I am an alcoholic which means in my recovery; I have alcoholic thinking. It is not the amount of drink I have consumed. I crossed over that invisible line and became an Alcoholic, I am emotionally and physically different and so is my thinking. My book tells me I have the phenomenon of craving and an allergy of the body.
When I sit in my meetings; we do the usual stuff, and ask people to identify, such as newcomers, 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, six months, and nine months of continuous sobriety. We also do give cakes for birthdays (sobriety anniversaries.) I listen to everyone, and I noticed this more and more lately.
I will use a name of Bill for this article. So, this person Bill, shares or identifies. I often hear, “Bill Alcoholic.” This identity is slightly off, from what I think I should be hearing. Saying “Bill Alcoholic” as if Alcoholic was his or her last name. I believe we need to identify as who we truly are, like, “Bill I am an Alcoholic” or “My name is Bill P., and I am an alcoholic.” Slightly different, but I think it is important. I also hear “I am Bill, I am an active member of Alcoholics Anonymous” while true is not identifying as an Alcoholic.
Why is it important. First, it is what we do, for each and at every meeting, (including business meetings). So why? Why do we identify as ‘I am an Alcoholic?’ I believe it helps when we are new to understand that we are physically and emotionally different from non-alcoholics, so this reinforces the understanding of who we are.
As well as, I am identifying as an alcoholic and with another alcoholic. It is the Essence of Our Common Bond.
What is an alcoholic?
Page XXX.5 All these, (alcoholics) and many others, have one symptom in common: they cannot start drinking without developing the phenomenon of craving. This phenomenon, as we have suggested, may be the manifestation of an allergy which differentiates these people, and sets them apart as a distinct entity. It has never been, by any treatment with which we are familiar, permanently eradicated. The only relief we have to suggest is entire abstinence.
That is a great definition of what it is to be an alcoholic. So, if we are alcoholic, we need to identify as just that. To reinforce this critical concept to ourselves and the newcomer.