Letters, We Get Mail, CDXXV



[The previous letter from King_Fan is here.]

[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters425.html#King_Fan ]

Date: Fri, 16 Jan 2015 03:12:13 +0000 (UTC)     (answered 18 January 2015.)
From: king_fan
To: "[email protected]"
Subject:

You say "Please pick out your favorite two or three points of disagreement, and show us what thereal truth is, citing valid and credible sources of information.", yet this is something you yourself have difficulty doing.

For example, you assert (at "http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-propaganda.html#everybody") an entire list of things that A.A./N.A./Al-anon supposedly say.

They (XA programs) do not say any of those things. And there is no "real truth" nor "valid and credible source of information" you can produce that demonstrates otherwise. The official literature actually suggests the exact opposite.

Your "evidence" for this is a quote (from a non-X/A source, no less), that 12 step programs can be "important." The quote dose not say that "everyone is doing them," or even that "most people are doing them".

Your next "evidence" is a quote that is selectively used without any frame of reference or qualification, that is "The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered acommon solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree,and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action"

Note the key word "a". AA has "a" way out. Not "the way", not "the best way", not "the most common way", not "the way everyone is doing it" (despite your claims otherwise).

Your experience in AA may admittedly have been quite different. You may in fact have run into a book thumper or a crusty old timer who told you exactly everything that you listed. I would tell you my experience has been exactly opposite. I have never run into anyone with that sort of attitude. Now, your response to me would probably be "well that's just anecdotal evidence, that's just your experience." And I would reply, yes it is, just as your example is anecdotal evidence and your own personal experience. And your response would be that you heard from X number of people something close to what you said, and I would say I have heard from X number of people exactly what I said. And in the end, it's just a big mess of anecdotal evidence.

So you go to "valid and credible source(s) of information", which in this case would be the official organization stance. And the official organizational stance is not what you claim it to be. Nor does any scientific study or paper say what you have listed on your page.

Look, there are lots of ways to get and stay sober. I have lots of alcoholism in my family. My brother went to AA and still drinks not very successfully, unless you count accumulation of DUI's a success. My mother used to drink and quit drinking through her church. My uncle was a drug addict and alcoholic and quit without any program or support group and now has become an occasional social drinker. I went to AA and found something that works for me. So my personal experience shows many different paths a person can take. And I'm OK with all of them. And so is AA. But you only believe I am some brainwashed delusional fool who believes you must be "saved", and may "only be saved through AA." On that, you're simply wrong.

I appreciate that you're sober. Anyone who has struggled with any kind of addiction and found a way out is 100% ok in my book, no matter how they quit, be it willpower, "won't"-power, church, Moderation Management, AA Agnostica, or whatever.

You're sober, and that's all that matters. And I'm sober, thanks to AA, and that's all that matters. The only difference between you and I is that I can see that your way works for you, and I'm 100% cool with that, and you can't see that my way worked for me, nor are you cool with that.

God bless ("a" God, we Buddhists can believe in a God as well) you as always.

=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~==~=~=~=~=~=~=
"Genius may have its limitations,
but stupidity is not thus handicapped."
— Elbert Hubbard
=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~==~=~=~=~=~=~=

Hello King Fan,

Thanks for the reply. I am pleasantly surprised to receive this letter. Yes, I asked you to

"Please pick out your favorite two or three points of disagreement, and show us what thereal truth is, citing valid and credible sources of information."
And you actually tried to do it. Alas, the last part, the credible sources of information, is missing.

You complained about a variety of things:

  • For example, you assert (at "http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-propaganda.html#everybody") an entire list of things that A.A./N.A./Al-anon supposedly say.

    They (XA programs) do not say any of those things. And there is no "real truth" nor "valid and credible source of information" you can produce that demonstrates otherwise. The official literature actually suggests the exact opposite.

    Your "evidence" for this is a quote (from a non-X/A source, no less), that 12 step programs can be "important." The quote dose not say that "everyone is doing them," or even that "most people are doing them".

