Some AA Meetings has a Reflections group format stated as an AA meeting. Primary’s (allergic to alcohol) don’t get sober at these meetings. Instead they are very often turned off from going to meetings at all, they are so bad.
Some say that only 1% of people who walk through the doors of AA will stay long enough to get sober. Media reports sometimes say anything up to 10% of the people introduced to AA stay. This percentage is false. For a starter they’re only guessing a percentage because there’s no way of knowing how many people walk through the doors.
AA’s foundation is anonymity. No records are kept and so no one knows who comes or who goes. However even if 1% stay the walls of AA meetings would be bulging with happy sober people. They are not, instead meetings are closing down due to lack of members.
A member reported recently attending a Daily Reflections group meeting and noted how wrong things were. Wrong in the way that the meeting was not in line with the original format of AA meetings. Primaries (people allergic to alcohol) will not get sober at these types of meetings and they need to be avoided at all cost. These types meetings will send an alcoholic nuts, therefor these meetings kill alcoholics.
The wrongs of Reflection Groups:
1. Reflection groups only go for an hour. Traditional AA meetings always go for an hour and a half. Meetings would only start at 8pm, so people who work can attend. It’s so important for people to be work when getting sober. They have travel time, time to eat, and time to find the meeting before it starts if they haven’t been before.
2. Daily Reflections meetings (meeting weekly) are not set up properly. One had around 45 people in attendance. The secretary had them sit in not one but 3 circles. 3 circles around with the chairman sitting in the middle.
This meant that people in the outer circle and middle circle were talking to everyone’s back. The people sitting inner circle were talking to people on the other side of the chairman and to the people behind them. Virtually no eye contact for anyone. It was hard to see who was talking most of the time. They have to be blockheads running the meeting. Not alcoholics.
The chairman started the meeting by reading Chapter 5 of the Big Book, How It Works (how it doesn’t work it should be). Luckily he read at a reasonable speed. Sometimes it’s a slow process for a variety of reasons that we won’t go into right now. The meeting went only for an hour. Next he asked someone to read out the 12 Traditions. Then after that another book called “Daily Reflections”.
3. Then back to the chairman who’s now ready to start the meeting. He reminded people it’s only an hour meeting so they needed to ‘share the time. There were 40 to 45 people and after the readings they had 40 minutes left to speak. That is absolutely crazy.
4. Out of the 8 or so people who go to speak only 1 or 2 briefly identified – meaning told a little of their story. The rest with a few minutes each to speak, instead of telling their story, praised god. For what, who knows?
One women in her 5 minutes said she was sober for a short time. She now has god in her life due to ‘doing the steps’ and said ‘that is lovely.’ In the next breath she said that, just last week, she had a Panic Attack. She thought she was going to die. She knew what was happening because she had them before.
It was so sad because she did not relate her results (the panic attack) to what she was doing. The women couldn’t see she was not getting sober. The panic attack was a direct result of what she was doing. God is not the right one to be seeking help from in the meetings. This point is often lost.
No time to identify
The next person asked to speak is a male. He simply praised god for him being there, and so it went on. Many said the same as each other. One bloke had a 1st birthday and so during the 40 minute meeting a Birthday Card went around for everyone to sign. This often happens at meetings and it’s so very distracting.
Having sobriety birthdays is so silly. On closing the meeting everyone formed a large circle by holding hands and before saying the Serenity Prayer to close they sang happy birthday to the bloke who’s a year sober. Wacky do! …won’t see him next year.