I knocked on the door and no one answered

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It was late enough, dark enough to be difficult to drive. It was in Edmonds, out of my way. But I went, finding a large church, old and unexpectedly intimidating in the murk. I knocked on the door and no one answered. I couldn't find the Women's-only AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) meeting. I went home saddened and discouraged: I'd wanted connection more than I realized.


I have a number of clients, friends, and members of my extended family who struggle with alcohol. I've taken an Institute for Challenging Disorganization webinar to learn how to incorporate AA concepts into my practices with my clients in recovery. To try to understand AA's influence and power, to be comfortable talking about it, I've now attended a large co-ed morning gathering at the invitation of good friends of mine; two women's-only sessions; a very small co-ed afternoon reading; a Native-oriented group (by accident, it was mislabeled as something else), and an LGBTQ-focused evening meeting.


I can't find the hubris to claim I understand AA from the perspective of someone living sober, or trying. I understand AA from the perspective of someone who ought not to drink - my body doesn't tolerate alcohol anymore, very little sickens me swiftly and brutally. And nonetheless, I succumb to "Just one, doesn't hurt, it's a social event." I admit that falsehood and need to work on it.


AA is community. It's safety for tears. Its structures are comforting, familiar, and reliable - a promise of and tool for stability. People even laugh! And yes, laughter is now acknowledged for its probable healing affects. My disappointment in missing the Edmonds meeting was rooted in my Bryn Mawr days: a women's-only college gave me unique "You get it!" affirmation. My most-memorable meeting was among the Native Americans. I felt most out of place there (Far as I know, I'm solid Paleface: freckled, blue-eyed, red-haired Anglo-American Mutt.) and most welcome. It didn't matter who I was, it mattered why I was there. Fellowship.


There are reasons to be skeptical of AA: atheists and agnostics may not be comfortable at many AA meetings, and many of its members hold destructively outdated, critical views of medical and/or counseling and therapy interventions for alcoholism. There are alternative programs. Please consider getting help, from whichever support provider works for you, if you think you need it.



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James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Morning Lauren.

I can remember my dad having two drinks of an adult beverage.  Otherwise I never seen him take a drink of anything except coffee, water and an occasional soda.  Me on the other hand, not so much 

Dec 23, 2019 02:00 AM #1
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Lauren Williams,  I think it is a major problem and more and more people are drinking because the way things are going with the world.


Dec 23, 2019 08:45 AM #2
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Lauren - what an interesting post.  And an interesting find.  That's one of the wonderful things/aspects of ActiveRain.  One never really knows what can be "found" while searching the blog roll.  It's not always expected.  That's one of the joys of membership here as I see it.  It's about discovery.  New thoughts.  Differnt ideas.  It's also about "finding" what works best and what fits right.   Right now.  Maybe longer.  

Dec 24, 2019 06:44 AM #3
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Thanks for sharing your experience and advice. I do not have any personal experience with AA but we do have a least one family member who is an alcoholic. He is okay when others around him are drinking as long as he has a Coke or a non-alcoholic beer. He avoids desserts that have any alcoholic content.

Dec 24, 2019 09:12 AM #4
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Lauren Williams, CPO

Professional Organizer: Puget Sound homes
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