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Switch to Forum Live View Recovered vs Recovering?
5 years ago  ::  Mar 04, 2013 - 5:58PM #81
Seefan
Posts: 4,017

Mar 4, 2013 -- 5:02PM, brewmeister wrote:


Great description,man, I am recovered from alcoholism taday and great to know others believe that too, in UK its AA's best kept secret





Welcome brewmeister,


Here in Canada we're getting caught up with what I believe is the reality of being recovered from that awful state of mind and body alcoholics know only too well ...  Smile


 

In the human world, if we do not understand the divine world, is that a proof that the world of God does not exist?  (Divine Philosophy, p. 117 ... Baha'i Writings)
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5 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2013 - 2:19AM #82
rincon4567@comcast.net
Posts: 36

LaughingHappy to see others are enjoying SOBRIETY ALSO, god has blessed me with RECOVERY. I couldn't have done it without his help. I am so GRATEFUL. Just keep up the GOOD WORK, I will forever more. AMEN to all who Love SOBER LIVING. Check back with you all LATER On. Debrinconcita in Portland OREGON USA.

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5 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2013 - 7:59AM #83
Seefan
Posts: 4,017

Mar 31, 2013 -- 2:19AM, rincon4567@comcast.net wrote:


LaughingHappy to see others are enjoying SOBRIETY ALSO, god has blessed me with RECOVERY. I couldn't have done it without his help. I am so GRATEFUL. Just keep up the GOOD WORK, I will forever more. AMEN to all who Love SOBER LIVING. Check back with you all LATER On. Debrinconcita in Portland OREGON USA.




And the very best sobriety has to offer to you and yours ...Cool

In the human world, if we do not understand the divine world, is that a proof that the world of God does not exist?  (Divine Philosophy, p. 117 ... Baha'i Writings)
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4 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2014 - 1:53AM #84
Raysmtb1
Posts: 6

Hello everyone I'm new here,



I am fascinated by this subject Of using recovered versus recovery. I've been trying to find everything I can this evening online to figure it out. There's been some great discussions on this forum.


i've been around AAmost of my life and tonight I was at a meeting in Florida and I heard a guy introduced himself as recovered. All of my AA experience has been around the Cleveland area and in a lifetime of AA I never heard anybody introduce themselves as recovered.



it really made me ask myself what was the difference. I have some thoughts below.



from a semantics point of view I think I see it as "baking " and "baked". Baking is in the process and baked means it's complete. I feel like I still learn every time I go to a meeting. I feel like I'm still learning every time I read my one day at time book every morning. I feel like I learned something about myself whenever I help a new guy. Doesn't that mean I'm still baking? Recovering? Why aren't buildings call Biltz? I think it's because they take constant care and attention to keep them healthy. Just like the foundations we build out our first meetings and end up with lovely beautiful homes as we get more sobriety under us.



I remember my first week of meetings. I was sitting there in this room on the east side of Cleveland and this old man behind me poked me on the back. He said to me, "you look like your new?" Yeh, I said. He said, " i'm jealous of you" .  Hahaha, I couldn't imagine why so I asked him...."why?"


he said, " if you stay here and do with these people tell you to do you are going to have the most amazing journey you could never imagine." Little did I know or care at the time but the man was absolutely right. I don't ever want to be recovered. That means I'll stop learning and growing and feel like I'm done.


The problem with being recovered is it sounds like you've graduated. Does that mean at the meetings we should take pictures of the people that have graduated and hang them up behind the table? The saddest part would be is when you saw someones picture missing the following week.


I don't see considering myself recovering as any kind of a torturous state of mind. Maybe it's just how people are wired they need to feel like the process is complete. That's why they need to be recovered. As they say live and let live. I couldn't imagine not doing a little bit of work to my house every day. So I guess I'm in the recovering camp.




