Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

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?
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Brock
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Brock »

Everybody from high office to low does indeed need advisors, but these carry qualifications and names, be they priest doctor accountant lawyer mechanic what have you.

The 12 & 12 statement is in the step five instructions, put to convince us that we should discuss our step four writings with another human in five. It states that those of this high spiritual development check with others that they are interpreting the message they received from God correctly, if I need this yes I will ask someone with experience in such spiritual matters.

Another member ‘Stepchild’ made these comments earlier today in another discussion –
I also believe that somewhere along the growth of this wonderful program of recovery the words "sponsor" and "meetings" have taken on a life of their own. I hear way too much misinformation regarding these two things for my comfort. Like maintaining sobriety without one or the other can't be done. But I don't see that anywhere in the book.
And this --
....86 to 88. How we let God discipline us. We've already turned our will and our lives over to God's care. Here is where we get out our knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out. Nowhere do they mention going to more meetings or consulting with our sponsor.
Life would be easier for me and I expect members like Stepchild, if we didn’t see the need to bring things like this up here, or the more difficult proposition of saying it in meetings. But I remember some of the excuses I made on the two occasions I tried AA years ago, and the same ones which scared me this time before I learnt the truth. Everywhere the voice of old timers who newcomers will look up to, say they think a sponsor, especially long term as in this case is a requirement for them, I want someone else to let them understand that many of us do not have this need. Because I expect there will be others like myself, who might not accept the program if that was a requirement.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

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Tommy-S
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Tommy-S »

Thanks Brock,

I speak for myself when I share, as I have found, like Bill wrote in the Step 3 essay, that fear (ego) and intellect will conspire to convince me that I do Not need another's input... the big "I" can surely handle it all by myself... Because I have a difficult time humbling myself enough to allow someone else to know exactly who & what I am. This was as true then as it is now.

A good look in my rear view shows where this self-reliance gets me, yet I have times, even years along this sober path, that I balk at letting any one know exactly where I am at... EGO isn't dead, and I don't have a lock on sobriety.

Its True (& thank you for finding it) that the advisors I referred to are about God's will... But I think that is what I AM supposed to be practicing via the Steps. So I do need outside input of someone I can trust and count...and someone who knows ME & my thinking. The simple fact is that all I know has gotten me to this point in time, hence, if I wish to go further, I have to have some other input.

My biggest use of a sponsor today is to help me understand how best to help that other fellow... The one who needs a chink broken through his armor of self, or the ones I sponsor to make sure I am separating ME from them ( I often do more work on me with the Steps sponsoring someone then they do)

But that's me... AA has no musts, Tradition 3 states our requirement, and the 12 Steps are not the only way... Just one that worked (and continues to do so) for a hopeless, helpless drunk like me.

Good discussion... Thanks

Tommy
Together, we don't have to cave in or wimp out to that Fatal First One, no matter what today!

Service
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Service »

tyg wrote:I have many, many solid relationships in and outside of the program today. Thank you Alcoholics Anonymous!

I am not saying sponsorship is not important, it was vital in the beginning.
Easily diverted by people places and things right out of the gate if you are already here - "PERSONAL" wiliness is vital

Today More people are ran out that were already here than brought to the door for the first time by these outside labels !! :idea: :idea: :idea:

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tyg
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by tyg »

Thank you for all your replies, I read some good stuff and new things to meditate and pray about. :D
~The secret to the AA program is the first three words on page 112~

Service
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Service »

GREAT AWAKING ! WELCOME TO THE FELLOWSHIP! ABLE TO PRACTICE IT IN ALL YOUR AFFAIRS, lOVE IT LIVE IT !
I to have so many friends in A.A I don't need one - if you catch my drift!

Love what the book says the A.A book is right !
12X12 Pg 116
“When we developed still more, we discovered the best
possible source of emotional stability to be God Himself.
We found that dependence upon His perfect justice, forgive-
ness, and love was healthy, and that it would work where
nothing else would
. If we really depended upon God, we
couldn’t very well play God to our fellows nor would we
feel the urge wholly to rely on human protection and care.
These were the new attitudes that finally brought many of
us an inner strength and peace that could not be deeply
shaken by the shortcomings of others or by any calamity
not of our own making”

As a result of spiritual development here is another good example of that from a member in the post OMG "Honest questions deserves Honest answers"

{Another Member} quoted “Hey Service, I need to re clarify something. you must have read in my first post on this topic: that I wrote that I HAD a sponsor for taking me through the steps in my first year. I don't have a sponsor any more.
" We feel as though we had been placed in a position of neutrality -- safe and protected.
We have not even sworn off. Instead the problem has been removed. It does not exist for us."

