LINCOLN AREA NEWSLETTER
I want to thank everyone who submitted things for our newsletter. If yours didn’t get into this issue of the newsletter look for it in the next one. We still need more things submitted for the next newsletter so please send them in to the address in the Open Forum section of this newsletter.
I have gotten a lot of good responses from people in the area about the newsletter. You need to let your GSR know how you feel about the newsletter and if you would like to see it continued. Remember that we only have these two issues as a trial basis. At the next area meeting they will be voting or rather to continue the newsletter, so be sure and get your opinion to your GSR.
MEMBER'S VOICE on Violence in Meetings
This is in response to a concern about how we (NA World Services) answers questions of violence at meetings, we strongly agree that it is very important for NA to be available to all addicts seeking recovery. Following is our typical response we offer when asked about the issue:
Regarding the issue of violence and threats of violence, we offer this perspective: an individual’s personal anonymity must be balanced with the welfare of the group. That is to say, if a member is violent or threatening violence, the welfare of the group is the primary consideration, and the group has the responsibility of maintaining a safe meeting place. If a member’s safety is threatened, the group must make the decision to (or not to) call the police, but the result of that decision rests with the individual acting or threatening to act violently, not the group.
But it may be possible to defuse the situation before it comes to that. The suggestion that we have is for two or three of the mature group members to meet with the disruptive individual on their way into the meeting each time. These members can help the individual understand what is being asked of him, and that violent behavior is not acceptable. This will need to be done in a loving, caring way, tempering honesty with compassion and understanding, a challenge for sure. They can explain that the NA meeting is for all people who want to stop using drugs and that everyone attending the meeting has a right not to be threatened or distracted from the atmosphere of recovery. It usually is not successful to ask the person this once or twice, but if a group continues to do this before each meeting, there is a better chance that the disruptive person will respect the needs of those attending the meeting. If this approach fails, the police can be called. Again, calling law enforcement is not inappropriate when personal safety is at stake.
Steve Rusch – Fellowship Services Team Leader – NA World Services
If you want what we have – do what we do
By following the lead of old timers, you can learn to be one, if you can allow yourself to become teachable.
Here’s one example. “Old timers” attend business meetings regularly and vote that we eliminate smoke breaks from meetings. Next month, Newcomers decide to attend JUST to vote it back in. Let me say that again – old timers vote it out, newcomers vote it back in. Can you read between the lines there? Just in case not, I’ll explain. Follow the lead of people trying to show you how to get some clean time. People with significant clean time are attempting to show newer members how to resist cravings, an hour at a time, 5 minutes at a time. But newcomers ALWAYS know better and think smoke breaks are necessary. We have a name for this – it’s called self-will run riot. We come here not having a clue how to do life, yet we tell the people that do, that we know better than them how meetings should run. I’ve seen this happen over and over again in the course of my recovery. Here we are in a room, learning how to resist our obsessive compulsions, and we choose to stop, break the continuity of our recovery meetings, to go out and practice our addictions. (Many old timers also smoke by the way…yet are able to resist urges for an hour or so). We don’t lock the door - you’re free to go out and smoke at any time, so why make people who want to resist cravings stop to indulge YOUR addiction, at the cost of a quality meeting with continuity. You want more fellowshipping time? Come early and stay late. I can’t even begin to count the newcomers who bailed at smoke break, never to return. Many many times, there will be 20 people in the meeting at the start, and only 6 or 8 after the break. Had they stayed another 30 minutes they just may have heard what they needed to save their lives. I think they left 5 minutes before the miracle happened. This is not fulfilling our primary purpose.
“We’re not interested in what you have done in the past…ONLY in what you want to do about your problem and how we can help.” The past includes today and yesterday’s drama; Recovery includes today and yesterdays solutions, which lead us into how to live tomorrow. Experience, strength and hope, experience is only a small part of how we get to the strength and hope, the important part. IF you don’t get there, you WILL repeat the (bad) experiences. Keep doing what you’re doing you will keep getting what you are getting. If you MUST talk about the experience, please keep it short and move directly into what you want to do about it and how we can help. We all know how to use and run unmanageable lives; we don’t need any more examples or stories about that.
Atmosphere of recovery?
Some of our meetings have been a mess lately. Our personal recovery depends upon NA unity. We come here with a disease as serious as a heart attack. It is important that we are not grim faced white knuckled serious people, yet an atmosphere of recovery must prevail in our meetings. We come here to save our lives, not to play games, play grab ass, chit chat, cross talk, gossip, get laid, tell war stories, and point out the differences. When you do this, it sets the example to others and more do it. Sometimes we have the inmates running the asylum here, and the atmosphere of recovery deteriorates. Newcomers leave, old-timers leave, and that is sad. Saving our lives is not a game, and this is not just a “new playground”. As members of Narcotics Anonymous, we have a responsibility to newcomers to show them a new way of life. We come here in Unity, sharing a common bond. We don’t know how to live life and enjoy it, yet our actions often alienate the very people capable of showing us how to do so. If you can’t engage in appropriate behavior, and help us to fulfill our primary purpose, please come back when you’re willing to learn.
I’m saddened, no ashamed that many old timers no longer come around our meetings. Many go elsewhere seeking recovery. This program gave them their wonderful lives, yet they are not here to share it. Why? I’ve been told that NA meetings are too “dysfunctional”. I am here to tell you that it works just fine, but we have strength in numbers. And I can also tell you that those disruptive members who are here only to take don’t stay. Only about 10% of the people who walk in the doors stay. Which ones? Well,
We ONLY keep what we have by giving it away, if that gives you a clue. Do you contribute to the atmosphere of recovery?
If you’re chairing a meeting, Please try to “steer” the meeting and keep the focus on recovery. This includes telling people when they have gone on too long, and bringing the topic back to recovery when it drifts. Uncomfortable, yes, vital, yes, if we want to stay. Remember this; part of sharing is sharing time. Try to monitor yourself as to when your 5 minutes is up.
Do you choose to be part of the solution, or part of the problem? Are you carrying the message or spreading the disease? War stories are the disease, talking about your problem and how we can help takes us to the solution.
“You have to learn to Listen, cuz you have to Listen to Learn”. We have a step study meeting, with the intent of helping one another understand and work steps. Do you share about the steps, or about daily drama? In the step study meeting, if you don’t know anything about the step, just ask. You’ll certainly find someone who has been where you are and will help you to the solution. If you have nothing to share about the step or steps, learn to listen. I know when I am talking I am not learning. Yet I know I have to share what I have, so I can keep it. Sometimes there isn’t a lot of time to do that if the meeting time is wasted listening to drama. There’s a time to take the cotton out of your ears and put it in your mouth. If you can’t talk about the steps, this would be one of those times. You most likely WILL hear things that will help you live your recovery.
I love this program and am dedicated to never turning my back on the program that saved my life. I have a very strong desire for quality recovery meetings. I never want to have the crap that goes on in our meetings drive me or anyone else out of the rooms. Follow the lead of old timers; you just may turn into one. The problem is Me, the Solution is WE. You can be part of the solution. Please help us to fulfill our primary purpose so our beloved program thrives.
|This poem is about my mother. A mother I have lost to the disease of addiction. It is one of the reasons I am in recovery. I have 2 years clean and hope someday my mother will too. Nothing more in life hurts me than what this poem tells of. To every mother, recovering; and trying to recover Thank you. There is one thing that you can be extremely proud of. No child should have to live with addicted parents. Even walking into a meeting of Narcotics Anonymous shows love for your child (ren). Thank you for doing what my mother hasn’t.|
Ode to an Addict
Like you never did
Love me like you should
I can no more live to hope
I know you’ll never be with me
You have something better
Something evil and distraught
Something that kills for sport
I tried to warn you earlier
You stood there crying
Like you knew
It’s trapped you in its deadly prison
And there you’ll stay
In your own insanity
So, you deserve a better way of life? Try planting this simple garden. To get started all you need is willingness to follow some suggestions and expend a little effort. If you need assistance; plenty of help is available.
There is no need to purchase fertilizer as we each have our own supply of BS
Literature is available to answer your questions and help you learn about tools you will need (all tools needed to work in your garden are freely available.).
If you are not familiar with how to use a tool, just ask any experienced gardener (they will be happy to share their knowledge).
A final point before breaking ground (also known as plowing in and turning it over): For the health and safety of all gardeners everything in the garden is organic. No Pesticides (chemicals or other artificial substances) allowed!
Begin your garden by sowing five rows of P’s…
Then Plant four rows of squash…
· Squash indifference
· Squash ego
· Squash intolerance
· Squash injustice
Follow this with five rows of lettuce…
· Let us be honest
· Let us be open-minded
· Let us be courteous
· Let us be unselfish
· Let us be humble
Finally lay out three rows of turnips…
· Turn up at meetings
· Turn up for service work
· Turn up with a smile
If you are working hard, and not looking, you will often be followed by the Master Gardener (also known as H.P., God, etc.) sowing seeds of Fellowship and Harmony (resulting in a harvest of friends and serenity) as a bonus for your efforts.
Please remember to take care of your tools and keep them close at hand (your never know when you may need them). Also remember that all growing things need time to mature. Lovingly tend the garden daily and have faith that the Master will bountifully bless your works.
If you have questions that can’t be answered by your fellow garners; the Master operates a 24-hour, toll-free hotline… Just call 1-877-ADDICTS.
- Anonymous -
My name is
Michael T and I’m a recovering addict in Lincoln
County. I live on the Oregon coast in a small town called Newport.
WHAT'S GOING ON???
Canal Creek Campout & Fish Fry is being held August 6, 7, & 8, 2004, at Canal Creek Campground seven miles east of Walport. There are flyers at all of the meetings and there will be more information in our next newsletter. This is a fun campout and registration includes dinner Saturday night and breakfast Sunday.
Triangle Lake Campout is being held August 27, 28, & 29, 2004, at Triangle Lake Campground southwest of Eugene. This is the second year we have had this campout. This is the end of summer campout nothing fancy but you do get dinner Saturday night.
The Philomath, Serenity Well meeting has a potluck the second Wednesday, of every month. It starts at 6:30 p.m. with the meeting starting at 7:00 p.m.
The Siletz, Freedom Group has a potluck the last Tuesday, of every month. It starts at 6:30 p.m. with the meeting starting at 7:30 p.m.
The Siletz, The Only Requirement For Membership meeting has a Speaker meeting the last Saturday of every month.
The From There To Here meeting has a Speaker meeting the last Sunday of every month.