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4 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2014 - 2:03PM #85
Seefan
Posts: 4,017

Mar 30, 2014 -- 1:53AM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

  Hello everyone I'm new here,


I am fascinated by this subject Of using recovered versus recovery. I've been trying to find everything I can this evening online to figure it out. There's been some great discussions on this forum.


i've been around AAmost of my life and tonight I was at a meeting in Florida and I heard a guy introduced himself as recovered. All of my AA experience has been around the Cleveland area and in a lifetime of AA I never heard anybody introduce themselves as recovered.


it really made me ask myself what was the difference. I have some thoughts below.


from a semantics point of view I think I see it as "baking " and "baked". Baking is in the process and baked means it's complete. I feel like I still learn every time I go to a meeting. I feel like I'm still learning every time I read my one day at time book every morning. I feel like I learned something about myself whenever I help a new guy. Doesn't that mean I'm still baking? Recovering? Why aren't buildings call Biltz? I think it's because they take constant care and attention to keep them healthy. Just like the foundations we build out our first meetings and end up with lovely beautiful homes as we get more sobriety under us.


I remember my first week of meetings. I was sitting there in this room on the east side of Cleveland and this old man behind me poked me on the back. He said to me, "you look like your new?" Yeh, I said. He said, " i'm jealous of you" .  Hahaha, I couldn't imagine why so I asked him...."why?"


he said, " if you stay here and do with these people tell you to do you are going to have the most amazing journey you could never imagine." Little did I know or care at the time but the man was absolutely right. I don't ever want to be recovered. That means I'll stop learning and growing and feel like I'm done.


The problem with being recovered is it sounds like you've graduated. Does that mean at the meetings we should take pictures of the people that have graduated and hang them up behind the table? The saddest part would be is when you saw someones picture missing the following week.


I don't see considering myself recovering as any kind of a torturous state of mind. Maybe it's just how people are wired they need to feel like the process is complete. That's why they need to be recovered. As they say live and let live. I couldn't imagine not doing a little bit of work to my house every day. So I guess I'm in the recovering camp.





Welcome to the board and to beliefnet.  I've read your comments and I'm sure if you've read mine you might see we disagree on some things.  For me, recovered vs recovering is certainly not a game of semantics.  There is a vast difference.  It has to do with whether you still consider alcohol as an option or not.  It has to do with being relieved from that awful obsession to drink that only an alcoholic knows. 


I believe what the Big Book tells me.  I don't work 'my program' but the 'AA program' as outlined to the best of my ability.  When I look at the information in the big book, recovered is mentioned 23 times, recover 28 time and recovering only 2 times and these two times are in relation to the newcomer first coming into the program. Just to mention, in the introduction to the 1st edition, on page xiii it states that "we are more than 100 men and women who have ‘recovered’ from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. To show precisely how we recovered is the main purpose of this book". Remember that this declaration was made during the writing of the Big Book by those bottomed-out drunks who knew what it meant to be an alcoholic!  I believe it when the BB tells us that we want to complicate things.  In every meeting we read and either don’t listen, don't understand or don't think about what is being read. Coming from chapter 5 page 58, at every meeting we hear "those who do not ‘recover’, are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program ..." So if I’ve been here for awhile and have been working the steps and consider that I’m still recovering, why am I not recovered as the Big Book tells us. It has to be that I am not completely giving myself to working the program to the best of my ability and alcohol is still part of my thought process and/or part of my live.  If that's where we are than we are still recovering from the awful state of mind of when we first came into these rooms.


So what do I think I'm recovering from?  My character defects?  We will always have defect of character to work on whether we are alcoholic or not.  That's not what alcoholism is.  If you haven't as yet, read the doctor's opinion in the BB.  Chacter defects are what every human being has.  But when we allow them to take over our lives they cause such discomfort and causes us to seek a solution.  I we work the 12 step program daily we will get the power to overcome the defects that control our lives.  So we either work AA's 12 steps of personal growth and stay healthy and happy, or we take that first drink so we can get some semblance of power to control.  If we choose the latter that first drink starts the process of addiction once again as explained in the dr.'s opinion and the merry-go-round of active and/or untreated alcoholism continues. 


