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January 10, 2013


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Personally I am so very grateful you ARE OK and you are back to posting that I'm willing to get over myself and forgive. Today. Maybe tomorrow will be different. If you vanish again.

atomic momma

This might be one of the best posts ever in my opinion.

I don't have a blog. I do sometimes though feel like if a writer of a blog needs time off the polite, responsible thing to do is post that, leave up your past blog posts and either tell people you're done, you're not done, or that you need a break. We get attached out here.

I think C makes a valid point and I'm glad he/she wrote and I'm even happier that you posted and responded.

I heard this from someone else so I can't take credit but it goes like this (and you touch on this): people will disappoint you and let you down. Our Higher Power has designed it that way so we turn to our Higher Power for wisdom and not the humanity of people


I love the blog, and just have to say that as both an alcoholic and someone who wrote a personal blog that became surprisingly popular, I understand. Sometimes it's hard to believe (or, it was for me) that so many strangers take so seriously something that you plunk out on the keyboard in your pajamas after work! Anyway, keep up the great work.


Brings to mind one of my favorite program quotes, "Expectations are just premeditated resentments."


I did in fact think the worst during your absence and when you came back with the feeble excuse post it didn't sit right with me either. I just wasn't brave enough to write you anything about it the way this person did. Your blog after all is a gift, and who am I to lash out at you and hurt your feelings? I must admit tho, your response in this post to the email was long and windy and I couldn't read all of it.


I love it. Reminds me of the importance of treating BOTH sides of our disease by keeping my seat warm in al-anon. The requirement for membership to al-anon is if you've been affected by someone's alcoholism.

Grace Hall

I read every last word and it made me so grateful for AA. Your ability to respond the way you did is the program in action for me.

Having just found you quite by accident and then realizing the date of your last post made me really sad...for ME! I think I even emailed you asking if you were okay.

It was with a happy heart that, on return to your blog, there was a new post!

Thank you for the gift of your blog.


Interestingly I also wondered if there was something disingenuous in your reason for being away. Of course the reason for that is my tendency toward catastrophization, one shared, I imagine, by most readers. We assumed the worst en masse, something a more general blog wouldn't have to deal with, and something beyond your control. An excellent and honest response to this issue. A heads up would be appreciated next time you head off though!


Ah, Mr. SP. Since your sabbatical, I have gotten out of the habit of looking for your posts M-F, but I do generally catch up, as I am doing now. Thank you for posting this rather odd email and writing your fine response. It makes me realize that I am more forgiving than I think I am as I did not feel resentment toward you for disappearing for a while. Maybe since I've done some writing in my life, I recognize how tiring and painful it can become. In any case, thank you for starting again and thank you for being such a fine example of a human being who is living this program that has helped so many of us with so so many aspects of life. Cheers to you.

Bobby D.

As I read the "sanitized" version of the email you received, I couldn't help wondering how you would respond.

I should have known that you would answer with compassion, insight into your world, and a good dose of "you might take a look at that" towards the end.

I spent a few years wringing my hands as a bleeding deacon, but I'm glad for the sponsor who raised both eyebrows after one of my rants and "let me have it!"

You're right, AA is messy, but I can't ignore that THE program works. (I get so tired of people saying around here, "MY program works for me, but it may get you drunk." I'm pretty sure they're right! However, the program of action outlined in the Big Book is guaranteed to NOT get you drunk.)

I need no explanation for your absence (although I wondered). There are lots of things that are not my business in this world-- and with friends (and I count you as one of those), I think it can be downright disrespectful and rude to demand to know.

You and I are friends because I choose you. And even if I never hear from you again, I will always wish and think the best of you. That's what I've learned from my AA friends who love me UNCONDITIONALLY.

After all, once we've been loved that way, I don't think we can help ourselves.

Bill B

Welcome Home, Mr. SP!


Dear SP: Your blog is your own and you can post whenever your d@mn well feel like it. Although your followers care, and you are courteous to keep them somewhat informed, you don't really owe us anything! Who are we to call BS on you? This nimrod can get over him/herself. ;) Heh!


Mr SP, I can understand your correspondent's upset, particularly in the context of the events in his life.

When you disappeared, yes part of me thought the worst had happened and we had heard the last from Mr SP. But I tried to keep an open mind, remembering that it is hard to be with "not knowing" and any scenario or explanation that played out in my head was pure fantasy. I know that when my someone pretty well constant has fallen off the radar, my primitive brain senses jeopardy. Still, even this is just supposition.

When you eventually came back (yay!) and had a rather mundane account of your time away from this blog, I thought, it just figures.

Mr SP is an ordinary human being. He can have pretty mundane, banal resons for doing what he does. The fact that what he writes can have an extraordinary effect on people is, I believe, down to his ability to be a mouthpiece for a higher power.

Mr SP, you are an ordinary, humble human being. I can forgive your needing to drift away for a while. But I really, really, REALLY missed the mouthpiece to a higher power. I am going to keep coming back and I hope you do too.


I missed you very much when you were gone and I worried that something horrible had happened to you.
However, it never occured to me that I was owed anything. Blog writing is not obligatory, even if you formerly did it every day.
I worry about all my AA friends when I don't hear from them. It comes with the territory. Those kind of relationships are one of the things that makes AA so powerful. The common bonds that tie such a diverse group of people together.
I was worried when you were gone, I'm pleased that you are back. I hope that the period of rest rejuvenated your desire to write on this blog.

David S

You mean we have to be accountable? That's part of the deal?
Welcome back Mr. SP, humans can be just downright disappointing, glad I don't have to be accountable to a mass of bug eyes staring a a screen.


hummm, expectations and disappointments!
We (people) are flawed and will remain that way, therefore I try to expect nothing, demand nothing. Your return post was OK with me..who am I to read into your post? or to ask for more or less?
What is important is that you are OK, you are sharing your ESH, and I am blessed because you were/are/will be a big part of my sobriety. And for that I love you and thank you. (schmultzy, but that is the way it is, so there)


Mr SP- Your blog has helped me with recognizing the humour that goes with the pain of being human. I can poke my own bruises as I let them heal. What a gift that is.
I was worried when you disappeared. I have a bad habit of idolizing people that give these gifts. Silly pedestal placing of people who aren't even asking for a seat. I am going to take lessons instead of gathering resentments. This serves me a lot better and (in some moments) more palatable.


I am not an AA member, I stumbled across your blog while researching "cross talk". I quite like what I read and if it's okay with you I'd like to keep coming back. I am a member of another recovery program and find the dialogue here familair.
I admire your patience, respect and compassion in responding to someone in obvious pain.


Hey Mr. S thanks for writing again. Personally I love your prose and message. I like the long and windy blogs very much. You have a message and a gift.

My personal sponsor moved away and I had to deal with deep rooted abandonment issues that (until that point) I never had noticed. Boy talk about an opportunity for learning and growth. It was painful and brought up all kinds of garbage that was deep inside me.

Nothing happens without a reason. I just have to check myself and deal with my own issues. Pain is a great diagnostic tool. It shows me where I am wounded. It is up to me to seek treatment and heal.


I found this blog toward the end of February and I'm grateful I did. It is so interesting when an alcoholic complains "about the sad state of the nation" forgetting how fortunate we really are to have other recovering people in our lives whether they be bloggers or just another alcoholic. I'm just happy that AA is not an exclusive club where you're out if you screw up. That would really be a sad state of affairs would it not?


Just glad you are back. There must be a lot of pressure behind being this helpful. Words don't always come easy- even with a gift such as yours. Thank you for all you see, create, and pass along. I hope the break gave you the rest your mind and heart surely needed.

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