Lack of power, that was our dilemma.
- Alcoholics Anonymous (the Big Book), page 45
By the time I finally admitted I was an alcoholic I was not really ashamed of the fact. On the surface, psychologically, that sounds like a good thing. What has very slowly been revealed to me is that in my case it indicates I never really (and by really, I mean really, REALLY - as in 100%) took Step One. Which also means I never really took Steps Two and Three.
From this statement I have no doubt that a long, philosophical, Big Book quotin', Big Book misquotin' alcoholic/addict discussion/debate could begin....and go on and on and on. But those of you familiar with alcoholics/addicts, and particularly their debates, will know that would be a tedious thing indeed. For that reason, it's a good thing this is a blog rather than a discussion group. But I digress, as predicted by this paragraph :-).
My point is that 6+ years ago I took Step One thoroughly enough to stop drinking and start getting sober. I did not take it thoroughly enough to not transfer my addictive behaviors to a different arena. In my case, (one of) the arena(s) was sexually acting out, aka sexaholism, aka going places I never thought I would go to do things I never thought I would do.
It has taken me a long time to admit I have a problem with sexually "acting out" (such a nice term). That's because I find the admission very shameful...shame much deeper than any I ever felt about being an alcoholic. In my case, my queerness (sorry Brad, the description works for me and I know you know I use it proudly, not disparagingly...it must be a generation thing) completely clouded the issue. And by clouded, I mean it gave me an excuse for my behavior. The excuse went something like this: "God made me queer (insert bisexual, gay, gay-ish, not entirely straight [my second-favorite], whatever term you like), society made me ashamed of what God made me, that shame made me behave in less than noble ways, but I am just trying to find myself and express who I am, so what I am doing is not really that bad...just don't ask my wife if she agrees...etc. etc. etc." You get the idea.
What I know today, May 23, 2010, is that I am powerless. Over everything. E V E R Y T H I N G. Between my ears lies something like a lump of shit, except much less useful than a lump of shit. And I must start my day, every day, realizing that fact. Completely. 100%. And I must do my very best to remember that fact throughout the day. The whole day. 100% of the day. Once I have surrendered, to the very best of my ability, the notion that I have power of my own, I must plug into the only source of power that works for me. The power of my Higher Power.
It just dawned on me that a more accurate name for my Higher Power is my Only Power.
This may or may not make sense to you. All I know is that I have lived this way, to the best of my ability, for the past two weeks. And I have lived two weeks without craving or obsessing about having anonymous sex with another man.
I'm not ashamed to say that fact makes for an incredibly good two weeks for this addict/-aholic.
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Lack of power, that was our dilemma.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
I'm back. Not TRYING to be back. Just back.
With an updated understanding of acceptance, humility, gratitude, recovery, peace, serenity, alcoholism, addiction, lust, God, mobius strip as metaphor for life and a lot more.
I also have a healthy respect for the part this blog can play in my continued sobriety and recovery.
Posted by Flip at 7:29 AM
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
January 23 will mark the third birthday of this blog.
Happy Birthday, Flip!
I haven't read any of your old posts for a very long time. But if I remember correctly, when you first started this blog you had one overriding desire...to "right-size" the (in your eyes) major problematic circumstance of your life - that of being a not-entirely-straight man married to a woman. How's that going?
Hey, glad you asked. Today, as so often happens, I heard just what I needed to hear in an AA meeting. I heard that because of the gift I have been given through AA, my pain is now optional.
Truth. Like a dash of cold water to the face. Today I have a choice. I can surrender my will and my life to a Higher Power (a higher power I don't have to be able to understand or explain, by the way) and I can find serenity. Or I can hang on to my will (it's MY life, dammit!!!) and be on my own - subject to both fleeting pleasures and a pain that, in 50+ years, I have found no way to relieve other than by surrendering my life and my will to a Higher Power.
It's going very well, thank you.
Love and hugs to anyone who might read this.
Posted by Flip at 3:32 PM