Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Most of us who recovered with AA's program did so with the help of a "sponsor". But what is sponsorship? How do I get one? Who can be a sponsor? What makes a good sponsor?
kittyr
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Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by kittyr »

I'm having trouble finding a sponsor.
I had one, but she won't take me back after my relapse. I was a jack ass and I stole her living sober book and ducked her calls, but she actually won't talk to me and won't let other people pass on her new number to me so I can't apologize to her properly, so not much I can do there.
I asked someone else but she was uncomfortable with me (I'm a bit strange, I get it) and she is a really devout christian so I can see where she's at with that as I'm really not and she doesn't like some of the things I say.
Everyone else who has decent times at my home meeting are guys.
Do you think it is ok to ask a guy if they seem super non-creepy and not interested in me? I think I have pretty good creep-radar. I personally am bisexual so male or female doesn't bother me in that sense. I don't think I'd ask someone of either sex to sponsor me if I thought they were really hot. But I guess the guys I would ask are most likely to be straight and it might bother them.
I just really want a sponsor, I don't really know how to do steps 4 and 5 properly and I want to talk to someone and waaaaaah.
I think I'm just having a big sook actually and want to share it somewhere. I've tried to be really pro-active getting my old sponsor back and trying to find a new one and I feel a bit rejected. Maybe I don't need a sponsor straight away, maybe I just need to harden up a bit.
:(

chefchip
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by chefchip »

What about a sponsor online, even if only temporarily? I'm sure one of the moderators can weigh in on that along with where the resource is located. In any case, I would never have been able to do the steps without a sponsor. I'm too good at deceiving myself!

On the gender thing, I have actually sponsored a woman. But it was made clear up front it was very temporary, only to get her through the steps in the beginner group. I even gave her numbers of a few women in my home group and introduced her around. Recently she found a very good sponsor who is female and is doing great with her, aggressively working the steps again. As I am a gay man, the gender thing was not really an issue for me. It seemed not to be for her, either. But, as we discussed during her fifth step, there are some things that men just can not understand about women, whether the man is straight or gay or none of the above or all of the above.

That is by no means advice. Just something I experienced that bears on the subject.

Good luck with your search. And, for the record, we are all strange to someone! :wink:

Chip
The only constant in life is change.

kittyr
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by kittyr »

chefchip wrote: And, for the record, we are all strange to someone!
Love it! Thanks Chip :)

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Tosh
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by Tosh »

I couldn't sponsor a woman. I'm hard-wired to want to have sex with them. And then I wouldn't want my sponsees to sponsor women either, because mostly they're like me; hard-wired to want to have sex with them, so I guess it wouldn't set a good example if I did. I'm spiritual, but not that spiritual that... well, you know. There'd probably be an element of ego in there too, like 'Hey, pretty lady, aren't I your knight in shining armour!'

I also sponsor a guy whose wife wasn't an alcoholic, she was a self-harmer, so her priest (who is a member of A.A.) sponsored her through the steps (this had nothing to do with A.A.). The priest's wife then left him (very sad, two young children were involved there), and then very shortly after my sponsee's wife left him for the priest (four children involved there). It's been a very messy situation and to be honest, there were times when I felt that the priest needed a good punch-in-the-face for 'sponsoring' my sponsee's wife (now ex); apparently this sort of opposite sex 'spiritual guidance' is frowned upon in their church too. Six children had their lives turned upside down there.

After that incident, I'm quite a strong believer of same sex sponsorship. I know it can get complex because sexual orientation isn't fixed, but as far as possible; common sense should prevail.

Besides, Mrs Tosh wouldn't let me! :lol:
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)

kittyr
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by kittyr »

I respect your opinion Tosh. Sometimes though, that stuff seems a little hetero-normative blah blah to me. I'm bi, so I could be attracted to anyone really - does that mean I have to get a sponsor who's really mean or ugly or something so I don't think they're cute? Know what I mean? But I do take what you are saying seriously as even though that gender stuff is all meaningless to me, I think a lot of the old guys in my meeting are traditional and would think like you do.

