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Florence Rankin

Florence Rankin

Florence was the first woman to get sober in AA, even for a short time. She came to AA in New York, in March 1937. She had several slips, but was sober over a year when she wrote her story for the Big Book.
(Silkworth.net, Biographies, “A Feminine Victory…

Tomas L.

Tomas L.

I drank my first beer when I was 16. We had a swimming pool and a sauna that we could use after PT in high school. One day, some of my classmates had brought beer. It was an amazing experience. That buzz after two or three beers was peculiar and…

The Right Way to Recover? Gaslighting and Psychological Manipulation

The Right Way to Recover? Gaslighting and Psychological Manipulation

The term “gaslighting” comes from a 1938 play called “Gaslight,” and it’s a story about a wife and a husband who’s set out on making her think she is going insane. One of the tactics he uses is making small changes to their environment—such as moving furniture…

Ebby Thacher – An Unhappy Life

Ebby Thacher – An Unhappy Life

Late November 1934 seemed to be the worst of times for Bill Wilson, an unemployed and completely discredited stockbroker living in Brooklyn, New York. He had fallen from a lofty place in life. Less than six years earlier, everything had been going his way: a luxury apartment, fat profits in…

Alli O.

Alli O.

A Secular Sobriety, authored by Dale K. is an invaluable tool for anyone who may be interested in a secular interpretation of the 164 pages of AA’s Big Book. Dale takes the reader through the first 164 pages, but rewritten as a secular version of the book. The book…

A Big Book Compromise Opens AA to Unbelievers

A Big Book Compromise Opens AA to Unbelievers

In the spring of 1938, the future of the group started by Bill Wilson and Bob Smith three years earlier was very much in doubt.  There were only two meetings–in Akron and New York. Wilson had proposed an ambitious plan for expansion: he wanted to send members on speaking…

Inclusiveness Can be a Matter of Life and Death

Inclusiveness Can be a Matter of Life and Death

I got a reputation as the rebellious atheist type at my AA home group, even though I never spoke against religion or the Judeo-Christian concept of God or identified myself as an atheist, and had, in fact, encouraged Christian sponsees to practice their faith…

Some Thoughts About AA in the 21st Century

Some Thoughts About AA in the 21st Century

A couple of days ago it was two years since I had my big surgery. I had cancer, and they took two thirds of my liver out. When the doctor came in I asked him: “Could you please do the surgery exactly the way they did it in 1939…

Chatting with Believers and Traditionalists in AA

Chatting with Believers and Traditionalists in AA

My conversations with people about “the God thing” in AA are usually kicked off by my non-recitation of the Lord’s Prayer after meetings. I try to be obvious about it. I don’t discretely bow my head to examine the flooring tiles, but instead look around the room…

AA and the Art of Automobile Maintenance

AA and the Art of Automobile Maintenance

It has probably happened to most of us during the times when we hadn’t put our lives back together yet, or back in our drinking days, that we’d be nursing an old vehicle along and there would be days we’d say, “Dear god, please let it start…