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A Dilemma

Old 05-17-2013, 02:18 PM
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A Dilemma

Hi, I am 7 days sober and I am going to AA.

At my 3rd meeting, the mother of a friend of mine was there. I felt uncomfortable right away. She ended up telling my friend, her daughter, I now go to AA. This friend is an addict who is not in recovery. My friend text me today telling me her and her mother were discussing me and my need for a sponsor, she recommended someone her mom mentioned. I told my friend I was not comfortable with her mom discussing me, my addiction, or AA outside of AA or with anyone!

My Dilemma is I love the AA group I go to and I don't want to switch. I just got comfortable and I am so bad with sober confrontation. Do I move if my friends mom tries to sit by me at a meeting? Do I tell her to stop discussing me? I'm stressing out over this.
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Old 05-17-2013, 02:34 PM
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I am not in AA by it certainly seems inappropriate for this woman to be discussing your sobriety with anyone but you, and even then only via AA. I'd politely ask her to refrain from doing so.
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Old 05-17-2013, 02:49 PM
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Yeah, unfortunately you can't trust that everyone is going to respect your anonymity. There is no need for confrontation, rather it sounds like a good opportunity to set clear boundaries with those who mean well, but have overstepped nonetheless. Clearly expressing yourself is an important skill. Looks like the universe has handed you a great opportunity to practice being assertive. Use it.
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Old 05-17-2013, 02:53 PM
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I hadn't looked at it that way Soberlicious. Learning a lot of new things on this journey. Thanks
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:24 PM
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What happened to the second A for anonymous that's why I fear AA.
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:33 PM
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I'm not an AA person, but I do agree that setting firm boundaries for yourself at this time, would be a really good idea. And, personally, I would stay very far away from your friend's mother.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:16 PM
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There is a reason for the second A in AA. She clearly stepped over the boundaries but that should not deter you from going to the group you have enjoyed and find comfort in.

Maybe one day in the future when you are ready to speak, you can casually bring up in group discussion how AA is a wonderful place to meet others and because what is said and who is present is private and not to be discussed by anyone outside of the meeting. Make sure you look straight at her when you say your nice eloquent comment.

Stay strong and keep going, because one day everyone around you will notice how awesome you are doing and you will not feel uncomfortable at telling anyone and everyone how great sobriety is.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:23 PM
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I agree with all the comments above. She was wrong for what she did. How you handle it is up to you. It would be hard for me to set someone straight also, especially a friends mom.

Don't let it stop you from going if you enjoy it and it is helping you. The alcohol/addiction thing is life and death. Take care of yourself. You can do this!!
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:26 PM
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I also would speak about it in the meeting as liveordie says. You can do it nicely and I think she will get the hint. Even if she had good intentions some people need to be reminded that what happens at a meeting (and who you see) stays at a meeting.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:51 PM
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I agree, she never should have done that. My guess is she was hoping her daughter would emulate you and join AA herself. Regardless, it was an invasion of your privacy and against what AA stands for (from what I've read here). I think I would say something to her privately to ensure she never does it again...
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:56 PM
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One meeting near me finishes with these words:

"Remember; who you see in here, what you say in here and what you hear in here, stays in HERE!" Followed with the response "Hear, hear!"

Nice tradition and reminder.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:59 PM
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Next time you are both in the same meeting and the person chairing the meeting asks if anyone has a topic for discussion raise your hand. If he calls on you tell him you would like to discuss the 12th Tradition and how important anonymity is to the AA program.

Twelve—Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

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Old 05-17-2013, 11:18 PM
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It seems like a fairly honest mistake to make... I don't have kids but I can reverse the scenario. If one of my parents were alcoholic or addicted and I saw one of their good friends getting help, using them as an example would probably be my first thought too.

I would think it would only take a very quick "hey I know you mean well but I'm really new to sobriety and don't feel comfortable with you discussing it with Jess or anyone else" would probably snap her out of seeing you as an extension of her daughter and make her realize that she's crossed a line. Calling it out in front of the group sounds like an aggressive first step to make.
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:19 AM
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Thanks everyone. I talked to my friend and told her I do appreciate the help but I an very uncomfortable with anyone discussing me and AA outside of AA, I told her I do not want her mother doing that again. My friend never responded. (It was a text) I do need to stay away from this friends mom for this reason amd many others. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Black Bird View Post

Do I tell her to stop discussing me?
yes
we are not suppose to share with anyone
who we see at meetings
or discuss what we hear there

bottom live is
she needs to tighten up her Program
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:08 AM
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I would suggest that you tell your friends mother to seek help from either Nar-Anon or Al-Anon to help her with her daughter.

The principal of Anonymity in Alcoholics Anonymous is at the level of press, radio, and film. What is just as damaging to members is gossip to which your friends mom is guilty. Please don't let that and other's faults deter you with your journey in recovery.
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:14 AM
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My friend's mother does not work the program. Well, she does not drink so I can't say she doesn't work it in that aspect. She and her daughter are non recovering addicts. And their behavior reflects that. Hard to get through to people in that state. I kind of feel they are trying to sabotage me. That could be my crazy thing too. It could very well have been an honest mistake. I don't know. I will bring it up to the mom in a nice way and hope she will just leave me alone.
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Old 05-18-2013, 09:13 AM
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a respect for others is a must

Originally Posted by Black Bird View Post

I will bring it up to the mom in a nice way
and hope she will just leave me alone.
that would be for the best
and
I will share with you at this time
after being in AA for a time
most all who attend make it no big secret that they attend meetings
but
we still should never break someone's anonymity

there is a very small town out in the desert
where I attend meetings sometimes
while in the grocery store or in the few eating places out there
many times I will see ones from AA meetings
I always say hi to them
but
never mention anything about sobriety or meetings in public
true -- some do not wish to have their anonymity broken
I really don't care who knows I go to meetings
but
a respect for others is a must
ones who do not practice this respect
are somewhat lame towards the Program
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Old 05-18-2013, 09:22 AM
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Thanks onehigherpower. I think I will be fine about people knowing I go to meetings. Just not right now. The main reason is I don't want to hear anything negative until I am stronger. I have told my drinking friends and family I quit drinking. No one has any idea how bad my drinking was except my husband and best friend. They both know I am in AA. I think it's lame too. My friend did just text me and said she would not speak about it again. That is a plus.
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Old 05-18-2013, 09:31 AM
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Good work on being assertive. In a perfect world, your friend's mom would work a better program per se, but hey that's got not one thing to do with you.

You decide with whom you will spend time, in and out of the program.
You decide with whom, if anyone, you will share personal information.

You decide. Always.
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