    Actually, the list of sayings that you complained about is common jabber in A.A. circles, and much of it comes right out of Council-approved literature:

    • Everybody recovers through x.A..
    • Everybody knows that x.A. works, and has saved millions of lives.
    • Everybody who ever overcame an alcohol or drug addiction did it by doing the Twelve Steps.
    • Everybody goes to meetings.
    • Everybody needs to go to meetings.
    • Everybody knows that the answer to every crisis in life is "Get to a meeting, as fast as possible."
    • Everybody knows that x.A. members are the experts on addiction.
    • Everybody is just taking it "One Day At A Time."
    • Everybody is in recovery.
    • Everybody knows that the Twelve Steps work, and that all of the x.A. religious dogma is true.
    • Everybody knows that x.A. is "spiritual", not religious.
    • Everybody knows that x.A. is the only way.
    • Everybody knows that newcomer alcoholics and addicts are all "in denial", and if they object to anything about the "spiritual" 12-Step program, it is just their addiction talking.
    • Everybody knows that the best thing you can do with an alcoholic or drug addict is force him to go to x.A..

    • "Twelve-step programs are increasingly recognized as important resources and treatment adjuncts for recovering alcohol and other drug abusers."
      An analysis of 12-Step programs for substance abusers from a developmental perspective, Shulamith Lala Ashenberg Straussner; Betsy Robin Spiegel, Clinical Social Work Journal, Fall 1996 v24 n3 p299(11)

    • "The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered a common solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree, and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action."
      The Big Book, 3rd Edition, William G. Wilson, chapter 2, "There Is A Solution", page 17.

      (What does "brotherly and harmonious action" really mean? That is yet another one of Bill's many euphemisms. And it usually it means is, "go recruiting" and then "attend A.A. meetings and help to indoctrinate the new recruits by not quite telling them the truth".)

    Many of those statements came right out of Council-approved literature, and some are even the words of Bill Wilson. Bill Wilson routinely talked out of both sides of his mouth. First, he would make mollifying statements like "We know only a little," and "A.A. isn't the only way", and then he would reverse himself and say that A.A. really is the only way:

    First, the rap was:

    • Our book is meant to be suggestive only. We realize we know only a little.
      The Big Book, 3rd Edition, William G. Wilson, A Vision For You, page 164.

    • Upon therapy for the alcoholic himself, we surely have no monopoly.
      The Big Book, 3rd Edition, William G. Wilson, Foreword, page xxi.

    • We have no desire to convince anyone that there is only one way by which faith can be acquired.   ...
      The Big Book, 3rd Edition, William G. Wilson, There Is A Solution, page 28.

      (A.A. was advertised as a "quit-drinking" program, not an "acquire faith" program. But now Bill's goal is to make the beginners "acquire faith." That's another bait-and-switch trick.)

    But then Bill Wilson switched sides and declared that A.A. really was The Only Way:

    The other statements that came from A.A. promoters are also common A.A. fare. A.A. benefits by having propagandists and promoters who constantly repeat such untrue slogans and clichés, in magazines and newspapers, and on TV, and in movies, constantly parrotting the advertising slogans, and then when somebody challenges them, A.A. defenders are quick to complain that those pundits are not "Council-approved" sources, so A.A. cannot be criticized for what they say. That's like having your cake and eating it too. A.A. benefits from having all of those promoters and propagandists advertising and praising and selling A.A. and A.A.-based "treatment", but A.A. denies any responsibility for what they say.

    That's the same thing as the arguments about what constitutes "the real A.A.":

    Baloney. It's all really A.A.

    • Whatever is done to newcomers by the A.A. oldtimers is "the real A.A."
    • Whatever is taught in A.A. meetings is the real A.A.
    • Whenever a sponsor seduces a cloudy-headed freshly detoxed young woman, for her that is the real A.A.
    • Whenever a crazy sponsor tells someone not to take his or her medications, that is the real A.A.
    • Whenever A.A. oldtimers lie about the real history of A.A., that is the real A.A.
    • Whenever A.A. true believer members begin an A.A. meeting by reading out loud Bill Wilson's lie about "RARELY have we seen a person fail...", that is the real A.A.
    • And when the A.A. organization sues A.A. members for legally publishing their own literature, like their own translations of the out-of-copyright first edition of the Big Book, that scheming, perjuring corporation is the real A.A. too.
    • And whenever another A.A. promoter plants another untrue plug in another TV program like Cagney and Lacy or The Hill Street Blues or ER or The West Wing or The History Detectives or Elementary, that is the real A.A. too.

