12 Step Posters/Posers

     Follow up to the previous Let Go and Let God post about AA slogans (Also see AA Slogans). There is, in fact, a problem with this slogan, or rather its constant recitation in AA. When I walk into a meeting, there are few, if any, who can tell me exactly how to let go and how let God.

     Even more disappointing is that there may be no one in the room who has done so himself.

    That poster of the 12 Steps that hangs on the wall is not the Twelve Steps. It is a summary. The detailed instructions are inside the Big Book, even though hoards of AA ‘members’ aren’t really sure what’s in the book other than a few stories. Others think the Big Book is just something you win in the raffle at the end of the meeting.

     Nothing could be further from the truth.

     Find someone who has taken Steps (as they are laid out in Alcoholics Anonymous) and has recovered. That’s the guy you want to follow. That is real sponsorship. It’s not going out bowling on Friday or talking on the phone when you feel like drinking. As if a phone conversation is going to stop us once we are hit with the mental obsession. Joke. If a fundamental principle of AA tells us that we are beyond human aid, when did it become acceptable to think that a phone call can keep us sober? This is why I’m not so sure how many folks in AA are really alcoholics, as apparently they can stop on their own self-will.

God, teach us that action, not empty words, colorful stories and group therapy, is what keeps us sober…

One thought on “12 Step Posters/Posers

  1. I love your blog. I found it because I have a sister who has been a hardcore drug addict for over 15 years. Think it's brilliant. Thank you. I recently moved out from my nine year relationship with an alcoholic. I have read the Big Book twice and recently started going to Al-Anon because I want to work the steps with a sponsor. I asked a woman to sponsor me, and she laid out the \”suggestions.\” I must sit next to her at meetings, in fact, at one meeting I got there early as I usually do to help set up the chairs, and I had already taken my seat and there were plenty of empty seats around me, and my sponsor came in and asked me to move to where she wanted to sit…? I have to call her every day for 30 days and then indefinitely (she wouldn't tell me how long) for 5 days/week. I must go to 3 meetings/week. And, she wouldn't tell me when we would begin working on the steps. In my understanding, in The Big Book, the steps were taken as quickly as possible so the person could have an awakening, and then live his/her life through the continued working of the steps. Am I mistaken? All the other stuff felt very controlling and rigid and not tailored to an actual individual person.

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