It Works, It really Does!

Despite my white knuckling, I have somehow managed to get fourteen months free of drinking and drugging under my belt. I went to rehab not knowing anything about A.A or that it would even be a part of my treatment. I still remember my first meeting and the relief I felt at not being alone in my problem. That feeling lasted for a little while. The truth was though, that I wasn’t ready yet for a different life. That fact became apparent after over a year “dry” and in a bad relapse. I believed that by reaching out and asking for help I would be somehow bothering people.  Being in a year-long abusive relationship added to my feelings of unworthiness – an all too familiar reality inside the walls of domestic chaos. Finally I had found a sponsor and was going to at least a meeting a day in addition… Continue reading

Not My Type

In 1971, two events occurred that changed my life forever:  I got married and I became a typesetter. There was also a third event simmering away under the radar that hadn’t quiet manifested, but was waiting to explode.  It will become evident what that event was later in the story. In those days, typesetting was done with metal slugs. Men sat at huge machines and typed words to be set on a large sheet of metal and then run through the printing press. When I started typesetting there was a burgeoning industry of cold type (computer) beginning to appear.  Most type was done with metal, but eventually the printing industry, including the major newspapers, went to cold type. My first computer was just a keyboard, with a small machine off to the side which punched holes in paper tape. Each character had a corresponding set of holes punched in the… Continue reading

An “Old-Timer” in a “Newcomer’s” World – By Joanee T

I came into recovery in 1988.  I was miserable, broken, and lonely.  I was pretty much friendless and hopeless.  I felt like I was dropped onto this planet from another universe and didn’t belong there or here. I was smoking a lot of pot, sniffing speed, and drinking until I passed out every night. I never fell asleep, back in the day, I just passed out. In the mornings I came to; never woke up. I had no idea it was the drugs and the booze that was causing me to disconnect from my family, friends and society. And of course, all the drugs I was consuming had nothing to do with why my life was so wretched. For someone who had been told she’s fairly intelligent (though I never believed it) I hadn’t had a cohesive thought in years – maybe decades.  I was the last to find out… Continue reading

Can You Work the Steps in Therapy, Too? – Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT-S

Many recovering addicts choose to seek help in therapy as well as twelve step rooms. Sometimes this begins with a stay at an inpatient rehab followed by standard outpatient therapy. Other times addicts skip rehab and seek standard outpatient treatment right away. Either way, therapists who specialize in addiction treatment (and even those who don’t) nearly always steer their addicted clients toward twelve step meetings, encouraging them to get a sponsor and to work the twelve steps as originated by the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous and adapted for use by other recovery programs. Generally, the twelve steps are worked with guidance from a sponsor—a fellow recovering addict who has worked the steps already as part of his or her own recovery. Therapists, even those who are in recovery themselves, should NOT serve as a client’s sponsor. The therapeutic alliance is unique, and it should not be conflated with sponsorship. A… Continue reading

A Sober Mom’s Guide to Recovery By Rosemary O’Connor – Spirituality is for People who have already been to Hell – Review By Jackie Stein

In the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous, a familiar refrain is that religion is for those who are afraid of Hell and spirituality is for people who have already been there. I am here to tell you that no truer words have been said. Most people who walk through the doors of AA or NA have been to Hell and back at least once and know first-hand what the depths of this disease can portend. We come to this program with many different hopes and dreams. Some are looking for a safe way to drink. Some are looking for a magic potion to take away the desire to drink. Almost all have come with a desire to feel better and failing that, to feel at all. When we get to Step Two, after having taken the step to acknowledge that we are powerless over the next drink and that our lives… Continue reading