It Stopped Working

Used 2012-11-01 It's Stopped Working sobriety recovery alcoholism

It’s Stopped Working

i’m adding this to the SlogAAns & sAAyings page but i wanted to cross post here because it relates to my previous post about timing.

It Works Until It Doesn’t

Addicts begin using their drug of choice as self medication for a variety of ailments, and the treatment is efficient until “using” became “abusing” and “treatment” became “mistreatment”. The old methods work until they don’t work anymore. When the cure becomes the disease, alcoholics in recovery seek out healthier methods of dealing.

(For those of us in Alcoholics Anonymous, this realization is Step 1 material. “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.“)


This adage applies to other areas in recovery as well. Check it out:

  • i didn’t believe in or even need a Higher Power until i did
  • i skipped meditation in my recovery until i didn’t
  • i find it hard to be intimate until i won’t anymore…


About Al K Hall

Like a battered drinker or a punch drunk boxer, i am here for another round. For those of you who don’t know me, i’m a semi-professional writer on the rocks and a non-practicing alcoholic (if after 30 years of practicing, you still can't do something well, it's best to just give it up). For those of you who do know me, thanks for stopping by anyway and where’s the ten bucks you owe me? Welcome to my Bar None. A hole in the wall where we can hang out and trade the kind of stories you swap only when you’ve had one too many and either can’t find your way home or are afraid to. Hell, it’s cheaper than therapy and plus the pictures are prettier. Here we’ll crack open bottles and jokes and ‘last call’ are the only dirty words you’ll never hear. Pull up a stool and make yourselves at home.

Posted on November 1, 2012, in AA Step Work, Alcoholics Anonymous, Alcoholism, Lessons in Recovery, Recovery and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. “It Works Until It Doesn’t”

    I have found in my own life and experiences — maybe as a kind of universal law — that this is really true. And it seems like my higher power is very aware that something not working is the best way to get my attention, lol. Was thinking of wheat and gluten here. I kept eating it, using it, and it worked until it clearly didn’t. True of drinking for me, too, for I was absolutely one who abused it, but was whacked on the head with a brick (metaphorically-speaking) straight from the universe: “Alcohol will not work for you any more.”

    Hopefully, I can get to the point where I recognize a little before the brick needs to hit me square between the eyes the signs and signals that something is not working any more. Meaning: hopefully I can see the flags that an unhealthy coping mechanism needs to go in the cosmic cleanup of my spiritual cellars a little ahead of time, before I get to the “brick stage” (lol). I’m getting better about that. Hopefully, I will need fewer and fewer radical means than previously to do my learning about what can stay and what really needs to go.

    Sometimes the “this does not work anymore” experiences have been *really* tough to get through!

    May I proceed ahead with eyes open to the ways in which I am continuing to use faulty thinking and coping.


    • Hi Babe!

      i think you’re right that “It works until it doesn’t” is kind of a universal law. i’ve had to “hit bottoms” with my drinking and other defects (large and small) and i agree, it’s preferable to understand a situation is no longer working before it gets to the “brick stage”.

      Keep coming back,

      Al K Hall

  2. Yeah and what I find really annoying is that for SOME people, OTHER people that is, they can keep going using and it works, to deal with stress or emotion or whateve, and it NEVER crosses over into abusing. This is the great UNFAIRNESS of life!!! That those bloody NORMIES!! not like us ALKIES!! Sorry about the liberal use of caps there but it helps with emphasis and it’s late at night here and I’m tired. Anyway, on a cheerier note… aren’t we amazing sober people!!!! Ha ha … take care xxxx

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