PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

The book Alcoholics Anonymous, aka The Big Book, is the basic text for the AA program of sobriety. "Alcoholics Anonymous" Copyright 2012 AAWS, Inc. All Rights, Reserved. Short excerpts used by permission of AAWS
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Karl R
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PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by Karl R » Sat Sep 20, 2008 4:45 am

Good Morning all,

Yesterday we started 'More about alcoholism"-in which much of the Dr's opinion is reinforced and expanded. Yesterday's reading pointed to one of the first parts of the process of becoming truly sober.

"We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery. The delusion that we are like other people, or presently may be, has to be smashed." BB p. 30

Today the authors of the BB examine the things we do to avoid this concession that we are alcoholic. I know that I avoided admitting I was alcoholic. On my last drinking night I had an argument with my mother-in-law who told me I was an alcoholic. I yelled at her that I had a career I was good at, a fine home, had never been in trouble with the police, took cared of my wife and children---how could I be an alcoholic. She told me---"you'll die alone because your family is going to leave you if you continue drinking" That's when I blacked out. The next morning in the silence of an empty house I began my sober journey. The concession in our own mind that we are truly alcoholic is fundamental to grasping a new sober life.

Other's experience, strength and hope on conceding to their innermost selves that they were alcoholics?

in peace,
Karl

Synchronicity isn't just proof of the existence of God. It's also proof of God's concern for and involvement with you.

- Bayard







Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going to believe they are in that class. By every form of self-deception and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to the rule, therefore nonalcoholic. If anyone who is showing inability to control his drinking can do the right- about-face and drink like a gentleman, our hats are off to him. Heaven knows, we have tried hard enough and long enough to drink like other people!
Here are some of the methods we have tried: Drinking beer only, limiting the number of drinks, never drinking alone, never drinking in the morning, drinking only at home, never having it in the house, never drinking during business hours, drinking only at parties, switching from scotch to brandy, drinking only natural wines, agreeing to resign if ever drunk on the job, taking a trip, not taking a trip, swearing off forever (with and without a solemn oath), taking more physical exercise, reading inspirational books, going to health farms and sanitariums, accepting voluntary commitment to asylums - we could increase the list ad infinitum.
We do not like to pronounce any individual as alcoholic, but you can quickly diagnose yourself. Step over to the nearest barroom and try some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it. It may be worth a bad case of jitters if you get a full knowledge of your condition.

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Post by jujub » Mon Nov 03, 2008 10:25 am

hi all,

i've spent the last 18 months trying to prove i was an exception to the rule. that i could enjoy my drinking and control the consequences of my insane behavior. i was out to prove i could work a program and still drink when i decided to drink. i tried it all--and i'm out of solutions that originate in my tiny brain. i give up and i give in. i am alcoholic, and i can not stop left to my own devices. but i'm sober for 16 days now, that's all i need to know to believe there is a greater power working in my life.

judi, alcoholic

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Karl R
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Re: 9/20/08 BB More about alc. 31-32(Can I control my drinking?)

Post by Karl R » Sun Oct 11, 2009 1:08 pm

If anyone who is showing inability to control his drinking can do the right- about-face and drink like a gentleman
Something that I thought I was doing for many years......then I had the intention of doing it........then.....I found out I couldn't do it.

At that point that I admitted that I was powerless over alcohol and I was one of you: And thus began my journey to a spiritual experience and freedom.

hope everyone is having a great Sunday,
K.

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by jak » Sun Oct 11, 2009 4:35 pm

Thanks Karl,

Heaven knows, we have tried hard enough and long enough to drink like other people!


The peolple that I tried to drink like were hard drinkers and alcoholics. There were not many gentlemen in our crowd. One maybe, but he tried to drink like us too. We were a fellowship of hard partiers. Actually I tried to drink better than the others. We prided our abilities to drink everyone else under the table. It is no wonder I flamed out at age 26. I was not able to surrender to the program and escape the obsession for another two years.

jimk

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by ann2 » Mon Oct 19, 2009 7:16 am

jak wrote:The peolple that I tried to drink like were hard drinkers and alcoholics. . . .It is no wonder I flamed out at age 26.
I tried to drink like my family and my drinking/drugging friends. And I got to AA at 26. It was a relief to have another goal I think -- not drinking instead of drinking and trying to keep up appearances . . .

Ann
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by bowlerdawg » Mon Oct 19, 2009 1:22 pm

for me and I have heard many others share on this as well, but I did not want to admit to my innermost self that I was in fact a real alcoholic. I knew from a young age that I was most likely alcoholic. Alcohol did things to me that others did not seem to experience. But after the " fun " was over and several years of insanity that followed , I had to face facts about my life , and in so doing I had to come to grips with me.

I must have forgotten this some where along the line, because I had to go back out after 6 + years of sober time. Further reinforcing to my inner most self, that I am and will always be an alcoholic, but it's quite ok today when I think of the horror of what active drinking represents in my life.
First of all we had to quit playing God, it didn't work

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by happycamper » Mon Oct 19, 2009 2:32 pm

Oh yeah, Im powerless over alcohol. and Id be a liar if I said that I dont miss drinking. There is a strange sort of fellowship amongst boozers too. And I'll be honest .. I liked the way booze made me feel ( temporarily, until I turned into the pyscho wacked out of control pitiful woman that I did ), that warm feeling after a few drinks. The feeling that I was comfortable and whatever it was that might have been bothering me was gonna be alright.
I never realized until almost the very end of my drinking that booze would kill me if I didnt stop.

