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Be Careful What You Pray For…

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 16, 2020 8:24:09 AM / by John D. posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, Recovery, AA meetings, Sober Housing, 12 steps of aa, alcohol abuse

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I was 18 years old and three years sober. Ever since I went through treatment in the summer of 1978, all I wanted to do was to be a counselor. My counselor had saved my life and all I wanted to do was to become a counselor so I could save lives too. I could think of no higher calling or more worthwhile work. So, I applied for a Counselor Training Program.

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How Treatment Becomes a Part of Our Disease

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 3, 2020 1:04:48 PM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, Recovery, substance abuse, AA meetings, Sober Housing, alcohol abuse, AA Big Book

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Step One of Alcoholics Anonymous tells me that I am powerless over alcohol when I drink it. Step One of Al-Anon tells me that I am powerless over alcohol when other people drink it, or when other people want to drink it. Both treatment programs, and The Retreat (which is not a treatment program) are powerless over alcohol and addiction when the people in them want to drink.

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Gratitude and Resentment

[fa icon="calendar'] Dec 5, 2019 8:00:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, Recovery, substance abuse, alcohol abuse, Older Adult Recovery Programs

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            In the early 1970’s I drove a taxi in New York City. The fare meters were mechanical, not electronic. They were driven by two moving cables. One cable measured time, and the other measured distance. Whichever cable moved faster drove the fare. If the cab was stuck in traffic, the fare still went up, driven by the “waiting time”. If the cab was moving briskly, the meter went up, pushed along by the distance driven. That image comes to mind when I think of gratitude and resentment.

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We’re As Sober As Our Driving

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 6, 2019 12:37:42 PM / by John MacDougall posted in Recovery, Sober Housing, alcohol abuse, AA Big Book, Alcohol & Health

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“I don’t mean driving under the influence of alcohol, I mean driving under the influence of anger, resentment, and ego. “You’re in MY lane!” “You’re in MY way!” “You cut ME off!”"

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Building the Ship While We Sailed It

[fa icon="calendar'] Mar 6, 2019 6:00:00 AM / by John D. posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, alcoholism, AA meetings, alcohol abuse, Alcoholism Treatment Program

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Powerlessness is not Hopelessness

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 23, 2019 5:48:56 AM / by Sherry Gaugler-Stewart posted in family recovery, 12 steps of aa, alcohol abuse, Family Sober Support, Recovery Program

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It’s Ok to Be Sad at Christmas, If We Have Something to Be Sad About

[fa icon="calendar'] Nov 30, 2018 6:12:23 PM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, family recovery, Sober Housing, alcohol abuse, Family Sober Support

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This month, there are a lot of “service pieces” in magazines and newspapers with helpful advice about how to not be sad at the holidays of Christmas and Hanukkah. These well-meaning columns have suggestions on how to change our moods and move away from sadness. However, I have a theory that having feelings that match reality is mental health, not mental illness.

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Proof of Attendance at Meetings

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 13, 2018 10:10:06 AM / by John D. posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, AA meetings, alcohol abuse, Recovery Program, Support Group

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There is a question that comes up repeatedly around the rooms of the program - what about these people the courts are sending here? What should we do with them?

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Detachment with Respect

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 17, 2018 12:06:56 PM / by Sherry Gaugler-Stewart posted in family recovery, alcoholism, Recovery, alcohol abuse, Family Sober Support

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Slamming doors. Broken dishes. Arguments that the neighbors could hear clearly. Tears. Unkind words. And, conversely the resonant sound of hostile silence. The disease of alcoholism had wedged itself into the middle of our marriage.

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“Could We Have A Moment of Silence….”

[fa icon="calendar'] Jun 27, 2018 10:26:24 AM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, AA meetings, alcohol abuse, Recovery Program, Drugs Adiction

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At many AA meetings, somewhere in the program, a person asks “Could we have a moment of silence for the alcoholic who still suffers?” We are briefly quiet, perhaps thinking of someone we know whose suffering is all too clear to us. I also think of those whose suffering is over because they lost their lives in a struggle with alcohol or drugs.

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