To me all that stuff is less relevant than what Chip said. I'm not sure I could do step 5 as effectively with a man. I think I would relate better to a woman in that context. So I want to hold out for a female sponsor. I just can't think of anyone remotely suitable. Or, more accurately, anyone remotely suitable who'll have me. :wink:

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Tosh
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by Tosh »

kitty_ramirez wrote: To me all that stuff is less relevant than what Chip said. I'm not sure I could do step 5 as effectively with a man. I think I would relate better to a woman in that context.
I think that's a good point too.There's a sex inventory in a Step 4 (those people we've harmed through our use of sex) and I would feel uncomfortable listening to a female's. And one of the benefits of doing your step 5 with a sponsor is that the sponsor is fully aware of the circumstances around the people we've harmed, and because they've been through the process too, they have a wealth of experience to help when it comes to making amends. I know my sponsor was absolutely crucial during my amends process. He even told me when to back-off when certain amends weren't going well, which was great, because I'm like a dog with a bone sometimes - I just don't know when to let go.

Can you get to some new meetings, maybe in the next town or something, and find a sponsor there?
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)

kittyr
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by kittyr »

I have to expand my meeting attendance. I find it hard to get out in the evenings as I'm a single mum, so I go to these ones that are on my lunch break from work. They're in a dingy basement - like your worst stereotype of AA - and there are usually like 5 old men, all 60s plus, all tattooed ex-cons, and me. I love those meetings, they make me really happy, but not very good for finding lady sponsors!!
I'll try to branch out a bit. :)

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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by chefchip »

Have you asked any of the guys in the meetings if they know any women with good sobriety? Who sponsor and actually work the steps? This may sound bad, but that is one of the reasons I have a half dozen women's numbers in my cell phone. I heard them in meetings. Said to myself "Now there's someone who gets this." And asked them if they would be part of my twelfth step arsenal, as it were. Men may be clueless about women in general, but we often know when a female AA has it together just as we do about male AAs.

Just a thought.

Chip

PS - this thread is actually at the top of the board you posted on! I just saw it... :roll:

http://www.e-aa.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=5297
The only constant in life is change.

kittyr
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by kittyr »

Good thinking Chip.
I think I feel a bit unloved sponsor-wise and I don't want to keep asking people cos I can't handle much more rejection, I'm having the sads a bit. I'm only two weeks sober so a bit emotional and I wish people didn't think I was weird and unsponsorable. It's like being picked last for teams at school. :(
But I like your idea, if I let some of the nice old guys know I'm looking, maybe they'll help me find someone. Fingers crossed.

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Brock
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by Brock »

kitty_ramirez wrote: I was a jack ass and I stole her living sober book and ducked her calls, but she actually won't talk to me and won't let other people pass on her new number to me so I can't apologize to her properly, so not much I can do there.

:(
Sounds like you would be better off without her, I feel someone who can’t get over the theft of a stupid book, (and it is a stupid book), and blocking others so you can’t contact her, sounds like she’s not on the program herself. There are a few of us on this site who did the fourth step without a sponsor, and every time I write that I imagine good folks in various parts of the world, with smoke coming out of their ears, it is not a popular thing to say, still let me explain my reasoning. Since I couldn’t find a suitable sponsor myself I searched the net for step 4 advice, I settled on this site – Working Step 4 – Barefoot’s World, there I found lots of good advice and forms to download. Used the advice and forms, and when it came to my fifth step asked a man from NA to hear it. Have no regrets whatsoever, and the person from NA was surprised at how well prepared I was, he had expected to spend at least one day on the 5th, we were done in two hours. I don’t think Squawking Hawk would mind me quoting something said last Saturday, she said – “Several years ago, I did another fourth and fifth step and did save my fourth step. I am glad that I have this copy, if for no other reason than I am working on another fourth step and it is useful to refer to what was on this earlier inventory.” So you see it is not a onetime thing, and I have now found more than one person in local groups, that I would redo the steps with, if I ever find the need to do so. Of course if you do find someone via the old guys or whatever that’s fine, but lack of a sponsor should not hold you back.

