Join Us in Discussing Staying Sober Without AA by Charles Deemer

On the copyright page of Charles Deemer’s little ebook “Staying Sober Without AA,” after the title, it continues:

or religion, ideology, peer pressure, spousal ultimatums, deals, trade-offs, wagers, false promises, fear, loneliness, self-delusion, and other popular crutches.

In 2015, when I was just a few weeks sober, I stumbled upon this little ebook, and those words grabbed me like few others that I had read. That was exactly what I needed to be able to do.

There were a lot of myths about “addiction recovery” and the “right way” to achieve emotional sobriety that didn’t serve me. I felt tremendous pressure from some of the AA members with whom I interacted in my online community to do it the way that they had done it or expect to fail. Failing at staying sober quite literally terrified me.

At the time that I found Charles Deemer’s “Staying Sober Without AA,” I was 50 years old and maybe six weeks sober. I had heard people say, “I don’t think I have another quit in me,” and that is exactly how I felt. I needed to hold on to this quit for dear life, and from what I had been reading and hearing people talk about, holding on to staying sober was as hard as getting sober in the first place.

I found that the messaging that I was getting from members of AA, with whom I interacted or whose stories I read, frightened me further.

I found myself feeling diminished by myths like these: 

If you do not accept the label alcoholic you are in denial and destined to fail.

The work of sobriety is the 12 steps and you will not stay sober if you do not do this specific work.

You think too much- that is part of your problem.You are too busy busy busy- that is part of your problem. You are a people pleaser – that is part of the problem.Your problem with alcohol is not the problem it’s a symptom of the problem. The problem is you. 

The simplicity of Deemer’s message was exactly what I needed at that time 

Studies have found that the success rate for people quitting on their own is the same as those quitting in some kind of a program. In other words, there is no statistical advantage to joining a program, any program. The bad news is, the majority of attempts at sobriety fail. Relapse is likely no matter what you do. In fact, everyone in my VA class at treatment has relapsed except me. One of my counselors relapsed! But if I can do it, you can do it. Why not? It’s your life, and you are in control of it. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise. Keep reading, keep learning about alcohol, and use common sense.  Remember, no excuses. NO EXCUSES.

Join us in discussing Staying Sober Without AA by Charles Deemer, Follow the links below to the discussion posts inside our private “Boom Rethink the Drink” community.


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