    Likewise, common A.A. sayings and slogans that are routinely repeated by A.A. members and taught to newcomers count as part of the standard A.A. lore, even when they are not printed in Council-approved literature. Such non-approved slogans include:

    • "You must Work A Strong Program, or else your fate will be Jails, Institutions, or Death."
    • "You're better off in here pretending you are an alcoholic, than out there pretending you're not."
    • "Without A.A., it's Amen."
    • "If you leave A.A., your fate is jails, institutions, or death."
    • "I've been in jails; I've been in institutions; there's only one more place to go."
    • "A.A. is the last stop on the train."
    • "A.A. is the last house on the street."
    • "A.A. is the Last Stop on the Track."
    • "I tried everything before A.A."
    • "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome."
    • "Insanity is the seeming inability to learn from past mistakes."
    • "Don't let anything get in front of your recovery."
    • "You will lose anything that you put ahead of your recovery."
    • "If you are not working on your recovery, you are working on your relapse."
    • "Where do I find sobriety? Twelve steps past any lengths."
    • "You're exactly where you're supposed to be."
    • "You are exactly where God wants you to be."
    • "God saved me a parking spot in front of the meeting."
    • "Your disease is doing push-ups in the parking lot."
    • "Came, came to, came to believe."
    • "Think."
    • "Think, Think, Think."
    • "Don't Drink and Don't Think!"
    • "Don't drink, don't think, and go to meetings."
    • "Don't drink, don't think, and don't get married."
    • "Religion is for people who are afraid of going to Hell; Spirituality is for people who've been there."
    • "Most people hope to avoid hell; spiritual people have been there."
    • "Nobody comes here by accident."
    • "If you drunk enough to come to A.A., you've drunk enough."
    • "Meds quiet the still small voice of God."
    • "You won't have 'real sobriety' if you take medications."
    • "God can do anything. You don't need medications."
    • "If you take medications to treat an addiction, you are just substituting one drug for another."
    • "Medications just treat the surface symptoms. The Twelve Steps will get at the underlying causes."
    • "Doctors who prescribe drugs don't know anything about using spirituality to cure spiritual diseases."
    • "There is no chemical solution to a spiritual problem."

    And that is just the tip of the iceberg. I have a list of over 900 A.A. slogans, and most of them are not "Council-approved".

    You see, there is much more to A.A. than just what you call "the official organization stance." There is the official A.A. as defined by the A.A. headquarters in New York, and then there is the real A.A. as it is actually practiced by groups all over the country. And when people are sentenced to A.A., they get the real street version of A.A., not the "official A.A.". And when casual visitors or newcomers go to an A.A. meeting, they get the real street version of A.A., like Clancy's Clones or Mike Quinones' Midtown Group, not the nice sanitized "official A.A.".

  • Then you quibbled over "a", as in "a way out", versus "the only way out".

    Your next "evidence" is a quote that is selectively used without any frame of reference or qualification, that is "The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered a common solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree,and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action"

    Note the key word "a". AA has "a" way out. Not "the way", not "the best way", not "the most common way", not "the way everyone is doing it" (despite your claims otherwise).

    Well, Bill Wilson said many times that A.A. was the only way out. I just listed several such quotes from Bill Wilson above.

    Again, Bill Wilson routinely talked out of both sides of his mouth. Quoting one sentence where he said, "a way out" does not erase all of the dogmatic statements that he made about A.A. being the only way to avoid death, and the only way to live happy.

    Now I'm glad to hear that you admit that there are many different ways to get sober and stay sober, and A.A. is not the only one. The problem is, the Council-approved literature and Bill Wilson disagree with you. The quotes above show Bill Wilson declaring that A.A. really was the only way to stay alive.

    On top of that, the point of that quote was not to talk about whether Bill Wilson claimed that his religious practices were "a way out", or "the only way out"; the point was that Bill Wilson was using the "everybody knows" propaganda trick:

    "The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered a common solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree, and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action."
    The Big Book, 3rd Edition, William G. Wilson, chapter 2, "There Is A Solution", page 17.

    That is, of course, a load of bull. The A.A. "pioneers" did not all agree that Bill Wilson's cult religion worked as a solution. Bill Wilson was writing the exact opposite of the truth. In fact, the early members had loud screaming matches over whether Bill's religious fanaticism would drive away the very alcoholics whom the program was supposed to help. Half of the original membership refused to do Bill Wilson's "Steps". They demanded that Bill Wilson remove the statement that the 12 Steps were "required" for membership in A.A., and that the Steps be labeled "suggested steps", which is what ended up being the text in the Big Book, on page 59. But then Bill Wilson got his revenge by writing on the very first page of the next chapter that we may not overcome drinking if we don't do "this vital Step." That produced a funny back-and-forth dance. In chapter 2 of the Big Book, "every one of us" agrees that the 12-Step religion works great, but in chapter 5, the Steps are only suggested, but then on the first page of chapter 6, the Steps are suddenly "vital".