Being recovered, imho, is not a game of semantics.  It's a place of emotional sobriety where we are fully human and fully alive, experiencing continual, daily maintenance and growth couplied with a piece of mind and serentiy not experienced before.  That's our daily reprieve!  Recovering, as opposed to recovered, is continually 'trying to reach' that state but thoughts of alcohol and the past clouds our world and prevents us from achieving!  For me, not to want that state is not understanding the process we are involved in ...


Hopefully your journey of discovery through sobriety is rewarding and continues so ...


In the human world, if we do not understand the divine world, is that a proof that the world of God does not exist?  (Divine Philosophy, p. 117 ... Baha'i Writings)
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4 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2014 - 6:49PM #86
Raysmtb1
Posts: 6

Thanks for your response, please excuse some of the typos and grammar in this stuff below. I don't type very well and I try to speak it into my iPad.



This discussion is so fascinating to me. I've been going to meetings for almost 20 years and my father's been in the program for another 20 beyond that and I never knew that this debate was lingering out there. It's really got me perplexed, I don't consider alcohol an option and I have an amazing life all thanks to AA. It saved my father's life and save my life and I've always considered myself in a constant state of recovery. Maybe I am fixed? Maybe I am recovered? You make some very valid points.



When the BB uses the word recovered, in my eyes, they refering to being  recovered from the side effects that the alcohol produces. The insanity, the shakes the scrambled thoughts the mental hospitals etc. these things I have fully recovered from. I am of sound mind and body I feel great and I rarely have a fleeting thoight of picking up a drink. So I guess I am recovered from the side effects of what alcohol produces.  



But in my opinion,  I still need to go to meetings , I still need to read my book every day and I guess I'll always consider myself recovering. My daily works, keep me sober like a medicine. I can never be a normal drinker,  so I still don't see how I could be recovered from the disease of alcoholism.


The definition of recover is " return to a normal state of health, mind or strength" . That I got, the first few years I went to AA. I had recovered from the physical and mental effects of drinking alcohol. When I stayed around the meetings long enough I heard a guy say in a lead one time,"when we get here we have a drinking problem, if you stick around long enough, you find out you have a thinking problem." That's what I continually work on by reading my daily reminder books and asking God to direct his will throughout the day. That's what I believe is the disease of alcoholism. If alcohol was the problem then once you sobered up everything would be fine. When I stop drinking life becomes very painful and that's where AA is the cure. The daily medicine of working the steps etc. is for me going to be a lifelong process until the day I die.


To be honest, I never read the BB. I just got a sponsor, listened at meetings and read my morning meditation Books. Oh, yeh and my knees. Hit my knees in the morning and at night.  Maybe that's why I never ran in to this discussion. 



I live in Cleveland six months out of the year. I was born and raised there. I'd like to think that there is some solid AA there. Many of the meetings that I attended went back with a history back into the 1940s. I just went to meetings and did what they told me to do. It all seems to of worked out just fine. I remember being at one meeting and sitting down every week at the old-timers table. I asked this fella how long he is been sober. He wouldn't tell me, so I asked them why. He said, it's screws you new guys up, you can't comprehend staying sober for a day let alone how long I've been sober. He followed up with, what time did you get up this morning? I replied 6 AM. He replied, well you've been sober longer than I have been. I got up at 9 o'clock this morning. Son, it's one day at a time.....that little conversation changed my life forever. That's now how I see my sobriety. 


For the second six months of the year I'm down in Florida. That's where I heard the guy say, hi my name is Lou I'm a recovered alcoholic. I've been to different areas and been to different meetings all over the US and I know they vary from place to place. I am a little concerned that some of the normal things you see  at a meeting back home in Cleveland are not present here. Like the picture frames on the desk in front of the meeting that say things like easy does it, one data time, live and let live etc. none of those things exist anywhere in the meeting room.


I had always wondered why they didn't have any of those things displayed at a meeting. I just minded my own business and sat there and listen to the meeting and always went home learning something. But, when the guy claimed he was recovered, something bothered me and it still does.


