Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

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Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Chel_E » Mon May 28, 2018 3:56 pm

Hi everybody. Longtime lurker and all that good stuff. Just wondering if anyone has faced anything related or just has any plain old peanut gallery opinions.....

I've been with my sponsor for about a year and while we're pretty different in our sensibilities and day to day lives, our dynamic has more or less worked well. A couple months into it all, I had begun to hear rumblings that she paid her bills doing porn, but I chalked it up to gossip, and even if it was somehow true, I'm very sex positive, pro sex worker rights, pro legalization, etc etc.... and beyond all that: don't throw stones in glass houses, tend to your own garden. (That and there's a pretty consistent sex worker contingent at the meetings I go to, and I've always found it admirable that like all of us, they're just chipping away at change bit by bit instead of getting overwhelmed by the impossibility of changing EVERYTHING all at once.... and that's naively assuming they even want to change on the sex worker front..... but I digress).

So it's a year later and after a bunch of 2+2=4 comments and weird scheduling conflicts I've finally taken the blinders off and recognized that yes she's indeed in porn, even if she hasn't admitted to it outright. I let my curiosity get the better of me and google searched for actors/camgirls in my area and she was literally among the the top three to show up and is pretty darn popular internationally, and pretty darn hardcore. Once again, I'm sex positive, pro sex worker rights, try not to throw stones in glass houses, etc etc.... so I'm not thrilled to admit, I'm feeling conflicted.

We're literally doing step group in the same apartment that's on camera in her vids and I've been sitting on the same couch where everything under the sun been done. Instead of being present for the work I find myself distracted and going down the rabbit hole...... "how can I sit here listening to this person tell me (in supposedly good faith) about spiritual centeredness and keeping an honest moral inventory (eg. not compartmentalizing and hiding things away) when she's doing what she's doing. How can I take our conversation about trying to live honestly when we're surrounded by what I now know are an assortment of shoes/clothes/knickknacks/electronics that she's gotten by manipulating emotionally needy men into sending her gifts in hopes of currying some fake sense of intimacy?" I think I was less bothered by the harshness of the porn itself than I was by the blatant ugliness of the persona she has online..... one where she unabashedly zeroes in on people's neediness, chastises them for their cheapness, and takes them for all they're worth under the guise of friendship, favortism, etc etc..... it was all so ADDICTY and so much like "the old life" of grifting the gullible (even if, in this case, willingly gullible).

None of us are saints in the program, and I of all people have no right to stand on any sort of moral high ground. So my own hypocrisy is only pissing me off more. But I can't seem to let go of this imaginary idea that we're all "in the same boat/on the same team/working toward betterment and radical honesty and not allowing ourselves dicey little allowances that previously always led us back into trouble." Relating to that, she's a sponsor to several other girls in our little click, and I CHERISH our click, rely on it, and I wouldn't want to lose it because I high-mindedly decided I just couldn't continue with my current sponsor.

Having a hard time reconciling all this?!?!? Anyway.....any input would be welcome. Thanks XOXO
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Spirit Flower » Mon May 28, 2018 4:35 pm

Don't be so open minded your brains fall out.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Brock » Mon May 28, 2018 4:49 pm

Welcome here Chel, I admire your open mindedness.

Just wanted to welcome you, and say that others should be along with an opinion on your situation, I will think about it and hopefully say something later. We have had many sponsor related queries here before, but I don’t think we ever had one quite like this.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby D'oh » Mon May 28, 2018 4:58 pm

Does She have what you want?

Is She willing to show you how she got it?

She could be a Martian, as long as the first 2 fit.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Greywolf » Mon May 28, 2018 7:45 pm

Lord Buckley, my favorite comedian, said, "There's a lot of good ways for a man to be wicked."

I thought of that when you said something about the gossiping going on in your group. Or as Bob Dylan said in Talking New York on his first album, "Some people ain't got much food on the table but they got a lot of forks and knives and they gotta cut something."

My children' mother and I thought our responsibility was to see that our children grew up to be able to take care of themselves. If you think you can decide what's best for you (without endangering your sobriety of course) IMO that's the route to take. That's what my sponsor did for me and what I in turn did with people I sponsored.

That's not the way it's recommended this day in time but we didn't have pamphlets telling us how to do things the right way. We didn't have sponsors who took pigeons by the hand and walked them through the BB and the steps, but people stayed sober and learned to stand on their own 2 feet. God as I understand Him/Her wants His people to be strong physically, mentally and spiritually. And He'll take us any way He can get us.

