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Ending Alcoholism

"Ending Alcoholism, What does it take to finally end alcoholism "
copyright 2011, all rights reserved

by Toby Rice Drews
author of the "Getting Them Sober" books

The family member tends to search and dig relentlessly for "what might be my part in the blame" for the tension, the ugliness in the home.

Most of the time, the "wrong" that is found is, "I yelled too much when he hurt me"...... or "I got so angry when I found him in bed with my neighbor, that I threw some of his clothes out the window"....... or "I didn't talk to him for almost a whole day when he blew the rent and milk money at the bar".

At the other end of the spectrum, we too-often find the newly-recovering alcoholic not wanting to make amends for past behavior.

"It's enough that I'm sober now".

Is it?

A few days ago, I saw part of a Charlie Rose show on public television. He was interviewing an actress who talked about the new film she was in. It is a film about South Africa, apartheid, whites who were part of the old and the new regime, and the need for amends.

(No matter what one's political beliefs, this is not why I am writing this. I immediately, when hearing her talk the way she did, "translated" what she was saying from the political, to the importance of the essence of the message in terms of alcoholism recovery and the "amends steps" in the 12-step programs).

She said, "in order for healing to occur, one must put words to the pain". And Charlie agreed........ but then said to her later, "and the persons who were hurt must accept the apology".

And Ms. Binoche replied, "oh no.....if one has been the one who hurt the others, one does not have the right to demand that the person who was hurt do forgiveness. That is their choice...we do not have the right to demand it."

It is so much in line with what the A.A. Big Book says to the alcoholic.

But so much today veers from the letter and the spirit of what the God-Given Big Book said...... often, in meetings, one hears "opinions" that "all one needs to do is stay sober...... that is enough".

What is beneath that, is a continuation of what the Big Book says is the heart of the problem of the alcoholic...... selfishness and self-centeredness.

As Dr. Tiebout said (a psychiatrist who greatly understood the essence of alcoholism......and who was asked to help the A.A. founders set the tone and foundation of much of the program)----- "What is necessary for the alcoholic, for a lasting recovery, is ego deflation at depth."

Another way of saying, "get out of self".

One can only really understand the depth of the pain one has caused others if one is not centered in what one perceives to be one's own needs.

It's really sad when a person does not understand how very very much he will grow and thrive when he transcends the limits of his lingering alcoholism.

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