The Narcissistic Nature of Alcoholics Anonymous

Here is another one we did a few years ago. Do these characteristics remind you of anyone?

  • Lucy

    William Wilson.

    And every redeemed member who believes life was fruitless before a destitute and womanizing stockbroker had DTs, found God and convinced a broken down child abusing nutcase doctor to get everyone sober.

  • hulahoop

    Uh…actually it reminds me of a lot of the people I saw in the rooms of AA. Not all of them. But a lot of them. It was like they went all profound like when they found out there was a newbie in the room. And the newbie (me included) would think, “Wow! How profound.” And then I went on to other meetings and discovered nothing I heard was profound at all. It wasn’t some inspirational thought I was destined to hear that day…it was some not newbie or old timer wanting to be a big fish in a little pond that day hoping they would parrot something I had never heard before because I was newbie and thought was profound. Does that make sense to y’all?

  • Sally

    you cracked me up!

    It does makes sense, lol. The last sponsor I had (number 5) would tell me things (repeatedly) that I had heard 1000 times already.

    Question for the two of you. Is making a sponsee call you every day but never calling them a sign of narcism? I can never figure it out. I thought it just plain rude to be told”

    “Call me every day but I won’t call you back. You have to call me. You have have to show willingness, and just have to keep trying to reach me”.

    I guess it makes them feel important to get phone calls. Then get repeat phone calls when they pretend they are too busy to answer the first time. Also, too righteous to be considerate and call the person back you are trying help.

  • Would officer Kenneth Moreno, who was is a current and long time member of AA be considered a narcissist for using his position of authority to make an illegal 911 call in order to return someone he believed to be an alcoholic?

    “Ms. Balbert pressed Officer Moreno to concede that he broke the law when he made a false 911 call to get dispatchers to send him back to the woman’s apartment after he had left the first time. ”

  • hulahoop

    Uh…Sally…I never got a sponsor. With the risk breaking the anonimity of AA…I heard some sponsees speaking about their sponsors in a way that really freaked me out. Svengali and Pavlov’s dog came to mind and does to this day along with “My Own Personal Jesus.” Also, at a lot of meetings they would ask for experienced members who wanted to become sponsors. Their eager hand raising was unsettling to me. Someone here compared it to collecting dolls and that has always stuck with me.

    I didn’t spend a lot of time in AA. There are people who post regularly on this site that spent many, many (too) many years in it. I found this site when I has having doubts and thought it was possibly “the alcoholic and my alcoholic nature” being in denial as I had been told in meetings. Thanks in a lot of ways to the people who were kind enough to openly discuss their experiences I was able to listen to what my brain and logic were telling me. I was not the only who had doubts and who did not believe AA was the way for me.

    I met a lot of people in AA who seemed well intentioned. I just never could get in to the sponsor thing. Especially after hearing some of the shares. They kept telling me I couldn’t trust my alcoholic mind, that my best thinking got me there, …how could I possibly trust my personal judgment enough to decide who was really sincere and who was not at such a trying time in my life?

  • AntiDenial

    Narcissistic behavior is exactly what we have experienced in Holly Hill Florida with the Daytona Beach area Narcotics Anonymous and Daytona Beach Alcoholics Anonymous.
    They have such a sense of entitlement to free rent, taking over a park regardless of what is best for the community. It is like they become delusional in thinking they are God feeling they save millions of lives according to them.I actually over heard an Alcoholics Anonymous member in a meeting a couple of weeks ago speaking in a nearby pavillion stating he had received an e-mail from another AA member. It stated “In AA it is okay if you believe in God,it is okay if you do not believe in God,as long as you dont think you are God!” This got lots of laughs and the speaker was joking as to why HE got this e-mail-were they trying to tell him something? Again lots of laughs. I sat there nearby thinking-OMG-they sure hit the nail on the head-didnt they? This is probably a common problem that comes up in AA when AA dogma goes to their head. I did not find it funny myself. It just confirmed my belief that they feel they are above reproach and superior to others. What about the people that never had a substance abuse problem and went on to have a healthy,happy life? They should get warm fuzzies for not having addiction issues in the first place.But -no the 20 year member gets a chip like a 1st grader gets a gold star. It is a patronizing act. But many seem to crave for decades the pat on the head that they have been a good little boy or girl.

  • AntiDenial

    Tonight they are having a huge picnic for the kids in the park.
    Na members kept walking up to meetings going’is this the NA meeting?” Where is the NA meeting?” It is so annoying they are running a rehab out of a park with all of these children.
    It’s all about them in NA Daytona Beach Fl.

  • AntiDenial

    I meant they kept walking up to families and asking them about NA meetings in Sunrise Park.

  • Insider

    AA is an organization which helps alcholics and addictions by using the steps and readings . It’s steps are about character building and learning how to be as a human on a spitual basis. When one is continuing to drink or drug then all bets are off in your own individual growth. Never mind the people in Aa. Aa is not narcissist it would be se people who decided to be in the program.yes narcistic personality traits and alcholic personality traits are closely linked. The only difference is when one is truely honest with oneself one would truely have enough humitlity and continue to grow . One would understand themselves the defect and actually change . A narcist continues the paterrn and lacks empathy and uses the program to actually hide what they really are. To thineself be true!

    • Gardener

      I agree, I’ve been a member of A.A. For almost 30 years and when I hear some folks talk about specialness, I always speak up and say we are no better or worse than anyone else and that we are NOT special. I firmly believe there are plenty of other ways to get sober but A.A. Worked for me. I don’t sponsor people very often and I don’t believe that as a member I can never say no to A.A. In fact, I work the Alanon program and that’s really where I integrated the steps and learned that I have a self and can set healthy boundaries and don’t have to conform to rigid dogma. The steps are wonderful and a great guideline to healthy living. I do believe there are lots of folks with all kinds of personality disorders or mental health issues that attend A.A. They became drug or alcohol addicted to cope with trauma in their lives. I don’t blindly believe what humans are saying in the program. I read the literature for myself and take what I need and leave the rest. I don’t believe that I have to consult with a sponsor for the rest of my life. The goal of having being a sponsor is to help guide and mentor not make someone dependent on you. My belief is that we are all equal. I cringe when I hear people talk about their little pigeons in the program and all the folks they sponsor. Now that is narcissism when you sit on a pedestal and have all your little followers. Most folks I know truly try to help and mentor. All we can do is share what worked for us. I don’t dictate to anyone what they should or should not do. I cringe when I hear big book thumpers lead tables pretending to be arm chair therapists. Some folks kill people when they say folks should get off their meds. They are not doctors. There is a lot of good and great recovery successes in AA and for that I am truly grateful. Unfortunately, there are a lot of misinformed people in A.A. As well.

      • John

        Sound as a bell Gardner. With you every step of the way.