  • This paragraph is standard Escape Via Relativism:

    Your experience in AA may admittedly have been quite different. You may in fact have run into a book thumper or a crusty old timer who told you exactly everything that you listed. I would tell you my experience has been exactly opposite. I have never run into anyone with that sort of attitude. Now, your response to me would probably be "well that's just anecdotal evidence, that's just your experience." And I would reply, yes it is, just as your example is anecdotal evidence and your own personal experience. And your response would be that you heard from X number of people something close to what you said, and I would say I have heard from X number of people exactly what I said. And in the end, it's just a big mess of anecdotal evidence.

    When people see something wrong with A.A., the standard A.A. defender's response is, "Oh you just went to the wrong meeting." "You just met one bad apple." "Your mileage may vary." That is bad logic. That is the logical fallacy of Escape Via Relativism. A dozen nice meetings in your neighborhood do not erase the crimes committed in other meetings, or heal the people who got hurt elsewhere.

    Then you tried the "I didn't see it happen, so it didn't happen" logical fallacy. It doesn't matter how many nice meetings you went to. Other people got robbed, raped, and murdered at their A.A. meetings. The fact that you never saw a dogmatic fundamentalist sponsor doesn't mean that they don't exist. Lots of other people have told me about their bad experiences.

    Then you tried to dismiss all stories of abuse in A.A. as just so much anecdotal evidence. Well, you know, even sworn testimony in a court could be dismissed as "anecdotal evidence", but after a dozen women get up and swear, "He attacked me and raped me," then that counts for something. It isn't just anecdotal evidence after a while. Guys get convicted on the basis of such evidence. And A.A. can get convicted too.

    Anecdotal evidence is stories like, "Joe Blow drank five bottles of Dr. Phineas T. Farnsworth's Magic Green Tree Snake Oil Elixer, and he immediately recovered from the plague. So you should drink that Magic Green Tree Snake Oil Elixer too."

    Evidence is, "Karla Brada was sentenced to attend A.A. meetings where she met a man who murdered her." That isn't just an anecdote. She's dead.

    By the way, notice that the logic isn't reversible: After a dozen women testify, "He attacked and raped me," another dozen women testifying, "He didn't attack and rape me," don't prove him innocent. Even the most active serial rapist will miss tens of thousands of women in any city, so there will always be lots of women who could testify that they weren't attacked. Similarly, saying that nothing bad happened in your meeting doesn't mean that nothing bad happened in other meetings.

  • This is generous, but I can't whole-heartedly agree:

    I appreciate that you're sober. Anyone who has struggled with any kind of addiction and found a way out is 100% ok in my book, no matter how they quit, be it willpower, "won't"-power, church, Moderation Management, AA Agnostica, or whatever.

    I can't regard some people as 100% okay just because they don't drink alcohol any more. There has to be more to life than that. And I have higher moral standards than that.

    A couple of extreme examples that come to mind are Adolf Hitler and Heinrich Himmler, the head of the Gestapo and SS. Adolf Hitler was a very abstemious fellow who rarely, if ever, drank alcohol, and Heinrich Himmler was so extremely anti-alcohol that he sent soldiers and SS officers to the Dachau Concentration Camp as punishment for drunkenness. But those two non-drinking men ran the Holocaust that murdered 6 million Jews and about 6 million other people too, Leftists and Socialists and Communists and other political opponents and priests and ministers and gays and Gypsies and Poles and 7th-Day Adventists and just anybody else whom Hitler or Himmler didn't like. I just can't believe that Hitler and Himmler were 100% okay because they quit drinking alcohol.

    On a more local level, I don't consider the rapists or sexual predators or con artists whom you will find in your friendly neighborhood A.A. meetings to be 100% okay people.

    A.A. even has a slogan about that: "If you sober up a horse thief all you have is a sober horse thief."

    Perhaps you didn't really mean to be so effusive in praise of people who quit drinking.

  • I strongly disagree with this paragraph:

    You're sober, and that's all that matters. And I'm sober, thanks to AA, and that's all that matters. The only difference between you and I is that I can see that your way works for you, and I'm 100% cool with that, and you can't see that my way worked for me, nor are you cool with that.

