Why do people call me when they know I am going to tell them off? I try so hard to bite my tongue, and then I try to say it with love, and then I try to at least say it softly... but it always sounds so hard to me.
But when a fellow sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous calls and asks me what they should be doing - am I supposed to candy coat that? My first question was: do you have a sponsor? I knew the answer was no, but I felt the question was still worthy. My next question was: why don't you get a sponsor? Well, this man has been sober for over 20 years and therefore knows more than anyone else.... hmmmm. I told him there were plenty of people who are sober longer than 20 years who could sponsor him. Well, he said he has history with all of them. Well. That does sound like a problem.
A problem of arrogance.
God help us when we think we have all the answers and have no more to learn.
God help us when we can no longer humble ourselves to people we may not like, but need to love.
We don't come to Alcoholics Anonymous to show off our great selves, but to humble ourselves to our problem. We share a common problem, and a common solution. COMMON. Not special. Common. Humble.
I happen to believe that is why we start our shares with "My name is Mary, I am an alcoholic." Plain old Mary. Plain old alcoholic. Not special. Not hyphenated. We are all on the same level. We share a problem and a solution.
Unless of course you don't need it. And if you are an alcoholic, God help you.