I really think that guy would've gotten a different response if he would've stood up and said he was recovered in a meeting around Cleveland.



thanks for all your thoughts, it has help me to try to figure this out in my own head. I sure wish we all could just ask Bob and Bill what they were thinking. A lot of this drilling down to every word in the big book kind of bothers me. It reminds me of a lot of Bible thumper's I grew up with when I was a kid. The part that bothers me is that they kind of miss the whole picture. They all were sure that Jesus was going to be back along time ago. Maybe that's why I'm kind of freaked out by these big book enthusiasts.


God bless them BB thumpers, if that's what works for them and keep them sober then that's awesome.


here's to, live and let live!



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4 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2014 - 7:39PM #87
Seefan
Posts: 4,017

Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

When the BB uses the word recovered, in my eyes, they refering to being recovered from the side effects that the alcohol produces. The insanity, the shakes the scrambled thoughts the mental hospitals etc. these things I have fully recovered from. I am of sound mind and body I feel great and I rarely have a fleeting thoight of picking up a drink. So I guess I am recovered from the side effects of what alcohol produces.



You are absolutely correct! That’s what recovered means!


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

But in my opinion, I still need to go to meetings , I still need to read my book every day and I guess I'll always consider myself recovering. My daily works, keep me sober like a medicine. I can never be a normal drinker, so I still don't see how I could be recovered from the disease of alcoholism.



After 20 years only you can make the determination of where you are in recovery. If you are an alcoholic you are right, you can never be a normal drinker again. Once an alcoholic always an alcoholic. Recovered does not mean cured. It means not having to suffer the consequences of this disease ...


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

The definition of recover is " return to a normal state of health, mind or strength" . That I got, the first few years I went to AA. I had recovered from the physical and mental effects of drinking alcohol. When I stayed around the meetings long enough I heard a guy say in a lead one time,"when we get here we have a drinking problem, if you stick around long enough, you find out you have a thinking problem." That's what I continually work on by reading my daily reminder books and asking God to direct his will throughout the day.



That is correct. Going to meetings and doing what you do is maintaining what you have – recovery – imho. If you want more from the program you need to learn more about this process ...


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

That's what I believe is the disease of alcoholism. If alcohol was the problem then once you sobered up everything would be fine. When I stop drinking life becomes very painful and that's where AA is the cure. The daily medicine of working the steps etc. is for me going to be a lifelong process until the day I die.



I agree, it is a lifelong process! But character defects is not alcoholism unless these defects are not controllable and leads us back to the first drink. Up to that point it is part of daily living which for us alcoholics is necessary to keep alcoholism at bay and recovered from that awful obsession.  Recovered or not we are only given a daily reprieve contingent upon our spiritual condition ...


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

To be honest, I never read the BB. I just got a sponsor, listened at meetings and read my morning meditation Books. Oh, yeh and my knees. Hit my knees in the morning and at night. Maybe that's why I never ran in to this discussion.



If I’m reading you right, it sounds like you totally depended upon a sponsor to tell you what the program was. Not a good idea! It has the effect of watering down the process to a point that when you pass it on to a newcomer he only get what you remember from your sponsor. The AA program is the first 164 pages of the BB. If you have not read the book, you might look at what it says and read the part called the doctor's opinion!  Maybe the peace of mind and contentment you experience now would be even greater. At the very least you would fill in possible blanks you don’t know is there ...


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

I live in Cleveland six months out of the year. I was born and raised there. I'd like to think that there is some solid AA there. Many of the meetings that I attended went back with a history back into the 1940s. I just went to meetings and did what they told me to do.



And you weren’t told to read the BB? Wow!


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

I had always wondered why they didn't have any of those things displayed at a meeting. I just minded my own business and sat there and listen to the meeting and always went home learning something. But, when the guy claimed he was recovered, something bothered me and it still does. I really think that guy would've gotten a different response if he would've stood up and said he was recovered in a meeting around Cleveland.



