Chris R. – AA Speaker on the topic of “Relapse Prevention”
Look at the truth based on your experience. I go out and I have two beers. I have two beers with dinner and I think I can control it, because that night, all I had was two beers. Everything seems like it is going fine, but I’m fooling myself because what did I do the next night. So the woman I’m with says the next night, “Chris that worked so well, why don’t we do that again tonight?” Forget it. See, I do not want to do that again because I’m not really drinking. Two beers? In my eyes, I’m not drinking. When I go drink like a mad dog, I’m drinking because I’m trying to treat that spiritual sickness inside. Can I guarantee that I can control it every time I drink? No.That means I have the phenomena of craving that the doctor’s opinion talks about now. It is exactly what we just read on page 21. If given sufficient reason, you I quit on your own? If you can just quit and its easy, you’re not one of us.
This is what makes an alcoholic. Nowhere in the book does it say you’ve got to go to prison, rob liquor stores or blackout. It’s just not in there. There’s a bunch of that stuff that is in the story section in the back. But in the first hundred sixty four pages it just talks about control and choice; and if you’re one of us folks, it will never get any better. Alcoholism is a progressive illness, and it will get worse, and you may eventually die from it. Some of you are feeling some tension in your gut, you haven’t felt in years. Alcoholism is like a death sentence tightening around your neck. See we got a common problem folks, alcoholism. I wish I could control it. I wish I could just stop when I chose to, and do it every time. But I can’t. So what do I do? Just keep drinking? The book says you’ll keep drinking, or you’ll seek spiritual solution and that what it says that brings us to what we’re talking about today folks.
People want spend it a whole bunch of valuable time trying to explain to people how they could stop relapsing. Relapsing is not necessary. We’ve got whole industry grown up around this relapse thing. Oh, relapse is just inevitable. No its not. Once a spiritual experience takes place and God’s power kicks in, relapse is not necessary. The desire to drink is removed from you completely and you go through this world kicking butt and taking names. Now that’s been my experience, and the experience of thousands of other alcoholics and addicts that I’ve had the privilege to work with. It’s as simple as this, everybody that does the work has a spiritual experience and gets taken to a different place. Everybody that doesn’t do the work, does not experience the benefits. This is what seems to be the vocal majority in AA today. They’re the ones that want to come up to take exception and make a bunch of excuses why this won’t work.
Why do these people say the program does not work? Well, because for the most part, we use meetings as therapy groups. We were not using the meetings as pep rallies to talk about God. One more time folks, this is a spiritual program folks. Alcoholism and drug addiction is not a behavioral problem, I didn’t just get sit on a by sitting on the potty backwards one time. We’ve got a whole bunch of people coming to treatment dealing with issues, walking back out of treatment and never picking up the Big Book or going to 12 step meetings. They never do any 12-Step work, and never do what we are asking them to do, and well, they’re not staying sober. This is why people complain about the success rates of the 12 step fellowships. It’s because most people do not actually do the 12 steps.