    Being sober isn't the end-all and be-all of life. Heck, it's just the start. Sobriety isn't "all that matters".

    What if someone is a child molester or a murderer who is stone-cold sober while he commits his crimes? What is sobriety worth then?

    One of the big problems with A.A. is that so many members think they really have it made when they get a few years of sobriety. I have received so many letters that describe people who have done nothing with their lives in 10 or 20 years except go to A.A. meetings and repeat the same stories and slogans again and again, for years.

    Personally, I don't call that living. I'd consider that Hell. Sobriety is NOT the only thing that matters.

    Now I understand that you were probably only thinking about various recovery methods as you made that statement. The problem is, A.A. is not a method of recovery from alcohol abuse or alcohol addiction. A.A. is a cult religion that pretends to have a cure, or a "non-cure, but a solution — a daily reprieve from a death sentence". A.A. does not work to make alcoholics quit drinking. That has been proven in medical tests again and again.

    1. Dr. Brandsma found that A.A increased binge drinking.
    2. Dr. Ditman found that A.A increased the rate of rearrests.
    3. Dr. Walsh found that A.A increased the cost of hospitalization of alcoholics.
    4. Drs. Orford and Edwards found that having a doctor talk to the patient for just one hour was just as effective as a whole year of A.A.-based treatment.
    5. Dr. Vaillant, who went on to become an A.A. trustee, found that A.A. did not increase sobriety in alcoholics at all, not even a little bit, but it did raise the death rate in alcoholics.

    The fact that you see a few sober people with several years of sobriety at meetings only shows that some sober people are attending the meeting. You don't know what made them get sober. The truth is, they quit drinking because they chose to. The fact that they yammer about how A.A. saved their lives shows that they have been hoodwinked and indoctrinated into believing and repeating falsehoods. Yes, they have been brainwashed.

    Then you assume that A.A. somehow made you sober, but I've never heard a realistic explanation of how doing the 12 religious conversion steps of Dr. Frank Buchman's cult religion makes people quit drinking alcohol. There is no sane, sensible, or rational explanation of the workings there. Just because somebody is going to some A.A. meetings at the same time as he quits drinking does not mean that the meetings or the 12 Steps caused him to quit drinking. That is the logical fallacy of Confusion of Correlation and Causation.

    • A bunch of people went to a Baptist church for years.
    • During those years, many of the women got pregnant and had babies.
    • That proves it:
      Going to Baptist churches causes women to get pregnant and have babies.

    The 12 Steps don't even tell you to quit drinking. They tell you just the opposite: "Admit" that you are powerless over alcohol, admit the you are insane, and turn your will over to some "higher power" or God, or Group Of Drunks, or whatever, and that vague "power" will supposedly perform a miracle for you, and control your hands and make you quit drinking. (Even though It never cared to make you quit drinking before.)

    Can you tell me how Doorknob Almighty makes people quit drinking? Or Kon-Tiki, or Stone Idol, or Golden Calf, or Big Rock? Or Group Of Drunks? I have never in my life met a group of drunks who had miraculous healing powers. If they did, it would totally revolutionize medicine. Don't bother brewing up penicillin, just brew beer and get those wonderful alkies drunk again, and we can cure everything from Ebola to cancer.

    No, the A.A. "God" must be the big angry male tyrant of the Old Testament, the "God" of Dr. Frank Nathan Daniel Buchman, William Griffith Wilson, and Dr. Robert Holbrook Smith, a vicious dictator who will kill you unless you "seek and do His will" every day. No thanks. I don't need that in my life. And I successfully quit drinking without "Him" running my life. Thank God for small favors.

    Tom Cruise is equally convinced that Scientology restored him to sanity, as he jumps up and down on the couch and declares that Scientology knows more about the human mind than all of the psychiatrists in the world. What is his sobriety worth? (Scientologists are adamant about not drinking or taking drugs either.) How restored to sanity is he? But he's sure that he is, and Scientology is the cause.

    In fact, Scientologists declare that only Scientology can cure alcoholism and drug addiction. NARCONON is their big addiction cure-all. So why shouldn't we believe Tom Cruise and the Scientologists when they say that Narconon is the best thing, and the only thing that works? Just dump A.A. and practice Scientology. Why not?

