As one member sees it.

I sobered up before there was SOS. I went to AA not because it helped me stay sober but because I was told over and over this was the only way that I could remain sober/drug free. What I got most from AA was that "I made it a place where I practiced speaking" in discussion meetings. I learned to over come my shyness. I meet some really great people there. Made friends and found that I enjoyed the parts between the meeting best.

In using AA I never did the steps. When asked what step I was on I would say I was still working on the first one. I never did get through it.

I would never recite the lords prayer. For me religion was and still is a private matter.

The idea of a sponsor was not to my liking. It was foreign to all of my beliefs. Why would I put my life in the hands of a drunk or a dope fiend? I may have had problems with alcohol/drugs that didn't mean that I was crazy. If I need someone to tell me how to live my life I will go to a professional. Our I will make my own mistakes and learn from them.

I was criticized for how I was doing my recovery. I was told over and over what I was doing was wrong. Why wasn't I encouraged to continue with what was working? This is a support group isn't it?

The longer I stayed clean & sober the more criticism I got.

I finely left AA and continued on with my recovery.

When I found SOS I really liked the way they embraced the fact that we are each different. Our recovery is different for each of us. Our religious and political views are separate from our recovery.

I have encouraged many of our members to go to AA for support. There are SOS members who use both SOS & AA.

The problem that I have had "in my opinion" is that the group doesnít take a stand about members criticizing another members way of recovery. If it works it works. The group in "my opinion" has a duty to let its members know that there is no such thing as one way.

With all this said I would still suggest that SOS members go to AA for support.

Seek out supportive people. Know that you have a "Safe Place" to come back to. If a member of SOS jumps on you and says that your recovery plain is wrong, most of us at SOS will jump to our feet and defend you & your right to be different. If what you are doing is working and you are alcohol/drug free then you must be doing some thing right.

I would like to reach out to AA members. Please do no harm. If someone can't make it in AA send him or her to other groups so they may have a chance of finding recovery. Care about the person first the group comes second.

In SOS using other support groups in no way will affect your standing in SOS. We are each unique. There is no such thing a "one way".

This is Duaine M. from Dallas here.

Up Date

Hi Duaine Metevia here;

There was a time I did suggest aa for people to try ďarmed with some warnings and information on how to protect themselvesĒ .  

Over the years I have questioned my suggestion to go to aa, even with information and warnings. I now feel I was mistaken. 

I thought if a person went to aa knowing there were people who used aa for the power it gave them over new people they could be on guard and protect themselves.  Cult indoctrination and misinformation could be dealt with because they had some knowledge about what to expect.  I though these people armed with knowledge would be ok.   

People in early recovery are vulnerable.  Sending them to or suggesting they go to a religious cult is never the best or first suggestion.

I also thought it was ok to think I was an alcoholic.  I am not an alcoholic. I am a person who drank too much and too often. It evolved into a physical addiction. If I stopped abruptly it would cause me physical pain and I stood the chance of dtís and death. Far too many people die from abruptly stopping. When a person becomes physically addicted to alcohol , abruptly stopping without medical supervision is not a good or safe chose.

Once free of the physical addiction I needed to build a new life without alcohol. I knew alcohol was no longer an option.   

It was also not an option for me to live the rest of my life in fear of going back to alcohol. My goal was to live my life and do things I couldnít do because alcohol got in the way.

I was looking at a whole new world and I wanted to explore it.

In the past I would never have bought a motorcycle because I was too afraid of driving it drunk .  

I bought over the years 6 motorcycles and loved and enjoyed every one of them.

I had such a fear of public speaking that I would never ever get up in front of people and talk.  

I added that to my need to do list.

I had so many things on my need to do list. It became my need to try list. I needed to try joining hobby groups.

Over the years I have had so many experiences because I chose life over the restrictions that alcohol imposed on me.    

I believe itís about choice.   

Once no longer physically addicted then itís about choice.

If still physically addicted than itís about chose. To keep on with the addiction or search for way to detox.   

I meet a person who said he had quit drinking over 20 years so what was the odds he would drink tomorrow? Over the years the time going up 30 years 40years until he passed away. He never drank after he quit.

I stopped drinking  4/14/1983 this writing was done 2/01/2023. Whatís the odds I will drink tomorrow?

When I went to aa there was a person who kept getting drunk over and over. The old-timers kept inviting him every ware they went. He was always welcomed with open arms.

I asked one of them how come they were so welcoming of him and kept telling me I would never make it because I took credit for what I had done.

He told me I was doing it wrong and the man who kept failing was doing it right.

I answered back but I was staying sober.

He said it doesnít matter he was doing it right.   

I stopped going to aa because it wasnít about staying sober and building a life, it was about the god of aa and the cult of aa.

Where in the 12 steps does it talk about how to stop drinking and detox?


Hi Duaine :-)
I checked out the addition to the site, and think it's great!  And you stated a lot of my own feelings about/between SOS and AA. 

I initially got sober through AA, but have realized that a lot of what AA promotes and "suggests" its members do and believe, I didn't and couldn't believe, or at least to the extent of having my sobriety depend on it.  Some of the points you made in what you wrote on the site hit them on the head.  Thank you!


I've been in/around recovery for 8 years now, through AA, and I'm realizing that some of the tenets of AA are what may even be what are contributing to my inability to stay sober. 

The biggest two that come to mind are powerlessness, and HAVING to "work the program" exactly as everybody else does, with no room for me to do any thinking for myself.  As you mentioned...turning my life over to another drunk (sponsor) to teach me how to stay sober.  I just couldn't get around those...and there are more, but I don't want to get into it all right now

BUT, AA does have a lot to offer, and to tell you the truth, I don't know if I could have been able to get any grasp of what sobriety is supposed to be about, if I hadn't been introduced to AA and had the initial support that helped pull me through those first months of sobriety that I'd ever had in my adult life. 
Anyway, I did want to say also that I've been having a hard time "jumping in" and getting involved with the group, but I'd really like to!  So this is my first attempt...but I hope not my last one :-)
Susan B.

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Val. 24 No 4

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Web Master Duaine Metevia