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Post Info TOPIC: 12/29/20 Courage to Change - Criticism of Others


~*Service Worker*~

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12/29/20 Courage to Change - Criticism of Others


When everything the alcoholic or another does leaves me feeling irritation, something is going on within me suggests today's contributor. Quite likely I am agitated and disturbed with some fact or detail in my life, but I am routing the blame to an easier target.

Reminder: Criticizing may be as difficult to give up for me as alcohol is for the alcoholic. Intended to serve a similar purpose of releasing internalized discomfort and pain, it is no more effective than alcohol at bringing real solutions.

"A man can detect a speck in another's hair, but can't see the flies on his own nose." - Mendele Mocher Seforim
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The more I want to believe the fault lies with someone else, the more likely it is my own, unaddressed issues that are robbing my serenity. In turning outward to pin responsibility, I miss the most likely source: my own attitudes, expectations, and 'shoulds'.

Grateful for the wisdom and guidance of the program



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Paul

"...when we try to control others, we lose the ability to manage our own lives."  - Paths to Recovery 



~*Service Worker*~

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Thanks for today's reading and your share Paul. This is something I need to be mindful of especially now. Although not of my making, things feel chaotic and insane right now. We're told in Al-anon that we have free will and the right to make choices and work towards goals aimed to self sufficiency not dependency. That's a primary goal for my own recovery and has become my way of life. I resent control by others, others imposing their will on me, shoulding on me. It's no wonder as I feel the walls closing in on my right to make my own choices for my own life, my own feelings begin to come out sideways through criticism and unrealistic expectations of those closest to me to be consistently perfect as not to get on my last nerve. In reality, I impose on another the very thing from which I myself am seeking freedom; control by others over my will and choices. This reveals itself in an unloving, uncaring and critical demeanor and need to be right. This happens far less often when I can speak about my fears, anger and resentments honestly and with vulnerability to my hp and a trusted Alanon member. In doing so, I can regain emotional balance, am prone to less projection of my stinking thinking onto others and able to focus on what other Al-anon tools of self care I might use to toward my own self improvement in lieu of doing the very thing I distain to those closest to me which is being regulated by others and being criticized when I make my own choices rather than follow their will. TT

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Surround yourself with people and elements that support your destiny, not just your history.



~*Service Worker*~

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Thank you Paul for your service and for both above shares. I had a reasonable discussion with my A on Sunday night, explaining the dysfunction in our marriage as I see it. For once I think I did a fairly good job of not blaming, but saying how I experience things. In this discussion I also owned my own unhealthy behavior and my reason for making some contact with alanon daily. I think it was a step in the right direction.

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Lyne



~*Service Worker*~

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Good morning MIP family. Thank you Paul for your service and the daily. Thank you both for your ESH & shares. I must share about my 'thinking' and how it leads me sideways as well as our program/tools and how it helps me focus and recenter.

I truly have dreaded the holiday season for about 15 years. I've gone from one who over-did everything - decorations, gifts, baking/cooking/gatherings, etc. to one who's opted to view this season as just another day, as suggested by our program. Suffice it to say that with loss, the season has become even more difficult as I try to be authentic and feel my feelings today where in the past I did all I could to avoid feeling/reality.

So, yesterday was the one year anniversary of my cousin's life celebration. My heart fully understands she's gone and my sadness/missing her is real. Yet, my mind is still in a bit of denial that she was diagnosed and dead within 30 days, without any sickness, symptoms, etc. So, I started the day with the plan to just roll with it and be gentle with myself. Needless to say, in spite of my plans, my mind went from missing my cousin to missing her mother, Betty, my Aunt(s), my nephew, etc. Then, in spite of my plans, I began to dwell on my sons, this disease, etc. In spite of my plan, my tools, etc. I allowed my sadness to take over for a while and my mind just went to all that's wrong in my life.

On a separate page of my brain, I have a really, really good friend who's helped me stay the course with social distancing, staying home, being part of the solution, etc. Long story short, she opted to get in her car right after Thanksgiving, drive to Florida (staying in hotels along the way), and set up camp at an extended stay place for an unspecified period of time....a snowbird kind of deal. I have been bothered by this from when I found out because she lives alone, she's high risk, I'm an emergency POC for her and she chose to sneak out of town and not tell any of 'us' in our trusted small group (all in recovery).

Not knowing she had left town, I posted in our group one day how utterly frustrating it was that many opted to travel and gather, in spite of health expert warnings, for the holidays. It was kind of a rant, and I was not aware of her relocation...she sent me a couple messages off-line of the group that made no sense and suggested I had traveled earlier in the year (to care for my Covid parents, in their 80's when only social distancing & masks were recommended).

I've opted to leave it sit until I can take action that's divinely inspired vs. 'IAM inspired'. So, this situation has been sitting in my mind/heart for a few days, which most likely did not help my slight decent into insanity yesterday. How easy it is for me to forget how utterly powerless I am over other people, places and things!! How easy is it for me to forget that I am blessed to have a HP who will guide me away from self-will and ego if/when I will just let go?

I reached out to another in recovery and talked all about my thinking, my obsessions, my sadness, my worry, etc. I can't tell you why I waited until last evening to do so, yet I did. Needless to say, I felt better after our conversation and even more serene this morning. Needless to say, my willingness to look beyond my own imperfections and focus on the actions of my friend derailed me in ways yet to be revealed. I am grateful today that I made it through yesterday. I am grateful today that it's not my job to judge or criticize what another is/is not doing. It is my job to unconditionally love others and to unconditionally accept life on life's terms.

