A.A. Myths: The Myth of Sponsorship – Big Book Sponsorship

A.A. Myths: The Myth of SponsorshipNo where in the first 164 pages of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous does it tell the newcomer or any other member of A.A. to get a sponsor.I hear it all the time in the rooms of A.A., “Get a sponsor”, “Call your sponsor everyday”, and “Don’t make any decisions until you talk to your sponsor”.I heard one fellow in the rooms of A.A. say, “My sponsor told me to call him everyday.” He replied, “But you’re out of town for the next two weeks?” His sponsor replied, “I said, you’re to call me everyday. I didn’t say I would talk to you everyday!”Incredible! I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard this pathetic ‘bromide’ touted as a sound strategy for helping the newcomer recover. Furthermore, I hear other “sponsees” share about how dependent they are on their sponsors for advice and counselling on medical, psychological, financial, legal, and relationship matters. “They won’t make any decisions about anything until they talk to their sponsors.” It’s no wonder why the rooms of A.A. are wrought with co-dependent members unable to function independently without being hand-held and spoon-fed their sponsor’s “pap” for some indefinite amount time in the program of A.A.I believe one of the biggest reasons A.A. recovery rates have plummeted from its stellar 50% to 75% success rates of the 1940’s to a dismal 10% or less success rate in the rooms today is due to poor and ineffective sponsorship.Bill W. writes: “Though three hundred thousand have recovered in the last twenty-five years, maybe half a million more have walked into our midst, and then out again. We can’t well content ourselves with the view that all these recovery failures were entirely the fault of the newcomers themselves. Perhaps a great many didn’t receive the kind and amount of sponsorship they so sorely needed. We didn’t communicate when we might have done so. So we AA’s failed them.” (AAGrapevine. The Dilemma of No Faith. 1961. Vo. 17 No. 17).

Source: A.A. Myths: The Myth of Sponsorship – Big Book Sponsorship


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