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Guest Jeh

Transitioning And Aa

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Guest Jeh   
Guest Jeh

This is similar to the Coming Out in AA topic but I had some of my own questions and didn't want to derail the thread.

I'm FTM, and I'm going to start T in about a month. I dress as a guy, I bind, my hair is cut in a men's style, but people still call me she. I'm hoping that once I start T, the changes resulting from that will finally get me recognized as a guy, but I've just returned to AA and I don't know how they see the trans thing. There's one LGBT meeting in my city, but only a couple of people go.

Has anyone been actively transitioning while going to AA? They're going to see the changes as they happen, so there's no way I can go stealth. How are the people going to react to this?

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Michelle 2010   
Michelle 2010

Welcome Jeh, those are all pretty logical questions and concerns. As you can tell by reading the topics, there are people here going through what you are doing. there are several of us who are making the Sunday night chat at 9pm. You may want to stop by.

since you have been to AA before you were probably exposed to the 3rd tradition which states that the only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. Its a pretty liberal group of people and I've never seen anyone turned away. Your concern tho is on being accepted by the group. A regular member here is trying to go full time mtf in aa and has been accepted warmly by the women in his area. Thats all i can share of another's story. I'm sure she will show up here too. There are at least 3 canadians here who i've talked to about aa and trans issues. Not all are daily visitors from what I can tell but if they don't post at some point I'll wake them up lol.

There are areas of the state where I live that are more and less conservative. AA does reflect the cross section of th community so if you live in a liberal area it will be and if you live in a conservative area, it will be. As I said tho, the 3rd tradition guides the opening and closing of the doors, not personal attitudes. I'm sure someothers will be by to comment. In the meantime, stay sober and hit some meetings! Also, don't forget Sunday night chat...These are the kinds of issues we can discuss.

Best wishes

Michelle

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Guest Jeh   
Guest Jeh

Thank you.

So far I've found people to be generally accepting. I'm still having major trouble drinking though. I basically didn't attend class at my university this week because I was too busy drinking.

I just feel so different in AA. There are no young people at the meetings I go to , never mind LGBT folk. I don't relate to anyone.

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Michelle 2010   
Michelle 2010

Thank you.

So far I've found people to be generally accepting. I'm still having major trouble drinking though. I basically didn't attend class at my university this week because I was too busy drinking.

I just feel so different in AA. There are no young people at the meetings I go to , never mind LGBT folk. I don't relate to anyone.

I think it is part of the disease to feel different and that no one understands. Of course as t-folks its REALLY easy to feel different and that no one understands, lol!

I believe we may have chatted a couple of Sundays ago.. If you live in a large town I bet there are meetings you'll feel more comfortable at. If you're drinking is affecting school you might consider biting the bullet and going to meetings even if you don't feel you relate. I dug my hole deep enough that trans issues were down the list of problems when I got sober. Its easy to end up wondering where the next meal is coming from, how to get your loved ones back, how to get out of jail after getting a DUI, feeling unemployable, etc. if the booze continues to control your behavior. Even if the people in the rooms that you attend seem like they have nothing in common with you, they do know something you don't know... How to stay sober and not hate life.. and thats valuable information to learn from them.

The thing to ask yourself is, "how's thats working out for ya?" If your strategy for controlling your drinking or living a happy life is working out well, then perhaps AA isn't for you... If you find yourself making the same well intentioned(because hey, I'm really a good person) promises over and over but they don't seem to work out because life is conspiring against you, weellll, maybe it would be worth listening at an AA meeting to how they do it(life). For many of us the pain had to get pretty bad before becoming open mindedrolleyes.gif, but of course, the length of suffering is optional, something I had to learn from others who had been down the same road.

Best wishes

Michelle

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Guest Jeh   
Guest Jeh

I used to live in a very large city and enjoyed the AA meetings there. There were a lot of young people, and I made some friends. The city I'm in now is smaller, and there aren't any young people at meetings, at all. I wonder if I would find more young people if I went to meetings closer to the university. Unfortunately, I live on the other side of town.

I do want to stop drinking before I throw everything out the window. I can still dig in and fix things, like school. I can stop skipping class and do my work instead of drinking.

I don't know what to do about a sponsor. Generally, men sponsor men and women sponsor women, but who will sponsor me? I've only just started transition, and I would feel more comfortable with a female sponsor even if I identify as male.

That said, I've had a couple of sponsors, and I have trouble with close relationships. When they start insisting I call them every day I start to run.

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Arbon   
Arbon
Has anyone been actively transitioning while going to AA? They're going to see the changes as they happen, so there's no way I can go stealth. How are the people going to react to this?

Yes, I am actively transitioning and in AA, very openly. With a few exceptions, people have been very accepting and supportive of me in the fellowship. Much more so then what I experience within the rest of the community by a long shot. I think that is the experience of most trans people that I have met and talked to that are in the fellowship. There may be some uneasiness at first, but it usually passes pretty quickly.

I just feel so different in AA. There are no young people at the meetings I go to , never mind LGBT folk. I don't relate to anyone.

Pretty much everyone feels that way, whether they are to young, to old, different color, wrong economic class....pretty much everyone feels like they are different. I got sober young, started going to AA when I was 17 - 18, and finally got sober when I was 24. I felt to young! Plus I had all the gender stuff going on in the background to telling me I was to different from them. In contrast to that watching my dad struggle with his aclholism and his late 50's declaring that he is simply to old for AA and does not fit in :banghead: but he did finally realize that he might be wrong and got sober.

What you need to know is that the commonality in AA is the shared problem of alcoholism and that there is a solution for that problem. Everything else is really besides the point. As it says in the literature we are men and women that normally would not mix.

I don't know what to do about a sponsor. Generally, men sponsor men and women sponsor women, but who will sponsor me? I've only just started transition, and I would feel more comfortable with a female sponsor even if I identify as male.

The important thing, IMO, is to find a sponsor that "lives" what they are talking about and that will take you through the steps in the Big Book. It is good to have someone you feel comfortable with, that you can trust. But sometimes to, like with me, my first sponsor was very pushy with things like that steps and getting together often, I did not like that at all in the beginning but he did end up helping me immensely. I knew that my way did not work well at keeping me sober, and I was willing to try someone else's suggestions even if I did not like them.

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Guest kidnoel   
Guest kidnoel

I think that Arbon made some really good points in her post. I am still learning and accepting so much about my true self... but I am certain that I would not have been able to do it sober and I didn't know how to stay sober. The other members showed me how to do that.

The big book says "if you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it-then you are ready to take certain steps." (from How It Works"). For me that meant doing what my sponsor suggested I do even when I didn't really feel like it-so long as it was part of the program as outlined in the book, no funky made up stuff. It also meant that I looked for similarities. When I found myself struggling w something, I put that energy back into my program (step work, talked to others who were demonstrating the program, tried to be of service).

It was extremely terrifying to let go and let these wonderful group of misfits take me by the hand and show me the way, but they did. All I had to start with was a sliver of willingness.

I know how you feel cuz I felt that way in the beginning, so please know that you are not alone.

Much love and many blessings.

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