God bless all who contribute.
Brock.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by ann2 »

Sponsors are nice but they're not a requirement to work the steps -- lots of resources here, all over the net, lots of people frothing at the mouth to answer a step-taking question :) Hey! As an online friend said to me a long time ago, "pick up paper and pencil . . .".
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by Squawking Hawk »

Brock wrote:I don’t think Squawking Hawk would mind me quoting something said last Saturday, she said – “Several years ago, I did another fourth and fifth step and did save my fourth step. I am glad that I have this copy, if for no other reason than I am working on another fourth step and it is useful to refer to what was on this earlier inventory.” So you see it is not a onetime thing, and I have now found more than one person in local groups, that I would redo the steps with, if I ever find the need to do so. Of course if you do find someone via the old guys or whatever that’s fine, but lack of a sponsor should not hold you back.
No I don't mind at all. :-D

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I will never forget

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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by chefchip »

You know I've often felt like a heretic when I say that people have worked the steps without a sponsor. But I know a few from my f2f meetings and, believe me, they have their s$$t together. I really like the new direction of this thread and hope Kitty doesn't mind. There is a story on the non-forum section of this site, one of lots of stories. But when I was reading the latest posts here, it reminded me of that story. I am going to quote a short section and leave the writer anonymous unless he or she wishes to reveal themselves,
This was 16 years after first getting sober. I started with step 1 with the help of this online group. I read and studied and listened and learned so much from the people sharing online. They pushed me to start the spiritual journey, encouragement that I really needed.

Interestingly enough, my first 4th step also came around the turn of the year. And this was the start of finding out about me -- why I behaved the way I did, why I ran, and finally why I didn't need to any longer.

I took my fifth step with a lady halfway across the world. Afterwards, I thought long and hard about the defects of character this process had revealed in my sixth step until I realized I had to give them up. I turned to the God of my understanding asking for release from the chains of old attitudes.

At that point I had a spiritual experience that resembles the one Bill W. talks about. His happened when he was a day or two away from the drink, mine took 17 years to get to. Still, I wouldn't have had it any other way.
Doesn't should like this person had just one sponsor. It sounds like they had a squadron of them, and many of them seemed to have been right here. Food for thought.

Chip
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avaneesh912
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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by avaneesh912 »

Doesn't should like this person had just one sponsor. It sounds like they had a squadron of them, and many of them seemed to have been right here. Food for thought.

By grace of GOD, I was lead to some good workshops like Joe and Charlies, Mark Hs and Chris Raymers. All had one thing in common, start working on the steps quickly. And I still remember Charlie saying 'Everyday we procrastinate 4th step and 5 step is a day closer to a drink'. And one other workshop I remember, Paul F, who pointed this one little statement:
For by this time sanity will have returned. and this happens only when we get to step 10.

I know its a difficult thing to expect, the person in recovery should be little awake, otherwise they could end up with sponsors with their own ideas (or ideas from Living Sober, LOL, Kitty good thing you stole from her, next right thing is to dump it and grab a big book).
Show him the mental twist which leads to the first drink of a spree. We suggest you do this as we have done it in the chapter on alcoholism.(Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Re: Getting a sponsor? Of another gender?

Post by kittyr »

Ok, so I like these thoughts. I've found some good net stuff and am working on step 4.

I'm seeing a counsellor atm and sent her a text and she said she'd be happy to do the 5th step with me. She is not in AA but is very aware of all the steps. I don't know why, I haven't asked her, but when I have discussed the program with her she obviously has good knowledge of what it entails (either she has counselled others in AA or she knows about it from her personal life, I don't actually know). What do you guys think of getting an outsider to do the 5th step with?

I would prefer to do this stuff with someone from AA but I am genuinely having trouble finding someone. And last time I didn't get 4 and 5 done, I ended up drinking again and I don't want to waste time. Thoughts?

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