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The Problem Child.

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 20, 2017 4:39:33 PM / by Sherry Gaugler-Stewart posted in 4th Step, Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-anon, Family Program

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On a recent trip home I got to join my family for their weekly breakfast. The waitress took everyone’s order, and then looked to me for mine. I had no idea what my order would be, as I didn’t have a menu. Everyone else knew everything on the menu! So, when I asked her for one, and she brought it back, I jokingly apologized for being the “problem child” this morning. This was immediately met with another family member stating “I hate to tell you, dear, but you always have been.” Of course, I said I already knew this.

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A Soldier’s Calling.

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 15, 2017 10:37:21 AM / by John D. posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-anon

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Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me!" Isaiah 6:8

 

In 2007 I volunteered for my first tour to Iraq. I had been sober a long time by then, but I was afraid. Would I hold up under fire? Would my men follow my orders? Would I freeze in the face of danger? These and many more thoughts flooded my brain.

 

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Safety in Self-Help Groups - A.A.’s Common Welfare.

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 15, 2017 10:17:04 AM / by John D. posted in AA meetings, AA, Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-anon

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Earlier this year the General Service Office (GSO) of Alcoholics Anonymous in New York, NY published guidance on “Safety in A.A.”.  The paper was entitled "Safety and A.A.:  Our Common Welfare".  Printed on January 25, 2017,  this paper laid out the A.A. philosophy and helpful suggestions for keeping A.A. groups safe.  

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Carrying the Message.

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 19, 2017 9:30:00 AM / by John D. posted in Al-anon, Alcoholics Anonymous, 12 Steps, 12 step program

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So you’ve been asked to bring a meeting into a facility. Congratulations! What an honor and privilege it is to be involved in service. As it states on page 89 of the book Alcoholics Anonymous:

“To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends--this is an experience you must not miss.  We know you will not want to miss it.  Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.”

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Seven Steps to Conflict Resolution.

[fa icon="calendar'] Jun 14, 2017 9:00:00 AM / by John D. posted in conflict resolution, Al-anon, big book, acceptance, Love

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1.   It takes two to tango. In any situation if I respond with anger, hurt or frustration, the situation can quickly escalate. If I respond with calm and reassurance the situation can quickly defuse. If I refuse to do the dance of anger, the dance quickly ends.

 

2.   What other people think of me is none of my business. I have a sponsor and significant others to whom I turn for advice and suggestions. If I try to live my life to appease and please those around me, I become a people pleaser. And there’s an app for people pleasing – it’s called Al-Anon.

 

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The Family Afterward

[fa icon="calendar'] Oct 19, 2016 9:05:00 AM / by Mark Korman posted in Family Program, family support, Al-anon, Recovery

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When I am facilitating Family Program sessions I often ask participants to think of a family affected by addiction like a mobile floating over a child’s crib. When you imagine a mobile, there are a few things that instantly come to mind.  You’ll see a bunny, bear, frog, and bird: rotating around and helping the mobile to maintain balance.  There’s often quiet music playing in the background.  

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A Seed Had Been Planted

[fa icon="calendar'] Jun 17, 2016 12:30:00 PM / by Chris Nehotte posted in Al-anon, alcoholism, Family

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As a young child, my father was in the depths of his alcoholism.  I remember feeling frightened, confused and uncertain on some days, then happy,  joyous, and carefree on others.  I didn’t realize that my father’s drinking often determined which feelings would be present in me and my family. I did know that I was never going to be like my father!

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Grief in Addiction: Grieving the Loss of a Dream

[fa icon="calendar'] May 18, 2016 9:00:00 AM / by Sherry Gaugler-Stewart posted in Al-anon, Family Program, Family

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I made it through another Mother’s Day.  As a person who loves to celebrate, I definitely love the aspect of honoring the loving, nurturing women in our lives.  And, yet, it can still be a reminder of something that is missing in my own life – something that I dreamed of that didn’t take place because of the disease of alcoholism.

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Mindfulness during the Holiday Season

[fa icon="calendar'] Nov 18, 2015 1:39:53 PM / by Ellie Hyatt posted in recovery process, addiction, Al-anon, Family Program, family support, family recovery, drug recovery, alcohol recovery, mindfulness

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The expectation of the holiday season can be stressful for everyone. For reasons that might be obvious, that stress seems to be even greater in families dealing with recovery from a drug or alcohol addiction. 

There is a simple practice that can reduce that stress and offer us the opportunity for a meaningful holiday experience; that is a mindfulness practice. It allows us to stop our racing thoughts, which are usually produced by some form of fear. It allows us to make choices that support our well-being. It allows us to be present.

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Work Together as a Family to Help an Alcoholic Loved One.

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 20, 2015 10:37:00 AM / by Ellie Hyatt posted in Al-anon, alcoholic loved one, alcohol recovery

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Family Recovery Series: 6 Things You Can Do to Help an Alcoholic Loved One.

Part 4: Work Together as a Family

Last month we talked about the importance of setting limits and sticking to them, so the alcoholic learns to take responsibility for their own destructive actions. Family members must take care of themselves if they’re going to be able to help and setting limits is a key piece of self-care. 
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