right to have a resentment against her.
4. I'm sure she wouldn't be too happy if god forbid one of her friends died and I was her sponsor and I didn't care that she was upset and a mess.
armywife, condolences about your friend, but your sponsor is there to guide you through the steps, not to hold your hand, and resentments are like peeing in your own pants, no one feels it but you...let it go and move on, we alcoholics cant afford to get resentful or angry...that stuff threatens recovery
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Old 03-24-2012, 11:46 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Apology accepted . She promised me she'd always be available to talk and be here from me. Tonight I am going to a meeting I've never been to before and reach out for more support. Thanks for the advice, I'll keep you guys posted.
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:10 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Maybe it's time to create a network of friends for support.

(more later, I'm out for a

Condolences on your loss.

Love & hugs,
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:22 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Sorry for your loss.

Hang in there , sounds to me like you are already really working a good program. To deal with a death so soon and staying sober WELL DONE.

If you want to move on to another sponsor then do it. But remember we are only human also, not saints.

Prayers for you and welcome aboard.
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:34 PM   #13 (permalink)
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See your sponsor as a teacher or adviser. Sponsors aren't parents or best friends ... it wouldn't work if they were. I hope you stay with her if this is the only problem you have with her. Part of getting sober is learning to accept others even when they don't do what we want.

I applaud the work you've put into staying sober. My emotions were very volatile (like PMS 24/7 in a full moon). It's tough but things do get better for all of us.
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Old 03-24-2012, 12:53 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Bless my first sponsor (Neil B. deceased sober in 1997)

He told me what I NEEDED to hear, not what I WANTED to hear.

Wishing the best to everyone.

Bob R
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Old 03-24-2012, 01:21 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by sugarbear1 View Post
Maybe it's time to create a network of friends for support.

(more later, I'm out for a

Condolences on your loss.

Love & hugs,
This is what I wanted to point out.

It was kind of a wake up call to me when my sponsor (who also sponsored a few others my age), wasn't as available as I originally thought. He was gone and busy most of the time, so after calling him in crisis mode a couple times and not getting an answer or call back, I learned quickly that I couldn't rely on any single person to be there for me all the time.

What helped was having multiple #'s and connections, that way I could always talk or meet up with another person during tough times. It helps a lot and takes away the anxiety of relying on one person to always be there for us!
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Old 03-24-2012, 03:01 PM   #16 (permalink)
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sorry, I was out for "a bit)"

(all of this is said in a calm and gentle sober voice)
A sponsor's role is to guide you through the steps.
Some sponsors become friends, some don't. You haven't known her very long. This is why we need a network of friends as sponsors aren't always available.

Many people in AA are attempting humbleness and ego deflation, although I find most humans fall short of this, no matter how much they think... (well, there they go thinking).

This is my opinion. I had to cancel on my sponsor last minute once, and was given a talk about giving notice in advance, which wasn't possible that particular time, although on more than 3 occasions, I've changed my schedule to meet theirs--last minute.

That's a bit "uneven" and we are all on the same plane, in my opinion, no one is better or worse than the next human. We are all fallible, so I gave that one to my higher power.

I had my own situation when my ex committed suicide and called my then sponsor, who never returned a call, and I ended up drinking again. I can't blame her, it was my choice, but when I returned to AA this time around and ran into a lot more people, it's funny how "everyone knows about my ex" but not one person called me to see if I were okay. Humans are fallible. We are all flawed. Many are still self-centered, including me.

If I had a vehicle, I'd be picking you up to take you with me on that particular evening, to make sure you aren't alone. I'm also on the codependent side, too. At least I would have had a lengthy conversation with you. Maybe there's something you aren't letting us know about your situation.

Usually, when we are in that kind of situation, there's a lot more to the story than has been written or told. You've had "quite a few sponsors" in your words. I'm not sure what's going on, but usually when I've had problems, I tend to be part of the problem, in some way. I can't put it all on another person anymore. I used to, though.

Please make sure you call a few people every day. Enlarge your sober group of friends. This way, at least one person will come and help you out.

Don't rely on that sponsor to focus on you or drop everything just for you. If that sponsor does that, maybe they feel you won't grow in some way. I don't know, it's a guess.

Texting in the middle of a group conscience isn't focusing on the task at hand, which would have been the Group Conscience, where our attention needs to be. Waiting until afterwards would be a good idea. We always need to look at our own behavior first.

I'm so sorry about your friend's passing. Feel those sad feelings, but don't let life get in the way of your sobriety, as you seem to be doing ok with sobriety for now.

There's so much more I'd like to share, but maybe you will realize that sobriety comes first, no matter what life throws at us. Don't rely on one person for anything. Neither you nor your sponsor are right or wrong, but learn from this. Keep her around and work the steps with her. Have a lengthy discussion about this situation. Maybe this can be on your first 4th step (resentment) and you can fully discuss this with her. Of course, it would all be about your reaction to the situation. Her 4th step would be between her and her sponsor.

Don't give up on her just yet. You may find yourself without any sponsor and that isn't good at all.

In sobriety, we are just learning how to have true friendships and relationships with others. Let this resentment go to your higher power for the moment. There is time to discuss this soon enough.

Stay strong and stay sober, this is number one priority. Call your sponsor and let her know you need to vent and have a talk. Maybe the only thing that may have been different is letting her know you needed to be with her and if you had asked if she could pick you up or meet you after that meeting, then things may have worked out differently, I don't know.

We often don't know how to tell others how we are honestly feeling.

Say some prayers, read the literature. More will be revealed.

I wish you sober serenity.
More love and hugs sent to you.
Peace,
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& remind yourself it All happens for a reason.