    Warning: That is a trick question. Any good reasons that you can give for rejecting Narconon apply equally to A.A. and "Twelve-Step facilitation". Both you and Tom Cruise have exactly the same amount of valid medical research that shows that your favorite thing actually works: ZERO. And we have plenty of cases where people died in both organizations as a result of bad therapy and quack medical treatment. You dismiss such stories as "anecdotal evidence", but those people are still dead.

    Lastly, since you are under the misimpression that A.A. works to make people quit drinking, please answer this one simple question:

    What is the REAL A.A. success rate?

    Out of each 1000 newcomers to A.A., how many will pick up a one-year sobriety medallion a year later?
    Or even several years later?
    And how many will get their 2-year, and 5-year, and 10-year coins? Ever?
    How about 11 years and 21 years?

    No qualifiers are allowed, like, "We will only count the people who worked the program right, or we will only count the people who really tried, and kept coming back." Everybody counts. No exceptions.

    No excuses are allowed. When the doctor gives a patient penicillin, and it fails to cure the infection, the doctor doesn't get to say, "But he didn't work the program right. He didn't pray enough. He didn't surrender. He held something back in his Fifth Step." No excuses.

    So what's the actual A.A. cure rate?

    HINT: the answers are here and here and here.

  • God bless ("a" God, we Buddhists can believe in a God as well) you as always.

    God Bless you too.

And have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*
**    Alcoholics Anonymous and Scientology could get together and
**    do a joint venture: They can declare that alcoholism is
**    caused by interplanetary cooties — that is, by the
**    ghosts of unhappy aliens who were dumped into a volcano here
**    60 million years ago, and who are now flying around and biting
**    people and making them drink alcohol. And the cure is to give
**    all of your money to an Alcocon Treatment Center®, which
**    will perform a 12-Step exorcism and tin-can confession session
**    to help you to get rid of those bothersome ghosts, but only
**    if you really try and thoroughly follow our path.





BLOG NOTE: 2015.01.20:

Well, here I am in the final stretch of getting ready to move. Actually, I haven't done much at all. My back hurts and I can't stand up for more than a few minutes without it hurting more, so I'm right back down again. All that I want to do is lay in bed and let the pain pass. I haven't gotten much done.

But I'm putting a notice up on Craigslist, advertising for a guy with a truck and helpers to pack up everything I own and move it to a storage locker in the next week.

Then I'll hit the streets. Homeless while 68 years old, and disabled. In the winter. Now that will be a new experience.

Such is life. Nobody said it would be easy.





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters425.html#Ron ]

Date: Sat, 17 Jan 2015 21:51:58 +0000     (answered 26 January 2015.)
From: Ron
To: "[email protected]"
Subject: hi

Hi.
I was watching your videos on Youtube about AA I have 10 years now, but rarely if ever go to meetings, but I still retain the steps. Sometimes I think I was happier when I was drinking, but wont go back to it. Now I spend countless hours alone, and really am afraid to open up. I have also have to say I have very very few friends in AA that I hang with. Infact there are none. We talk on the phone, and just go along with them to even talk. Sometimes I feel sorry for the ones who slipped and then go back feeling so guilty. I hated seeing that. I use to tell people you didnt fall back but forward..Not sure why Im writing but thanks for sharing your experience. Also I have been on anti-meds.
ron

Hello Ron,

Thanks for the good wishes, but those are not my videos. They were done by a couple of fellows by the names of James and Mike B., James is also known as "BlameDeNile" or "BlameDenial". They like my web site so they put plugs for it at the end of their videos.

Congratulations on your quitting drinking, and I'm glad to hear that you aren't going back to it. Me neither.

I know the feeling that you are talking about when you say that you think you were happier when you were drinking. That is the siren song of The Lizard-Brain Addiction Monster. I've heard that so many times. It whines and insists that things were so much more fun back in the "good old days": Which is completely untrue of course. Things were actually so bad and so painful that we had to quit our addictions. We quit because continued drinking was hell. Still, old Lizard Brain pines and moans:

  • Ah, for the good old days, when we could just kick back, and put our feet up, and do whatever we wanted to do.
  • Ah yes, for the good old days, when we were young and wild and crazy, and didn't give a damn.
  • Ah yes, the good old days, back before we started this insane routine of self-denial that they are calling recovery.
  • It's time to return to normalcy, and be just like everybody else.
    Translation: Go back to drinking just like everybody else. ("I shouldn't have to abstain when they don't.")
  • I just want one relaxing evening, just like in the good old days.
  • Let's just have one for old times' sake.
  • You smoked and drank when you were young, so you can return to your youth by smoking and drinking again.
  • Time to come home...
  • Let's just have one for old times' sake.
  • I just want one more big party, like in the good old days.
  • Don't you want to come home, to the good times again?
  • The best times were when we were smoking and drinking. We should go back there again. The best writing was while you were smoking.
  • You know, I just can't be happy without smoking a cigarette now and then... Remember how happy we were back when...

