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I am sick of AA/NA Meetings

Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

I know this is a web site about recovery. I am releasing my stress so please understand.

I am sick of AA/NA meetings. I have gone to these meetings for over 10yrs. off and on and have never clicked with anyone in them. (most experience is with AA) I can't stand thinking of nothing but recovery and how not to relapse while there is nothing I'd rather do. I'll have to focus my mind on recovery for years, maybe the rest of my life. Outpatient sucks. It helps with wasting the time, however any activity that occupies you serves me just as well. I will be losing my job and marriage. I don't think either one is worth saving they are part of my problem. Both have been entirely unsatisfying for years and years. Now I have just found out that I'm codependent. Add that to Obsessive compulsive and addicted? Ah bullshit. I have never chased my first high. I've been completely satisfied with meth each and every time. My desire to drink (after being alcoholic for twenty years) is utterly gone! no desire whatsoever. I don't want to let out my feelings so I can deal with crappy relations and employment. I'd like to have work that evolves and maintains my interest along with relationships. Both are too rigid. If I could just let go of my fears and let go of those that would go unless I get into an inpatient program, I would not have drug issues.
So, given that I have an approaching deadline with my employer and spouse, (July 14th) to get into inpatient and given my attitude, where and/or how am I going to succeed without a 100% conviction? How to I get it so I can do it for myself and not everything else?

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

I had to want to get clean for myself in order to stay clean for a long period of time. I know some people that got clean for someone or something else and over time, it became for themselves. I know some people that have stayed clean for over 20 years and they got clean for their kids.

My suggestion based on my personal experience:
Keep coming back! It works if you work it, and it works if you don't work it-- it just won't be working for you!

Choose freedom.
Abby, addict

Just Ol Ma Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

I have found that for anything to be stimulating, I have to allow it to be. And if I don't seem to fit or 'click' in a place, I carve out a niche for myself and mold at least part of that place around myself, for my comfort and usually the comfort of those closest to me in that place.

Perhaps it is time for a new job, new challenges, perhaps the relationship is too badly damaged to repair. But perhaps it is that your unwillingness to push yourself is causing this.

Introspection can be a pain in the butt, especially when you find things you don't want to. But Tim, going through the motions isn't going to cut it and you know it. You were enthused once, do you think perhaps there is depression setting in pushing you into this attitude?

In your post you are in a round about way blaming your relationship and your job for your use, you are also blaming your fears...identify those fears Tim. Once you know what and why they will loose power over you.

Hon you may always have drug issues of some sort. That doesn't mean it has to run your life. That life is yours take it back.

If NA, AA or CMA isn't for you, try one of the alternatives. Smart Recovery etc are options you can check out.

You say you are nearing a deadline for entry into an inpatient rehab in relation to your job. Why isn't this entry happening Tim? Are you the one holding back?

C'mon Tim, we all want things to be easy. And we all can't always have that. This is a challenge guy. You going to loose the challenge before you even get a really good start?

You mentioned having to live recovery 24/7. Well yes you do, but there is plenty of time for other things as well, fun things, learning things, challenges, it is simply a matter of incorporating them with the recovery.

Think about this Tim, nothing worth having ever comes easy...so how much more value does recovery have, when you have to work so darned hard for it, and for so long? The challenges are there Tim. Meet them, and win.

le grumps
Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

I gotta run off to my outpatient right now (affectionately known as daycare,). But I will post a real reply later this evening when I get home.

Just know that I've shared the same feelings and it is something that can be overcome. We'll talk soon!

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

tim, thank you for your honesty and trusting us enough to reach out. I am not the addict but a mom of one in rehab and it breaks my heart to see your continual struggle. please just give up and go into rehab... your entry date has come and gone if I remember correctly. It was a priviledge to wake up praying for you this morning and I will continue to trust God for your successful recovery. Le grumps is such an inspiration to all of us - please go back and review her recent posts. You can overcome this my friend.... Bless your heart. Now trust God and get into rehab... one day at a time - it's never too late and you have your whole life ahead of you. Big hugs to you.....