All Big Book quotes are from the 1st edition.
Linked with the permission of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

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Old 03-24-2012, 03:04 PM   #17 (permalink)
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sorry, I was out for "a bit)"

(all of this is said in a calm and gentle sober voice)
A sponsor's role is to guide you through the steps.
Some sponsors become friends, some don't. You haven't known her very long. This is why we need a network of friends as sponsors aren't always available.

Many people in AA are attempting humbleness and ego deflation, although I find most humans fall short of this, no matter how much they think... (well, there they go thinking).

This is my opinion. I had to cancel on my sponsor last minute once, and was given a talk about giving notice in advance, which wasn't possible that particular time, although on more than 3 occasions, I've changed my schedule to meet theirs--last minute.

That's a bit "uneven" and we are all on the same plane, in my opinion, no one is better or worse than the next human. We are all fallible, so I gave that one to my higher power.

I had my own situation when my ex committed suicide and called my then sponsor, who never returned a call, and I ended up drinking again. I can't blame her, it was my choice, but when I returned to AA this time around and ran into a lot more people, it's funny how "everyone knows about my ex" but not one person called me to see if I were okay. Humans are fallible. We are all flawed. Many are still self-centered, including me.

If I had a vehicle, I'd be picking you up to take you with me on that particular evening, to make sure you aren't alone. I'm also on the codependent side, too. At least I would have had a lengthy conversation with you. Maybe there's something you aren't letting us know about your situation.

Usually, when we are in that kind of situation, there's a lot more to the story than has been written or told. You've had "quite a few sponsors" in your words. I'm not sure what's going on, but usually when I've had problems, I tend to be part of the problem, in some way. I can't put it all on another person anymore. I used to, though.

Please make sure you call a few people every day. Enlarge your sober group of friends. This way, at least one person will come and help you out.

Don't rely on that sponsor to focus on you or drop everything just for you. If that sponsor does that, maybe they feel you won't grow in some way. I don't know, it's a guess.

Texting in the middle of a group conscience isn't focusing on the task at hand, which would have been the Group Conscience, where our attention needs to be. Waiting until afterwards would be a good idea. We always need to look at our own behavior first.

I'm so sorry about your friend's passing. Feel those sad feelings, but don't let life get in the way of your sobriety, as you seem to be doing ok with sobriety for now.

There's so much more I'd like to share, but maybe you will realize that sobriety comes first, no matter what life throws at us. Don't rely on one person for anything. Neither you nor your sponsor are right or wrong, but learn from this. Keep her around and work the steps with her. Have a lengthy discussion about this situation. Maybe this can be on your first 4th step (resentment) and you can fully discuss this with her. Of course, it would all be about your reaction to the situation. Her 4th step would be between her and her sponsor.

Don't give up on her just yet. You may find yourself without any sponsor and that isn't good at all.

In sobriety, we are just learning how to have true friendships and relationships with others. Let this resentment go to your higher power for the moment. There is time to discuss this soon enough.

Stay strong and stay sober, this is number one priority. Call your sponsor and let her know you need to vent and have a talk. Maybe the only thing that may have been different is letting her know you needed to be with her and if you had asked if she could pick you up or meet you after that meeting, then things may have worked out differently, I don't know.

We often don't know how to tell others how we are honestly feeling.

Say some prayers, read the literature. More will be revealed.

I wish you sober serenity.
More love and hugs sent to you.
Peace,
__________________
Someday it will all make sense, so laugh at confusion, smile through tears,
& remind yourself it All happens for a reason.


All Big Book quotes are from the 1st edition.
Linked with the permission of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Sober since May 16, 2011
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Old 03-24-2012, 06:44 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Thank you. That's all there is to the story. I've fully listened to her voicemail and she said that she was meeting her sponsor and it was uncalled for that I texted her and continued to tell me about what a conversation is. I don't like the lecturing and don't need sponsor drama when Im going through a death. I went to a new meeting and may have found someone I can connect with. I haven't talked to her on the phone since Thursday morning when she rushed me off.
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:50 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Glad you are connecting with someone.

I wish you well,
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Someday it will all make sense, so laugh at confusion, smile through tears,
& remind yourself it All happens for a reason.


All Big Book quotes are from the 1st edition.
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Old 03-24-2012, 09:05 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Armywife,

I am so sorry for you loss.

You're right, you do not need a sponsor as a lecturer. You want to know what my sponsor said to me when I went back out and came back? When she saw my call pop up on her phone she grabbed her phone and yelled out YAY! Then she went on to say she was so glad I called her cuz she thinks I am a delight. A DELIGHT! She made me cry. I have been sober ever since. When I was my lowest and loathing w/ self hatred she didn't blow me off, she loved me back into the program. She always takes my calls, even if it is only to say she cannot talk right now.

I think that we as women are so full of self hatred when we come into the program, we do not need anyone else to beat us up. We need love, however we also most importantly need TRUTH. There can most definitely be BOTH! My sponsor (D) is! We come from 2 different worlds.... she is Jewish and is very educated, I am a Christian with some college, but we both have the same disease, the disease of addiction and we connect. She has time to talk to me 5 mornings a week for 10 minutes or so and I can share w/ her what is up, we do a reading (just for today) and then she makes me write down and share w/ her 5 gratitudes a day. (I also share step work w/ her) She is not available to me on Saturday as this is her sabath, but I have a network of other women to call.

Oh Army wife, I pray you can make a great connection w/ another woman who has time, compassion, and isnt' a hard A$$ just cuz she CAN be.

I will say a prayer for you to make that connection.

Blessings, Lily
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