Two AA Members Walk Into This Cafe…

An example of how the AA sponsor system inflates egos and encourages sociopathy and just plain bad manners.

I was eating dinner in one of my favorite Park Slope cafes the other night when two guys IMG_0111walked in and asked if they could join me at my table. I thought this was a pretty strange request because there were about four empty tables in plain view in the place at the time. But I don’t like to be rude, so I told them to go ahead and sit down. In retrospect I think I must have been targeted because I was wearing a Lower East Side Needle Exchange T-shirt that said “I [heart] Drug Users.” on the back.

Well before very long the arrogant one who had forced himself onto my table was telling the other one all about how to do his fourth step inventory for his AA program. It was quite clear that the arrogant one was an AA sponsor and the sheeplike one was his sponsee. This was not a conversation which was likely to improve the digestion of my meal, so I kindly and politely told them that their conversation was highly offensive to me and would they please move it to another table. At which the arrogant one piped up that if I didn’t like what was being said that I ought to move to another table. This in spite of the fact that I had been there first.noaaman2.jpg

Then the arrogant one started saying “some are sicker than others” and I told him that I totally agreed because he was clearly sicker than anyone. At which point he hurled more insults at me and started talking about how everything he said was protected under the first amendment right of free speech. I explained to him that this did not apply in a private place of business which had the right to eject him if he was offending other customers.

At this point I called the waiter over, and the waiter asked them very nicely to move to another table and stop bothering me since I had been there first. Of course Mr. Sponsor Pants refused to move and said that the waiter ought to call the police on me. Perhaps he assumed that I was a drug user because of my shirt and assumed that I would be an easy target for oppression who would cower under the jackboot of the law. Although I am a staunch defender of the rights of drug users to be free from oppression and coerced religion such as is practiced by 12 step programs, it just so happens that all the drugs I like are legal, and hence I have no fear of the law. So I seconded the motion to call the police to eject these two interlopers who had invaded the privacy of my table and who were insisting upon offending me with their cult religious practices.Your ignorance is their power

Oh I might also mention that between the two of them all they had ordered was one cup of herbal tea. Mr. Sponsor Pants finally finished his cup of herbal tea and announced that he was paying his bill and leaving.

Why am I sharing this with you? It is a perfect example of how harmful AA is to people’s mental health. This man is typical of the sociopaths who become AA sponsors and of how their egos grow even more inflated as a result of the power they are given by their sponsorship roles. I have seen this sense of entitlement before when the AA meeting that used to meet in our church was evicted. Of course they spent much of their meeting time talking about how organized religion had lost contact with God and how the true God could only be found in AA meetings. But the real kicker was that they thought they had a right to move our piano every time they had a meeting even though they had been expressly forbidden to do so. They kept it up until they broke the leg of the piano which they then refused to pay for.

If you value your mental health, then stay away from AA. I hope some of this bad behavior sunk into that sponsee’s head and he has the sense to leave before he gets sucked in any deeper.

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About Kenneth Anderson

Kenneth Anderson is the author of the book How to Change Your Drinking: a Harm Reduction Guide to Alcohol. He is also the founder and CEO of The HAMS Harm Reduction Network.
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3 Responses to Two AA Members Walk Into This Cafe…

  1. There is definitely an AA “arrogance” that may have been there pre-AA or developed via AA’s program. The fact he’d so “not” humbly leave the table proves that he didn’t follow AA’s literature. If he had, he’d have walked away and “admitted his part in it.” But he did not. Which proves only that this Sponsor Pants guy did not realize he was wrong. Which means, AA does not properly inform, instruct, teach, or reiterate what “right from wrong” actually means. You were ambushed by AA members, thus proving AA members do act inappropriately and offensively. Therefore, if one wants to stop drinking forever and wants to adapt a demeanor of superiority and self-centered behavior and lack of empathy then… AA is perfect for you.

  2. cougarblogger says:

    This is a painful article to read, due to its clear invasion of privacy and drug user profiling … and yet it’s very important for people to understand what this cult religion does to destroy people.

    I certainly hope sponsee boy gets away from Mr. Sponsor Pants but unfortunately it usually doesn’t work that way after all the “you’re best thinking got you here” brainwashing.

    Thank you for taking the time to write this and post it. I don’t know how you maintained a civil tongue but mad props for doing so. I am so sorry they behaved so abusively towards you. You have helped more people than they will ever be able to help and these steppers need to be called out on their highly offensive behavior. Great work Ken.

    The AA God is filled with these Mr. Sponsor Pants types, the abusers who find their perfect environment in which to get away with murder. Literally.

    They clearly sat next to you thinking they could manipulate you to their cult religion. They had no idea they who they were fucking with and deserved all and more of the truth you handed them.

    I hope in some small way your writing this is cathartic for you and helps to off gas the normal frustration this encounter would induce.

    You are loved and appreciated and you deserve to be treated with respect wherever you go, especially in your own hood. If it helps at all, I am pissed on your behalf. I am also very thankful to you for writing this. This cult religion is dangerous and any worthwhile God has nothing to do with these selfish, abusive, destructive bastards.

  3. AA gave me only SERIOUS hurt and pain. They are horrible. Members don’t realize how it changes them. I pray for the courage to live with my SO who has changed so much since becoming part of the AA cult (and of course does NOT see it). I pray that AAers realize what brainwashing it is and get out of “Jonestown” and pray for people like me to be able to stand the pain of total destruction of a relationship due to AA thinking.

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