January 02, 2013
Last week I encountered a situation at a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous that, to say the least, left me frustrated and resentful. Although I thought I was over it, what followed yesterday informed me otherwise.
To make a long story short, a week ago yesterday I was approached by another fellow alcoholic. As it turns out, this person happens to suffer from another addiction which I think was part of his motive for approaching me in the first place.
In any regard, he asked to speak to me in private. As the diplomatic and polite person I happen to be, I agreed. What happened next would serve as the focus of my resentment.
This addict, who shall remain nameless, informed me, or shall I say, prefaced the conversation with informing me that he was a sex addict.
In fact, based on a rumor that he said he heard from someone else, he assumed that I was a sex addict and insisted that I come to a Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous meeting with him. I was aghast!!!
No offense to the sex addicts out there, but I was offended and angered at the presumptuousness of his suggestion. As I informed him, I am certainly not a sex addict, as anyone who has spent time with me knows that sex is the furthest thing from my mind.
Moreover, I have never had an intimate relationship with anyone in the program of Alcoholics Anonymous.
When he realized how upset I was, he attempted to apologize. However, I was not interested. Even more, I was confused at how he could reach such a conclusion.
Yesterday I saw him at a meeting. He walked over to me, spoke, and attempted to shake my hand. I informed him that I was neither interested in speaking to him nor shaking his hand.
Determining my part in this resentment was tricky. Personally, I do not believe rumors, and I certainly do not participate in spreading them.
I suppose I expected that other people think and behave the same way.
As well, I am a very provincial, Victorian, and have even been described as frigid. Even though people who know me well are aware of these characteristics, I expected, or assumed that he should know better as well…….that he could somehow read my mind.
Last, I have a habit of not holding grudges and “not forgetting anything” so to speak, often, even when a person apologizes, i.e., I am very self-righteous.
In this case, I was very self-righteous. He apologized, and yet I felt contempt for him. I wanted him to feel shame and self-recrimination for “what he did to me”. That is not my job. I have no right to judge him.
God, divorce me from having expectations of others. Divorce me from anger and self-righteousness. Aid me in forgiving, forgetting, and moving on. Fill me with compassion, love, tolerance and patience.
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