Admitting to myself that I was an alcoholic was not a really big deal to me once I realized that I was gonna die if I didnt change.

Please dont get me wrong .. I love being sober and today I am happy on a regular basis because of AA and the God I found there. But I still think about what my life use to be like on occasion. Ive heard it said best " Its okay to look over my shoulder at the past, just dont stare at it ".
Faith without works is dead

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by NancyNewMember » Mon Oct 19, 2009 5:36 pm

Oh, what a good topic for me today!

Thing is, I have known I was an alcoholic since at least 1986. I was a secret and heavy drinker. I used to have these dreams, about once a month, where I was trying to hide a body in the trunk of my car, or trying to drive the body somewhere to dispose of it. These dreams scared the crap out of me every time. Doesn't take a Dr. Freud to analyze those dreams!

Then I had a different kind of dream, where I was frantically looking all over the house for a bottle of booze I had hidden somewhere. In my dream, my long dead mother asked me why I was so upset. "Because I'm an alcoholic!" I screamed. That was two years before I got my white chip. So, I knew what I was.

I have been sort of the "happy" drunk these last five years, passing out sometimes, blacking out a few times, driving drunk or buzzed a lot, wetting my pants, crying too much. I just gave in to my disease wholeheartedly for whatever reason. But something happened last week, that I won't mention, and I finally realized that if I want to live, then the party is over.

I am powerless over alcohol.

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by Karl R » Mon Oct 19, 2009 8:06 pm

The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered a common solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree, and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action. This is the great news this book carries to those who suffer from alcoholism.
BB p. 17

And for those of us united by the common problem of alcoholism?....the absolutely wonderful news is that there is a common solution! A plan of action! That was the wonderful tidings which I heard for the first time when I lurked in here not so long ago. And that plan of action-a design for living can be found in the book "alcoholics anonymous" and is mirrored in the experience strength and hope of all those who have found sobriety through the action of the 12 steps of alcoholics anonymous!

It's great to have you here with us Nancy! You are much needed here.

cheers,
Karl

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by leejosepho » Wed Mar 28, 2012 8:00 am

Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going to believe they are in that class. By every form of self-deception and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to the rule, therefore nonalcoholic. If anyone who is showing inability to control his drinking can do the right- about-face and drink like a gentleman, our hats are off to him. Heaven knows, we have tried hard enough and long enough to drink like other people!
In my own case, and whether drunk or sober, I often used to stare at the bottle and wonder what in the world was going on. I knew there were others who drank like I did while some people did not, but I thought I was the only one anywhere who seemed "powerless" to do otherwise.
Here are some of the methods we have tried: Drinking beer only, limiting the number of drinks, never drinking alone, never drinking in the morning, drinking only at home, never having it in the house, never drinking during business hours, drinking only at parties, switching from scotch to brandy, drinking only natural wines, agreeing to resign if ever drunk on the job, taking a trip, not taking a trip, swearing off forever (with and without a solemn oath), taking more physical exercise, reading inspirational books, going to health farms and sanitariums, accepting voluntary commitment to asylums - we could increase the list ad infinitum.
For myself, much of that was initially about trying to find an ever-elusive "perfect formula" that could get me to where I wanted to be ... but then I ultimately began to realize I could not keep from "over-shooting the mark" every time.
We do not like to pronounce any individual as alcoholic, but you can quickly diagnose yourself. Step over to the nearest barroom and try some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it. It may be worth a bad case of jitters if you get a full knowledge of your condition.
Some of us suspect that element of our alcoholism prior to A.A. (and then "hear the words" about it here), and others of us first hear about it here and then "take the test" (intentionally or otherwise) to learn or to confirm we actually do have it.

=====

The next paragraph in our book moves past "More About ..." our physical "allergy" and begins sharing "More About ..." the matter of us and the self-unavoidable first drink.
=======================
"We A.A.s do not *stay* away from drinking [one day at a
time] -- we *grow* away from drinking [one day at a time]."
("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
=======================

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Re: PP 31-32 More about alcoholism (Powerless?)

Post by PaigeB » Wed Mar 28, 2012 3:36 pm

self-deception and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to the rule
I never really denied I was an alcoholic, in fact I insisted that I was one! It was my excuse to drink and a pre-understood apology for wrongs done. I was powerless, I was sick.
Here are some of the methods we have tried... we could increase the list ad infinitum.

Joe says: For myself, much of that was initially about trying to find an ever-elusive "perfect formula" that could get me to where I wanted to be
I could add a few methods to that list - not for quitting or for regulating consequences, but for finding that "just right" spot. Invariably it seldom lasted long and I too would over shoot the mark into insane drinking, because I was "thirsty".
we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics(pg 30) It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it.(pg 32
Here was the trick for me - I had no denial of my condition. I had to really deeply and honestly dig deep and concentrate on what "concede" ~ "to my" ~ "innermost self" actually meant! I had to look deep inside my psyche - soul if you will - in an honest search for the truth about the truth. A place deeper than the pitiful, incomprehensible, demoralization. I did this while I was drunk. I drank for 2 or 3 more days while I held this deep fact. I had called the AA hotline each of those nights trying to trick my disease into a "good time to quit". Like whisking off the tablecloth without moving the dishes. I really really needed a substitute for my only coping devise. I had tapped into that "unsuspected inner resource" for my courage and tenacity to walk into a noon meeting and take a white chip.
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

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