Meeting rooms and meetings may differ but the program is the same in the US and here in Canada, if the group is doing it according to the principles of AA which are based upon the 12 steps as understood according to what is written in the BB. If one uses the term recovered and it is not understood, maybe reading the BB with that in mind might shed a different light on what the program teaches ...


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

thanks for all your thoughts, it has help me to try to figure this out in my own head. I sure wish we all could just ask Bob and Bill what they were thinking. A lot of this drilling down to every word in the big book kind of bothers me.



Read the BB. Their thoughts are there in print. It is not down to every word but to thoughts and ideas. Don’t read one word but see what it is saying about whatever the whole concept Bill Wilson was trying to get across. After that look up AA history to get a better perspective of the whole picture.


Mar 30, 2014 -- 6:49PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

God bless them BB thumpers, if that's what works for them and keep them sober then that's awesome. here's to, live and let live!



There is more to life than just being sober, a lot more. There is doing the best each and every day with our knowledge of the AA process as it increases. Here’s to learning the process that saves lives if worked according to the BB. And I don’t consider myself as a BB thumper, only a BB believer. We can’t pass on to the newcomer what we don’t know. And we shouldn’t water down the intent or information of the program. One can only know if we are doing so if we read and study the literature available. It has to be a way of life for me ...

In the human world, if we do not understand the divine world, is that a proof that the world of God does not exist?  (Divine Philosophy, p. 117 ... Baha'i Writings)
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4 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2014 - 9:06PM #88
Raysmtb1
Posts: 6

Thanks for the speedy response,



I would like to respond to a few things but it might get confusing, I can't figure out how to grab the quotes with my iPad. I only have a few thoughts. 


Thanks for your time and effort to convince me that I am recovered. I've been walking around the house saying to myself , hi, I'm ray a recovered alcoholic. and it just doesn't sound right. I wish my sponsor was alive so that he could help guide me through this. I have a funny feeling he would laugh at me.


As far as not reading the big book goes, of course it was suggested to me. My sponsor wasn't a real big big book guy and he just didn't insist that I read it. I'll never forget when I saw him at the meeting and I asked him to be my sponsor he told me we would talk after the meeting. One of the things he said during that talk is, look I'm not a real big book guy, I've never read it. I have been here for 25 years and can show you the ropes. Let's get to a couple meetings together, I don't want you to talk I just want you to listen. So, that's what I did I shut up I went to a lot of meetings and I just listened. When I had questions he answered them for me. ..... It all seem to work for me, thank God ....And literacy is not a requirement for membership. 



I think I'm from the school of attraction rather than promotion. I watched my dad get sober  when I was a kid and I knew that I was going to end up in a bad place if I didn't quit drinking. It wasn't really a hard sell for me I knew about the program and I knew that it worked, so maybe I had it easier then some. I really wanted a better life. It still amazes me that I watched it wreck my family life when I was a kid and I ended up becoming one myself. It truly is cunning baffling and powerful. I guess that's why the word recovered bothers me. I consider saying that I'm recovered as a lack of respect of the power of the disease. I have an amazing life, I done things I never dreamt that I would do. Invented stuff that the world had never seen before. It's all thanks to being sober and what those guys taught me.



i'm not on this form asking questions because I'm considering a drink today. I enjoy going to a meeting a week. I tried different ones here and there when I'm in Florida for the winter. I have a home group and lots of AA buddies back home. I just feel weird if I don't go. I'm surrounded by lots of family and friends and absolutely enjoy sobriety every day. I also am not anonymous and try to live an amazing example. I'm around lots of young people on a daily basis and whenever I'm asked what happened to me I try to share my story and tell them that there is an option.



I never was a scholar and never will be, I'm more of a hands-on show me kind a guy. I must've found something that works I've been around for a while and I hope to stay another day. I remember back when I first came in, it's sad but many of the guys I used to hang with are either out drinking or dead. There but for the grace of God go I. I feel bad, but when we would catch wind that they were back out drinking, we would make this statement well I guess they're fixed.



