Last week at the LifeRing Service Center we received an email from someone, let's call him Clark, looking for a LifeRing meeting in a certain city, let's call it Gotham.
We don't currently have a meeting in that city but we have about half a dozen people on our mailing list who live there -- people who have bought LifeRing Press books or contacted us for other reasons. I asked Clark whether it would be OK if I asked the people on our list to contact him. Clark said "sure" and provided his phone number in addition to his email address.
I fired off a short email to the half dozen people in "Gotham" on our list and asked them please to extend their support to Clark. I provided Clark's contact information.
By the end of the week, the only person who had contacted Clark was an AA participant who told Clark where the AA meetings were. (We have many AA participants on our LifeRing mailing list.) Not one person contacted Clark to extend LifeRing support. Not one email, not one phone call, not one invitation to meet over coffee and talk.
Shame on us! If we're going to grow and become an established mainstream institution, we have to do better than that. We have to understand that the secret of empowering one's sober self is to connect with other sober selves. The engine of self-recovery is connections with others. If we don't take every opportunity to connect with others, our own sober self is bound to shrivel ... a dangerous course.
-- Marty N.