Obviously your sponsor hasn't tried to recruit you into the business. She has recovered and learned to make it in life without drinking. Her morals are her morals, not morals of the gossiping busy bodies in your group and certainly not the morals of the God consciousness folks wherever they they reside. IIRC there was a biblical character who worked in the "sex industry." Maybe there' some guidance there.

Follow your conscious and remember, she may need you as a friend if you are up to it. You've been sober, what, a year? It will take strong character to stand with her and stay with her as your sponsor. She feels the stares and hears the rumors. In my book she is a very strong woman to stay sober and go to meetings with all that gossip.

Cherl, it's your call. Good luck.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Brock » Tue May 29, 2018 11:29 am

I thought about this and can not judge your sponsor as good or bad in what she does, or good or bad for you. I come from the Caribbean and we are pretty old fashioned, plus I am old, so those two together add up to someone who is straight laced. I never had a sponsor except for my 5th step, and asked a man I knew from NA to hear it, mainly because he was white like myself, and we have cultural differences here. I found out after that he was gay and I was upset, that’s how I am, figured he should have told me upfront, believe it or not even being openly Gay is against the law here, far less making porn movies. Anyway that’s going off the point, although you didn’t ask for advise on it, the point in your post that really caught my eye was this -
Relating to that, she's a sponsor to several other girls in our little click, and I CHERISH our click, rely on it, and I wouldn't want to lose it because I high-mindedly decided I just couldn't continue with my current sponsor.

Firstly, if she is your sponsor for a year and you haven’t completed the steps, in my opinion that’s reason enough to find someone new. Secondly, if you have completed the steps, and living in the solution of 10, 11 & 12, nowhere in the program of AA does it suggest relying on others like this clique, but it’s all too common today unfortunately. AA is a recovery program, therefore when we do it successfully we recover, we then help others recover by taking them through the steps, and our life becomes one of serenity, relying on a higher power of our understanding. My wish for you is that you find strength and happiness outside of your little group.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Greywolf » Tue May 29, 2018 12:17 pm

I think she is referring to a group of friends when she says "clique" and relying on them could mean anything besides replacing God. While having friends is not in the program of recovery, having friends is not frowned on either.

I had a group of friends who I did a lot of things with both inside and outside the rooms. We went on 12 step calls together, formed a group together, played golf together and helped each other with home and other projects. Sometimes we just hung out together and had coffee. 2 died sober after over 40 years continuous sobriety. One had just over 50 years. Relying on them for friendship was one to the best benefits I got out of being a member of AA.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Spirit Flower » Tue May 29, 2018 2:35 pm

Relating to both Brock and Grey Wolf's comments on "clique."

Sometimes it relates to a kind of co-dependency. It is more than a group of friends. More like a covey of pigeons which some sponsors make; and to have that sponsor, you have to be in the clique.

I had friends in the program early on. I needed friends; but we didn't all have the same sponsor.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby PaigeB » Tue May 29, 2018 2:48 pm

we're pretty different in our sensibilities and day to day lives, our dynamic has more or less worked well.
This is a really good thing! At least you will always be surprised by her advice! :lol:

I laugh, but seriously. I often think, "I know what my sponsor will say when I call her" BUT MY EXPERIENCE is that when I call her I am always deeply amazed by her advice about how to handle a situation. Recovery really depends on thinking differently - and reacting differently - and acting differently than we did before.

Also: No matter WHAT one's darkest shame is, I have Faith that it WILL save the life of another alcoholic, some day some how. Page 124 of the Big Says: ... in God's hands, our dark past becomes the greatest possession we have - the key to life and happiness for others."

I saw this today...
29th May Daily Reflection

TRUE TOLERANCE

The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.

TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 139

I first heard the short form of the Third Tradition in the Preamble.
When I came to A.A. I could not accept myself, my alcoholism, or a Higher Power. If there had been any physical, mental, moral, or religious requirements for membership, I would be dead today.
Bill W. said in his tape on the Traditions that the Third Tradition is a charter for individual freedom.
The most impressive thing to me was the feeling of acceptance from members who were practicing the Third Tradition by tolerating and accepting me.
I feel acceptance is love and love is God's will for us.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

If there had been any physical, mental, moral, or religious requirements for membership, I would be dead today. I truly believe this.
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
The e-AA Group's 7th Tradition link: www.e-aa.org/group_seventh.php
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby shebot83 » Tue May 29, 2018 8:46 pm

Hi Chel_E,
What an interesting topic. I myself do not have a sponsor as I have never lined up personality wise with one. I am very selective who I am going to lower my guard to and want to spend time with. Because lets be honest, this person will be calling, texting, talking, checking in on you, spending time with you etc. Most of the members of AA, I don't trust enough nor get along with that I would allow this to happen. I have met two intelligent trustworthy older men that I thought would do the job just but as I am female, that is a big "no no" so I am still waiting.

However a few things.
1. Don't let anyone tell you that you can't find something unfitting, disgusting, or awkward. It is OKAY to feel mad, upset, or awkward about these findings. What is not okay is to treat someone less than a human being because of it. Having a different set of morals is just that. Follow them and don't feel bad for your gut telling you that is is not okay. But remember, be kind. There are people out there who thing drinking or being part of AA is disgusting. They wouldn't hire you for a job, date you, or might terminate a friendship if they knew that you were a drinker. Give someone the same basic human respect that you would like if they discovered your past, your secrets, and your "habit".

2. Now you have two options. Either you can live with her being a sex worker or you can't. Decide and stick to it. If you can't.... and you want to keep your AA group of friends. Be KIND about it. Suggest that the meet be held at a different location. Suggest a coffee place with great pastries and offer to buy the first round! Then speak to your sponsor. Let them know that you are having some personal conflicts inside and you don't really want to talk about them but be honest and let them know you will be seeking out a new sponsor. If they want to talk about it because they know why your leaving, then let them if you feel comfortable. If you would rather not, then tell them you aren't comfortable. Take the part of this plan and alter it to how you are feeling. If you can live with them being a sex worker but don't want to hang on the couch that "Debbie does Dallas" was filmed on, then suggest the cafe place. etc.

Just remember, however deep down you feel about it. Handle it with respect and be kind.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby positrac » Wed May 30, 2018 2:49 am

Welcome and one point I'd like to add: does your sponsor have an active sponsor she see's regularly? Having this makes the point of sponsorship work and so maybe find that out and try and let the rest go because it is her living and not yours.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Spirit Flower » Wed May 30, 2018 5:31 am

To thine own self be true... (on AA coins)
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Greywolf » Wed May 30, 2018 10:10 am

Spirit Flower wrote:To thine own self be true... (on AA coins)

Just out of curiosity, who decides what goes on these "coins?" I'm pretty sure we can't blame that on Bill. :lol:
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Roberth » Wed May 30, 2018 11:56 am

Greywolf wrote:
Spirit Flower wrote:To thine own self be true... (on AA coins)

Just out of curiosity, who decides what goes on these "coins?" I'm pretty sure we can't blame that on Bill. :lol:


in answer to Greywolf......... who ever want to pay to have them.
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Re: Advice: turns out my sponsor is a sex worker

Postby Greywolf » Thu May 31, 2018 12:16 am

Roberth wrote: in answer to Greywolf......... who ever want to pay to have them.

So you are saying that if I wanted to create a line of chips, I could put whatever I wanted on them -- if I payed for them.

After my regular Wednesday meeting last night I got the "chip box" and took a look at the chips. I was frankly surprised that the chip for one month, 2 months and bronze substitutes for blue chips had the same design including the words, "To thine own self be true" embossed on one side. The bronze "years" chip had Roman numerals to indicate the years in a small circle in the center.

Every group as far as I know, except my Wednesday Group, has the same meeting format that they have for the chairman to use to conduct the meeting. I thought this was a local thing that had been passed along from meeting to meeting as they were formed -- until I went to a meeting in San Diego about 15 years ago. I couldn't believe my ears. That nearly identical format was used. The name of the group was changed and that was about it.

Our group originally started opening the meeting with a moment of silence to use as you saw fit. Then one night a visitor informed us it was not an AA meeting without opening it with the Serenity Prayer. We certainly intended it to be an AA meeting so we put in opening it with the SP. She never came back but we kept the SP opening.

Our group does things a little differently. (What a flipping surprise, eh?) The biggest difference is we encourage 'cross talk' during the meeting. How do you have discussion without it? We still have trouble having a discussion. Seems most folks have become accustomed to giving a little 3 to 5 minute talk on the topic -- usually delivered in a monotone with the volume turned down.
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