Trust and Trustworthy – Episode 228

Do you have trouble trusting other people? Do you have people you trust?  How do you know they are trustworthy?

  • What is trust?
    • firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something. (
  • Do you have or have had trouble trusting other people?
  • Do you have people you trust?  How do you know they are trustworthy?
  • Do you have a Higher Power you can trust?
  • What is the difference between trust and faith or is there a difference?
  • If we developed an ability to trust, how have we done that?  with meetings?  the program/steps?  the tools? slogans? (I find that each of these has a role in developing trust).
  • Can you trust yourself?
  • Can others trust you?
  • When I don’t trust someone what am I feeling?
    • Fear.
    • Fear of being judged – ties in with perfectionism, low self esteem, unloveable
    • Fear of being hurt – emotionally, physically, intentionally and unintentionally.
  • Trust to me is having the confidence that another person is not going to harm me intentionally.
    • Sometimes the lack of trust is an issue on my side of the street
    • Sometimes the other person has not shown themselves to be trustworthy
    • Often I would assume that I couldn’t trust someone to be thoughtful of me because of my past experiences or my way of thinking.
  • Slogans / Tools for building trust:
    • One Step/Day at a Time (Tincture of Time)
    • Act as If in less important situations
    • Keep an Open Mind (helps with jumping to conclusions, esp. About negative intent)
    • Let it begin with me
  • Building others' trust in me
    • Traditions – learning to co-exist with others
    • Concepts – learning to work in an organization

Upcoming topics include parenting, being the sober parent, and being the parent of an addict or alcoholic. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Parenting as an Adult Child of Alcoholics – Episode 225

  • What challenges have you found, as an adult child of an alcoholic, in parenting your own children?
  • What program tools have you used, and how have they helped?
  • What is your biggest challenge now?

Several listeners shared their experience around these and similar questions.

Some challenges were

  • Not controlling.
  • Anger
  • Impatience
  • “Hurt people hurt people”

And some tools for better parenting include these:

  • Step 10 — apologize and make amends to our children.
    • Demonstrate humility and honesty — see it in the children
  • Tradition 11 — let it begin with me (attraction rather than promotion)
  • Tradition 1 — unity — guard against dominance — not about “me” but about the family
  • Tradition 2 — a trusted servant (a trustee) to the children — they have their own higher power
  • Tradition 4 — autonomy except where it affects others
  • Tradition 10 — no opinion on outside issues — let the child dress how she or he wants to dress
  • Tradition 7 — self supporting — allow children opportunity to be self supporting to build dignity, respect, responsibility.
  • Concepts of service — shared responsibility (co-parenting)
    • We love the presentation in the Reaching for Personal Freedom workbook, because it helps us understand how we can use the Traditions and Concepts in our own lives, in our families, and other relationships.
  • Step 11 — “I don’t own my children, God owns them” — need knowledge of God’s will.
  • Easy does it
  • How important is it?
  • Detaching with love.
    • “Don’t argue with alcoholics, toddlers, and terrorists.”
    • Let them express emotions without needing to change them
  • Sharing program with children.
  • “What am I hurt about?”
  • Pause — the “Al-Anon breath”

Our topic for next week is gratitude. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email to share something you are grateful for today.
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Tradition 11 – Episode 95

DSC_5860Do you switch the tv-channel when the commercial kicks in? Are you tired of being reminded of something which you know would be good for you but you just don't want to, and now giving in would just feel odd? Do you wonder why some annoying people always have to emphasize where and how they get their stuff? But are you curious why that person, despite all the obvious problems in their life, has a smile on their face? And how do we practice anonymity in our podcast?

Ruth and Spencer talk about Tradition 11, “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, films, and TV. We need guard with special care the anonymity of all AA members.” We used these questions to guide our discussion.

– There is a lot in this this tradition and I would like to start with the last sentence: the anonymity of the alcoholic. Why it is important, for them for us. How was it when we were new, or even before before we learned about the concept if the desease.

  • If we break our anonymity we may break the one of our relatives too.
  • How can we share our story without breaking the anonymity?
  • Various aspects of anonymity: our background, education, finance, status … not just names.
  • As important as it is to experience people who have what you want to have, it is important not to connect people with program (principles over personalities).
  • What can we do, what do you do to let people know about AlAnon?

I asked on twitter: how would you translate the 11th tradition into your personal life and I get a very good response from “the bubble hour”: “attraction not promotion means we can stand on our integrity in all things, without controlling outcomes or people.”

  • How do we practice Tradition 11 in this podcast?
  • We share only our own experience, strength, and hope.
  • We do not use our full names, and some of us use pseudonyms.
  • We don’t try to “sell” Al-Anon.
  • We often use phrases such as “loved one” when we mention the alcoholic(s) and/or addict(s) in our life.

A Slogan for Tradition 11: “Take what you like and leave the rest”

How do we practice this tradition in our life?

  • Being an example.
  • Act as we expect to be treated (“Golden rule”)

Upcoming topics include isolation and caretaking. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Tradition 9 – no organization – Episode 86

PodHow can we function without organization? Tradition 9 says, “Our groups, as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.” This seems somehow contradictory. What does it mean?

Spencer and Ruth talk about Tradition 9, following these questions:

  • What does it mean that our groups are not organized?
  • How do we get things done without “organization”?
  • When might we create “service boards” or committees?
  • How does this tradition connect to Steps 2 & 3?
  • How can I apply this tradition in my daily life?

Upcoming topics include “Is it caretaking or healthy support?” and “Triggers”. If you would like to share your experience with triggers and being triggered, and perhaps how working the program has helped you to deal with them, please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Tradition 8 – Episode 83

unityDo you find yourself looking for the “experts” in your meetings? Do you sometimes feel like you have nothing to offer? How do we help one another in Al-Anon? Today, we’re going to talk about Tradition 8, which states “Al-Anon Twelfth Step work should remain forever non-professional, but our service centers may employ special workers.”

Spencer and Ruth talk about Tradition 8, guided by these thought questions.

  • How does the reading match with my experience in Al-Anon?
  • Why do we have this tradition?
  • What are the advantages of a “fellowship of equals”?
  • What are the disadvantages?
  • Do I look to certain members as “experts”?
    • How can this be a problem for me?
    • How can this be a problem for them?
  • Do I sometimes feel reluctant to share because I’m not an “expert”?
  • Am I sometimes reluctant to share my problems because I feel I have to be “perfect” in my program?
  • How can I share with others without trying to fix them?
  • Am I sometimes “Mr or Ms Alanon”?
  • How/when am I judgemental?
  • How/when do I take others’ inventories?
  • What about paid employees (“special workers”)?
  • Final thoughts?

Our topic for next week is “The 4 M's: Managing, Manipulation, Mothering, and Martyrdom”. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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