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John, I'm curious what your sponsor has to say about your decision to violate the 11th tradition. It exists for a reason, and early sobriety seems like a poor time to decide it isn't useful. I know that "technically" your blog isn't press -- but it is publicity at that level. I am a fellow member of this program, and I have at times wanted to do what you are doing -- yet later I was very glad (for multiple reasons) that I did not. There are layers to recovery that you will continue to learn about, and this looks like a lot of ego to me.

John Fogg

Jane— I appreciate your comment & concerns.

I don't mention the name of the program on purpose. I was advised to say things like "the Program... Program of recovery... 12-Steps... Fellowship..." etceteras. So, that's what I do. Sadly the powers that were titled the book what became the very name of the fellowship. Makes it messy

One mistake I now realize I've made is a tag with two As. I'm not all that savvy about tag-like things, so I delete that one.

As for myself, I not only don't care who knows I am an alcoholic and in the process of recovery... it serves many people to know that.

Regarding "...this looks like a lot of ego to me." I doubt it, and I'll take another look. It's ALWAYS worth doing that.

Thanks again.
I appreciate you.


Hi John,

So, it may or may not "serve many people" to know that you are in recovery. You won't ever get to know that for a fact. You might not say the name of the program, but anyone with half a brain and access to Google can figure it out. So you are representing yourself as a "face" of what recovery in that program looks like. It may benefit some, and it may alienate others. It may later alienate those who initially benefited. You just never know. The alienation part is the reason why the 11th Tradition exists.

I really am curious what your sponsor has suggested about these postings. If you are sponsoring yourself, then you may have a ways to go in practicing the principles of that book. There are a lot of old ideas in early sobriety that we don't even know we have, and as a result we make mistakes and do things that we think are right but later realize were a piss-poor idea. Keep an open mind, talk to other alcoholics, and explore why you think the 11th tradition exists -- and why you think it doesn't apply to you. Because that is what your posts imply.

John Fogg

Jane, under the heading of "just so you know."

First, (again) a sincere thanks for your comments & concerns. I read them and reflect upon them and ask others for their perspective. And have spoken with my sponsor on the matter today.

I have been a very public person (in my pond) for 25 years. I keep the Tradition as best I know how (and have made a number of adjustments so far) and I am open to improving. AND, I have the right and will exercise same to be as open with my journey of recovery & reinvention as I choose.

Like all else, the traditions are open to interpretation. As Dr. Bob pointed out, we can breach the 11th by going over it or under it.

I AM the face of MY recovery. Not yours. Not the fellowships. Mine.

AND, I have known, intellectually, the value of being open for years. The Program has helped me live that beyond my rational/analytical mind— and my lower/false-self.

Not perfection. Just progress.

Again, thanks.
I appreciate you and your comments.

Dazzling Dolly Lutz

Hi, John,
What a great name for an anonymous program. :>) You would not remember me, but I met you a couple of times, at MLM events many (14) years ago. I valued you and your books very very much.......but being in recovery myself for 24 years....even then I saw and heard things that made me suspect we might have the disease in common......I'm also on your email list.....and did find it odd that you kind of dropped off the face of the earth the last couple of months.

NOW I understand why.....was I ever stunned to receive an email starting with, HI, I'm John, and I'm an Alcoholic. It absolutely shocked me......at first...and then as I read your letter, tears came to my eyes as the full realization of what you've been living like and what you and your family have been through. Even without the details on this Blog......I KNOW what it is like to go from darkness to recovery and re-invention.

Yes, I do believe you are blatantly breaking Tradition 11......and as Jane said, you might do things differently the longer you are sober......but I for one am very glad you are being so gut-level honest about things. YOU may or not help a lot of hurting people out there.
I almost did what you are doing.....but my Sponsor and my God..through prayer, cautioned me against it....I don't believe it is EGO that is driving you......you've always been a giver/teacher/mentor to thousands of others and now you want to share your experience, strength and hope with those who may need to hear it.

Maybe it was a bit too strong..."in your face"....the way you outed yourself....but I pray that much good comes of it.

I actually feel closer than ever to you now......though we don't really know each other...and you and family will be in my prayers......
It takes a great deal of courage to admit our faults and failings.....especially in such a public way.
It also takes a great deal of courage to seek help...even to admit we need it. But that is the true humility that God is looking for.......there are millions of hurting Alcoholic/Co-Dependent people still trying to do it on there own....and many of them will die. Some of my family members have and some of my closest friends have.

I pray your being so candid will be a blessing to so many....
I for one will be sharing your Blog with others....
I have a Blog, but I've been too "chicken" to be more honest about my personal struggle....and NOW I am going to change all that...very soon.
Thank you and Blessings Always,
Your new "sister", Dazzling Dolly

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