The A.A promises that came true for our member “Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook on life will change. Fear of people and economic insecurity will leave us.
We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us
. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we (we is a big word you and me) could not do for ourselves.
I will take a strong fellowship over all the sponsors you had any day all day, no baleful results (re: Menacing )

Love A.A :idea:

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Niagara
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Niagara »

Hey Service

Instead of putting sponsors and those who use them down, what about sharing how you did it without a sponsor? We need another person in step 5, for sure - how did you tackle this? How did you learn the steps? What resources did you use to look deeper?

I know there are quite a few people who don't wish to get a sponsor - we've had people say that they are wary of it - your experience of doing this with just the fellowship and not a specific person to guide them may well be useful for those who wish to take the same path as yourself.

start a new thread detailing your journey, by all means. I'd like to hear it - I'm always open to new learnings.

Niagara
If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn't sit for a month -
Theodore Roosevelt

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avaneesh912
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by avaneesh912 »

By ABCs. LOL!

There are hard-drunks like I shared before that needed milder form of therapy, thats all. But they end up stuck in AA for years. This guy is smart, didn't pick a sponsor to do his 5th but he thinks others also should do the same. Little well frog.
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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Brock
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Brock »

This guy is smart, didn't pick a sponsor to do his 5th but he thinks others also should do the same. Little well frog.
Let's be careful here, I am a reasonably smart guy and I didn't pick a sponsor for the 5th either, because the book(s) told me I didn't have to.
Hey Service, I need to re clarify something. you must have read in my first post on this topic: that I wrote that I HAD a sponsor for taking me through the steps in my first year. I don't have a sponsor any more.
Very good that's what the thread is about, do we need this one on one adviser forever, and I hope that it doesn’t turn out that those who stick with one person as a sponsor, are in fact the ones like the little frog in the well. Just as he found a whole world outside that well, we might find a new world if we stop running to someone else for advise after we complete the steps. I certainly do not support Service 's 'style' of writing, but I do believe that he has a point when he says we should be looking inward and upward to the God of our understanding for answers. To me it is far better, both as a lasting lesson and for my emotional growth, that when things aren't going well 'go to the throne instead of the phone.'
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

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avaneesh912
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by avaneesh912 »

Let's be careful here, I am a reasonably smart guy and I didn't pick a sponsor for the 5th either, because the book(s) told me I didn't have to.
The first part of "Into Action" is about having someone look at our garbage. I am not sure what you mean by book told me I didn't have to. When I say a sponsor, I meant another human being.
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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avaneesh912
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by avaneesh912 »

BTW this is the part i am talking about:
This is perhaps difficult, especially discussing our defects with another person. We think we have done well enough in admitting these things to ourselves. There is doubt about that. In actual practice, we usually find a solitary self-appraisal insufficient. Many of us thought it necessary to go much further. We will be more reconciled to discussing ourselves with another person when we see good reasons why we should do so. The best reason first: If we skip this vital step, we may not overcome drinking. Time after time newcomers have tried to keep to themselves certain facts about their lives. Trying to avoid this humbling experience, they have turned to easier methods. Almost invariably they got drunk. Having persevered with the rest of the program, they wondered why they fell. We think the reason is that they never completed their housecleaning. They took inventory all right, but hung on to some of the worst items in stock. They only thought they had lost their egoism and fear; they only thought they had humbled themselves. But they had not learned enough of humility, fearlessness and honesty, in the sense we find it necessary, until they told someone else all their life story.
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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avaneesh912
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by avaneesh912 »

Ok, my bad. My original intent was that hard drinkers dont have to go through the whole process. they don't even have to find a person to get the 5th done.
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Brock, I agree, the book doesn't label the person. It does say find a person who knows the process and is tigh lipped.
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)

Service
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Re: Forever dependant on just A sponsor?

Post by Service »

Tommy-S wrote:Though I'm weighing in late, I'm in agreement with the other Tommy.


In our literature (maybe the 12 x 12 as I'm without my book)) there's a statement along the lines of 'people of high spiritual development always insist on checking with others"
One's enough for me... the danger with 'committees' is that I can usually discern w
ho on the board is most likely to endorse whatever I want, even if it is utter BS.

Notices the S on others? - The need to associate is important but When one cannot be true to themselves, nor decipher the truth surely institutional ways are second best !
The 3 pertinent ideas of A.A are simple and clear weather one believes in A.A ways or not does not change things - A lot of my friends are institutionalized / GovernMental
who need assistance with their own brains, That's cool thank God it's not what A.A is about !
AHF

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