I absolutely love the brilliance that I only have to do this one day at time. It makes it so much fun and achievable. If I was able to stand on a mountaintop and scream a message "one day at time" would be it. To all those people who sit in meetings and wait for this magical miracle to happen,iif they just knew...instead of looking for some big large event , that it happens on a daily basis. It's totally achievable if you live your life one day at a time and you savor the daily victories.



alcohol doesnt wreck your  life overnight it is a gradual slow process. In my opinion what AAA does is tries to give you back what you lost in a very slow methodical process one day at a time. That's it, one day at a time.  split your day up into little segments , show some love to your family , show some love to yourself , show some love to AA , go to bed, get up the next morning and do it all over again and the miracle slowly happens.


I guess I'll shut up now. Sorry for all the long explanations. I'm not sure what I'm trying to sell you. I suppose it would be that I see sobriety as daily process and my medication is the things I do every day. If I go up my medication I will get sick and die. I don't see how that is recovered.


Thanks again for all your time and attention it's been a lot of fun.



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4 years ago  ::  Mar 30, 2014 - 11:52PM #89
mikeincolorado
Posts: 395

Welcome Raysmtb.


FWIW, I'm firmly in the recovered camp, and have been for years.


Why does "recovered" not include continuing to learn or or grow? To cease being inspired by others? Why does that word equate to not attending meetings? I'm recovered, and I do all of those things. I don't know that I could honestly claim to be recovered if I didn't. Well, I could see not going to meetings. I go because I want to, not because I'm recovered.


There seems to be a school of thought that goes "I got to keep on my guard, or else". That would make a certain sense if I wasn't powerless over alcohol. However since I am powerless, "keeping on guard" is an exercise in futility. At best I'm wasting time & energy. At worst, I risk suffering from alcoholism while deluding myself that I'm not. A self-defeating proposition.


I see it as prideful. "I'm so special God couldn't possibly heal me."

Mike

*******************************************************
"When I've learned enough to really live, I'll be old enough to die" - Johnny Cash
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4 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2014 - 7:25AM #90
Seefan
Posts: 4,017

Mar 30, 2014 -- 9:06PM, Raysmtb1 wrote:

  I guess I'll shut up now. Sorry for all the long explanations. I'm not sure what I'm trying to sell you. I suppose it would be that I see sobriety as daily process and my medication is the things I do every day. If I go up my medication I will get sick and die. I don't see how that is recovered.


Thanks again for all your time and attention it's been a lot of fun. 



I hope you're not trying to 'sell' anything.  There are two reasons you are here.  It's probably the same if you are going to an AA meeting - to share your experience, strength and hope and/or to continue the learning process and what AA has to offer.  I'm here for both.  For me, as part of the learning process, I had to do what the program asked of me.  The AA literature says:  "If I'm willing to go to any length ..." which means at the very least, I should know what the rest of the literature states so I'm familar with the MUSTS in the program.  While as you say the only requirement is to want to stop drinking that only gets us into the doors of AA.  The rest has to be daily growth in understanding and action.  And yes I too believe AA is an action program not a philosophical discussion for these or AA rooms.


You seem to have a good grasp in what you need to do.  You seems to be recovered as I've stated it.  The only question I'd have to ask is what do you think you are recovering from other than the physical and spiritual affects of active and/or untreated alcoholism?  It seems to me, while not cured, once an alcoholic always an alcoholic, you are recovered from the state of mind and body ...


As far as addressing that you are a recovered alcoholic, I don't find the need to state that at the beginning of a meeting.  If it comes up as a discussion so be it.  The common ground is that we are alcoholics and that's what I state.  If I say I'm a recovered alcoholic that creates the possibility of separation from the rest of the group if they do not think or are not recovered.  This for me includes other labels as well.  They are not needed except in discussion topics.  The one requirement to be a member is the belief we are alcoholic ...


In the human world, if we do not understand the divine world, is that a proof that the world of God does not exist?  (Divine Philosophy, p. 117 ... Baha'i Writings)
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