I Am Powerless Over People, Places and Things

Written by DeShawn McQueen on Monday, 19 November 2012. Posted in Voices in Recovery, Breaking News

Powerless Over People

I have a really good friend named Wyatt. We met about seven years ago, when we were both in rehab in Tucson, Arizona.

I was a prescription pill addict and so was he. Both of us were period drinkers as well. We quickly bonded due to the fact that neither one of us believed we were addicts or alcoholics. We had both accomplished a lot in life and were very high functioning.

I was in treatment for 94 days; he left four days before I did. He moved back home to San Francisco where he lives today, with his beautiful wife and daughter.

Since leaving treatment we have remained in contact. We talk several times a week and text every day. We visit with one another several times a year, either he visits with his family or I visit them.

As you probably already gathered, relapse was once very much a part of my early recovery, as I went to rehab seven years ago, but only have three years and five months of clean and sober time.

It was not until I left Arizona and moved to Los Angeles and actually started attending meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous that I got it…..I was powerless over alcohol and my life had become unmanageable. I eventually got a sponsor, worked the program, continued to attend meetings, obtained commitments and eventually acquired sponsees.

I have been able to maintain consistent sobriety.

I cannot say the same for Wyatt.

He has not been able to put together more than four months of solid sobriety. He continues to relapse, mostly over the stress of his very demanding, yet incredibly successful career.

He has tried rehab after rehab…..the very best that money can buy. Interventions have been arranged on his behalf, all to no avail. And, his family and friends, we have tried tough love as well.

I was on the phone with his wife yesterday, not to mention his dad and his brother, discussing what should be done next. We are really worried about the progression of his alcoholism.

To be honest, I have faith that he will get it someday. I wish it was today, but I have to be patient and tolerant with him.

I tell his wife that he is sick, he has alcoholism.

Meanwhile, I take his calls no matter what time and no matter what state he is in; I take him to meetings whenever I am in town. I never judge him nor admonition him. I can be an example. “Attraction rather than promotion…..”

I realize that if he could do better, he would. He is doing the best he can. He is just not ready to surrender yet. When he is ready, I will be waiting to offer my experience, strength and hope.

In the meantime, life is still in session. “I let go and let God” and embrace the fact that I am powerless over people, places and things, which includes the alcoholism of someone that I love.


If you or someone that you love is struggling with drug addiction or alcoholism, please call or text us. We can help you.

Photo Courtesy of: /holisticfitness4u

About the Author

DeShawn McQueen

DeShawn McQueen

DeShawn McQueen is a staff writer at Recovery Now Newspaper and Recoverynowtv.com, an informative newspaper that serves as a resource for persons of all stages of drug and alcohol treatment, by giving them access to relevant and necessary information so that they may live balanced and substance-free lifestyles. DeShawn graduated from Wayne State University with Bachelor of Science degrees in psychology and premedical sciences. He holds a Juris Doctors degree in law from Valparaiso University School of Law. DeShawn’s writing and research has been published in such academic journals as Behavioral Pharmacology and Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior among others. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

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