Wednesday, October 17, 2012

For The Most Part

I just took a big step and shared this on my facebook page with the comment "400 Days".  I don't know why I think it's such a big step, most everybody that has been around me in the last year already knows that I no longer drink, and most of those know how bad I drank before.  It will be old news for them.  As far as the people it will be new news for?  Does it really matter to me if someone I haven't seen since high school finds out I'm an alcoholic and haven't drank in 400 day? How about the friends that knew me when I was living on the boat?  They are all probably very skeptical, but that doesn't matter to me either.

But it might matter to one of them.  One of them may say, "OMG! If Kary May can quit drinking, than I can quit. 

So that's why I posted it.

I won't be surprised if I don't get any comments, let's face it, "they" really don't know how to react to such a proclamation.  Are they supposed to congratulate you on being an alcoholic?

And on that score, let's talk about Crying Out Now 's recent post about changing the word alcoholic from "bad" to "brave."  For the most part, I agree with everything that is stated in the article.  It is time to put a new face on the face of alcoholism.  If Brad Pitt can be the new face of Chanel 5 maybe we could get George Clooney to sell sobriety.  Hell, I'll buy anything that man is selling.  Of course, we may have a hard time getting George to drink the kool-aid.

Or maybe we should just put our own faces out there because they are the real faces of alcoholism.  And they're beautiful like those faces in the above video.

Now for the part I didn't agree with.  I don't agree with the statement "I don't think that one can stay sober long term completely online."  I don't believe that's true.  I believe that right now is just the advent of people finding support for their various recoveries from their various addictions through the internet and I believe the numbers are going to grow.  And has been the case in other areas of internet support whether it be banking, shopping or filing taxes the ease and convenience and, especially in the case of recovery services, the anonymity is going to attract people away from traditional f2f programs and it's going to attract those that would never consider a traditional 12 step, face to face program, whatever their reasons or biases be.

 It's the future.

 Is this a better way?

 I don' know, but it's another way.

And I believe we all have to find our own way.

There will always be a need for the traditional 12 step, face-to-face programs for some.

But now there are other ways for others.

I believe we should celebrate all of our different and converging roads to sobriety and I believe we should  help others find their own paths instead of insisting that they follow ours.  Sometimes it is impossible for someone else to follow in our footsteps, does that mean they should not be allowed to take the journey?

Is there something missing in a program that does not provide physical contact with a live human being?  I think we have to acknowledge that, yes, of course there is.  An internet connection can't take the place of a hug or a shoulder to cry on.  However, is it possible to find sobriety without the support of another breathing human being to lean on?  Of course. People have being getting sober on their own since way before AA was formed, perhaps now these people  have a means of viable support.  Nobody has to go it alone anymore.

Maybe the new face of a recovery programs is a face in front of a computer screen sharing her story with hundreds of people on various message boards or blogs.  Maybe the new face of sponsorship is someone answering a text from someone across the globe that says, "Help!"

Let's all respect our respective paths to sobriety.


  1. Really well stated and I agree with you. Congratulations on your success. :)

  2. I agree with you. This video is amazing and made me cry happy tears. But so far I have been doing this online. I blog, read sobriety literature, read other blogs, and am on WFS online. 62 days so far; and while I have cravings, I have no desire to drink because I know where it leads for me. I think I am learning the skills I need to maintain sobriety. I feel strong. If I get to the point I need more help, I will seek it out. But I do feel it can be done without further assistance.

  3. That line in Crying out Now struck and bothered me too. And I have gone to meetings for awhile now! But I don't want to go forever and I bristle at people saying you have to do this or that, meetings being the thing I hear most often as a must.

    I do think I should stay in touch with other alcoholics in recovery because it helps keep me focused and reminds me of how it was and could be if I drink again. Meetings are an easy way to do that, but I agree the format is less important than the contact itself. Great post and good for you for posting the video on your fb page.

  4. Wow, 400 days. I'll congratulate you for kicking the alcohol addiction to the curb! I haven't even reached 100 days yet... 400 seems almost unreachable. You're a freakin' inspiration.

    I also noted the statement. I wouldn't dare to assume to know what is best for someone else - i believe we all find our own paths. Thanks for posting about this xoxo

  5. Brava Kary!I love everything about this- especially 400 days!!! Woo-hoo!

    Seriously, that's great you posted it on facebook. You're right- if you can reach just one person- then it's so worth it. And also, in doing so, you do your part to "lessen" the stigma and make it easier for others to talk about.

    And I agree- people get sober every day on their own. "Whatever gets you sober and whatever keeps you sober." I support that 110 percent.

    Thanks for the post my friend!

  6. I know I'm brand new in this (but not my first rodeo) but have definitely embraced the "online sober community". If I feel like I need "face to face", I will reach out for it, just as I reached into cyberspace for the support I am currently getting. We all know WHAT we need to do - it's just a matter of DOING it sometimes. For now - this is working, and I am in awe of your 400 days!

  7. I have to admit I was a bit "trepidatious" (that's my own word)about posting this, but what I see out there in the cybersphere every day is a bunch of women, and men, who are leaning on each other in a virtual way.

    At the mmabser chat the other night, one of the members said, "It's easier to lie on the internet." My reply was "For me it's easier to tell the truth."

    I want to clarify that I'm not saying that the internet is going to take the place of f2f 12 step programs, what I'm saying is that I think that there are some people that are going to get help sooner than they would have in the f2f world and there are some people that are finally going to get help. Period. for some people internet support will be enough, for some, it won't.

    I'm one of those.

  8. In my opinion, it is letting go and receiving "grace," that gift which cannot be earned. And then it doesn't matter how or where you get support - as long as it works for YOU.

  9. 400 days is a long damn matter what road one traveled to get there !!!!