Are you a musturbator? Perhaps you have a “friend” who thinks they might suffer from musturbation. Maybe you are just curious about musturbation and would like to know more. Musturbation? Hmm… Does it sound familiar but you can’t quite put your finger on it? Don’t worry, you’re in safe hands.
Struggling through addiction and sexual abuse is my reality, coming to grips with this reality, and being able to overcome my situation with a meaningful, joy-filled life is my purpose. I began to drink when I turned twelve in hopes to end the shame and hurt from the incest that I endured a few years prior.
Hope is not a foundation that I build my life around. This elusive principle was not a tool that I used in times of difficulty. Growing up in dysfunction and becoming an alcoholic encapsulated hopelessness rather than hope.
Step Six of the twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous states, “Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character” (Alcoholics Anonymous p. 59). With a few years of Buddhist practice under my belt, my initial response to Step Six is, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Character defects, my actual character is defective? If that is indeed the case then I must admit, I do need a deity with a powerful mojo to fix this condition.”
Eighty years after the initial publication of the book Alcoholics Anonymous, and two decades into the new millennium, AA has never been more divided.
In traditional AA circles, one of the most frequently cited stories in the back of the Big Book is “Acceptance Is the Answer” (407-420). What is more or less its main point is apt: Focusing on ourselves is a far better recovery strategy than trying to control what other people do.
In the previous essay, I described the increasingly negative interactions between my fellowship’s Phone Meeting Intergroup and me in the first two years of my recovery, after 20 years away from the program. I had initially been impressed by their services because of the quality and variety of the phone meetings I attended, which reflected a solid body of past effort in developing formats for the different types of meetings and overcoming technical and human disruptions on the phone lines.
What I initially heard at my first AA meeting was useful, I would even argue, necessary for me to take at face value in order to see the harsh reality of my psychological dependence on alcohol to cope with a life that often felt painful. Acceptance was the answer to all of my problems today, that day, April 21, 2007.
I have been sober for over twenty-six years, an atheist who doesn’t believe in the existence of a deity, having developed a much more natural secular sobriety. But if I could travel back in time with this experience and attend my early sobriety A.A. meetings, what would I now see in hindsight as the simple and true drivers that still underpin my sobriety today?