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

Sounds like you are setting yourself up for a fall Tim. Better think about it. I hear classic meth thoughts in your post.

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

Simply stated Tim, there is no easier/softer way! Post acute withdrawl sucks and the healing that is occuring requires time and paitience and considerable discomfort. We ALL felt the same way Tim and you can discount the notion that you are unique in the way you feel lately. Progress is where it's at, often that is a slow process. Miracles happen through prayer and meditation, try it. Those cunning, baffling, and powerful unseen forces, combined with your highly evolved addictive thinking are forces to be reckoned with, don't give up Tim! It took time to cook our goose, it's going to take time to heal it. What seems to be the unfortunate truth today will one day be fleeting memories of early recovery blues, I gaurantee it! Hang in there Bro.

le grumps
Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

I learned something new in the past few days. You may benefit from me sharing this.

My whole life I have thought of myself as an extremely flexible and adaptable person. I had to be. I could not count on the folks in my life to be consistent and to always lead the way, even during times when I really needed the guidance and leadership.

I coped with that by always being ready to "break away" and do my own thing when my environment was hostile toward me.

To this day, I carry around a huge bag, with a change of clothes, a jacket, books, entertainment. Still armed and ready to run when the going gets tough, still carrying my "life" in that bag, because I "never know" where I'll end up, when it will be time to take off once again, and desert a world that does not suit me.

I have learned that what I am carrying in that bag is self will. I unpack it when reality is dull, I set up the contents when I become bored with recovery, when I do not feel like talking to those damn NA people, when I am yearning for something more than a lifetime of serenity.

I have been lucky over the past few weeks. Some people have come my way that have truly rocked my world. I cannot wait to see them everyday, and I miss them on days that I don't see them. These are people in recovery.

What changed? Well, for a long time, even though I wanted the pain of addiciton to go away, I felt that the willingness wasn't there. My sponsor told me to ask for the willingness, pray for it.

Pray to who? Well, anyone will do I guess. I asked for the willingness that would make my recovery much easier to handle. I asked for the open mindedness that would allow me to look at others in the NA rooms and see the similarities, not the differences.

I run with a crowd I never imagined I would. I have a new "best friend" who shows me that there are folks out there like me, and that by being MYSELF and being open and honest about my quips and questions, I attract them. I trust them.

Bask in those feelings of emptiness, Tim. Let them rush over you like waves of nausea. Knowing that nausea passes, people get through it. And by listening to folks in recovery, I know that the post acute withdrawl will pass, too.

And if I keep my head out my arse, it will be the last time I have to go through it. I savor my emptiness, because it's a feeling I am damn set against feeling ever again.

There may be pain ahead, but it will not be empty pain. It will be tangible and passable. I will be able to see it come and go.

I know this is a hard time for you Tim. Thank you for telling on yourself and admitting to us that you are losing a little bit of your willingness.

Ask for it, and you will get that, and more.

PS. Drugs were great for me every time, too. For the first couple of hours. Then the tears. Then the excruciating physical pain. Then the paralysing terror.

Play the tape until the END, and it will have you seeing recovery as a favorable alternative. Don't be washed up like ye ol' auntie grumps. I speak from experience, using does NOT get better. Tap your heels together and know this, brother.

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

Hey Tim - it wasn't too long ago when you were telling us how horrible it would be to lose your wife, your child, your job. What do you think will happen if you choose addiction over these? Do you think that you will find some dynamite, high paying job - one that doesn't mind that you are a meth addict? They won't know at first, of course. But they will. Your present employer has, so there is no reason to believe that any future employer won't figure it out sooner or later.