I giggle every time I read that quote - it's just so super silly, yet so darn true! Make it a great day all...(((Hugs)))

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Practice the PAUSE...Pause before judging.  Pause before assuming.  Pause before accusing.  Pause whenever you are about to react harshly and you will avoid doing and saying things you will later regret.  ~~~~  Lori Deschene

 

 



Senior Member

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Greetings to everyone!! Thank you Enigmatic for your service, ESH and today's reading.

I revisited the 12 Steps recently, because I was having such feelings of resentment and it actually was making

me very uncomfortable!! I knew it wasn't right and needed to be addressed. Just love Al-Anon!!

Am much more in tune with reality and found my serenity indeed.

{{HUGS}} To everyone!

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"Forgiveness doesn't excuse bad behavior, but does prevent bad behavior from destroying your heart" ~ Unknown

Debbie



~*Service Worker*~

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I am here 

I can definitely relate to your exasperation at your friends actions. This pandemic certainly brings out the best on is. 

I made two friends this year. One got a DUI.  The other is also traveling like your friend is. He is in tremendous denial about the virus.   So what gves? 

Certainly we have to detach.  Making and keeping friends is difficult. One of the jobs I lost this year was one I had had for several years.   I had some friends there. I think pf them often.

This pandemic has certainly brought out the dysfunctional 

Maybe it will he a good thing in thr long run because we can give up the presumption  that other people are functional and we are not 

 

Maresie 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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~*Service Worker*~

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 aww good topic Paul and y'all...

Getting a perspective was a big need for me. A song healthy group give me this. At my first Alanon meeting one member actually stood up and pierced the air with her finger. "When I am poking my finger at someone- there are three pointing back at me!"

Good lesson. In recent years I heard the same person using the akronym NUTS. Not Using The Steps. Not conference approved. This same person told me- and the group- that we couldn't read from Hope For Today. Because it wasn't conference approved.

So there is still a lesson here for me.

Not getting into the victim situation. 

Thanks.



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Each Alanon member is my teacher.                                                                                                                  



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Thank you for your service Enigmatic.

I Am Here, Im sorry youve been down. It sucks to get caught in those moments when it all comes down on you at the same time. It happens to everyone at some point. The rabit hole of very real grief and longing can be deep and dark. It didnt help you any that your friend misunderstood your feelings about life with covid and the way people behave, was directed at her. Thats her own self judgement at work assuming a direct message. You cant change whats going on in her heart and head about her own behavior, nor do you have any responsibility for her reactions to your feelings.

On a regular day the difficulties we each face in life way heavy on us. During this time its understandable how we can feel the gravity of it all at once. The pandemic can make it all seem like a perfect storm. We, in Alanon, can thank HP we have the tools to get us up and out of those feelings. Youve always been a voice of calm, care, and strength when ive been down in it. Ive been so grateful for you and all of the Alanon family. I hope I can send a little light your way today. Be good and gentle to yourself...you deserve it. (((hugs)))

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This is a good and timely topic. Our son and his GF popped by for like 10 minutes earlier, I hadn't seen them in awhile. I was *trying* to talk to both of them but AH talked non stop, so much that I couldn't get a word in edgewise. Every time I said one or two words he over talked me and got louder so that they listened to him not me ,they really had no choice though, he's always the center of attention.

After they left, I said something to him about it, asking why he always does that to me no matter who we are around. I told him it really hurts my feelings and blah ,blah, blah. I stopped to think about what I was doing and what I was saying and then apologized.

It wasn't really about him ,it's about ME. I have a hard time talking to people, having conversations and chit chat. Some people think I am snooty and snotty because of it. I had even told him that it's his fault people think that about me because he never shuts up and gives me a chance to talk. That's not exactly true though. It's just easier to blame him than admit to my poor conversational skills and that it's something I need to work on. And if I am completely honest, I guess it bothers me and I am a bit jealous that everybody always likes him and he can talk to any person he is around and acts like he has known them his whole life, even if he has just met them.

That was just a trivial example but enough to be food for thought for me. If I am projecting small things on him maybe I need to take a long look at some of the big things too.

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SunnyFrogs, you made me smile, because AH does the same thing as well. Talks loud, long and doesn't have a clue that he is

monopolizing the conversation. I would never ever say anything to him about it, there would be hell to pay and it is simply,

to me, not worth the effort. I actually have learned to not care. Sounds horrible, but that what I have to do with AH who is

partial narcissistic as well. I like you, feel that AH does this to keep the lime light on himself, hence the narcissism.

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"Forgiveness doesn't excuse bad behavior, but does prevent bad behavior from destroying your heart" ~ Unknown

Debbie



~*Service Worker*~

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Dear Sunnyfrogs 

My qualifier could really turn on the charm 

He left me in the dust most of the time 

I have been doing a lot of research on narcissism. I am around a lot of narcissists.  Inderstanding how they manipulate is very important to me .

Certainly there have been ways I did not know how to.speak up for nyself.  There are other ways I put uo with being around people who dominsted me.  I did not know how to negotiate otherwise.

The other issue for me of course is that having boundaries means that I am not exactly popular.

The more I am aware of how manipulated i have been the better it is for me. There are certainly places that played on my low self esteem.  They knew just how to do it. 

There are two sides to a conversation. The qualifier was a master of the image. He appeared genial.sweet and kind to others. He was anything but that.  He did appear like that to me in the beginning but thaf soon went out the window.  Then he becane entitled  moody and withholding.

My part is that when he behaved differently I did not set limits. 

Now when people become demanding rude and entitled I let go. 

Letting go was  not a possibility before.  Now it is. 

 

I know I really settled for tremendously obnoxious behavior.

I settled for that for a long time. I settled for that in many relationships.  It is very painful to look at how easily I was manipulated in much the same fashion 

I know much of my experience around alcoholics has been being treated badly.  I protesred the treatment rather than set limits. Now I have limits they are very different from protests. 

 

Maresie 

Maresie 

 

.



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