Is this considered cross talk?

For recovery discussion
Post Reply
Forums Newcomer
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2017 4:44 pm

Is this considered cross talk?

Post by Socalseagypsy »

My old sponsor attends my home group. We are not on speaking terms. One other woman that she used to sponsor goes to our meeting. They are not on speaking terms either. My old sponsor regularly shares about her betrayal by 'past sponsees' in our meeting. We know she's sharing 'at' us and it's more of the unsafe behavior that caused us to not be on speaking terms with her to begin with. IS THIS CONSIDERED CROSS TALKING? We'd like to make a motion to define cross talking in our meeting format to dissuade this behavior but I can't tell if this fits the script. Any and all suggestions appreciated. Love to you guys!

User avatar
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 949
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2015 11:45 am
Location: France

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by clouds »

Sheesh! what a lousy situation.
Sure, you could take that topic to the business meeting.
I hope there are meetings you can go to where this x-sponsor won't be attending though.
" Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get well regardless of anyone. The only condition is that he trust in God and clean house." page 98 A.A.

User avatar
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 5307
Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 12:22 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by avaneesh912 »

The problem is people who don't know what they are getting into when starting to sponsoring. She needs help. You may use the 4th step resentment prayer. Your HP will provide you an answer. May be you can take her for a dinner and have a open one on one discussion.
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)

User avatar
Trusted Servant
Posts: 8713
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:28 pm
Location: Iowa USA

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by PaigeB »

Cross talk general refers to when one person says, I have a dog and another person says I have a dog too, sometimes going back and forth. More like a recovery house meeting than an AA meeting where people share one at a time.

I think that if anything is bothering me, it is on me.
BB Acceptance, p.417
When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing or situation -- some fact of my life -- unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.
and like avanneesh said - it would surely be time for me to use the Sick Man's Prayer, ""We asked God to help us show the same tolerance, pity, and patience that we would cheerfully grant a sick friend. When a person offended we said to ourselves, 'This is a sick man/woman. How can I help him/'her? God save me from being angry. Thy will be done." We avoid retaliation or argument. We wouldn’t treat sick people that way. If we do, we destroy our chance of being helpful. We cannot be helpful to all people, but at least God will show us how to take a kindly and tolerant view of each and every one."

I like short prayers so after reading the passage a few times plucked out "God save me from being angry." But Later I began to use "This is a sick man/woman."

It worked for me. Still, a business meeting, whether she is present or not, is not the place to chose a fight. Do some research of the Traditions and stay within them yourself, as well as bringing the request that other members stay within them as well. See also:

Good luck and Peace be with you, the women in the meeting and your sick friend.
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

User avatar
Blue Moon
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 3676
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2002 2:01 am
Location: New Jersey

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by Blue Moon »

The dictionary defines cross-talk as "casual conversation" or "conversation that does not relate to the topic being discussed". But many in AA interpret it to mean answering back / directly responding to something that was said. So your group may need to define what it thinks "cross-talk" means.

IMO it doesn't include talk of resentments, which is what you're describing that she's sharing. Perhaps folks in the meeting need to point out that if any sponsor develops such resentments, they would have completely missed the point about what being a "sponsor" really means, so maybe some step-work and recovery is in order before attempting to sponsor again.

This is sometimes one problem with sponsorship in AA, we have no test to determine whether someone is suitable to be one.
Ian S
AKA Blue Moon

User avatar
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 4152
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:45 pm

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by Brock »

My old sponsor regularly shares about her betrayal by 'past sponsees' in our meeting.
I suppose she considers that she has been 'betrayed' by those who have quit her sponsorship efforts, because she feels they were there to help her keep sober. And while it does say that intensive work with another alcoholic, “works when other activities fail,” I am not too sure many know what these other activities are, and maybe they don't practice some of the steps, particularly the spiritual growth offered in #11. So instead of looking for strength in spirituality, they look for it in the number of sponsees they have. To me it's disturbing when we see people boasting of how many they have, or saying my sponsee is going really well she has many sponsees of her own. It's not a good measure of one's progress to base it on how many people they sponsor.

Others are offering advise on saying prayers for her and such, that's fair enough. But I would think a little tough love might serve her better, just tell her why nobody wants her as a sponsor, maybe she will learn from it, she sure won't learn from the prayers what she is doing to put others off. I don't think it's cross talk either, but being a bit of a rebel, when my turn to talk came, I would probably say something along the lines of, 'I wonder what makes some sponsees dump their sponsors, and make them feel betrayed.'

Best of luck at sorting this out, just keep in mind it's not your fault. Even the leaflet on sponsorship says we can change sponsors, it's not uncommon. And a proper recovered alcoholic with the type of sobriety it takes to be a sponsor, would accept a sponsee wanting to change sponsors, with grace and understanding.

"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

User avatar
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 702
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: In The High Desert of California

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by Roberth »

hello Socalseagypsy, My name is Robert and I am a Los Angeles area alcoholic. As soon as I read your post I could hear my sponsors voice. He wouldn't look at the cross talk as a problem but a symptom. He would tell me, like he has more than once to figure out my part in it (non communication) and make any amends that is needed. He's funny about me holding on to resentment. and I have leaned he is right they only seem to hurt me.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in pretty, well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming WOW What a ride!!!!

User avatar
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 1480
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2011 3:35 pm
Location: Kansas, USA

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by Duke »

My experience is that the more you try to manage people who want to complain about others, the longer and louder they complain. There's a lot of truth to the idea that lack of attention is the best way to deal with situations like this. If you have any amends to make, get them done. If not, let it go. It's not your problem.
"If you are humble nothing will touch you, neither praise nor disgrace, because you know what you are.", Mother Teresa

Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:03 pm

Re: Is this considered cross talk?

Post by kdub720 »

Wow, This hits home for me. I ran from a home group because of this type of problem. We all struggle, and when others tell us that we are not enough only adds to our confusion. I agree with the comments prior that you need to let go and let this "sponsor" deal with their own issues before they try and help you deal with yours. Some people have desire to bass others around, and that is not what we are about. We have to communicate in a non-judgemental way or this program is flawed. I loved this post this morning, as I have found way more support from friends and family while anyone trying to be my sponsor comes off needy. Thanks again, this is a great topic.

Post Reply