Category Archives: denial

Personal Responsibility

“I believe that we are solely responsible for our choices, and we have to accept
the consequences of every deed, word and thought throughout our lifetime.”

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (1926-2004)


Anyone who sits through a few meetings will hear someone blaming their addiction (or other people) for their behavior. “My addict did this,” or “It was just my addict talking,” or “If it weren’t for my addiction, I….” or “If she hadn’t…” or “If they didn’t…” (insert appropriate whine).

Our attitudes are often the same regarding those whose social behavior fails to meet our standards. Perhaps we believe they have mistreated us or a loved one. Perhaps we believe they should know better, based on our underestanding of our reality. And do we get pissed off when they fail to apologize or make restitution in some way? Of course we do! We demand that they accept the responsibility for their actions (judged by our standards, mind you), and that they try to make things right.

Continue reading

Bitch, Whine And Debate, Or Experience, Strength And Hope?

Note: These comments are not meant to apply to
newcomers or people in crisis.


I get really annoyed at meetings when the discussion veers to subjects that have nothing to do with recovery. I’m perfectly willing to admit that the irritation is my problem, but this is my blog and I’m going to discuss it anyway.  :-p

The other night I was at a meeting where the chair asked for a topic, and one of our more “intellectual” members raised a hand and commenced a five-minute dissertation on how they didn’t understand why we say in the rooms that it takes an addict to really understand an addict, why they shouldn’t just be able to speak openly about their addiction to any friend and get useful feedback, etc. They used the words obviously, clearly and in my opinion a lot. This sort of thing does nothing to promote discussion about recovery; it merely exercises the ego of the speaker.

Our fellowships are not debating societies. They are about getting a sponsor, developing a support system, working the steps and practicing the 12 principles* in our daily lives. If I want to bitch, whine or debate, I need to do it outside a meeting with my sponsor or a support, not hijack a meeting with subjects that have little or nothing to do with the process of recovery. Better yet, at whatever point in recovery I may be, I need to remember that I’m the problem, and projecting my complaints onto other people or ideas is not conducive to a genuine pursuit of sobriety.

Maybe that’s what I’m doing now: projecting my issues.

Or maybe not.

* 12 Principles? What 12 principles?