money Archive

My Experience With Leaving AA and Successfully Staying Sober

Trigger warning: mentions of alcoholism, relapse, and sexual violence

Failure is built into the punitive, guilt-ridden fabric of AA. An archaic framework of Christian dogma marketed as the only way to get sober. If you fail it’s your fault. If you succeed it’s God’s miracle. Every meeting we recited that those who drink after AA are “naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty.” According to AA honesty in confession to unscrupulous strangers will keep you from drinking. That and the will of God.

Inertia

I have been literally paralyzed these last couple of months. I began working towards a college degree in September of this year. Initially I chose one course, hoping that by the time it was over I’d have a better idea of what I wanted to major in, since I am interested in so many things and the choice seemed impossible. If anything, it’s made the whole thing worse.

End of an Era

Tomorrow is my seven-year anniversary of sobriety. Well by the time it’s posted it’ll be ‘today’ or ‘yesterday’. But y’know what I mean. It’s weird. Seven years. It’s a long time, and then it’s also not. It also goes very fast when life passes by and one is not mindful or living in the present. I can honestly say that most of my recovery has been one big, long panic. Will I get loaded? Will I find a job? How am I going to pay the rent?

Self Preservation and Stress

The moment I made the decision to preserve myself, at the risk of possibly abandoning my friends who need me, I was again asked to help one of those friends. Perhaps this is my lot, to care for others at the expense of myself. If this is so, then the fates have been kind to me in their curse.

It goes without saying, I believe, that it is very much so against my nature to think of myself first, or, sometimes, at all. I’m not saying that I don’t buy myself things or spend or do for my pleasure – I freely admit that I do. What I am saying though is that when I am asked to choose between buying dinner for a friend, or knowing I’ll have enough money for the rest of the week, I will always choose buying dinner for that friend.