Beginning new journey’s can be intimidating and fearful.  On a recent online AA meeting, I heard a gentleman say “If you have faith, you don’t have fear” and “if you have fear, you don’t have faith”.  When I first heard this from him, I thought that this guy is a real grouch.  He had been making other statements and comments during the meeting that I thought were very forceful and would scare away a newcomer that just joined the meeting or sobriety.  Being in recovery for 4 years, this man’s statements and phrases seemed to be regurgitation of the Big Book and he kept repeating the same concept, but using different words (which became more aggressive as he rambled on).  Part of AA meetings that I don’t like is that at times you have one ‘Negative Nancy” (man or woman) in the group that just seems like an angry, sober alcoholic.

It’s important that people open up their ears when participating in AA meetings or any other meeting that has to do with addiction.  Commenting on what a newcomer has said and pretty much presenting your statements as a rebuttal is absurd and especially when you are trying to prove someone else’s statements wrong.  The great thing about recovery, is that you have to do what works for you and sharing those things at meetings may help others.  It’s not worth scaring away a new person to sobriety because you don’t have any control of how you present yourself and your thoughts/beliefs.  People have the right to talk how they want, but people also have the right to not listen. In my experience, it’s just as important to listen to someone as it is to speak to that person.  As I have been attending more AA meetings online and from my experience in the rooms, all meetings aren’t like this, but one sour apple can effect the demeanor of the environment.  People are supposed to feel safe in AA and not feel like they are being judged by what they say.  This is extremely important so that people continue to go back.  I do not want to go into much more detail about the meeting because anonymity is critical in AA.

I’ve been in recovery for 4 years and still feel like an outsider when I join some AA meetings, even though we are all supposed to be following the same creed.  This feeling of being an outsider at times is fine with me, because this is my recovery and no one else’s.

Outsiders – Eric Church

4 thoughts on “Outsiders

  1. You should never feel like an outsider, I know it’s hard and easy for me to say. You have full control of your life and who you want to be now more than ever. No one will ever understand how you felt, the agony you been through the to fight as hard as you did to be better as a person and to others you love, and have a healthier life in general. So in fact, those who don’t know should be on the outside and someone whom you don’t need to emotionally drain yourself for. I hope that makes sense. At the end of the day, at this point all you have is you and your stronger and much more powerful mind set to be who you want to be. Anything outside of that is irrelevant. I know I might sound a bit forward but I hate the feeling of feeling like an outsider or separated. Just know that you’re amazing and you have come such a long way and your journey is yours to be proud of. Keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind and ‘forward’ response about my ‘Outsiders’ post. I truly value your thoughts and opinions on this matter. I do not feel like an outsider in my recovery, but I know how I felt when I joined recovery and AA. I was overwhelmed and sometimes distraught to what people were saying in meetings. Now that I’ve been in recovery for four years and I’m very confident in my recovery, I don’t feel overwhelmed by what others say. It should be about helping yourself first in recovery, Unity and Service. Thanks again for your response and have a blessed journey.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you 🙂 we all need a boost from time to time. I thought realizing the disease was the end of it and I can just miraculously become better. I was wrong haha. The road to recovery and staying on the path is by far the hardest. Four years is really impressive, I hope to reach that milestone myself. The only thing we can do is keep going.. In the right direction 🙂 have a blessed journey to you as well.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I think alcoholics who are generally angry (grouchy, bitter, sarcastic, maybe?) are more DRY than sober. The difference is in practicing the principles…
    I’ve felt like I didn’t fit in at meetings, plenty of times. Usually, but not always, it’s just that I’m out of sorts for whatever (unrelated, 99% of the time) reason. I was told to go to meetings until I wanted to go, and it does seem like I get out of my funk when I’m around my chosen family, in the rooms.
    Tyfs. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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