You obviously have reservations about getting clean at all. Nobody but you can decide which road you want to travel - if you want to walk away from your life so that you can continue to be a drug addict, then do so forewarned. I did the same thing once. I have regretted it for the past 10 years. My marriage was not good either, it needed to end, but they way I did it is SO regrettable. I literally walked out on everything, kids, home, husband, dog, house, everything. I was given an ultimatum by my employer too. I lost that job. I chose the drug over my life, literally, and then wasted another 10 years on it before I finally pulled my head out of my ass and saw it for what it really is. Because of the way I chose to end things with my husband, I missed out on a great deal of my son's childhood. I missed report cards and plays, 8th grade graduation, holidays and special events. I can never get those things back. I lost them because I was so busy being SELFISH.

You have choices. Personally, I wish I would have made the right ones back then. I didn't, and I will have to live with it for the rest of my life. Meth never helped me with any of my problems. Meth made all of my existing problems 10 times worse. Too bad I was too blind to see it at the time.

How blind are you?

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

I have been thinking about your post and something "came" to me. You said that you can't stand thinking of nothing but recovery and how not to relapse. And that you don't want to have to think about it for a long time or the rest of your life.

I felt this way when I got clean also. Today, recovery is my life. Meetings are a part of recovery. And something that made a big difference then, and is still a big thing today is that I don't think of the rest of my life. I think of staying clean just for today. In all reality, I can't promise anyone that I'm not going to use tomorrow. I don't want to, so tomorrow, I will do the things that I did today to stay clean.

Just for today, we never have to use again.

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

Hi Tim,

From your post, it is not like you have NOT given AA and NA a good try. You would think that if it was going to work for you, then it would have worked within 10 years!

If you know who I am or have read any of my posts you know that I promote recovery that encompasses all kinds of recovery methods - recovery that is CLIENT based.

I also hold clients responsible for their own recovery. You are responsible for the choices that you make.

Tim it is OK that 12 step programs do not work for you, there are other alternatives.

Recovery really incorporates several main components:

1. Process of Change:
One part says that for CHANGE to take place, certain steps need to be followed, pre-contemplation, contemplation, preparation/determination, action, maintenance, exit. This is the PROCESS of change.

2. Reasons for Substance Use:
The second part of the multi-dimensional model says that RECOVERY is made easier when the substance user is able to DEAL with the issues that got them to use in the first place or keeps them using. In other words you need to learn how to DEAL with life, and find healthy ways to respond to stress rather than using a substance. This includes the biopsychosocial spiritual and harm reduction philosophy of addiction treatment. In simplest terms, treatment is what works for the individual client.

3. Motivation to Change:
The third part of recovery is the individuals level of MOTIVATION to change their thinking, feelings, and behavior. The very things that drugs alter within us when we use a substance. CHANGE can be immediate – you just DO IT, or change can happen little by little until you realize that things are completely different than they were before. Change can also depend on having the right person in your life to help you facilitate change, or the right information, or the right support system. The most important thing to remember about change is that it is POSSIBLE.

4. Social supports for maintaining recovery:
One of the great things about 12 step fellowships is the social support networks. However, there are other types of recovery support groups, such as LifeRing that have meetings, and other recovery philosophies that do not support meetings at all.

Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

Tim, I gotta agree with Doug Pamenter here.

If AA/NA isn't for you, try something else. However, I get the impression from your post that what REALLY isn't working for you is your own desire to get clean. Unless you want to get clean, no program is going to work for you. I know you are already in an outpatient program - how long have you been going to that? Maybe you just need to stick it out, keep doing what you are doing, and see what happens when you graduate from the IOP. Either that or go to the inpatient program. Whatever you decide, don't let the pain of early recovery convince you that being an addict is the "Softer, Gentler" approach to life. It isn't, trust me.

le grumps
Re: Alternatives to AA/NA attending meetings and recovery.

Hi again Tim,

Do you have a sponsor yet?

If not, then take a suggestion from ol' grumps: Get one. Make an announcement in a meeting that you really, really need one.

That was the thing that changed me from being a perma-newcomer to collecting my 30-day chip.

Sure, 12-step programs aren't for everyone, but I think you are just struggling with some reservations and unwillingness. That's normal.

Getting a sponsor and working the first step really ironed out my being on the fence about things.


See also:

Recovery Meetings: AA, NA, 12 Step Program Topics

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