….Heavy drinkers are “Alcoholics”
To begin to put the concept of “Live and Let Live” into practice, we must face this fact: There are people in AA and everywhere else, who sometimes say things we disagree with, or do things we don’t like. Learning to live with differences is essential to our comfort. It is exactly in those cases that we have found it extremely helpful to say to ourselves, “Oh well, ‘Live and Let Live'”.
In fact, in AA much emphasis is placed on learning how to tolerate other people’s behavior. However offensive or distasteful it may seem to us, it is certainly not worth drinking about. Our own recovery is too important. Alcoholism can and does kill, we recall.
We have learned it pays to make a very special effort to try to understand other people, especially anyone who rubs us the wrong way. For our recovery, it is more important to understand than to be understood. This is not very difficult if we bear in mind that the other AA members, too, are trying to understand, just as we are.
A number of alcoholics become estranged from members of their family. Sometimes these estrangements continue into sobriety and fester as a source of resentment.
Where estrangements have occurred, we are always responsible for any wrongs on our part. We need to check carefully to make sure that pride and bitterness on our part aren’t prolonging the estrangement.
But some of these estrangements have been chosen by others. We need to accept them if we’ve done everything possible to correct the problem.
Honesty will be our guide as we look carefully at any estrangements in our lives. All that’s ever necessary is that we use our best principles in dealing with any estrangements.
If I find today that an estrangement is bothering me or others in the program, I’ll examine it carefully with the thought that either making amends or acceptance might be required.
Hi, I’m Ian, and I’m an alcoholic.
When I first got sober, a new way of thinking was just so confusing to me. Everything seemed to be backside-first and nothing made sense. When that last day of drinking came, I’d just had enough and I was sick of ending up like this. I had lived 34 years, and all my best thinking just ended up with me always seeming to be back at Square One. I’d had tried so many things and ways to get sober — everything from therapy to transcendental meditation.
The blow came to me when this guy at a meeting asked me if I was really ready to listen this time. I had no idea if I was or not but, thank God, I did. I’d thought I knew it all. Once I started to just keep it really simple, listen, and follow instructions, an amazing thing happened. Not only was I not drinking, but my negativity and my outlook on life started to change little by slow. People noticed it before I did.
So, if you’re new or just coming back, there’s really not much I can say other than to just try and listen to what we do, then do it. It seems to work for a good long time for me and I’m grateful for that. Thanks!