Thursday, July 15, 2004

Working AA's Twelve Steps Online?

I think I am going to embark on an ambitious project here. I think that I am going to attempt to work the twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous online. The idea is that I think these steps have changed and revolutionized my life for the better and I want to share how I have worked them. I wish I could really, physically share the results with people, the change from the old Andy to the new Andy has been dramatic. I did not think such a revolutionary shift in my perspective was possible.

The positive side to working online is that I will then have a place to refer my sponsees and anyone interested in seeing how the twelve steps are worked to. I can see this being a learning tool for others. From my perspective, I think it will be a challenge to do these steps honestly and thoroughly online. It will certainly challenge me. I’ll also have to stick with it for quite a while.

There are some negatives. The first concern is still the Twelve Traditions, specifically anonymity. I still think I am okay in that while this is public it is written in a fairly anonymous way. True, it would not be hard to track down who does this blog, but it is not simply public knowledge. I do intend to publicize this blog, but not with my name or any other contact information, just the fact that there is a blog out there that deals with being sober and Pagan.

Another concern is that I will need to come up with a disclaimer and anytime I post anything that is related to the steps, I will need to have this disclaimer right there. I don’t want anyone thinking I am some sort of guru or expert because I am not. I am one alcoholic doing the best I can to work this program that has been given to us by a kind and loving Creator. This is not going to be instructions on how to work the steps, those instructions can be found in the first 164 pages of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. Following my example in working the steps is not a good idea. Following Bill W’s example is a much better idea.

Also, this is not the 1st time I have worked the steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. In fact, I am now three and one half years sober and this will be my fourth go round with the steps. There is the chance that someone could look these over casually and say, this guy is nothing like me—his life is so orderly, I can’t relate. The disclaimer should try to handle that as well.

I must also be careful of the ninth step injunction that I cannot do things that would cause further harm to others, so any references to anyone else must also be anonymous. It could also harm me.

The more I am writing on this, the more convinced I am that my sponsor needs to be fully involved in this process, maybe even so far as to have her approve each post. I have no doubt that will then at some point involve my grand-sponsor.

Yep, gotta talk with my sponsor about all of this. Good thing I am seeing her tonight!