And it just goes on and on. Old base brain is convinced that getting high will feel good. It tries very hard to forget the pain that made us quit. And of course the pain was so bad that we had to quit. Lizard Brain is so moronic that it thinks it can get the pleasure of smoking and drinking and doping without the pain that comes with it. It thinks that it can get one side of the coin without the other.

About not having any close friends with whom you can share such thoughts, may I strongly recommend going to some meetings of something like SMART or SOS? I don't know if they have any face-to-face meetings in your city, but it's sure worth looking into. Having some companionship, some friends who understand what you are going through can help. It isn't good to be alone all of the time. You don't need to go to such meetings for "recovery". Heck, you are already recovered. But finding some kindred spirits can be a good thing. It can be a real comfort to have someone else who understands. Here is the contact list:

Sensible Evidence-based Recovery and Support Groups

About this feeling:

"Sometimes I feel sorry for the ones who slipped and then go back feeling so guilty."

Oh yes. I agree. That is one of the bad aspects of A.A. They make sobriety into a status game, where your value as a human being is determined by your sober time. It's also like the children's game, "Chutes and Ladders", where one slip or misstep and you slide all of the way back down a chute to "Start" and you lose everything, and you have to start over, climbing up all of those ladders again.

That is one thing that SMART does not do. You never have to go to a meeting and declare how much sober time you have, or don't have. You never have to go back to a meeting and accept a "Just For Today" coin that tells everybody that you just lost all of your sober time. It just doesn't happen in SMART, and people's status or value is not determined by their sober time.

In fact, SMART teaches that all ratings systems are inherently incomplete and unreliable. To truly rate a person accurately, you would have to know all about him, and you would have to add up scores for a zillion different things, like

  • "Is this person kind to animals, or does he kick puppy dogs?"
  • "Does this guy support his children?"
  • "How healthy is this guy?"
  • "How good-looking is this guy?"
  • "How much money does he have?"
  • "How much sober time does he have?"
  • "Is this guy pleasant company?"
  • "Is this guy sane?"
  • "Is this guy kind or cruel?"
  • "How educated is this guy?"
  • "How intelligent is this guy?"
  • "How strong is this guy?"
  • "How fast can he run or swim?"
  • "Does this guy care about others?"
  • "Does this guy have his addictions under control?"
  • And on and on...

There would have to be hundreds of such questions, and then somebody would have to decide which questions were more important and got more points in the final score, which means that somebody brings in their own arbitary value system, which is inherently unfair, and inaccurate as well. Does anybody have a perfect rating system? The Nazis had strong ideas about the perfect man, high school coaches have another, priests and ministers have other ideas, and women seeking husbands have other standards. So oddly enough, even though we have been taught to rate others and to judge, our judgements of both ourselves and others are almost invariably inaccurate and incomplete. And unfair.

There are times when I think that Jesus's line about "Judge not, lest ye be so judged," was really a warning telling us that we would end up judging ourselves just as harshly as we judge others. And it will mess with our minds.

And the A.A. thing of judging people by just a few things like sober time, years of meeting attendance, number of sponsees, and skill in parroting the slogans, is insane. There is much more to life than that.

About the "anti-meds": that wasn't totally clear. Did you mean that they were pressuring you not to take your medications? If so, please ignore those fools. They aren't doctors, and they don't know who should take what. They have no business telling anybody to take or not take medications. That is A.A. quackery at its worst.

Take care, and have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*
**     I always felt that the great high privilege, relief and
**     comfort of friendship was that one had to explain nothing.
**       ==  Katherine Mansfield (1888 — 1923), New Zealand-born English writer.
*
**     "It is the friends you can call up at 4 A.M. that matter."
**       ==  Marlene Dietrich, b. 1901, German actress
*
**     A friend is someone who knows all about you, and likes you anyway.
**       ==  Orange
*
**     An insincere and evil friend is more to be feared than a wild beast;
**     a wild beast may wound your body, but an evil friend will wound your mind.
**       ==  Buddha





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Last updated 28 January 2015.
The most recent version of this file can be found at http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters425.html