Charlie Sheen … Normal? Burning the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Big Book Made Him Feel Better!

Recovery or ?

Very few are taking Charlie`s side in this world event! Maybe he has it right? Every time I see him, he sure looks happy. Isn’t that what life is all about?  Wine, women and song doesn’t really sound all that  bad. I remember Liberace saying “I don’t care what you say about me, just spell my name right.”

So what is “normal?” In my 65 years on this planet, I have yet to meet a normal person. In fact, the only thing that I consider “normal” is the cycle on a washing machine. Webster`s Dictionary defines normal as: “being the same.” Since I have never met any two humans who think, feel, or do the same, that means that no-one is normal.

Wait! Maybe I have to correct myself. I found something that is normal! The behavior of an alcoholic/drug addict is actually predictable if you know what to expect. I am a recovering alcoholic/ drug addict myself, but, just like Charlie, was a proud member of “denial anonymous” ( if there was such a group). Charlie and I had so much in common. I, too, used to misinterpret the meaning of life.

Charlie Sheen insists he will never use the support of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) to help him beat booze as he has nothing but contempt for the “ridiculous” system. During an interview with Britain’s The Sun, Sheen is pictured tearing pages out of the AA handbook and then using it to light the fire in his living room, declaring “I’m finally finding the right use for Alcoholics Anonymous.”

Although I may not have gone to that extreme, I was in and out of my 12 step program many times before “I got it.” I also criticized the A.A. program. But, during my relapses I would take the motto “One Day at a Time” to mean I should get high and escape reality and all responsibilities. No need to feel shame or guilt, medicate, and it worked! But the “one day theory” always had an end and I would wake up back in realty, which became more painful everyday. My temporary solution was simple, repeat my “one day at a time plan.” I finally reached the point of…. no way out!

Yes, Charlie Sheen, you are a normal person with an addiction. Being pain-free is “fun for the moment” (I always quoted the Dalai Lama to justify my addiction). But the price of the side effects is huge. I  could handle the harm I was doing to myself (which I did not know) but the pain I caused to the people who loved me was overwhelming. The most difficult part of all of this was to say “I need help.” I saw it as a sign of weakness, but it really was a sign of strength.

So, Charlie Sheen, I understand you. For those unfamiliar with his disease, he is the way he is, and the power to change will never happen until the pain of realty sets in. Only through surrender will the door to recovery be opened.


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