Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“Addicts may seem apathetic to the problems they are causing. Be aware they are relying on an innate defense mechanism – denial.” (Unknown)

Quote #2

“If a person doesn’t want to take responsibility for the consequences of their actions, they may try to blame others. Don’t accept blame or try to fix things for them when you’ve done nothing wrong. They need to learn that if they want different outcomes, they will have to make different choices.” (Doe Zantamata)

Quote #3

“Blame is a cigarette. It soothes your mind and your muscles when you take a drag on it. It feels like it helps. If you do this long enough, you forget that it helps only because it takes away the same stress it creates. Blame is an addiction.” (Vironika Tugaleva)

Bonus Quote

“I have come to believe that caring for myself is not self-indulgent. Caring for myself is an act of survival.” (Audre Lorde)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

When A Sponsee Blames Their Sponsor For Their Own Issues…

I love sponsoring others in 12 Step recovery, as it’s very rewarding spiritually, but at times it can also be extremely draining, especially when a sponsee indirectly or directly blames me for their own issues, baggage, and addiction itself.

Just over a month ago now, I had a former sponsee tell me they didn’t want to call me every day to check in, which is one of my requirements. They had over 13 years of sobriety from another program, but very little sober time in the one I was working with them in. They felt it was beneath them to check in each day because of how long they’ve remained sober in their other program. After talking with them at length though about this, the real root wasn’t about me at all, it was about them not wanting to do the work in the 12 Step program I was sponsoring them in anymore and them feeling they could handle their addiction on their own.

And just recently, I had another sponsee infer that the work I was doing with them and the traditional 12 Step recovery method itself was the very thing leading them into one relapse after another. What they failed to see was that before I even started the work with them, they were in a chronic relapse pattern over and over again for years, which was very evident a few days after stopping the work with me when they had another relapse. Here again, the problem wasn’t in my style of sponsoring, nor was it with the 12 Step program either, it was that they just didn’t want to do the work necessary to remain clean and sober.

The fact is, addicts are notorious for believing they can handle their addiction on their own, especially after getting some sober time under their belt. It’s a false assumption that’s often made, specifically when a sponsee begins to grow weary of the amount of work involved in the 12 Step process. And when that starts to happen, it’s typically their ego that often drives them to attack the very person trying to help them, in this case the sponsor, solely to allow them to be back on their own. Why would one’s ego want that? Because if there is no sponsor or 12 Step recovery program guiding them, it becomes very easy to allow the smallest of circumstances to guide them straight back into their addiction without anyone or anything to help keep it in check.

How many times I’ve had sponsees attack my style of sponsoring or the 12 Step method itself is countless at this point over the 14 years I’ve been doing this type of work with others. Hell, I even did this myself during my previous 12 years of sobriety prior to that with all the sponsors I had during that time. Nevertheless, it’s always the same reason why this happens. It’s because addicts are addicts and addicts don’t like facing the pain of themselves and their disease, which is precisely what sponsors and the 12 Step process does. It makes an addict face themselves, the very thing their addiction causes them to run from like I did during the first 12 years of my sobriety where I just became a dry drunk.

I have a lot of sadness for any sponsee who attacks my style of sponsorship or the 12 Step process because most tend to disappear after doing so and ultimately end up reengaging in their disease not too long after with very few ever returning. Those who do are usually quite apologetic, realizing how sick their mind and ego actually was. Having succumbed myself to so many addictions throughout my life, I know addiction behavior all too well and how my ego always is trying to lead me back into it. That’s why I have a sponsor and a sober support network. It’s why I’m still going to meetings all these years later in both of my recovery programs. And it’s why I remain very active in sponsoring others and volunteering.

Because the last thing I want is to start believing the problem is in my sponsor, a 12 Step program, the meetings I go to, or anything else that’s outside of me. The problem is within me, always was and always will be. Addiction is not out there, it’s in us. It’s never anyone or anything else’s fault. It never was and never will be. Believing anything otherwise will only give power to our addiction itself and that’s something I absolutely don’t want to ever do again…

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Silly Joke Friday

Silly Joke #1

While making his rounds, a doctor points out an x-ray to a group of medical students with him. As you can see, he says, the patient limps because his left fibula and tibia are radically arched. The doctor turns to one of the students and asks, “What would you do in a case like this?” The student responds quickly, “Well, I suppose I’d limp, too..”

Silly Joke #2

Little Johnny was asked what he wanted most for his birthday and he declared: “A baby sister.” “Daddy and I would like to give you a baby sister,” said her mom, “but there isn’t enough time before your birthday dear. Little Johnny looked sad and said, ”Well, why can’t you do like they do down at Daddy’s factory when they want something in a hurry and just put some more men on the job?

Silly Joke #3

A proctologist walked into a bank. Preparing to endorse a check, he pulled a rectal thermometer out of his shirt pocket and tried to write with it. Realizing his mistake, he looked at the thermometer with annoyance and said, “Well that’s great, just great! Some asshole’s got my pen!”

Bonus Silly Joke (3 quick ones!)

After a quarrel, a wife said to her husband, “You know, I was a fool when I married you.” The husband replied, “Yes, dear, but I was in love and didn’t notice it.”

“Hey, did you know that statistics are now showing that people are choosing cremation over traditional burial more than ever before?” said the funeral director to his business partner. “Well, I guess then they are really starting to think outside the box!” responded his business partner.

“Someone broke into our garage last night and took a bunch of stuff Mom, including my limbo stick! Can you believe it?!” said Suzie to her mother. “Seriously? I mean how low can you go!” responded her mother.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson