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Curious about Lifering

Old 05-13-2014, 06:32 PM
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Curious about Lifering

Hello All,

I am new here, just joined a few days ago--thanks for all the warm welcomes! I quit drinking and smoking cigarettes just 3 days ago but I'm feeling strong and I am determined to keep going (and I won't change my mind).

I am using the AVRT method now, I tried AA about 5 years ago and stayed sober for 3 mos., never really felt comfortable there--it felt hokey and preachy to me and it felt like it was taking up my whole life. So many rules and regulations and people telling you what you should and should not do. (Please note that I mean absolutely no offense to those that have gotten sober this way).

I don't want to make my sobriety a big job this time around--I just want to stop drinking-- but I am intrigued by Lifering which I've seen some members mention here. I just think it would be nice to have a face to face support group without all the religion, endless steps and handholding, etc. Can anyone who's been tell me more about it and if they found it useful for them?

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Old 05-13-2014, 07:09 PM
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Sobriatea,

San Francisco....you live in LR country! more meetings there than anywhere else in the world. it started right there in SF.
yes, i got sober using the LR forum (very very slow now) daily, going to one meeting per week (it was the only one available here in Vancouver). the "Recovery by Choice" workbook by the founder, Martin Nicholas, was extremely helpful to explore my beliefs, attitudes, fears, habits, support system...all areas covered, really.

there are many online choices, and the e-mail lists sound very active.

there is no LR program as such but lots of support for you to find what works for you. it's an abstinence-based peer support place. no steps, religion is private business, the place is secular. handholding? uh...not that i've encountered, though i did give a couple of people a hug...UGGGHHH

AVRT and LR mesh well together.

hope you'll check it out and find something of use to you. The LifeRing Home Page | Sobriety, Secularity, Self-Help
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:44 AM
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I had a wonderful experience, the first three meetings I went. Very relaxed small group (4-6 people roughly each time) but just as in another recovery-based group I ran into the same problem of predatory individuals and was not all that keen to go back.
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Old 05-14-2014, 11:59 AM
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Thank you Fini, yes I actually live right down the street from their headquarters, lol. So finding a meeting is no problem.
And thank you Soberella, I am wondering if you could elaborate (if you want to) about predatory people? Do mean like sexually or what?
It's been some time since I went to a meeting of any kind--I think I remember being hit on a few times (course I was much younger and thinner then ;-) AA oldtimers would always say you shouldn't date anyone and esp. not someone form the program for at least a year (another one of their endless rules). I was never tempted or too bothered by it, but it did seem rather inappropriate
to the the setting.
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:14 PM
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To answer your question Sobrietea, at the fourth LR meeting I went to there was a very disruptive man there who claimed to have been 'in Lifering' for many years in another state yet his behavior and demeanor felt he was there just for kicks to prey on people or cause a ruckus just for 'something to do'. He was very manic, spoke out of turn and laughed at inappropriate times. Towards the end of the meeting he honed in on me and began asking very personal and inappropriate questions about my love life.
The fact this made this experience more scary than say within 12-Step mtg. was this man couldn't necessarily be tracked down through a fellowship or through his sponsor and reprimanded or talked to; anyone can come to a LR mtg falsely represent themselves and cause problems, and disappear, that's what bothered me the most about that experience and by that time I was already decided f2f mtgs weren't for me, so that experience just stuck the nail in the coffin.
This is a random experience, Im sure that happens only in once a great while and don't let it sway you against LR, there are weirdo's in every support group. Just go with a solid shield of armor against the bad folks and it sounds like you might already have that skill
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:41 PM
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I live in the Bay Area as well and I am gonzo on Lifering!!! I will be attending the Lifering congress which will be taking place in Santa Rosa at the end of the month, very excited about that. I also convene a meeting in the Bay Area as well.

Yes, sometimes there are meetings that don't go well. I had that experience once when I was much earlier on in recovery, last year. He was an alternate convenor who was running the meeting for someone else. Used attack techniques to run the group, very unpleasant and confrontative, and in the end used his position to smuggle a lot of 12-step philosophy into the meeting, which of course is terrible at a Lifering meeting and not what you go there for. My solution? Didn't go to that particular meeting anymore.

I currently attend 2 f2f meetings per week (one that I convene, and one that I attend) and I find them invaluable. A really relaxed, fun, insightful bunch of people. Invaluable to my recovery. And we talk like normal people, we focus on the future, and when we talk about so-called recovery, we all make sense. No chanting. No handholding. No mysticism. Just support without all of the distracting window dressing. Powerful stuff.

If anyone wants to know more about Lifering they can PM me as well. I'm pretty plugged in.

-DrS
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:46 PM
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Soberella,
it's very much too bad you had such an experience, of course. what it says, i think, is that you unfortunately were at one of the few meetings where clearly the convenor (LR's word for the person chairing and responsible for that particular ongoing meeting) did not do his or her job of keeping the meeting a safe place for everyone. i helped with convening several times and am quite familiar with the expectations LR has of its convenors, and tactfully but assertively dealing with disruptive and obnoxious people so that everyone is comfortable and safe is at the top of the list.
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